Charlotte Mason – Education is a Life
So many times I have said to non homeschooling friends that homeschooling is a lifestyle not school lessons at home. That is exactly what Charlotte Mason is saying by this statement.
Education becomes a lifestyle of learning—feeding our mind with the mind food of great ideas.
Charlotte Mason encourages us to make sure we put quality ideas into our children’s lives.
What is an Idea?
An idea is a live thing of the mind. It strikes, seizes and catches hold of us. Ideas form the basis of our inspiration. An idea can possess us. Without ideas education is dull.
Ideas in Education
Charlotte argues that in many schools the concept of ideas is curiously absent. Curiosity is stilted with dull textbooks, wrote learning and dry facts—I would add force feeding of political agendas and peer group pressure. Before children receive the ideas of others it is watered down, pre-digested and often manipulated.
Giving Children Great Ideas
Charlotte Mason wanted children to be exposed to great thinkers and great ideas; these thinkers nourish their mind and feed their life.
“Education is a life. That life is sustained on ideas. Ideas are of spiritual origin, and God has made us so that we get them chiefly as we convey them to one another, whether by word of mouth, written page, Scripture word, musical symphony; but we must sustain a child’s inner life with ideas as we sustain his body with food.”
As the educator living literature is an instrument for giving idea. It allows the child to touch the author’s mind with their own words. This literary powerhouse helps them connect with these thinkers. Ideas clothed upon the factual stories seem to be recalled; for the delivery of an idea seems to require much padding.
Charlotte Mason cautions us to not to confuse opinions with ideas. Allow the children to express their own thoughts and ask them questions before you express your opinion.
“All roads lead to Rome, and all I have said is meant to enforce the fact that much and varied humane reading, as well as human thought expressed in the forms of art, is, not a luxury, a tit-bit, to be given to children now and then, but their very bread of life, which they must have in abundant portions and at regular periods. This and more is implied in the phrase, “The mind feeds on ideas and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.”
*Quotes unless otherwise stated are from Charlotte Mason “A Philosophy of Education Volume 6”. Read the whole chapter online at amblesideonline.com
Professional Development Resource for Homeschool Teachers
Inspired by Charlotte Mason is for you the home educator. You as the teacher need professional development and this ebook will help you teach. It’s not about resources; it’s the reasons behind teaching the Charlotte Mason way.
Inspired by Charlotte Mason will familiarise you with Charlotte Mason the educator and her core beliefs so you can understand how to implement her ideas and make them suit your homeschool.