Thursday, June 18, 2009

"I Choose All!"

...that You will."

It's important for me to remember the last part of those famous words by St Therese of Lisieux.

So many choices this time of year, and so many homeschooling "methods" that attract me. Classical education is my abiding love. This book Jesuit Education by Robert Schwickerath is my reading of choice right at the moment.

Yet Charlotte Mason and unschooling were even earlier influences on me. Even before I read Laura Berquist's book (and Douglas Wilson's, which I did not like as much) I had read Susan Schaeffar Macaulay's For the Children's Sake, and John Holt's' Teach Your Own.

I am using the Ambleside curriculum because of all that is out there it seems the most reasonable for me personally to build on in view of my interests and abilities and ideas about education. It meets up nicely with my understanding of the principles of classical education, without burdening me with intensive teaching of Latin and Greek and other things I don't know well. And the emphasis on hours of time to play and investigate meets up nicely with my unschooly side, too, and my belief that freedom and exploration are of vital importance in learning.

But it's about Him and His Will, more than anything else.

I think I love to think about learning in general, and in particular the rich heritage of our past all the way from the ancient days. Theory of education seems so closely wrapped up with our understanding of the human being. Degrading, mechanical forms of education seem to rise when the general view of the human is ignoble and mechanistic.

From the Introduction to Jesuit Education:

"For an educational system must aim not at educating men in general, but at educating the youth of a certain age in a certain country. Hence the necessity of changes, of development. Education is something living and must grow, otherwise it will soon whether and decay.

There are, however, certain fundamental principles, certain broad outlines of education, based on sound philosophy and the experience of centuries, which suffer no change."
So like St Therese I am free to choose what will help me and my children on the road to what God wants for us, in light of those fundamental principles.


  1. There are so many educational approaches, resources, and ideas out there! It is really an embarrassment of riches. :-)

  2. Oh Willa.....don't ever stop blogging (typing our loud)...I NEED you! :o) You make me think more deeply about things that I am thinking about but don't know exactly where they are going....translation: I am able to put together my many random educational thoughts here...THANK YOU!! see, I am outnumbered...
    8 free-thinking children...each so different from the other (which of course means they think diferently, learn differently, have different challenges and gifts....ect...)
    ~and *only* 1 me!
    I am so glad I could spend some time leaning over the fence listening to you chat today. You do help me learn my place and gesticulate my own educational objectives amid the clutter of my kid-induced ADD mind ;o) I don't always get a chance to acutally type, but I love coming here!
    God bless you!


I would love to hear your thoughts on this!