How is scholé a part of your life?

Scholé is not just something we do for or with our children. Scholé is for everyone, including homeschooling moms.

Whether you call yourself a classical educator, a Charlotte Mason mom, an eclectic homeschooler, or something else entirely, you need to draw on the wells of learning yourself in order to model the life of loving to learn and grow.

schole-life

Scholé rises above our labels and recalls us to time-honored truths: A student, when he is fully trained, will be like his teacher. If we say our goal for our children is that they have a lifelong love of learning, do we evidence and live out a love of learning for them to see? Or is learning something they have to do while we tell them we have already put in our time?

Are the school years a jail sentence? Something we graduate out of? Or do we continue all our lives down the path of curiosity and wonder, learning and growing and loving wherever we are?

If we’re taking time out of the hustle and bustle of washing dishes and laundry to have conversations with friends or family over dinner, to read a good book, to play with art, then we are living and modeling scholé.

I do love a good, meaty book and time set aside to really dig in and think and write, but that isn’t the only way to scholé. It also happens when we have people over for dinner and share about life and what we’re living and learning. It happens when we’re driving in the car and a conversation opens up with our children. It happens when we take an early morning walk and just open our eyes to our own neighborhoods and breathe in and notice the fresh air and changing seasons.

Scholé is not only about reading thick books. It is also about living a noticing and wondering life.

Share what you’re learning lately. When and where does it happen in your life?

19 Responses

  1. Rhebeka
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    I am blessed to live in a place where noticing and wondering are very fruitful endeavors…the mist this morning, and many mornings, filling the valley and sometimes making its way up the hillside to flood our little farm; the sunset’s brilliant colors out the window while we eat dinner; porcupines and red-tailed hawks and hummingbirds in the jewel weed; more flowers than I could ever name (though identifying them was a fun project this year); new lambs in the spring; snakes in the woodpile; the four seasons so right outside the window, so close to all we do – is it time to plant, play in the creek, pick the wild raspberries, gather the harvest, stack the wood, batten the hatches and let the winter howl? For me and my family, our most regular form of schole is living in touch, daily, with the incredible natural world all around us.

  2. Karen
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    I appreciate how you pointed out that schole is not just about reading books. I thought this was a great statement: “Scholé is not only about reading thick books. It is also about living a noticing and wondering life.”

  3. Ann Boyd
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    Schole happens for me in cooking — reading cookbooks, listening to The Splendid Table podcast, experimenting in the kitchen. It is a place of creativity for me — but I need to make time for it!

    I’ve also really been enjoying a series on Hamlet that the Circe Institute has been offering on their podcast station. My kids are too young for Hamlet, so this is on my own time (although we have been enjoying A Midsummer Night’s Dream as a family). It has been fun for me to read the play again and listen to the thoughtful discussions. It feels so good to soak up that beautiful language.

  4. kortney
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    i’ve been taking a walk each evening after dinner…besides any health benefits, the quiet is restorative.

  5. Jamie P
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    It happens for me in re-learning to play the piano (and my kids hearing me practice!); in reading great books; in the kitchen, like Ann, though I am re-watching YouTube videos of Julia Child’s The French Chef. It also happens for me in watching movies, especially foreign films (love love LOVE samurai movies), but also questioning and trying to discover the directors’ agendas/themes/point of view. This blog has definitely helped me to look for new ways to look for the good, the beautiful and the true in my daily life.

    • Rain
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      Jamie have you ever watched Yojimbo? It is early Kurosawa. It is soooo good!

      • Jamie P
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        Oh I haven’t watched Yojimbo, but it is now on my “To Watch” list! Thank you :)

    • Mystie Winckler
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      I keep thinking about taking up the piano alongside by older kids, but finally realized that one reason why it wasn’t happening was that I can’t take the extra noise at this point. Maybe later. :) Instead, I’m learning Latin and also going for daily walks.

  6. Rain
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    I second or third the listening of podcasts, it is like participating in a discussion and it always expands my mind and adds to my thought life.
    I’ve also taken up knitting (after MANY failed attempts). I still need to conquer my fear of the sewing machine.
    Also, I find reading the Sunday paper and being informed about current events and culture to be a type of learning.
    Lastly, there have been times when I have been able to participate in a one day workshop on gardening or writing or homeschooling that has been a huge boost!

  7. Lisa A
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    It’s very neat to see how others use their leisure time (in the true sense of the word leisure as it relates to schole :) )

    For my part I have rediscovered the joy I always used to take in learning. I am doing things like learning geometry and Greek and studying history just for the fun of it. I go slowly and I don’t put pressure on myself and my progress is s.l.o.w., but it’s refreshing and it’s fun. I say this not to show off what impressive subjects I’m studying, but just to share how very delightful learning new things can be just for the sake of inspiring wonder and awe at the way things relate to each other.

    In learning new things I have also realized how wonderful it is to do things with my hands – to create and to do physical work that produces something beautiful and/or tasty is a way in which we can be more fully alive. I have spent much of my life reading “about” the things that others have done, but only now have I begun to value doing things myself and I am a better person for it. Simple things like knitting, cooking, playing piano are not unique to me – there are plenty of people who do those things so much better than I, but my skill level is beside the point. What matters is that I have begun to become more fully alive than when I was only observing and not doing.

  8. Sarah
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    Schole in my life- embroidery project – when- whenever I can sit and there is still enough natural light for me to see the tiny holes in my linen! I read fr z’s blog wdtprs that gives me discussion about what is going on in my Catholic world at large. I read that at the end of the day and discuss with my husband what catches my interest. Along with world news.
    I am having a hard time at the moment to to find any time for me in the day. My one year old son is toddling everywhere and I follow him and try to keep up with everything else including my other 5 children. It is a busy season for me until he gets more reliably safe. My other hobbies just stare at me and I back at them!

  9. Allison
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    I decided to jump into (slowly) learning Latin with my two oldest kids this school year. Emphasis on slowly (yes, the brain is very much a muscle). I am inspired by the other moms who commented above that they are re-taking up piano. That is something I have battled to re-learn countless times over the last eight or nine years, to no avail. Perhaps my biggest challenge is: intentionally blocking time for it. Right now, I have pegged my Latin time to my lunch (which works well, since I eat a late lunch after my kids are in Quiet Time). I think this pegging has been the key to success these past couple months. Now, how to find a time to peg piano somewhere?

    • Jennifer Hong
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      Allison, I don’t do it as often as I’d like, but I sometimes sit down to play piano right after the kids are in bed — before they’re asleep and I become concerned I’ll wake them. It’s much more successful than playing with the toddler competing for the keys, and I think it allows the kids to see how the music feeds me when I need it. I guess I tend to play (mostly hymns), when I’m sad, stressed, or discouraged. I would love for music to be one of their coping skills, too. Don’t know how old your kids are, and we all have plenty to do in the bedtime hours! I do like how you expressed your “pegging” an activity to a time to make it happen.

  10. Jennifer Hong
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    Oh, discovering a life with leisure and schole has been one of the greatest joys of this year. While I always enjoyed learning itself, I treated my formal education as a game to be played, perfectly. It was a matter of getting straight A’s with as little effort as possible, completing one assignment while sitting in another class, writing essays off the Cliff Notes, and never once opening a piece of literature simply for the joy of the endeavor. I feel like I have discovered a second chance at real education, and I’m jumping in. Not sure where to begin with literature, I found A Well Read Mom and have begun reading along with this year’s book list. I also decided it’s nigh time to delight in some beauty in penmanship, and I began the online calligraphy course at http://www.istilllovecalligraphy.com . And in the interest of enjoying math once again, I’ve borrowed and am reading ahead the Life of Fred books.

    With much on my plate, like any mother, I decided I’d spend 20 minutes each evening doing some sort of “leisure” activity, after the kids’ bedtime, and after visiting with my husband, but before getting wrapped up in housework and chores. It’s working out really well.

    • Mystie Winckler
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      That’s a great way to fit it in and make it happen, Jennifer!

  11. Cynthia Wilson
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    I have been home educating for 13 years. Through schole I have discovered that I need to be learning too! For the first time, I am reading the Greek myths with my daughter, not just assigning them. “A student when fully trained will become like his teacher.” Instead of fearing that I am not educated enough to pass on a classical education, I am reading the Great Books and enjoying the journey with the kids. I’ve also realized that this will not end when the last child “graduates.” I have the rest of my life to explore nature, history, literature, and other areas for myself. I love Schole Sisters!

  12. Julie
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    I checked out a Great Courses series from the library on mental math techniques. It was actually a lot of fun to try out the tricks. Now my husband wants to learn about it too.