"'Education is the Science of Relations'; that is, that a child has natural relations with a vast number of things and thoughts: so we train him upon physical exercises, nature lore, handicrafts, science and art, and upon many living books, for we know that our business is not to teach him all about anything, but to help him to make valid as many as may be of––
'Those first-born affinities,
That fit our new existence to existing things.'"

Charlotte Mason, A Philosophy of Education
with a quote from The Prelude by William Wordsworth

Monday, January 19, 2009

Connecting With History

History for a Catholic Charlotte Mason educator is difficult. The popular Story of the World and the old books favored by Ambleside Online are comprehensive histories, so they are textbooks, after all, regardless of their packaging and writing style. They are also biased against Catholics so they are not really a good fit for our family.

World History is block time for us, meaning I want to have both living books and hands-on activities. My boys just will not sit and let me read to them for more than fifteen or twenty minutes at a shot. I was going to pick a time period and try to put together some resources, but nothing in the popular or out-of-copyright material incorporates any Catholic perspective whatsoever.

I remembered RC History came out with some sort of world history program last summer. I was wrong, however, in thinking that it was something along the lines of Story of the World only from a Catholic perspective. It has a classical design, and it uses a variety of living books available through the library. I read the review at Love2Learn. Yes, this is a Charlotte Mason style program.

I ordered a copy of volume I today. Volume II is just coming out and will be available next month. St. George Catholic Books has free shipping, so I am trying the program without the extras for now. I guess it is meant to be done in one year, with 4 volumes planned in all to match the 4 year cycle of a Classical education. We of course will do things at our own pace.

With Connecting with History, and Maureen Wittmann's book For the Love of Literature I am ready to put together our World History studies.

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