Month: March 2010

Detachment? Disinterest? by Melanie Walker

I am a passionate person by nature.  I am prone to speak quickly and I wonder if, at times, I am plagued by some form of Tourette’s Syndrome.  While this part of me has been useful in my commitment to the ideas of Mason, in starting a school, and in speaking about our shaping philosophy, I am finding that my passion is often as much vice as virtue.  Passion can run contrary to the habit that monastics referred to as “detachment.”  Charlotte Mason named it a healthy “disinterest.” Essex Cholmondley writes that “Miss Mason is concerned with the conduct of life showing that the opinions and principles that are gathered as life goes on should be a natural living growth out of the wide knowledge collected during the school years.” (The Story of Charlotte Mason, p 118) I believe she is promoting the idea that children want to be free, and will, if given a healthy atmosphere, form their own ideas and opinions.   These ideas and responses may differ from the teachers. Sometimes, the personality, passion, …

Thoughts on Living like a Person by Laurie Bestvater

“Children are born persons”…and grow up to be super persons? (“Honey, where’s my super suit?”)  Silly? Yes. But still, I have to wonder what our children see when they watch us.  I have had many occasions to burn the midnight oil this year, many of them seemingly good ones but a friend has provided a gentle reproof since I reread her biography, The Story of Charlotte Mason, last summer and copied notes on her daily routines.  Here they are as they sit in my day planner to remind me: 9:30am            attend to post & work 11:00am          20 minutes with Punch or Trollop 12:15 am         10 minutes reading a classic 1:00 pm           dinner with students then interviews or travel reading till 2:15 2:15-4:00         ride in the neighbourhood & tea 4-5:00              one hour with the principal 5-6:00              reading or proofing 7:00pm            dinner, then reading aloud, The Times, travel, literary memoirs 8:45                  ready for bed with Scott and devotional reading Thursdays were a ½ day as were Saturdays. Sunday was a day of complete rest. Are you as …