Bio: Cindy Rollins, the recipient of the 2016 Russell Kirk Paideia Prize, is the author of Mere Motherhood: Morning Time, Nursey Rhymes, and My Journey Toward Sanctification and A Handbook to Morning Time, and is the editor of Hallelujah: A Journey through Advent with Handel’s Messiah. She is a host of The Mason Jar, a popular podcast about the intersection of Charlotte Mason and classical education. Cindy was a homeschooling mom of 9 (8 boys and 1 girl) who attended Stetson University and Toccoa Falls College. She was drawn towards homeschooling after hearing Raymond Moore in his original Focus on the Family Broadcast in the early 1980s and has now graduated 6 sons. For over 10 years, she blogged through her efforts to homeschool under the classical principles of Charlotte Mason. Her heart’s desire is to encourage moms, with a special concern for those raising sons. She lives in Chattanooga, Tennessee with her husband Tim and however many children happen to be around.
Brandy Vencel first heard about Charlotte Mason when her children were tiny (and some as yet unborn). It was a divine appointment. Charlotte Mason’s philosophy sung to her soul; it was everything she didn’t know she wanted to know. Brandy was given a six-volume set of Charlotte Mason’s works for her 27th birthday. Those books are now falling apart at the seams from years of reading them over and over again.
These days, Brandy is a Christian wife and mom to four children ages 9–15. She believes in the Charlotte Mason method even more than before, now that she’s taught this way for over a decade. Her passionate interest in educational philosophy is evident wherever you find her:
- Her blog: Afterthoughts
- Her phonics curriculum: Teaching Reading with Bob Books
- The Scholé Sisters podcast
- The AfterCast podcast
- Serving on the Auxiliary Board of AmblesideOnline, a free Charlotte Mason homeschool curriculum
Brandy is the creator of the study guide Start Here: A Journey Through Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles.
Bio: Julie H Ross believes that every child needs a feast of living ideas to grow intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually. As a former school teacher, Curriculum Coordinator, and Assistant Director of a Homeschool Academy, Julie Ross has worked with hundreds of students and parents over the past 20 years. She has also been homeschooling her own five children for over a decade. Julie Ross developed the Charlotte Mason curriculum, A Gentle Feast, to provide parents with the tools and resources needed to provide a rich and abundant educational feast full of books, beauty, and Biblical truth. Julie lives in South Carolina with her husband and five children. When she’s not busy homeschooling, reading children’s books, hiking, or writing curriculum, you can find her taking a nap.
The F.E.A.S.T. of the Charlotte Mason Method
“We spread an abundant and delicate feast in the programmes and each small guest assimilates what he can.” (Charlotte Mason, Vol. 6, p. 183)
Charlotte Mason states that a child’s mind must be fed a consistent diet of living ideas in order to grow intellectually in the same way a child’s body needs nourishing food for proper development. She proposed that the role of the educator is to consistently prepare this abundant and rich feast. In this 101 workshop, you will be given an overview of Charlotte Mason’s foundational principles, leaving you inspired to create an educational feast for your family. Come, whet your appetite and see how this Victorian educational pioneer can transform your home school.
Living Ideas: The Food that Nourishes a Life
“The mind is capable of dealing with only one kind of food; it lives, grows and is nourished upon ideas only; mere information is to it as a meal of sawdust to the body” (Charlotte Mason, Volume 6: A Philosophy of Education, p. 105).
In this workshop, Julie H. Ross will develop Charlotte Mason’s revolutionary philosophy of “living ideas” that come primarily from books, environment, and “things.” How do we find these sources of rich ideas? What is the best way to present them to our children? What do living ideas do inside our minds? How do these ideas prepare our children for an abundant life? Come find the answers to these questions and more in this inspiring and practical workshop.
Nitty Gritty Narration
“As knowledge is not assimilated until it is reproduced, children should ‘tell back’ after a single reading or hearing: or should write on some part of what they have read. A single reading is insisted on, because children have naturally great power of attention; but this force is dissipated by the re-reading of passages, and also, by questioning, summarizing. and the like.” (Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles)
“Where are all the workbooks, study guides, comprehension questions, and tests?” Julie H Ross often gets asked this common question when she shows the stack of books she is using for the coming school year. When she told a mother about Charlotte Mason’s powerful practice of having the students retell, or narrate, back what they read or heard, the mother responded, “It sounds too good to be true. Is it really that easy?” Julie’s answer: “It is far from easy, but the practice is powerful.”
Join Julie H Ross for this informative workshop where she breaks down this powerful method into simple steps that will equip you to start implementing this practice right away.
As homeschool moms, we don’t always think of ourselves as leaders, and yet here we are with numerous young people looking to us for their education. In this session, we learn something seemingly magical: a non-confrontational, simple approach to leading our children with wisdom.
Some of the most-asked questions from mothers living the classical and Charlotte Mason philosophy are these:
- “What books should I read?”
- “And what order should I read them in?”
In this panel, you get to ask the Scholé Sisters about your reading, and they will introduce you to their favorite titles and even list them in order of difficulty!
When Charlotte Mason distilled her immense educational philosophy into a concise form (“20 Principles”), she was forced to highlight only the essentials. In this session, we will discover the internal logic of the 20 principles and how they fit together as a comprehensive whole, how they serve to balance one another, and how so many of our educational mistakes result from focusing on some of the principles while neglecting others.
Charlotte Mason encouraged her teachers to ponder a certain Spanish fresco every Sunday afternoon. She believed the characters in this grand painting could impart much wisdom in regard to education, and she wanted all parents to experience this “Great Recognition.” Join us for an intimate look at the fresco, and have your own great recognition of divine knowledge and virtue!
Charlotte Mason said that at the end of a child’s education, it doesn’t matter how much a youth knows but rather how much he cares, and how many orders of things he cares about. This was a revolutionary idea for her time! In this session, we will discuss the two aspects of love in education, why care is a good test of an education’s success or failure, what we expect students to care about, and what we can do to help develop our students’ affinities.