I am so excited about Cycle 2 with Classical Conversations!
When I first considered CC a few years ago and visited a classroom, it was so foreign to grasp the idea of the "memory pegs" – this type of "filing system" created by the memory work. I distinctly remember telling the Director that it all seemed somewhat "random" this simple memorizing of random facts, with no deep content. She described the memory pegs like a coat hook where all other information gets hung or placed in chronological order based on these pegs. She mentioned how kids would naturally retain more once the pegs were in place because they have something solid to correlate it to, and a place to store the information. I didn't fully understand what she was describing at the time, and it was hard to trust in this system that seemed so foreign from conventional schooling, but WOW! After a few years of CC under our belt, I have seen this to be so unbelievably true! I am continually amazed an how much my kids retain and how interested they are in subjects I would have totally not cared that much about as a kid just because they know something!
Just the other day, I ended up in a rather deep discussion about Alexander the Great, his rise to power in Greece, the unprecedented spread of the Greek language to a huge area, and how this was all foretold in the book of Daniel way before it all came to pass! We talked about how when Daniel interpreted Nebuchadnezzar's dream, it was to happen in the future, and now we read it as history! We talked about how the reign of Alexander ushered in a great pathway for the spread of the gospel in one language. During all of this, the kids were on their toes, and interjecting different things they knew about things during that time from their memory work – and these are 6 & 8 year olds! This is one of many, many, many examples of conversations we get to have in our home, that I really believe would not be possible without the foundation of a classical education that we have. More than that, I am thankful for the structure of Classical Conversations which has made my transition out of a traditional education mindset, and into the classical model so much easier!
There are so many options out there as homeschoolers, and we all need to choose what works for us, but I would challenge you to give this year your best – don't add so much to your CC year that you aren't tracing maps, don't dig deeper so much that you aren't memorizing the memory work. Prepare well for presentations (something we will be working to do better at) this year. Give The CC curriculum your full effort as the core of what you do, not a supplement, and then at the end of the year, look closely at what your children have retained, and what they show interest in. I strongly believe you will have your best year yet!
I know that CC has been a great tool to help us live a one-piece life that we journey towards, and I write these words on behalf of no one, and for no reason other than to rejoice in a tool that has given our family a richer depth of knowledge, and a common love language to communicate in all things throughout our day.
May the glory of all knowledge and wisdom be given to God, and may we praise Him for His story through history and yet to come!
If you want to learn more about CC…..Check out Classical Conversations for more information, and to join a community near you! I am not affiliated with Classical Conversations in any way. However, I do love their resources and my CC community! Give CC a try today!
Linking up here….
Great post and all that you say is so true. We are starting our fourth year of CC and I am excited about Cycle two as well because that is the Cycle we started with and I want to see how much my children remember. I too was a little concerned when we first started but now it makes so much more sense, and we too will be trying to do better with our presentations ;-). I always seem to leave those as an afterthougth.
Deana (The Frugal Homeschooling Mom) says
We are beginning our third year in CC this year, and love it! It has been such a blessing to our family. I used to be a public school teacher, so the style of learning was certainly foreign to me as well. But I've seen the amazing things you've seen with my now 7 year-old, and can't wait to see what's in store at our co-op this year! 🙂 CC is wonderful!
Shannon Cormier says
Thank you for this post. We are beginning CC this year for the first time with my 3rd and 1st graders and I'm nervous and excited about all the memory work. I lookg forward (in the long-run) to be able to have similar discussions with my children so I really needed to hear that encouragement.
Our children and I had the exact same discussion mid-year last year as Stephen researched and wrote a paper about Alexander the Great for Essentials! It was so incredible to connect the history to the timeline to the Bible… and beyond!
Thank you for sharing your experience, Karen! I am absolutely delighted to read it!
What a great conversation to have with your children! We do not do CC, but we do the Veritas Press memory and I want to start tracing maps next year, so I loved what you said in the colored words at the end. Sometimes I tend to want to dig in deeper, but I need toremember to focus on that memory work which is really what the kids like and are good at anyways!
This is exactly what I am hoping to get out of CC. My kids (ages 11 & 8) and I start our first year of CC on Tuesday and I'm SO excited. Being the special brand of crazy that I am, I also agreed to Tutor so I'm jumping in with both feet to the CC pool. I hope and PRAY that in a few years time, I will be able to look back and see the benefits of a classical education. I truly believe in it and can't wait to see the fruit of our labors! Thank you so much for your testimony and encouraging words.