It is exciting to be hosting the Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival this month! The last time I hosted was back in February 2009, such a very long time ago.
The theme for this month's Carnival is "School-Books and How They Make for Education", and the pre reading for this theme was Chapter 15 of Charlotte Mason's School Education.
I was excited to host this chapter for a couple of reasons. Most obviously, it is all about what brings a book alive, and why we should use them in education, and that means I can take some pictures of my beloved books. But this chapter also contains one of the best known and most inspiring Charlotte Mason quotes. It is this one:
Children make large demands upon us. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests. Thou hast set my feet in a large room; should be the glad cry of every intelligent soul. Life should be all living, and not merely a tedious passing of time; not all doing or all feeling or all thinking––the strain would be too great––but, all living; that is to say, we should be in touch wherever we go, whatever we hear, whatever we see, with some manner of vital interest. We cannot give the children these interests; we prefer that they should never say they have learned botany or conchology, geology or astronomy. 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? In fact, how large is the room in which he finds his feet set? and, therefore, how full is the life he has before him? 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.Charlotte Mason School Education p170-1
Nebby, from Letters from Nebby talks about some of the other wonderful quotes in this chapter in her post, On Using Good Books.
I also wrote on a similar theme at A peaceful day in Why do we educate with living books?
"I don't do this alone. I am joined by the Holy Spirit as the Supreme Educator of my daughter in all things. Not just spiritual things - all things. He will help her to know these things throughout her life, if only I will provide the introduction. With the help of living books, I'm doing my best."
Karen, at her blog, Simply...http://thesimplyblog.wordpress.com also takes a look at what Charlotte Mason has to say in Chapter 15 in her post, The Importance of a Generous Curriculum.
"She felt it was important to cultivate the intellect, to appreciate beauty, to build character and teach morals, and to strengthen the physical body…a generous curriculum with the aim to contribute to a full life."
Tammy from Aut-2b-Home in Carolina also talks about the generous life in her post, Offering a Full Life.
"Recently, a Facebook friend asked what we would like in a daycare program for special needs adults. What I described was basically a full life as described by Charlotte Mason."
Carol from journey-and-destination takes a more practical look at choosing living books in her post, Book Substitutions When Using Ambleside Online - Some Considerations.
"Two (or more) heads are better than one. Being a part of a community such as the Ambleside Online Forum provides access to a wide range of other home educators with various gifts, abilities and experience in home education and using CM's ideas. Tapping into these resources can save a lot of time and bring to light something we might have neglected to consider. Discussing ideas on the forum may also help someone further down the track who encounters the same need to modify the curriculum to suit the circumstances they are in."
Jen, on her blog, belikeFabre, tells us an inspiring story about how living books helped a young lad she tutors in How a Book Got a Boy Out Of a Snowsuit.
"It is the story in the living book that can bring strangers like us together. It is that book that can transport us to faraway places and execute leaps in our imagination."
Nancy Kelly from Sage Parnassus has recently returned from a visit to Ambleside in England. For those of us who are not able to make the same journey, she indulges us with two posts about her trip. Ambleside 2014 - Plain Living and High Thinking
"One thing that really struck home for me was that learning this philosophy and method takes time. Time to think, prepare, and put into practice."
Ambleside 2014 - The Millet Mystery
"If I was going to go to Ambleside, I had a few things that were a must-see. One of these things had to do with the artist Jean Francois Millet. Years ago, I read about how in 1900, the then-famous artist Fred Yates came to Scale How to give a the college students a talk on Millet. Mr. Yates had no prints with which to illustrate his talk but the lecture rooms had been freshly whitewashed..."
Brandy from afterThoughts makes reference to this discovery of Nancy's in her interesting post, A Note on Lectures at the Ambleside Teachers' College.
"One thing to note is that, for the most part, they were not learning how to teach these subjects. They were learning the subjects themselves. Mr. Yates' secrets regarding the teaching of his daughter were far less significant than his lectures, or his wall sketches that can still be viewed at Ambleside to this day."
And finally, Cindy from Our Journey Westward tells us about a photography nature study project that was a hit with her little man in A Nature Study Photography Project For Any Age.
"My little plan worked. Not only was he super-motivated for this scavenger hunt of sorts, it meant he had to observe differences, make comparisons and look for detail. He also naturally wanted to know the flower names, which we talked about. And, he was honing his macro-photography skills!"
And that brings us to the end. What an amazingly interesting Carnival this has been. I hope you've enjoyed it as much as I have.