Teaching the Trivium: Christian Homeschooling
The Bluedorns have a family vision. Their high ideals of teaching by way of the mediaeval model of the trivium require careful study. Yet they make this classical style of education sound so doable, so appealing, and even homey. This is because they are pro-homeschool. They believe that “the family is at the heart of God’s plan for restoring Christian culture.” All three stages of the trivium (grammar, logic, and rhetoric) are explained. Then the Bluedorns answer “how-to-do-it” questions they have received over the years, relating their experience with their own children. Some of their own interpretations of classical education shares similarities with the Charlotte Mason philosophy. For instance, good books and narration are essential to both. Although the Bluedorns (who first met in a college Greek class) encourage us to make the teaching of Greek and Latin a priority in the elementary grades, they are not, on the whole, advocates for early formal academics. On the contrary, they suggest we delay teaching “formal” math and are in favor of “informal” math and English grammar, until the age of ten, which is in keeping with Miss Mason’s advice. If teaching Greek and Latin is not your preference, you won’t want to miss the other riches the Blueborns have to offer. You will glean useful ideas for teaching a range of other subjects to children of all ages.
We aren't Christian, but we ARE homeschoolers, and this book packs in a TON of information about how kids learn - at every stage of development. While I may wish some concepts were couched in a more secular way, I understand and appreciate the authors' worldview and - what's more - am extremely grateful that they have chosen to share their views of both the practical and theoretical side of a classical education. For a taste of the book, visit the authors' website at http://www.triviumpursuit.com/. But be warned - the excerpts there will probably leave you desperately wanting the full version. This book is jam-packed and well worth the investment in your kids' schooling, especially if you're considering a classical path.