Monday, January 9, 2012

Education is....Part Three

Final Installment in a series on our Philosophy of Education.
Education is a life... 
"By “life,” Charlotte wanted to remind us that “all the thought we offer to our
children shall be living though; no mere dry summaries of facts will do" (Vol. 2, p. 277). And the methods that Charlotte used presented each subject's material as living ideas. Here is where reading, writing, and arithmetic come in, along with all the other school subjects. But notice two important points: first, they are presented as living thoughts; and second, those school subjects occupy only one-third of the big picture of education."

So, finally we come to the academics. As a former school teacher, I love planning out the academic program that we will follow for a given year. It's easy for me to spend a lot of time on this, actually, at the expense of atmosphere and discipline at times! So, I appreciate the reminder that academics really only occupy one-third of the big picture. I also love many of the academic methods that Charlotte used in her schools. Among these are:
- the use of living books and excellent literature
- the use of narration or "telling back" in place of workbooks and comprehension questions
- short, focused lessons
- the development of the powers of observation through nature study.

Here is another mom's take on what she loves about Charlotte Mason's philosophy of education.  I could echo many of her reasons, especially #10.
Much has been written already on Charlotte's methods, so I will refer you to the Charlotte Mason Resources page in the sidebar if you'd like to know more.

So there you have it...our philsophy of education in a nutshell. In the weeks to come, I hope to use this space to share with you how we are living these things out in our home.

Quotations taken from Education is an Atmosphere, a Discipline, a Life, a free e-book available from Simply Charlotte Mason.

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