Seventeen years of Treehouse talk

Seventeen years of Treehouse talk

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Charlotte Mason and the Not-Just-Reading Challenge, Part Two

(Part One is here.)

Even when looking at the few samples we have of actual Parents' Union School timetables, the "what you do when and how" question looms....

People talking about Charlotte Mason's philosophy of education sometimes use the word organic.
Yes, organic does mean natural, real, of living things, not artificial.

But another definition is "consisting of different parts that all fit together well." Different organs, working together to make a functioning whole. Yet another is "happening or developing in a natural and continuous process."  

And the word that seems to fit in right after that is "holistic."   The idea that the total effectiveness of a group of things each interacting with one another is different or greater than their effectiveness when acting in isolation from one another.  The whole philosophical and educational package, made up of many small lessons over many days, multiple terms, a number of years, turns out to have a greater meaning and value than we could have forseen.
'Open, Sesame.'––I think we should have a great educational revolution once we ceased to regard ourselves as assortments of so-called faculties, and realised ourselves as persons whose great business it is to get in touch with other persons of all sorts and condition; of all countries and climes, of all times, past and present. History would become entrancing, literature a magic mirror for the discovery of other minds, the study of sociology a duty and a delight. We should tend to become responsive and wise, humble and reverent, recognising the duties and the joys of the full human life. We cannot of course overtake such a programme of work, but we can keep it in view; and I suppose every life is moulded upon its ideal. ~~ Charlotte Mason, School Education
Many living books.  Many ideas.  Many glimpses of the divine, of Eternity, of something beyond ourselves. ("God Sightings.")

And, unfortunately or fortunately (I think fortunately), it's impossible to program all that ahead of time, because we're not programmable beings.

We can plan books, do a little research ahead of time, think of good "narration prompts."  But we can't always predict where it's going to take us.

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