Month: July 2011

Homer, Charlotte Mason, and the College in Ambleside (All Surprisingly Interconnected) by Dr. John Thorley

I have just returned from the island of Chios, in Greece (just a few miles from the coast of Turkey), where each year I help with a conference on Homer run by an organisation called EUROCLASSICA, which consists of the Classical Associations of nearly thirty European countries. Course members are students, teachers, university faculty and people who are just interested in Homer. This is the 15th ‘Academia Homerica’ as we call it, and despite the economic problems in Greece today its great poet Homer still pulls in a lot of support for the conference. My job is to deliver a lecture or two to the whole conference, but mainly to run the student programme, in which we read most of a book of Homer in the original Greek and also have a few short lectures on Homeric topics. This year the student numbers were somewhat down because of the economic crisis, but five Greek students (i.e. students from Greece!) also joined us. As any teacher knows, it is very satisfying, even exhilarating, to teach a group …

Nature Study Around the World: Cambodia by HollyAnne Dobbins

This summer I travelled to Cambodia with a group of Maclellan Scholars from Covenant College. We partnered with Words of Life Ministries to learn about Cambodia, encourage expat missionaries, and offer our skills to help Imparting Smiles, the branch of Words of Life that reaches out to impoverished children. We flew into Phnom Penh where we met Elisabeth, Dan, and Heidi, American missionaries who live in Cambodia.  Dan and Heidi are newlyweds who live at the Krache Children’s Center. We spent a week in Krache working at Orosai House (Bamboo House) and at the Children’s Center. At Orosai House we laid cement, painted, washed mildew off the house, and dug trenches. It was hot, hard, and rewarding work. We were also blessed to spend six days working at the Children’s Center. The Center is home to about 70 kids—from an infant to young adults in their early twenties. At the Center kids are given a home, clothes, food, the opportunity to go to school, and extracurricular activities that include music, art, computer classes, and English …

Starting in the Right Direction by Kaley Struble

Your arrival at a destination does not depend upon your choice of a good road, or upon your journeying at a good pace, but entirely upon your starting in the right direction. Charlotte Mason, “Ourselves”, Part II, Chapter VI For the past two years, I have been surprised by the number of parents at the ChildlightUSA Conference who want to know what it’s like to be a Charlotte Mason student finished with school—what effects it has had on my life, and how I feel about being homeschooled using this method. I often struggle to verbalize an answer to some of these questions—it’s hard to talk or write about something that has been a part of my life for as long as I was conscious of the reality of curriculums and schooling methods. As the saying goes, does a fish really ever know it’s wet? I think the quote above could really answer the root of a lot of the questions that parents considering or using Mason’s method have. Everyone wants the assurance that they are, …

Being Swept Along Is Not Enough by Rebekah Brown Hierholzer

I don’t think it’s a good idea generally to begin anything with a disclaimer, but as it’s not unusual to assume that the writer of a blog article knows what he or she is talking about, I feel that perhaps it’s the way to go in this case. So here’s my disclaimer:  This blog entry is not about what I know; it’s about what I want to know.  What I’ve been thinking about, reading about.  It’s been the topic of many recent conversations with more than a handful of people.  It’s cropped up more than rarely in the most unusual ways at the most unusual times.  I tried to think of something else to write about but this topic keeps shouting at me, reminding me with more than gentle urgings, I’m important.  Seek me out. We speak often of the ideas of Mason’s philosophy – how they do much more than wander around the mere edges of our educational practices.  They reach in to deeper places, even the nooks and crannies, shining a light on …