I had so many wonderful comments last post about our bird feeder. I loved the interaction. The general consensus about our “mystery bird” seems to be that it most definitely is a grosbeak because of its beak. That was people’s first clue on what family it was from. Then our ”twitchers” determined that it was a black-headed grosbeak. Now to be honest, when I look in my Birds of Arizona book, the bird doesn’t look quite like the one we have, but when I googled it, the black headed grosbeak images are the very same ones as my bird.
Thanks so much everyone. It is so exciting to learn the names of the birds here in our backyard! If you want to be inspired, read the comments left on that post. There were so many great ideas from you all.
Carmen mentioned that her family keeps checklists – personal yearly lists, and lifelists (one big list for your whole life). I love that idea.
I have been given the ideas and tools to make our homeschooling interesting and educational. I’ve gotten off track in the last year but it’s so important that I keep my focus and make our homeschool journey a real life education. Since graduating 2 of my boys, I have learned that they may forget the facts they learned in history or the method to solving an algebraic equation but the ideas they have fed upon have stayed with them and is what keeps them inspired today.
Once again, I am amazed at Charlotte Mason’s understanding of humankind and more specifically, children.
Ideas alone matter in Education––The whole subject is profound, but as practical as it is profound. We must disabuse our minds of the theory that the functions of education are, in the main, gymnastic. In the early years of the child’s life it makes, perhaps, little apparent difference whether his parents start with the notion that to educate is to fill a receptacle, inscribe a tablet, mould plastic matter, or nourish a life; but in the end we shall find that only those ideas which have fed his life are taken into the being of the child; all the rest is thrown away, or worse, is like sawdust in the system, an impediment and an injury to the vital processes.
(Vol. 2, pg.38) –Charlotte Mason
How do we measure our children’s success in the schoolroom?
The question is not,––how much does the youth know? when he has finished his education––but how much does he care? and about how many orders of things does he care? (Vol. 3, pg. 171) –Charlotte Mason
[The duty of parents is to sustain a child's inner life with ideas as they sustain his body with food.]
The initial idea begets subsequent ideas; therefore, take care that children get right primary ideas on the great relations and duties of life.
Every study, every line of thought, has its ‘guiding idea’; therefore, the study of a child makes for living education in proportion as it is quickened by the guiding idea ‘which stands at the head.’ (Vol. 2, pg.39) –Charlotte Mason
With every book our child reads, every video they watch, the activities they engage in, they are being influenced, as Charlotte Mason put it, by a “guiding idea.” Nothing we/they do is neutral in its effects on our life.
I don’t want to get too deep in this, although my thoughts about this subject are quite intense, so I’ll just bring it back around to schooling our children. Let’s be careful what we allow them to fill their minds with. Give them only the best, not twaddle and dumbed down readers but expose them to the greatest writers who are passionate about their subject. Find mentors, like Lily’s mother-in-law (read the comments) who will take the time to share their enthusiasm for their area of interest whether it’s bird watching, knife making, fishing, gardening, farming, economics, history, geography, etc.
Reading the comments on the post Cultivating Enjoyment of Nature, you can’t help but be inspired. You, my dear readers, all are excited about your interest, you like to share about it and in doing so, you are spreading your “ideas” around. Through that, you have inspired me; I then shared with my family and believe that I will inspire them to a greater attention and appreciation of God’s marvelous nature.
I know you may bring a horse to the water, but you cannot make him drink. What I complain of is that we do not bring our horse to the water. We give him miserable little text-books, mere compendiums of facts, which he is to learn off and say and produce at an examination; or we give him various knowledge in the form of warm diluents, prepared by his teacher with perhaps some grains of living thought to the gallon. And all the time we have books, books teeming with ideas fresh from the minds of thinkers upon every subject to which we can wish to introduce children. (Vol. 3, pg. 171) –Charlotte Mason
Though they will plod on obediently over any of the hundreds of dry-as-dust volumes issued by the publishers under the heading of ‘School Books,’ or of ‘Education,’ they keep all such books in the outer court, and allow them no access to their minds” (Vol. 3, p. 228) –Charlotte Mason
How do you agree or disagree with Charlotte Mason’s philosophies?
Has the way you’ve homeschooled your children changed over the years?
Do you find yourself intimidated to drop the “traditional” way of schooling and do something different?
I would love to hear your thoughts.
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