Book Review: Stepping Heavenward

Dear Reader,

I recently read Stepping Heavenward  by Mrs. E. Prentiss. I suspect many of you have preceded me to this book; it seems to be a popular one among Christian women, and rightly so. If you are Christian and female and haven’t read it yet, run, don’t walk, and go get it now. I will admit that I was a  bit skeptical going into it. I don’t tend to like things that are popular in the Christian world, but this book turned out to be  a real treasure. I have said this of a few books, probably less than a handful, but this book made me want to be a better person (read about one of those other books, a real hidden treasure here).

Stepping Heavenward is a journal begun by a young woman and continued as she grows into adulthood. It is her spiritual journey. I also tend not to like diary type books and yet again I was surprised by this one. It didn’t take long for me to say that this is a good book and to think that I want my older daughter to read it. And then as I got further into it, I thought this is really for me too. You see, as the author herself grows, so her spiritual struggles change and she goes through a lot of what we too go through and many things that I hope we never do.

I don’t want to give away too much but this is a great book to read if:

- you struggle with being faithful in prayer and Bible reading

- you struggle to find meaning or see how you can give glory to God in the midst of menial day-to-day tasks

- you feel mired down in your spiritual journey

- you feel that every other Christian is so much further along and more perfect han you are

- you have ever wondered if you are really saved

- you have been on bedrest or been sidelined due to illness

- you have faced the prospect of losing a child

- you have had to live with your in-laws or difficult relatives

This is the sort of book from which different people are going to take away different lessons and to which one could return in the various stages of life and take new lessons. If there is one big overarching lesson to the book, I would say it is that our lives are spiritual journeys and we needn’t look at others who are farther along and berate ourselves for not being where they are. Personally, I was struck with the idea that I need to make holiness a goal that I work towards, both every day and for the long haul. I think I had sort of assumed holiness was something God would accomplish in me, but I had never really thought that I need to be actively participating in that goal. I am not sure I am describing that correctly. I have of course had goals like “be more patient with my children” and “don’t yell” and aspirations like “I want to be like Mrs. M when I grow up.” But the idea of holiness itself as the goal was a revelation to me. It is as if I had been focusing on the parts or the shadow and my eyes have been lifted to the actual thing I should be aiming for. I am still not sure if that makes sense, but you can always read the book for yourself :)

Anyway, long story short, if I haven’t already said it half a dozen times, read this book. Then read it again. And give it to the other women in your life.

Nebby

My Master List of Booklists on American History

Dear Reader,

At this point I have published quite a number of posts detailing what books we have used to study American history. For convebience sake, I thought I woudl give their links all in one place so they are easir to find. Below is that list. I will continue to add to it as I do new posts so check back periodically.

Nebby

Booklists for American History

Exploration

History Books: The Settlement of Virginia

Books on Colonial New England

Studying the Salem Witch Trials

History Books: Colonization

Living Books on the American Revolution

And Some Related Posts:

History Spine Books

Movie Review: The Crossing

 

 

 

 

 

Living Books on the Revolutionary War

Dear Reader,

We have almost finished studying the American Revolution and so I thought I would give a list of what books we have used. I am pleased to say that there have been very few duds in this section.

To let you know where I am coming from — I am homeschooling four kids, ages 9, 10, 12 and 14. We take a Charlotte Mason approach to our schooling. We read “spine” books together which give an overview of the era and then each child has his or her own reading on the same time period, often more specific books which might just cover the life of one person or the details of one event. They also at times read historical fiction which I do not usually make them narrate. When we can, we also listen to audio books in the car that relate to the period we are studying and watch DVDs on it too.

Booklist for the Revolutionary War

Spine books:

This Country of Ours by H.E. Marshall — We began this book last year when we studied the colonization of America and are continuing through it this year. I continue to love this book. The chapters usually make a good reading in one sitting, though occasionally I have split them in two or combined two in one. Marshall does an excellent job of making history a story covering all the big events with just the right amount of detail.

George Washington’s World by Genevieve Foster — Foster’s books are also real treasures. Heritage History which we have used in the past recommends using two spines on any given period and I have found this to be helpful. I know the CM way is to read things once and expect kids to get them but the truth is different authors have different perspectives and I find it helpful to get a couple of looks at the period we are studying. We had been through American history once before when the kids were littler; this time I am trying to give more of the global perspective while still concentrating on America. Foster’s book is perfect for this. If I were using it alone, I would find its treatment of the important events in America like the Boston Tea Party and the Shot Heard Round the World too brief. Since we have already covered those with Marshall’s volume, Foster’s approach which spends a good deal of time on what was happening in other countries as well is the perfect complement. She does a great job of focusing on individual characters and of drawing together all the many strands of narrative she has so that what seems like a lot of loose ends in the beginning of the book all comes together by the end.

Stories of Massachusetts by Mara L. Pratt – Since we live in MA and a lot of the events of the revolution happened here, I decided this would be good time to try to delve a little deeper and read portions of this book on our home state specifically. My high schooler is exempt from this one as he has other work he needs to get done without his siblings. The style of this book is easy and conversational. The content is a bit of a mixed bag. The author has some really good stories to tell but at other times talks a lot about historic houses in the various towns of MA and tends to lose my kids’ interest. We are using the Kindle edition of this book which makes it hard to skip around and just select the best parts. It is also quite poorly edited and occasionally I can’t even figure out what it means to say.

Books for ym 9th grader:

Story of the Revolution by Albert Marrin – We had used one of Marrin’s books in the past, one on oil of all things, and I thought that he made what could have been a dry subject very interesting and informative. So I was excited to find that he had a book on the Revolution. My high schooler did not seem thrilled with this book (that is rare with books they know are for school anyway) but he did  a great job narrating it, which I consider a good test of a book, ad he learned a lot of details that we did not get in our other reading so I was pleased with this choice.

Year of the Hangman by Gary Blackwood We had also done a couple of Blackwood’s Shakespeare books as read alouds and I was pleased with them so I thought this would be good choice for my high schooler to give him a bit of historical fiction on the era. I do not have them narrate these books so I get less feedback but he says he likes the book (again, they hate to praise anything they know is schoolwork so this is a pretty glowing recommendation). It does not apparently have much to do with hangmen but the year 1777 was considered the year of the hangman because all the 7s in it look like nooses.

histbk3

Books for the middle schooler:

Story of the Thirteen Colonies by Helene A. Guerber – This is another older book that we were able to get for free in the Kindle edition. It was really a bit on the easy side for my 8th grader but I couldn’t find much else to fill the gap. At times she seemed to have little to narrate. I think really she could have read Marrin’s book as her older brother did and this one would be better for a slightly younger child.

Toliver’s Secret by Esther Wood Brady– This was her historical fiction so again I got no narrations. Even my very contrary daughter says that “it is good for a shcool book.” It is the story fo a girl who disguises herself as boy to carry a secret message to General Washington. The whole girl disguised as boy thing seems a very common theme in books about this era.

Books for the upper elementary students:

American History Stories by Mara L. Pratt — This book seems to have a lot of chapters but each on is pretty brief so it really goes more quickly than one might expect on first inspection. I think the level was good for my 5th grader. I like the short chunks at this age even if he ends up doing two of them in a day. It seems to have been done a bit better than Pratt’s book on Massachusetts (see above). If it had editing errors, I think I would have heard about it and he never complained the book was unintelligible. It also seems to be better in terms of the content, I think because there is really more to say and it was hard to come up with enough to say on MA alone.

Arrow over the Door by Joseph Bruchac – This was my 5th grader’s historical fiction. It is the story of a Quaker boy in the year 1777. It seems just about right for his reading level and he says it is a good book.

histbk1

Trouble at Otter Creek by Wilma Pitchford Hayes — This was an added book for my 5th grader. Though no otters seem to actually figure into the story, he loves otters and one of the characters shares his name so I thought I would make him read it. It is the story of a family who moves to Vermont and meets Ethan Allen. It was not a hard book for him and could be done by a child a year or two younger. It seemed like a good story though.

histbk4

A Namesake for Nathan by Monjo - Yet another book for my 5th grader to fill in some gaps in our schedule (it is hard to keep everyone on the same reading schedule so we are all doing the same topics at roughly the same time!). Monjo is a favorite author who makes a good story of everything he writes. We used one of his books on the Pilgrims too. This one is about Nathan Hale.

King George’s Head was Made of Lead by Monjo – Another one by Monjo; this one is easier and shorter. I had my 4th grader read a number of smaller, shorter books. This one is really about a statue of King George but along the way it tells what happened to the actual King George III when his colonies rebelled. It is a clever little book and would be good for slightly younger kids too.

Phoebe the Spy by Judith Griffin — The story of a girl who saves George Washington from poisoning. My daughter is a sucker for stories of girls who do things. She really seemed to like this one and to appreciate the mystery involved in figuring out who was trying to poison General Washington. When Phoebe’s dad was mentioned in other books we read, she got quite excited so I know she connected with this book.

Carolina’s Courage by Elizabeth Yates — As I write this, my daughter has yet to read this book so I can’t say too much about it but we have liked Yates’ books in the past.

Secret Soldier by Ann McGovern — This is the story of Deborah Sampson who dresses as a man and fights in the war. She is from the town adjacent to us and there is a statue of her there so it seemed like a good one to read. And it is a good story. My daughter enjoyed it too.

Oodles of books by Jean Fritz — If you don’t know Jean fritz, check her out. She seems to have been quite prolific, especially on this period of American history. Each of her books focuses on a particular character. They are all the same length (about 44 pages of reading) and yet she is not overly formulaic. She makes a good story of each one. Some of the books available, many of which my 4th grader read, are:

What’s the Big Idea, Ben Franklin?

Why Don’t You Get a Horse, Sam Adams?

And then What Happened, Paul Revere?

Can’t You make them Behave, King George?

Will You Sign here, John Hancock?

Where was Patrick Henry on the 29th of May?

histbk2

Books we listened to:

Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes — We listened to this classic years ago but no list of books on the Revolution would be complete without it so here it is. For reading level, it would be middle or high school.

Mr. Revere and I by Robert Lawson — This is Paul Revere’s story told from the point of view of his horse. It is a clever idea and I thought it was not a bad story. My kids found it too homeschool-y.

War Comes to Willy Freeman by James Lincoln Collier — A free African-American girl loses her parents and travels around Connecticut and New York searching for her mother disguised as a boy (yet another girl in boy’s clothes story). My children stated out opposed to this one as being educational but I think they were won over by the story in the end. It does start a bit slow then grow on you. My own caution would be that the girl is groped by soldiers early on and later almost assaulted by one; this might be something you wouldn’t want your kids to hear.

The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing by M.T. Anderson — Like all of Anderson’s books, this one is unusual. The story is an odd one. It takes a bit to figure out what is going on and I don’t want to be a spoiler. It is the story of a boy and his mother who live in a house with a society of scientists who do weird experiments that often seem quite inhumane. It is set just before and during the revolution in and around Boston.  This was a hard book for my younger kids to understand. I would say it is definitely high school level,. There are bits that have mature themes, for instance the main character is asked to read some porn to his roommate. I didn’t think it went too far but one would need to be careful with younger kids.

The Rifle by Gary Paulsen — I had heard this book recommended in the context of the Revolutionary War and we have listened to and liked a number of Paulsen’s books, including his Mr. Tucket series which I would recommend, so I was optimistic about this one. I was disappointed. The book starts with a very long section describing the making of the rifle which is really the main character of the story. This really bored my kids (and me). The rifle itself is used in the Revolution, but this is a fairly small part of its history. Much of the story happens in modern times, and here the book veers into anti-NRA propaganda. The author seems pretty clearly (to me) to be saying in the end that despite what people say (“guns don’t kill people; people kill people”), guns do kill people. I am not a rabid pro-gun person. I have never used one or lived in a house with one. But I was really irritated by the tone and message of this book anyway. It doesn’t help that the one context in which religion is mentioned is to refer to one particularly deranged gun-toter as also a believer in Jesus. I have no doubt this character is an accurate depiction of how some people are, but I do think there are also more level-headed, intelligent pro-gun people and I know there are more level-headed Christians. I would recommend you skip this book.

Videos we watched:

The Crossing – Already reviewed here

Felicity — This is the American Girl movie. I was optimistic about it because we had seen and liked the one set during the Depression. This one was a disappointment. I have a longer post coming out explaining why so stay tuned for specifics.

Schoolhouse Rock — The old classic from my childhood has a few segments that relate to this period. They are brief and perhaps not overly informative but always fun.

Soldiering Through History: Revolutionary War– This video and accompanying book were made by a group of homeschooling brothers. They are reenactors themselves and the main focus is on how to reenact being a Revolutionary war soldier. The video itself is only about 25 minutes long. They do cover things like how the soldiers dressed and it was informative but my kids didn’t find it thrilling. They also have videos on other wars America has been involved in If you child is more into soldiering than mine are, this might appeal to them. The book lists other resources but I found its activities too workbook-y for my tastes.

Liberty’s Kids — If you have never seen this TV show, it is worth a look. It was a series of cartoons set during the Revolutionary War. The premise is that there is a group of kids who work with Benjamin Franklin in his printing shop and find themselves in the midst of all the big events of the time. It is very entertaining. Though we had watched it all probably a couple of times previously and own the DVDs, I had never noticed the historical inaccuracies before, and there are a number of them. For this reason, I would recommend studying the war first and then watching the videos. For instance, in the first episode, “The Boston Tea Party,” the throwing of the tea happens as soon as the ship carrying it has docked whereas in reality there were a number of days in between. Also the tea was in barrels in the show while we, having been recently to the Tea Party Ship Museum, know it was in wooden chests. My kids noticed these discrepancies too which I suppose is a good sign.

Obviously there is a lot more out there on the American Revolution to read and see. This is all we had time for. Are there any favorites of yours we missed?

Nebby

 

 

Jeremiah 9 and 10: Brothers, Fathers and Mothers, and Aramaic

Dear Reader,

In my study through the book of Jeremiah (find all the posts here), I am up to chapters 9 and 10. I only have  a few observations on these chapters.

In chapter 9, what I noticed were references to family members. The chapter begins with an indictment of the people yet again. In verse 4 (Hebrew v. 3), we read:

“Let a man guard himself against his neighbor;

And on every brother do not let him trust.

For every brother will indeed supplant,

And every neighbor will go about slanderously.” (Jer. 9:4; my translation)

This verse is a nice example of Hebrew parallelism.  Notice how the first and fourth lines use the word “neighbor” and the second and third use “brother.” I don’t think we need to particularly distinguish between the relationships here. The point is that those who are close to one are treacherous. Israel is really one family and every neighbor is a brother. Biblical Hebrew has no word I know of for cousin or the like and so brother can be used more generally than we would usually use it.

The word I have translated “supplant” is one that immediately drew my attention. It actually occurs twice here. There is an intensive form of the verb in Hebrew called the infinitive absolute which we usually translate, as I have here, something along the lines of “indeed” or “truly.” As its name suggest, this form is used with a finite form of the same verb to intensify its meaning. So we have the same word, in slightly different forms, here twice in a row. And the word root is the same as that in the name Jacob. The Hebrew here would sound like ‘aqob yaqob (the ‘ is what is called a glottal stop and the q is  a hard k sound).  Compare this to the name of the patriarch: Ya’aqob. The difference is only the matter of one short a sound. It is hard then when one reads this passage indicting brothers for their crimes against each other, not to think of Israel’s ancestor, the patriarch Jacob, who also gained his inheritance and birthright by supplanting his brother. The root used, ‘qb, in both the name and the verbs we have here comes from the word for heel and means something along the lines of to grab the heel of (as Jacob did to Esau in the womb).  More figuratively the idea is that one is right on the heels of another with the aim of overtaking or supplanting. What I get from all this is that God, through Jeremiah, is saying to His people, you have not changed; your forefather was a supplanter and you still betray your brothers at every opportunity.

Later on in the chapter, I noticed a contrast being made between two other family members — fathers and mothers. In verses 14 and 16 (Hebrew vv. 13 and 15), we find:

“They have walked after the stubbornness of their heart,

And after the baals as their father taught them . . .

Therefore I will scatter them among nations whom neither they nor their fathers knew . . . ” (Jer. 9:14, 16; my translation)

Notice that the fathers of the current generation taught them to worship false idols. The chapter goes on to call the women to come and mourn for Israel’s destruction. This is how things would have been done in ancient times; women would wail and carry on in times of grief. Professional mourners might even be hired at funerals and the like to carry on a good and proper lament. The Lord then says:

“Hear, women, the word of the LORD,

And let your ear take the word of His mouth.

Teach your daughters a lament,

And each woman [will teach] her neighbor a dirge.” (Jer. 9:20 [Hebr. 9:19])

Because they have followed their fathers’ instruction and engaged in false worship, now as a part of their punishment, they will learn not from their fathers but their mothers, and the lesson to be learned is one of mourning. Now I don’t think this is meant to say anything particularly horrible about a mother’s instruction (as a homeschooler, I could hardly think that, could I?), but it does give one the impression that the men who are supposed to be in charge in this society are gone. Because of their false teaching, they have been wiped out and the females are left, mothers and daughters lamenting together. Perhaps I go beyond the intent of the passage but I think it often happens this way among God’s people. It is easy to blame women who seem to rule in churches as violating God’s established order, but I think the women would not often take charge if the men did not cede to them their rightful position. A lack of leadership on their part, or as in the case of this passage even bad, wrong teaching, has opened the door for the women to step in. Okay, that probably does go beyond what Jeremiah intended here, but it is what it made me think of.

My only observation in chapter 10 of Jeremiah is to point out that in the middle of the chapter we get a bit of Aramaic. The vast majority of the Old Testament was originally written in Hebrew. Over time the people themselves came to speak a closely related language, Aramaic. I like to compare the two to Spanish and Portuguese; they are very near cousins. A good chunk of the book of Daniel as well as portions of Ezra were originally written in Aramaic. These are later books describing events during and after the exile of the southern kingdom. Here in Jeremiah we are not yet to the exile though it is looming. In the reign of Hezekiah, as recounted in II Kings, it seems that the people still speak Hebrew though their Assyrian oppressors speak Aramaic (see II Kgs. 18:26). This would have occurred in the 700s BC. Aramaic seems to have taken over during the Babylonian exile which began circa 586 BC. Yet here in Jeremiah 10, somewhere between these two events, we have this one verse in Aramaic:

“Thus you will say to them, ‘The gods who heaven and earth did not make,

will perish from the earth and from under the heavens.’” (Jer. 10:11)

The next verse tells us, once again in Hebrew, that it is God who make the earth and established the heavens. What is the significance of this one verse being in Aramaic? The people have adopted the gods of their neighbors and the language of their neighbors and oppressors is here used. Perhaps it adds to the sense of condemnation. It separates them from their God, the God of the Hebrews, to use the langauge of the foe.

There is one more point to note in v. 11. The way the Aramaic reads, there are two words that are almost homophones in a row. You can see in my translation above that the first line ends with “did not make” and the second line begins with “they will perish.” Each of these is only one word in Aramaic.The two words are ‘abadu and ye’badu respectively. They look and sound very similar. Again a nice parallelism is created. The first line has “heaven and earth”” and then the verb; the second has the verb, soundly much like the one in the previous line and then “earth and heaven.” It is an ABBA pattern in which the order of the elements is reversed in the second line. My own opinion is that this serves to highlight th contrast in meaning between the verbs – they, the false gods, “did not make” and therefore they “will perish.” Interestingly, this would not have worked in Hebrew since the first verb, the one for make, has a different meaning in Hebrew.

And that’s all I have on Jeremiah 9 and 10. What observations did you make in these chapters?

Nebby

 

 

 

Six Weeks of Christmas Ornament Crafts for Kids

Dear Reader,

My daughter is beginning a series of six posts featuring easy and cheap ornaments kids can make this holiday season. The first one, fake shrinky dink ornaments is now up. If you are looking for something to do with your kids, you might want to click over there and check it out. And be sure to check back every week for more fun ideas.

Nebby

Finding God in the City

Dear Reader,

So I am not a city person. I might as well tell you up front, because it will become pretty obvious pretty quickly here. I don’t like crowds and the really tall buildings make me feel claustrophobic.

Last weekend we had the opportunity to go into New York City for the day with some friends who live not far from it. Now there is a lot to see in NYC, for all its faults, and it seemed like a great opportunity to show the kids what a real city is like and to do so with other adults who could navigate thus taking a lot of stress off of me. The day we went was a gray, rainy one so we didn’t see as much as we otherwise would have. We only did three sites: the Museum of Natural History, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Empire State Building.

One thing that struck me this time which I had not really thought about on my one previous excursion to The City was how little green space there is. There is Central Park of course, and we did walk through it, though since the weather wasn’t great I know we didn’t fully appreciate it. From the top of the Empire State Building I was struck by how large the park is, and I am glad New Yorkers have this resource. But still it is all in one place, albeit one large place. As one walks most of the streets, there are only isolated little trees surrounded by what my sister has always called “ornamental cabbages.” And even these are fenced off. As a dog owner, I wondered how the poor city pooches do their business with no green patches to squat on. But it is not just the dogs who suffer. People too need nature. We need the color green. We need to see growing things. We need God’s creation. And that is what seemed to be missing from NYC, at least from most of it. One can go to Central Park, but because the nature is all in one place, one can also walk and walk and walk and really not see anything natural to speak of.

And then there are those tall buildings. Most places even if there is concrete beneath one can at least look up and see a bit of one’s Creator in the sky. But in NYC the buildings are so tall, the sky is practically obscured. There is no good view of it from the street. At one point on that gray day, my friend’s husband even pointed out that the changeable neon billboards even seemed like the sun with the light they cast on us. How is that for replacing God’s handiwork with man’s?

And I can’t help thinking that surrounded by all this man-made stuff and so little God-made stuff that something inside us must shrivel up. And that we will be predisposed to think of ourselves and not our maker. The story is really as old as Genesis 1, the Tower of Babel. Man’s greater creations tend to pull us away from our appreciation of God and His creation.

There was one point in our trip, however, in which I was able to regain my perspective. From the top of the Empire State Building, two things happen. The first is that man and his works get smaller. While there are still buildings taller than where one is standing, these are few. People on the ground are so small as to be invisible and their cars (so many cabs in NYC!) look no more than small, scurrying animals. Secondly, God’s handiwork can be seen again. There is water, there is Central Park in the distance, a patchwork of fall leaves this time of year, and there is the sky, God’s canvas, once again visible to the human eye.

Of course, I am not saying that it is impossible to find God in the city. I hope that He is there in the pinnacle of His creation — people — and that He can be seen through their actions. But I still maintain that it is much harder to have one’s thoughts turned to the Creator when the works of man are so prominently displayed as to crowd out the creation.

Do you live in a big city? Do you agree that it is harder to think of God there? How do your counteract this? How do you do nature study?

Nebby

CM Education and the Pressure to Do More

Dear Reader,

I participate in some online forums (fora?) about homeschooling and particularly about Charlotte Mason style education. I have noticed on these that while most of those participating are trying to educate the CM way, there is a lot of temptation to add in little extras.

Charlotte advocated short lessons, especially in the early years, and did not make use of many of the modern tools of education. Standardized tests, worksheets, vocabulary tests, true and false and multiple choice questions, reading comprehension questions and the like were not part of a CM education. Really a CM education can seem very simple. Copywork and later dictation serve to cover vocabulary, spelling, and grammar. Narration in which the child chooses what to include replaces reading comprehension questions laid out by the teacher. Early science is limited to nature study and the reading of living books.

This more limited agenda can be a relief at first. But then, over time, many parents will start to think that it is just not enough. They will see what other families are doing and begin to think that their kids too need grammar drills and vocab tests. That they need to learn all the parts of  a cell by fifth grade or memorize all the presidents or all the important dates in history.  Very few people, it seems, manage to adhere to a pure CM method of education. I count myself among those who add on little extras as well (my youngest two have a spelling curriculum, for example). Though over time I think I am becoming more and more “pure CM”, that temptation is always there. It is fed by attending homeschooling conferences with all their bright shiny curricula. It is also fed by talking to other homeschoolers. The solution, of course, is not to live in one’s own little bubble, but to resist the inevitable comparisons which arise. My kids don’t need to memorize all the kings of England just because my neighbor’s kids did.

As I have told inquisitive (using a nice word here) relatives, homeschooling proves itself over time. If they just give me 18 years, I will show them that what we are doing is not a bad idea; I do belive it will prove itself in the end. But it is hard to wait and be patient. If this is true of homeschooling in general, I think it is even more true of CM style homeschooling. The CM approach does not give obvious results up front; it is more of a process and one must trust the process to produce the desired fruit in the end. My oldest is in 9th grade now and I am beginning to see that, yes, I am getting what I want from him. He is more proficient at narrations, he seems generally interested in what he is learning, he is motivated and interesting to talk to.

But it is hard in the early years to say, yes, this is all we are doing; we do not need the extra drills and worksheets. Most of us grew up in the public school system ourselves; we are used to having a paper trail and numbers or letters associated with it as evidence of learning. It is hard to break free of that and to be willing to wait for the results.

One thing that I think really helps is to know why you are doing what you are doing. That means read, read, read. I recommend starting with books like Karen Andreola’s A Charlotte Mason Companion and Susan Schaeffer Macaulay’s For the Children’s Sake but then once you have mastered these, moving on to Charlotte’s orignal writings. Participating in online forums and reading CM blogs helps too though one must exercise some discretion as many of these also will include posts about adding in extras. The more we understand about Charlotte’s philosophy, the better we will appreciate how it works and be able to trust that it does work.

Nebby

journey-and-destination

Blogging about education, theology, and more

Harmony Fine Arts

Blogging about education, theology, and more

The Common Room

....Blogging about cabbages and kings since 2005.

Sage Parnassus

Blogging about education, theology, and more

A peaceful day

Blogging about education, theology, and more

Living Charlotte Mason in California

Blogging about education, theology, and more

weeklywalrus

Weekly Walrus Whatevers

Crafty Creations by Maris

homemade crafts and more

Blogging about education, theology, and more

Afterthoughts

Blogging about education, theology, and more

Leah's Bookshelf

Book Reviews You Can Trust

Duxbury Art Boosters

Supporting the visual arts in Duxbury Public Schools

Just Right Porridge

... you'll lick your bowl clean...

livinglikelinds

Seizing life three L's at a time!

Homeschooling Middle East

A Homeschooling/Unschooling Adventure from Bahrain to Dubai that's a story for anyone, anywhere who's interested in offering their kids an educational alternative. Please have fun visiting and have even more fun commenting! We have now moved to Granada, Spain and I will write again once we've settled down!!

Exclusive Psalmody

For the Encouragement and Preservation of Biblical Worship

Charlotte Mason Institute

Supporting an international conversation toward an authentic Charlotte Mason education - awakening to delightful living

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 61 other followers