In this season of the Thinking Love Podcast, Amy and Leah are talking about homeschooling as an art, beginning with what Charlotte Mason means when she says that we need a method, not a system. Join us for a conversation about the temptations of system-type thinking (and where that shows up), where we might want to use a system, and how to keep our homeschools making progress toward our long-term goals.
Listen now, or scroll down for show notes!
If a human being were a machine, education could do no more for him than to set him in action in prescribed ways, and the work of the educator would be simply to adopt a good working system or set of systems.
But the educator has to deal with a self-acting, self-developing being, and his business is to guide, and assist in, the production of the latent good in that being, the dissipation of the latent evil, the preparation of the child to take his place in the world at his best, with every capacity for good that is in him developed into a power.Charlotte Mason, Home Education
Home education is an art, not a science
[4:16] I want to step back a bit from finding specific solutions, because those won’t always work, and instead look at how we can develop principles and even attitudes towards our kids and homeschooling that are more resilient to the inevitable changes that take place as they grow up and our circumstances change
[7:56] If parents don’t have a method, we are going to fail before we even begin.
Charlotte Mason says what a method gives us
Method implies two things––a way to an end, and a step by step progress in that way…The parent who sees his way––that is, the exact force of method––to educate his child, will make use of every circumstance of the child’s life almost without intention on his own part, so easy and spontaneous is a method of education based upon Natural Law.Charlotte Mason, Home Education
[10:13] What are some ways that having a method in this sense (seeing a way to an end, and having progress along the way) have played out in your homeschool?
Systems give us an alluring fancy
[15:17] I think it’s very alluring that if we can just hit on the right process, then we’ll get the solution we want.
Where we want to use systems
[19:58] ‘System’ is sort of a level down from method. It has a place, but not the highest place. And this makes sense to me, because I think systems – kind of like habits – that are oriented to our long-term goals can help in that step-by-step progress that we want to make.
[23:28] It’s not the system that’s doing the work, but what our minds are working on that makes the difference.
How to homeschool as an art
[24:30] Have time to assess
[25:22] Pray and invite the Holy Spirit into our days
[25:55] Keep reading Charlotte Mason’s volumes
Mentioned in the Podcast
Wise Beginnings: Early Years Online Summit with Amber O’Neal Johnston
Simply Charlotte Mason Memory Work System