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Old March 17th, 2008 #1
Alex Linder
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LITERATURE

Discussion of Beowulf

http://www.chroniclesmagazine.org/?p=533#comments
 
Old December 6th, 2008 #2
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Greek to Us: The Death of Classical Education and Its Consequences
Posted by E. Christian Kopff on December 05, 2008

The following address was given to the H.L. Mencken Club’s Annual Meeting; November 21-23, 2008.

On the evenings of October 10 and 11, 1999, the A&E cable network broadcast a list of “The 100 Most Influential People of the Past 1000 Years,” selected by a “Blue Ribbon Panel.” Some of the names on the bottom half of the list were rather silly: Princess Diana, the Beatles, Elvis Presley (who was ranked just ahead of Joan of Arc), but the top ten names represent a consensus on what has mattered most to us over the last 500 years.

Here they are in reverse order:

10. Galileo
9. Copernicus
8. Einstein
7. Karl Marx
6. Christopher Columbus
5. William Shakespeare
4. Charles Darwin
3. Martin Luther
2. Isaac Newton
1. Johann Gutenberg

This small group includes a poet, a theologian, a social philosopher, an inventor, a discoverer and five scientists. (Similar lists also privilege science.) The list includes atheists and believers, Catholics, Protestants and Jews. They are all Europeans and all men. The A&E narrative emphasized their curiosity and creativity. I noticed another trait they shared. They all studied Latin. They all had a classical education.

A larger list of significant cultural figures appears in Human Accomplishment, where Charles Murray developed a research strategy that analyzed standard reference works to isolate the 20 most influential figures in 21 areas. Of those ca. 400 figures, 30 stand out as especially influential. Nine come from the period before 1400 AD, while “eighteen of the remaining 21 who came after 1400 were concentrated in the three centuries from 1600-1900.” Sixteen of these 18 (except for two on the technology list) were classically educated. Of the larger lists of the 20 most influential figures in the 13 categories devoted to European culture, the majority were classically educated. Every figure on the lists devoted to “Western Literature” and “Western Philosophy” was classically educated—except for those who actually composed in Greek and Latin in the ancient world.

Let us move from past accomplishments to contemporary problems. In both The Bell Curve and Real Education, Charles Murray relates the story of SAT scores from their high point in 1963 to a nadir reached in 1980-81. After 1981 the average math scores rose again, while the verbal scores stagnated. Herrnstein and Murray wrote in 1994, “The steep drop from 1963 to 1980 was no minor statistical fluctuation. Taken at face value, it tells of an extraordinarily large downward shift in academic aptitude—almost half a standard deviation on the Verbal, almost a third of a standard deviation on the Math.” And it was not average students, but bright high school students who took the tests because they were planning to attend college who were responsible for the dramatic decline in SAT verbal and math scores. After the nadir reached in 1980-81 average scores on the math SAT improved and by 1994 had reached the level of 1967. In fact, in 1994, Murray noted, “the percentage of seventeen-year-olds getting 700+ in the SAT-Math had not only recovered from its low in the early 1980s, it had reached an all-time high.”

The SAT verbal scores, on the other hand, improved only slightly over the low point reached in 1981. This is a serious problem. What T. S. Eliot’s Sweeney says about himself is true of the elite: “I gotta use words when I talk to you.” Murray argues convincingly that “The tools of verbal expression… are indispensable for precise thinking at an advanced level.” The inability of our leaders to think soundly and speak persuasively affects all of us, because their decisions affect all of us. Leaders of a regime based on consensual institutions need the full panoply of verbal ability.

Murray prefaces his argument for the importance of “rigor in verbal expression” by commenting, “In a generic sense, I am calling for a revival of the classical understanding of a liberal education at the college level…but I am not trying to make a case for obligatory study of Greek and Latin or for a St. John’s College curriculum that consists exclusively of the classics.” When he discusses K-12 education, he recommends E. D. Hirsch’s Core Knowledge curricula and an expansion of “choice” through vouchers and charter schools. Tom Wolf calls this “a practical plan for literally reproducing, re-creating, a new generation of Jeffersons, Adamses, Franklins, and Hamiltons.” Whether Murray’s plan is practical remains to be seen. We know the education of Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and most of the other Founding Fathers and it had nothing to do with school choice. It was what we now call Classical Education.

Jefferson and Adams had heard their good friend, Dr. Benjamin Rush, plead for the elimination of the Classics from education in favor of mathematics, science, engineering and Christianity. When they answered him, they emphasized the close connection between language and thinking. A rich vocabulary and a command of grammar are essential for effective writing and speaking. Latin and Greek are the sources for English vocabulary in many important areas, such as law, medicine, science, philosophy, politics and theology, and provide a solid grounding in grammar. Literary, historical and philosophical masterpieces written in Greek and Latin are the historical bases of our culture and are best understood and appreciated when read in the original languages.

In the 16th century, Martin Luther made a similar point about the ancient religious texts of the Bible. He wrote in his open letter To the Councilmen of all the Cities in Germany (1525), “The languages are the scabbard in which the sword of the Spirit is sheathed.” Luther’s defense of the ancient tongues encouraged Protestant educators to make the Humanist curriculum the basis of education in their countries, including the United States. Latin was fundamental in this curriculum. That is why I wrote a decade ago, “We need to know Latin if we want to think like the Founders.” I could have mentioned most of the great figures of modernity.

Book Cover

The greatest figures in the Scientific Revolution, for example, were classically educated: Copernicus, Tycho Brahe, Johannes Kepler, Galileo Galilei, Isaac Newton and most of the other figures found in Charles Murray’s eight lists of scientific achievement in Human Accomplishment. They had studied ancient texts and could read and write Latin. The Scientific Revolution of the 16th and 17th centuries was very self-consciously a return to the ideals and even the texts of ancient science. Copernicus was well aware that he was reviving the heliocentric hypothesis of Aristarchus of Samos from the Third century, BC. The atomic theory used by Newton in his optics was based on Gassendi’s brilliant philological recovery of ancient Epicureanism. Galileo quotes Plato’s Meno and Timaeus over and over again. The education of scientists remained classical through the time of Linnaeus in the 18th century and Charles Darwin in the 19th.

Sceptics object that they had no choice. The case for vocational or technical training was made in the late 18th century by men like Benjamin Franklin and Benjamin Rush.

History does not usually allow us to study events with a true control group. There is an exception to this situation in 19th century Germany, where there were two distinct educational paths. One led from the old Classical school, now with more Greek added, and culminated in the classical or humanist “Gymnasium,” from which students then went on to the university. The other path was devoted to math, science, technology and a modern language (usually French) and led to the technical high school or “Realschule,” from which the student went on to a professional school or a job in industry. This critical mass of technically trained graduates working in factories protected by the tariff spurred German industrial growth in the generation that preceded World War I.

The decades on either side of WWI witnessed brilliant work in Physics: the concept of quanta, the theories of special and general relativity and the development of quantum mechanics. One might expect that the most important work in these fields would be done by graduates of the technical school system. Nearly the opposite is true. Max Planck, Werner Heisenberg, Erwin Schrödinger, Niels Bohr were classically educated. Einstein attended a Swiss technical high school, but he had spent his first six years at a classical school, where his sister remembered his best subjects as Mathematics and Latin: “Latin’s clear, strictly logical structure fit his mindset.” Heisenberg wrote, “I believe that in the work of Max Planck, for instance, we can clearly see that his thought was influenced and made fruitful by his classical schooling.” Heisenberg insisted that his own insights into nature came from his classical education. Its combination of math and physics with language instruction led him to read Plato’s Timaeus in Greek. He was impressed by Plato’s rational appeals to understand nature mathematically rather than as a purely physical reality: “I was gaining the growing conviction that one could hardly make progress in modern atomic physics without a knowledge of Greek natural philosophy.”

When we review the story of SAT scores from the high point in 1963 to a nadir reached in 1981, after which the verbal scores experienced only slight improvement, we may want to add one factor to those usually discussed. 1962, the year before the SAT high point, marked the year of the zenith of enrollment in high school Latin in the United States, when 728,637 students enrolled in high school Latin. The decline in Latin enrollments tracks the decline in SAT-Verbal scores. Latin has never regained its position as a “more commonly taught language,” just as SAT-Verbal scores have never gotten back to their 1963 level. If the relation of high school Latin and SAT-Verbal scores is significant, we may note that the decline in measurable achievement was most striking in good students and it was precisely good students who tended to take high school Latin.

I understand why it is hard for advocates of academic rigor to take foreign languages seriously today. Greek has virtually disappeared. Latin has lost the presence it had in the early 1960’s. The dominant foreign language in high schools is Spanish. Before the cultural catastrophe of the late 1960’s, mastery of a foreign language was part of the standard high school curriculum and a prerequisite for admission to good colleges. Bright students developed a mastery of verbal expression. Ordinary people understood the challenges and rewards of knowing foreign languages.

That understanding not only improved the quality of “precise thinking at an advanced level,” but influenced popular culture. It is the basis for one of the funniest episodes of “I Love Lucy,” where a Parisian policeman, who knows French and German, communicates with the monoglot Lucy by talking to an inebriated prisoner who knows German and Spanish and so can talk to Lucy’s Cuban husband, Rickie, who knows Spanish and English. It is a superbly achieved comic presentation of foreign languages as a means and barrier to communication. In Jean Renoir’s La Grande Illusion the ability of two aristocrats, a German officer and his French prisoner, to communicate with each other in English and so hide their thoughts from their men provides both humor and heartbreak.

In Real Education, Charles Murray sees the direct connection between “correct understanding of the meaning of individual words,” grammar and syntax, “mastery of the rules of reasoning” and finally “understanding the principles of rhetoric.” This connected and coherent verbal curriculum is the late ancient and medieval trivium—grammar, logic and rhetoric—that survived in the Humanist curriculum that was then developed by the Reformers for Protestant countries and by the Jesuits in Catholic lands. (The quadrivium includes the non-verbal arts of arithmetic, geometry, astronomy and music.)

It is the curriculum that created the modern world. It has been revived and is fundamental for contemporary Classical educators. They know a lesson that was accepted for centuries and is now ignored at enormous academic cost. Grammar is fundamental for other important intellectual activities.

Few people can understand grammar by studying their first language. They need the discipline provided by rigorous study of foreign languages. It is vain to pin our hopes for improving communication on university writing programs, which were created to remedy deficiencies, not produce excellence. Writing programs cannot succeed at teaching high standards in communication unless their students already command “the tools of verbal expression.” Only rigorous study of foreign languages can give that to most people.

Classical Education as practiced in the United States over the past 15 years is the most up-to-date, cutting edge development in K-12 education. It is also the oldest, most tried-and-true alternative on today’s educational scene. Its current incarnation began when Calvinist minister Douglas Wilson read an essay entitled “The Lost Tools of Learning,” a witty defense of the medieval Seven Liberal Arts written by Dorothy Sayers after World War II. Wilson turned the ideas in Sayers’ essay into a curriculum based on the arts of language found in the late ancient and medieval trivium. Schools with a classical curriculum are often associated with traditional forms of Christianity, but there are also non-religious classical charters, which are public schools. Some Classical schools concentrate on the trivium, but many espouse the entire liberal arts curriculum.

Charles Murray describes clearly and powerfully the challenges that face American education. To overcome them we need all the help we can get. Classical education is the most successful curriculum ever developed, whether measured by its results in literature, art, music, science, philosophy, law or politics. Greek and Latin have provided the vocabulary for these important areas. Studying Greek and Latin trained the minds of those who practiced these subjects. Reading works composed n Greek and Latin transmitted the cultural legacy that was the soil in which they flourished. Latin is the language of such central modern works as More’s Utopia, the Augsburg Confession, and Newton’s Principia. Works in Latin formed the styles and provided the content of the writings of America’s Founding Fathers. What I wrote ten years ago remains true today: America needs the Classical Tradition.

E. Christian Kopff is professor of Classics at the University of Colorado in Bolder. He is the author of The Devil Knows Latin and has recently translated Josef Pieper’s Tradition: Concept and Claim into English for ISI Books. He is a contributing editor at Taki’s Magazine.

http://www.takimag.com/site/article/..._consequences/
 
Old December 6th, 2008 #3
Kievsky
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Thanks for digging this up, Alex. I discovered in college that I have an inborn talent for learning foreign languages, and wasted a couple of years after college studying Latin and getting a reading knowledge of German, thinking that I was going to be able to go to graduate school and become a valued educator, either in a college or a private school somewhere. That was what I was meant to do in life, but I was born in the wrong historical era. It was tough giving up the beautiful dream of becoming a professor of languages and literature. But the students wanting to learn this stuff aren't there. In the language of economics, "there is no market" for it.

In retrospect, I wish I had studied Mandarin Chinese in college in addition to Russian. And I wish I had majored in accounting and finance.

I'll keep all this in mind for the Feudal-Agrarian future. Perhaps we'll have little White enclaves where we preserve and cultivate learning, while the wider civilization descends back into a new Dark Ages.
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Old August 19th, 2009 #4
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MIT curriculum online for free

http://ocw.mit.edu/OcwWeb/web/home/home/index.htm

bibliography for same course
http://ocw.mit.edu/OcwWeb/Anthropolo...ings/index.htm
 
Old September 9th, 2009 #5
Alex Linder
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Home School 101

by Heather M. Carson

This is it. This is my first week as a home schooling mom. I asked my kindergartner what she would like her first subject to be and she said Bible. Bible it is.

Several months ago another mom at church, who began home schooling her son several years ago, approached me.

"So, are you planning to home school your daughter?" she asked.

"Yes."

"Have you chosen your curriculum yet?"

"Um..."

"Well," she interrupted, "I’ve chosen one for my son for this year. There were several I was interested in and we settled on this one. Here’s a book you can borrow. (The book is: What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know by Hirsch and Holdren) I used this for my son his first year."

As she continued to talk I could feel a fog coming over me. I began to feel worried. I hadn’t chosen a curriculum yet. I hadn’t read the book now in my possession. What if I don’t teach my kindergartner everything she needs to know. By the end of our conversation I had committed myself to joining the co-op of other home schooling moms at my church (good), and opened up a can of insecurities about my own lack of preparedness as a homeschooler (bad).

I knew I wanted to home school my kids. I had had fantasies about being educated by a governess when I was a child. The freedom home education provided was a major allure: freedom to follow my own interests, freedom to learn at my own pace, freedom from harassment by other kids. I considered these factors as I thought about teaching my own children. As the time approached to actually begin home schooling I realized I had accepted several false beliefs pushed by the educational establishment. I needed to deal with these before I could begin.

First is the belief that learning takes place in a controlled classroom setting. This is simply not true. Certainly not at the kindergarten level. So, I decided, most of my kids early learning would not, in fact, happen at her desk. Rather, over lunch while I’m doing the dishes we talk about words, lots of words. "How do you spell ‘from’ Mommy? How about ‘table’? How about ‘lamp’." On and on the questions go. I have her sound out words, write down words. We made flash cards with words and hung them up around the house. My house looks like a Richard Scarry word book with each item wearing its name. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that my daughter is ready to learn how to read! Neither does it take a teacher’s degree, which brings me to my second false belief: you have to know how to teach, and that requires a teaching degree. Wrong! I know at least a half dozen mothers who taught everything from Latin and French to Trigonometry without having mastered these subjects themselves ahead of time. They simply learned right along with their kids staying at least one or two steps ahead. I expect, however, even with this kind of commitment to learning there will be subjects that I simply won’t be able to, or want to, teach.

This brings me to another false belief; home schooling means I am on my own – as are my children (no socialization). If I find, for whatever reason, that I am unable to teach a certain subject to my children I can rely upon the rich resources of my community. For instance, I use a talented young lady who attends the university up the street as a "mommy’s helper" once a week. She is not only a very capable baby-sitter, but a decent dancer and pianist. She is studying accounting, but teaches piano lessons on the side. Since learning piano at this time may be just a little more than I can do, we will most likely go to her to teach that subject when the time comes.

I spoke earlier of having joined the "co-op" of home schooling moms at my church. This is a group of moms who have volunteered to help teach each other’s kids various subjects once a week using the church building. Of these mothers, three are bilingual, one was an engineer, and another a nurse who currently teaches classical education at a private academy on the side. I have a master’s degree, 15 years of music training as a violist, and currently sing with the church band. What a wonderful resource we can be for each other! The added bonus of opportunities for friendships with other children is wonderful.

Last is the issue of curriculum. The false belief that you must have a specific curriculum to successfully teach your child is the one that I most recently let go. Certainly, I need to have some kind of plan for my child’s learning, but a set curriculum is not necessary. I have established my goals for the year: teach my daughter to read, introduce basic addition and subtraction, study the Bible (our decision to do this is based on the long term goal of giving our children a Classical Education involving the use of "great books" as a main teaching tool), and introduce a second language. We intend to purchase classes at a French immersion school. Science/History/Geography are as near as our back yard, local zoo, science center, and local library. That’s my curriculum. I’ve spent about $30 on materials. Other materials were gifted or shared by the co-op moms. Most of whatever else I need is found on the internet. The book loaned to me, What Your Kindergartner Needs To Know, is a rough guide. I say rough because a seasoned home schooling mom cautioned me not to burn my kids out by trying to teach too much too soon. Rather, just go with the flow and let my child’s natural curiosity be my guide. A more formal, structured curriculum will become appropriate later as they get older.

Such a deal! I know parents who are about to spend $14,000 per year sending their kids to private school for kindergarten to avoid using the public schools. I get that, as a libertarian. I don’t want to use public schools either, but $14,000? Granted, homeschooling takes time, and it’s certainly a trade off. One wonderful thing about it: you are not locked in. You can homeschool one year, and send your child to school the next when you can afford it. I recommend homeschooling when they are younger, and sending them off when older as the curriculum gets harder as they age.

So, here I am. Ready as I’ll ever be to begin this newest journey in my life. I’m excited. I’m thrilled! This is the education I always wanted for myself, and I get to gift it to my kids.

Some helpful resources:

Starfall.com – language arts.

Peepandthebigwideworld.com – science and math.

Pbskids.org – all subjects.

Preschoolpalace.org – free worksheets on letters, numbers, colors, shapes, plus suggested monthly preschool curriculums all printable.

Usbornebooks.com – amazing books, amazing. Love them. You could piece together many grades worth of curriculum here.

Activitypad.com – mazes, connect the dots, color by number.

Triviumpursuit.com – website extraordinaire by a mom who schools using the trivium.

Kidzone.ws/math/kindergarten – lots and lots of math worksheets from number recognition to word problems.

Essays and Books:

What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know – by E.D. Hirsch and John Holdren

The Lost Tools of Learning – Dorothy Sayers (can be found on line)

The Well Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home – by Susan Wise Bauer and Jesse Wise

September 9, 2009

Heather M. Carson [send her mail] has a Master's in Counseling, and is the proud mother of a 5-year-old, 4-year-old, 2-year-old and 8-month-old.

http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig3/h-carson6.1.1.html
 
Old September 9th, 2009 #6
Alex Linder
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Home School 101

by Heather M. Carson

This is it. This is my first week as a home schooling mom. I asked my kindergartner what she would like her first subject to be and she said Bible. Bible it is.

Several months ago another mom at church, who began home schooling her son several years ago, approached me.

"So, are you planning to home school your daughter?" she asked.

"Yes."

"Have you chosen your curriculum yet?"

"Um..."

"Well," she interrupted, "I’ve chosen one for my son for this year. There were several I was interested in and we settled on this one. Here’s a book you can borrow. (The book is: What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know by Hirsch and Holdren) I used this for my son his first year."

As she continued to talk I could feel a fog coming over me. I began to feel worried. I hadn’t chosen a curriculum yet. I hadn’t read the book now in my possession. What if I don’t teach my kindergartner everything she needs to know. By the end of our conversation I had committed myself to joining the co-op of other home schooling moms at my church (good), and opened up a can of insecurities about my own lack of preparedness as a homeschooler (bad).

I knew I wanted to home school my kids. I had had fantasies about being educated by a governess when I was a child. The freedom home education provided was a major allure: freedom to follow my own interests, freedom to learn at my own pace, freedom from harassment by other kids. I considered these factors as I thought about teaching my own children. As the time approached to actually begin home schooling I realized I had accepted several false beliefs pushed by the educational establishment. I needed to deal with these before I could begin.

First is the belief that learning takes place in a controlled classroom setting. This is simply not true. Certainly not at the kindergarten level. So, I decided, most of my kids early learning would not, in fact, happen at her desk. Rather, over lunch while I’m doing the dishes we talk about words, lots of words. "How do you spell ‘from’ Mommy? How about ‘table’? How about ‘lamp’." On and on the questions go. I have her sound out words, write down words. We made flash cards with words and hung them up around the house. My house looks like a Richard Scarry word book with each item wearing its name. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that my daughter is ready to learn how to read! Neither does it take a teacher’s degree, which brings me to my second false belief: you have to know how to teach, and that requires a teaching degree. Wrong! I know at least a half dozen mothers who taught everything from Latin and French to Trigonometry without having mastered these subjects themselves ahead of time. They simply learned right along with their kids staying at least one or two steps ahead. I expect, however, even with this kind of commitment to learning there will be subjects that I simply won’t be able to, or want to, teach.

This brings me to another false belief; home schooling means I am on my own – as are my children (no socialization). If I find, for whatever reason, that I am unable to teach a certain subject to my children I can rely upon the rich resources of my community. For instance, I use a talented young lady who attends the university up the street as a "mommy’s helper" once a week. She is not only a very capable baby-sitter, but a decent dancer and pianist. She is studying accounting, but teaches piano lessons on the side. Since learning piano at this time may be just a little more than I can do, we will most likely go to her to teach that subject when the time comes.

I spoke earlier of having joined the "co-op" of home schooling moms at my church. This is a group of moms who have volunteered to help teach each other’s kids various subjects once a week using the church building. Of these mothers, three are bilingual, one was an engineer, and another a nurse who currently teaches classical education at a private academy on the side. I have a master’s degree, 15 years of music training as a violist, and currently sing with the church band. What a wonderful resource we can be for each other! The added bonus of opportunities for friendships with other children is wonderful.

Last is the issue of curriculum. The false belief that you must have a specific curriculum to successfully teach your child is the one that I most recently let go. Certainly, I need to have some kind of plan for my child’s learning, but a set curriculum is not necessary. I have established my goals for the year: teach my daughter to read, introduce basic addition and subtraction, study the Bible (our decision to do this is based on the long term goal of giving our children a Classical Education involving the use of "great books" as a main teaching tool), and introduce a second language. We intend to purchase classes at a French immersion school. Science/History/Geography are as near as our back yard, local zoo, science center, and local library. That’s my curriculum. I’ve spent about $30 on materials. Other materials were gifted or shared by the co-op moms. Most of whatever else I need is found on the internet. The book loaned to me, What Your Kindergartner Needs To Know, is a rough guide. I say rough because a seasoned home schooling mom cautioned me not to burn my kids out by trying to teach too much too soon. Rather, just go with the flow and let my child’s natural curiosity be my guide. A more formal, structured curriculum will become appropriate later as they get older.

Such a deal! I know parents who are about to spend $14,000 per year sending their kids to private school for kindergarten to avoid using the public schools. I get that, as a libertarian. I don’t want to use public schools either, but $14,000? Granted, homeschooling takes time, and it’s certainly a trade off. One wonderful thing about it: you are not locked in. You can homeschool one year, and send your child to school the next when you can afford it. I recommend homeschooling when they are younger, and sending them off when older as the curriculum gets harder as they age.

So, here I am. Ready as I’ll ever be to begin this newest journey in my life. I’m excited. I’m thrilled! This is the education I always wanted for myself, and I get to gift it to my kids.

Some helpful resources:

Starfall.com – language arts.

Peepandthebigwideworld.com – science and math.

Pbskids.org – all subjects.

Preschoolpalace.org – free worksheets on letters, numbers, colors, shapes, plus suggested monthly preschool curriculums all printable.

Usbornebooks.com – amazing books, amazing. Love them. You could piece together many grades worth of curriculum here.

Activitypad.com – mazes, connect the dots, color by number.

Triviumpursuit.com – website extraordinaire by a mom who schools using the trivium.

Kidzone.ws/math/kindergarten – lots and lots of math worksheets from number recognition to word problems.

Essays and Books:

What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know – by E.D. Hirsch and John Holdren

The Lost Tools of Learning – Dorothy Sayers (can be found on line)

The Well Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home – by Susan Wise Bauer and Jesse Wise

September 9, 2009

Heather M. Carson [send her mail] has a Master's in Counseling, and is the proud mother of a 5-year-old, 4-year-old, 2-year-old and 8-month-old.

http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig3/h-carson6.1.1.html
 
Old September 10th, 2009 #7
Igor Alexander
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Quote:
...freedom from harassment by other kids.
One of the big objections I hear to homeschooling is that children won't be adequately "socialized," which I presume to mean, "won't have enough contact with other kids their own age."

This objection assumes that the "socialization" kids experience in public school is positive and healthy. I knew several kids growing up for whom public school was a traumatizing experience; kids who had the crap beat out of them almost every day and who had been driven batshit insane by the time they reached junior high (and this was in a small-town, almost all-white school; I cringe at what it must be like for white kids going to school with a large number of niggers or mestizos). There is no doubt in my mind that these kids would've been better off without this "socialization."

I fared better than them, but only slightly, and for the most part feel that public school was a waste of what should've been the best and most productive years of my life.

There isn't much difference between the way public schools are run and the way prisons are. The notion that kids go to school to "learn" is laughable; public schools function primarily as state-run daycare centers, and secondarily, to condition kids into being obedient servants of the New World Order (and to indentify those who cannot be conditioned so they can be rubberstamped as "troublemakers" and either kicked out of school, barred from college, and/or put on mind-numbing drugs).

Was the "socialization" Dylan Klebold received in public school the type kids who are homeschooled will be missing out on? If so, is that such a bad thing? (Yeah, I know Klebold was a kike, but still...)
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Old September 10th, 2009 #8
Alex Linder
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Igor Alexander View Post
One of the big objections I hear to homeschooling is that children won't be adequately "socialized," which I presume to mean, "won't have enough contact with other kids their own age."

This objection assumes that the "socialization" kids experience in public school is positive and healthy. I knew several kids growing up for whom public school was a traumatizing experience; kids who had the crap beat out of them almost every day and who had been driven batshit insane by the time they reached junior high (and this was in a small-town, almost all-white school; I cringe at what it must be like for white kids going to school with a large number of niggers or mestizos). There is no doubt in my mind that these kids would've been better off without this "socialization."

I fared better than them, but only slightly, and for the most part feel that public school was a waste of what should've been the best and most productive years of my life.

There isn't much difference between the way public schools are run and the way prisons are. The notion that kids go to school to "learn" is laughable; public schools function primarily as state-run daycare centers, and secondarily, to condition kids into being obedient servants of the New World Order (and to indentify those who cannot be conditioned so they can be rubberstamped as "troublemakers" and either kicked out of school, barred from college, and/or put on mind-numbing drugs).

Was the "socialization" Dylan Klebold received in public school the type kids who are homeschooled will be missing out on? If so, is that such a bad thing? (Yeah, I know Klebold was a kike, but still...)
Yeah, you're right. But even dumbass NEA folk know there's no way they can pretend to match HS for intellectual achievement, so socialization is their wholly fictitious, invented fallback.

School socializes you to:

- realize you can be attacked physically with impunity by bullies
- accept incredibly loud obnoxious noises as normal
- accept endless roll-taking and bureaucratic nonsense as normal
- have your own interests ignored and your grades tied to a team (this is a more recent invention - getting kids used to the concept of affirmative action)
 
Old September 10th, 2009 #9
Alex Linder
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It's been proven kids who grow up and learn around adults do better intellectually and socially than kids who are imprisoned with their peers for most of their waking childhood.
 
Old September 12th, 2009 #10
Anne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Linder View Post
It's been proven kids who grow up and learn around adults do better intellectually and socially than kids who are imprisoned with their peers for most of their waking childhood.
Yes, or if that's not possible, having a mixed-age learning environment is good. Interaction between different age groups stimulates learning and maturation.

BTW, you've mentioned creating a HS curriculum several times. While I don't have any experience with curriculum development, I'm wondering why a curriculum in use in a private school that emphasizes the classics/Western canon, wouldn't be adequate for White families. For many subjects, using textbooks written prior to the 1960's would be valuable, IMO.
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Old September 14th, 2009 #11
Alex Linder
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anne View Post
Yes, or if that's not possible, having a mixed-age learning environment is good. Interaction between different age groups stimulates learning and maturation.

BTW, you've mentioned creating a HS curriculum several times. While I don't have any experience with curriculum development, I'm wondering why a curriculum in use in a private school that emphasizes the classics/Western canon, wouldn't be adequate for White families. For many subjects, using textbooks written prior to the 1960's would be valuable, IMO.
I'm sure it would be good, but I'm also sure it would not emphasize the specifically racial nature and context the student needs to know. That stuff was more or less assumed. At most you would find Christian moral lessons woven in, possibly some up-with-British-imperialism. Neither of these is what we need.
 
Old February 4th, 2013 #12
Alex Linder
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We Can Measure Educational Value in Words

by Peter Lawler

E.D. Hirsch (the cultural literacy guy) has, I think, written the most important article on educational "outcomes" in a long time. The great benefit of education, "the key to increasingly upward mobility," is expanding the vocabulary of students. Why is that?
Hirsch observes that "vocabulary size is a convenient proxy for a whole range of educational attainments and abilities—not just skill in reading, writing, and listening, and speaking but also general knowledge of science, history, and the arts." People have large vocabularies because they know a lot. They know a lot, because they've read a lot—that is, many, many challenging books and articles and such.

The military has discovered that the Armed Forces Qualification Test "predicts real-world job performance most accurately when you double the verbal score and add it to the math score." That's because those who have the big vocabularies actually know more about the real world. And it's also true that "knowing more words makes you smarter," because language is the main tool we have for understanding the world. Not only that, a large vocabulary increases your "working memory"—that part of your memory actually available to you for solving problems. Studies show that when people know fewer words, they're less smart, and they become less able to be productive. And sadly that's what's happened to "a big segment of the American population since 1962."
We know, of course, that expanding vocabulary doesn't occur through studying vocabulary words. It occurs unconsciously as the result of using reading (mainly) as a way of "acquiring knowledge about the social and natural worlds." It occurs as the byproduct of "content-based instruction." It occurred well under the old French system that "followed a very specific sequential curriculum," through "curricular coherence" that brings together "a wide range of domains."

To make Americans smarter again and come closer to equal educational opportunity for all, we in our country have "to undo the vast intellectual revolution that took place in the 1930s." The dumbest of our dumb ideas—one that we still think is innovative but is actually discredited and worn out—"is how-to-ism—the notion that education should concern itself not with mere factual knowledge, which is constantly changing, but rather with giving students the intellectual tools to assimilate new knowledge. These tools typically include the ability to look things up, to think critically, and to accommodate oneself flexibly to the world of the unknown future." Although Hirsch's article deals with primary and secondary education, it's clear to me that dumb-and-dumber how-to-ism has permeated higher education. So we want to assess our programs in a content-free way—as being all about the abstract skills such as critical thinking and analytical reasoning.

"How-to-ism has failed," Hirsch explains, "because of its fundamental misconception of skills, which considers them analogous to automated processes, such as making a free throw in basketball." The how-to-ists understand people, you might say, as productivity machines. They don't account for the distinctive capabilities and joys of the being given speech, the being with a name who can name. It's through naming people and things with increasing precision and enjoying the pleasure of sharing what we can know in common through words that we come both to know more and to think better.

So it seems that what our schools—from pre-K to college—really need is a well-developed, common, content-rich curriculum, with a "strong focus on subject-matter knowledge" and a quite intentional awareness of "the critical importance of factual knowledge."

Hirsch reminds us of the success of the old Catholic schools in raising up quite ordinary kiids from working-class families to high levels of vocabulary expansion and conceptual sophistication, despite deprivations and misconceptions most schools don't suffer from today. We might tentatively say that they were animated by the loving confidence that the truth is available us all and sets us free, and it’s found in complicated texts full of beautiful, old-fashioned words.

Peter Augustine Lawler is Dana Professor of Political Science at Berry College in Georgia. He is the author of Postmodernism Rightly Understood: The Return to Realism in American Thought (1999) and Aliens in America: The Strange Truth about Our Souls (2002). He is a Senior Contributor to The Imaginative Conservative. Reprinted with the gracious permission of the author.

http://www.imaginativeconservative.o...l#.URAM-2_5_To
 
Old February 12th, 2013 #13
Hunter Morrow
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With the browning and blacking of the public schools, White kids today have to do lots of "group learning." It is also "racist" and "White privilege" to break students into groups based on their skill or have schools set up for the higher ability Whites because the spics and the nigs would be in the slow group or not accepted. Those programs are going away. Even the honors classes have Affirmative Action to pack them with non-Whites The aim is to use not only technique, but race as well, to terminally dumb down the Whites. The White geniuses are in the same class as the stupid niggers and spics.

Maximum exposure and forced interaction with non-Whites is terrible. Anybody who has ever done a group homework assignment can tell you how dumb and lazy the non-Whites are. They get good marks on the homework off of the work of Whites and then graduate entirely illiterate. 50+ million functional illiterates are in this country right now and the number is only going to go up!

Schools race-interfere so much that there is more than just forced busing these days. There is forced seating! Lots of White kids these days can't even eat lunch at home or at a table of their choosing! "Closed campus" means children can't go home and eat with their mother, father, uncles and aunts, grandparents, etc.They get "lockdown" in school and assigned seating with Eduardo and LeShawn. Even in prison the wardens don't force you to sit in a certain seat.

Is that positive socialization?
 
Old August 15th, 2013 #14
lisayvonne
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Here go with beestar.org. We've been using it... Exercises are short so DD's more willing to do the work.
Lisa
 
Old March 20th, 2014 #15
Alex Linder
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Ron Paul Curriculum: The Story of Liberty, K-12

Here, you and your children can get an education in liberty like no other.

Here, students learn the basics of Western Civilization and Western liberty -- how it was won, how it is being lost, and how it will be restored. (Not can . . . will.)

Students also learn the basics of American history, the United States Constitution, and American geography.

They get two courses on free market economics. They get two courses on government, including a how-to course on reclaiming America, one county at a time.

Students get mathematics, either through calculus or statistics or both.

They get the basics of science: biology, chemistry, and physics.

I invite parents to take courses and participate on forums -- to get the education they never had. Parents do not pay for the individual courses that they purchase for their children.

When completed and online, the curriculum's first six years -- instructional videos and course materials -- will be free. Some parents will decide to join the site, in order to participate in the K-5 forums, but membership is not mandatory. It is supplemental. On the K-5 timetable, click here.

http://www.ronpaulcurriculum.com
 
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