Homeschooling brings with it a dizzying number of decisions to make. Unit studies? Copywork? Manipulatives? Workboxes? Latin? – We have to decide not only what subjects to study but then what curriculum to use for each subject and how often to do it.
We need filters to help us make these decisions with less angst and less research.
More than spending hours pouring over curriculum descriptions and reviews, we need to spend time reading up on education philosophy.
No, don’t go! Please, hear me out.
If you know the underlying principles you hold, you will be able to immediately nix 3/4 of what you come across in your homeschooling research. You won’t be blown about by every new fad nor believe every claim that such-and-such is “classical” or “Charlotte Mason” or whatever else.
Regardless of what style of education you prefer, a solid understanding of what children are, what people are for, and how learning happens will take you far and bring you peace as you navigate catalogs and blog reviews.
And now you don’t have to wade through volume after volume of educational treatises if that’s not your thing.
Brandy Vencel has created a study guide called Start Here: A Journey Through Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles, which will leave you through Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles of Education, her own distillation of her 6 volumes and lifetime of education research and practice.
Even if you aren’t doing Ambleside Online or aren’t sure you’re into the whole Charlotte Mason thing, working through Miss Mason’s 20 concise statements about children, purpose, and learning will be a profitable exercise in forming your own ideas of what education is and what it is for.
Instead of reading an entire book (or multiple books) or combing through blogs and other secondary sources, Brandy has listed Miss Mason’s 20 stated principles and pulled the relevant sections from Miss Mason’s own work. So you can read the richest snippets of her work and the best secondary sources. Discussion questions are included for each principle so you can work through the implications and applications you unearth as you go.
Because Miss Mason’s volumes are in the public domain, Brandy has linked each reading assignment directly to the paragraph she references. All the optional reading is also linked, making the assignments convenient and easy to access.
I think this would be a great resource for anyone who wants to learn about educational theory but also needs to be strategic with time and mental energies. This study will give you bang for your buck and won’t waste a minute of your time.
Brandy is giving away a copy of the pdf to one of my readers! Enter with the widget below. The winner will be announced next Saturday!
And, through November 10th, you can use the discount code LAUNCH2014 for $2 off the pdf version. But there’s also a kindle version that is fully linked – making it super convenient.