All posts filed under: Mason Graduates

Surviving College on a CM Diet by Hannah Hoyt

I’m about to start my last full semester of college. As I prepare for commencement this May, I think back and remember all my semesters of college learning. Including the classes that I took when I was sixteen at my local community college, I will have had thirteen semesters in all. Those thirteen semesters have been filled with paper-writing, homework assignments, tests, quizzes, drills, studying, listening to lectures, practicing my instrument, presentations, performances, proficiencies, stress, worry, late or all-nighters, anxiety, good and bad grades, good and bad professors, good and bad roommates, and good and bad classes. No matter whether my experiences in a certain class or with an individual professor were good or bad, there are universal truths to a college education. You have no time. You don’t sleep. You’re busy. You’re stressed. Even if you love school, you still look forward to spring break. A slightly humorous graph came out a few years back that summed up a college experience. It simply presented the choices “Sleep,” “Good Grades,” and “A Social Life,” and …

The Beauty of a Charlotte Mason Education by Jeannette and Abigail Tulis

When you assign a post to be written by two book lovers, you invariably end up with a longer post than usual!  Thank you for indulging our inability to edit words that mean so much to us. Beauty can be found in the feast spread before the student in many lessons. Poetry, great literature, nature study, picture study, handicrafts, composer study — all contribute to feed the soul of a child in a Charlotte Mason education. Our God filled the world with beauty and gave us a natural appreciation for it. When we recognize it, we recognize the Creator and His goodness. My daughter Abigail, nearly 21, was educated based on Charlotte’s Mason’s ideas from her first years onward. She graduated from high school, during which time she was apprenticed to a local sculptor. After graduation she moved to New York to study classical figure sculpting at an atelier in Manhattan. It gives me great delight to watch her grow as an artist and as a person in a very competitive environment. I know so …

The Due Use of Books by Dr. Jennifer Spencer

The importance of reading is widely acknowledged.  It increases vocabulary and oral language skills.  It builds background knowledge that can help give context to new information.  It can even help acculturate new members into existing cultures. One benefit that is often overlooked, however, is reading’s effect on writing. Like many who choose to implement this philosophy, I wrestled for many years with Mason’s assertion that, ‘Composition’ comes by Nature.––In fact, lessons on ‘composition’ should follow the model of that famous essay on “Snakes in Ireland”––”There are none.” For children under nine, the question of composition resolves itself into that of narration, varied by some such simple exercise as to write a part and narrate a part, or write the whole account of a walk they have taken, a lesson they have studied, or of some simple matter that they know. Before they are ten, children who have been in the habit of using books will write good, vigorous English with ease and freedom; that is, if they have not been hampered by instructions. It is …

In Her Footsteps: A Young Scholar’s Pilgrimage to Ambleside by HollyAnne Dobbins

“Sun, moon, and stars, by day and night, At God’s commandment give us light; And when we wake, and while we sleep, Their watch, like guardian angels, keep The bright blue sky above our head, The soft green earth on which we tread, The ocean rolling round the land, Were made by God’s almighty hand. Sweet flowers that hill and dale adorn, Far fruit trees fields of grass and corn, The clouds that rise, the showers that fall, The winds that blow—God sent them all. The beasts that graze with downward eye, The birds that perch, and sing, and fly, The fishes swimming in the sea, God’s creatures are as well as we. But us He formed for better things, As servants of the King of kings, With lifted hands and open face, And thankful heart to seek His grace.” ~Montgomery “How All Things Praise the Lord” from The Ambleside Geography Books- Book 1 by Charlotte M. Mason I’m sitting in the Armitt library. It seems just a week ago that I stood up in …

The Gypsy’s Garden by Hannah Schaefer Ezell

Hello sweet friends! I hope that this thought finds you each well and happy as we come to the ending of another school year and the beginning of a new free-learning period that is summertime. As I look back over this school year, I have to say that I am considerably more learned than I was at this time last year, though I didn’t take a single class in anything. Not in the traditional style anyway. I consider this past year as a year of transition — but looking over my life, I have to ask … which year, exactly, wasn’t a year of transition? This is where my thoughts take flight. If each and every one of us were to give a year by year, maybe even month by month story of our lives, I am almost positive that not a single one of them passed without some life changing event or another happening, shaping us, making us colder to some things, warmer to others, and leaving us in some moment quietly pondering what …

L’Umile Pianta: The place of “The Humble Plant” from 1897 to 1923 in nourishing and supporting Charlotte Mason educators – ChildLightUSA Conference 2012 Plenary Session

New Information coming out of the Charlotte Mason Digital Collection A Plenary Session at the 2012 ChildLightUSA Charlotte Mason Education Conference By Meghan Van Pelt and Deani Van Pelt             The early volumes of L’Umile Pianta are becoming available this year through the Charlotte Mason Digital Collection.  For the first time ever, “The Plant”, as it was fondly called, will be readily accessible to readers using digital formats worldwide.  In this session several of the persons who worked with the documents preparing them for the digital collection will share and discuss various aspects of this magazine that has served for over a century to connect graduates of Charlotte Mason’s House of Education.  Although it continues to be published to this day, the emphasis of this talk will be on contents of L’Umile Pianta in its first quarter century of publication.  The original purposes for the magazine will be considered and an overview of its various components and how they changed over time will be offered.  We will introduce the people that were important to the …

I Am At My Most Contemplative at This Time of Year by Sandy Rusby Bell

“I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves.” Anna Quindlen This season always finds me contemplative. The long, dark evenings at the end of the year invite reflection. I find myself looking back even more than usual this year though. I will soon be graduating my oldest daughter. It seems only yesterday that my four year old fireball was telling me that we could not be done lessons until she saw the school bus drive by our home. But this fall we’ve been visiting universities. My part in educating her is almost done. I’ve learned so much on this journey we’ve shared and there are many things I would do differently if I could do it all over again. But there is one thing I would do exactly the same. I would still read to her every single day of her life. We have built a life around books. I started collecting children’s stories before my girl was even …