Thursday, August 22

on homeschooling :: classical education

If you've ever peeked into the world of homeschooling then you know that there is a LOT of information out there.
And there are a LOT of different ways to actually go about homeschooling.
Commonly used styles include, but are not limited to:
and what we're doing
Classical Education.

We came across the classical education philosophy when Bryan read a book review by Susan Wise Bauer on a totally different subject.
He then did some looking into her and found out about all of her educational and professional achievements and also came across her (and her mom's) book The Well Trained Mind.
If you aren't familiar with it, The Well Trained Mind is pretty much the equivalent of the Bible for home classical education.
From the moment that Bryan looked into what classical education is (and then filled me in), we were both intrigued.
Providing this type of education for our children is something that he and I have talked about, off and on, for a good portion of the years that we've been parents.

Susan Wise Bauer has a great and thorough article on the Well Trained Mind website entitled
What is Classical Education?, if you're interested in this method at all, I would definitely hop on over there for a read.
I will highlight a few things here though, that aided in our decision making.

And, as always with posts regarding homeschooling, these are just our opinions and decisions that we have made because we feel like it is best for our family.

"The first years of schooling are called the “grammar stage” — not because you spend four years doing English, but because these are the years in which the building blocks for all other learning are laid, just as grammar is the foundation for language."

"In the elementary school years — what we commonly think of as grades one through four — the mind is ready to absorb information."

"Rules of phonics and spelling, rules of grammar, poems, the vocabulary of foreign languages, the stories of history and literature, descriptions of plants and animals and the human body, the facts of mathematics — the list goes on."

"Classical education is language-focused; learning is accomplished through words, written and spoken, rather than through images (pictures, videos, and television)....Language requires the mind to work harder; in reading, the brain is forced to translate a symbol (words on the page) into a concept. Images, such as those on videos and television, allow the mind to be passive."

 "To the classical mind, all knowledge is interrelated....The reading of the Odyssey leads the student into the consideration of Greek history, the nature of heroism, the development of the epic, and man’s understanding of the divine....The world is full of knowledge, and finding the links between fields of study can be a mind-twisting task. A classical education meets this challenge by taking history as its organizing outline — beginning with the ancients and progressing forward to the moderns in history, science, literature, art and music."

 "The classical education is, above all, systematic — in direct contrast to the scattered, unorganized nature of so much secondary education." 

Like I said before, the actual article is FULL of information, these are just bits and pieces of it.

So, this is our philosophy/approach to homeschooling in a nutshell.
Of course, there are other aspects of schooling which I will continue to delve into in the future.

Are you a homeschooler?
If so, I would love to hear about what philosophy you follow and why.
I am always interested in getting views into the ways that others do things.

 peace, love and all things sparkly.


  1. Oh! Wow! This is exactly what we are doing!!!!! This book is amazing! I feel like 4 years of college level education training has been thrown out the window! That's okay... I'm excited. It is what we have been dreaming of for our kids! I would love to pick your brain! Let's plan a field trip!

  2. Yay, Tammy! Most homeschoolers that I know follow more of an unschooling/eclectic/Mason method, so it's exciting to find out that someone is doing what we are. Honestly, there is a LOT that I'm excited about learning alongside of Audrey! And yes, yes, YES to a field trip!! :)

  3. I just saw your most recent blog post on Facebook and had no idea you just started homeschooling 6 months ago. You seem like such a seasoned pro! We've been talking a LOT about homeschooling our kids. I've always loved the classical education model and am so happy to hear of someone using it successfully at home. I may have to pick your brain on it in a few years. Thanks for sharing your experience on this blog! :)


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