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About Penelope

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    Hive Mind Queen Bee

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  1. I highly recommend the Rhetoric sequence. It has been a great fit for one of my teens. The teachers have changed, so I can’t personally recommend one, but there is at least one teacher for next year that I’ve seen good reviews for.
  2. Mine was slightly over that and I didn’t worry about it. I considered it a suggestion.
  3. We used it this year but are thankfully done with all applications. I really didn’t think it was too bad; most everything was fairly user-friendly once I figured out what to do. I haven’t used the Common App, though. We didn’t utilize the feature of sending College Board scores through Coalition, but did those separately, just in case, since I think that was new. One thing I am still not sure that I did the best way is the school profile. Apparently, schools only see that if they also request a counselor letter or counselor report; the profile is connected to that. And not all of our schools wanted that, so they did not all get a school profile. It did not seem to hurt the applications, though. I think a lot of schools that use these apps submit their guidance counselor info and transcripts through a different electronic service, so maybe that is why the Coalition is still clunky and has these all separate and only allows one attachment for the transcript. If I had a do over, I would attach the school profile to the transcript and not only the course descriptions.
  4. Accreditation doesn’t mean greater rigor. You can find online classes with high standards, including AP courses, that are not accredited, and you can mix them up with some home-guided classes if you wish. If I wanted to do a traditional high school program entirely at home but where I was largely hands-off and didn’t want to do any teaching, I would choose accreditation, because there are a few cases where it can make things a little easier in applying to college. And if I wasn’t going to be in charge of the homeschooling myself and the student’s transcript would have all of the classes from one school, then it makes sense to choose an accredited school vs. one that is not. So it depends on what you want, why you homeschool, and where your student might want to apply to college. I don’t know about that particular school, but the accreditation it has is one of the widely -recognized ones, so that is good if you do want accredited.
  5. We use some and I think they can be helpful. For my typical kids who are strong readers, I only tend to use adaptations for books that are more challenging than the English translations they could read in high school, like the Greek and Roman epics and myths. I read books in middle school that I didn’t realize were abridged til later. The Dickens version you describe sounds like that kind of book, still very well done and still with the original sentences, but with more extraneous sections removed. I think there is value in reading the story of Les Miserables in a —still quite lengthy— abridged version, in place of the entire book. Don Quixote is another one like that. I don’t assign these for academic reading, though. I do steer my kids away from things like the Classic Starts series, which are things like Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre written for third graders. I don’t see the point to this. For a solid reader, books like these are totally approachable for a a high school student and up, and I don’t think there is anything gained by knowing the story ahead of time. There are a long list of books, including children’s classics, that are more age-appropriate and much better written.
  6. A translation of the Ratio. Looks like interesting reading, most of which will be after the holidays, for me. But from a skim, it looks like the quote from earlier in the thread was for one of the lower grammar classes. The descriptions from rhetoric and humanities classes look more rigorous. Compositions in Latin and in Greek. Then there were classes in philosophy and theology. I don’t know when these occurred in the structure of the early Jesuit schools, but other things I’ve read on classical education led me to understand that these courses would have been the culmination of the education either prior to university or concluding in university.
  7. I don’t know if this is historically true, though. Anyone know? But in Latin, and sometimes Greek. Not in their native language.
  8. It seems that is right, but the English Canon part would have been a much later addition. And I would disagree that a degree in English in today’s universities, in America at least, necessarily gives an advantage in teaching the Western Canon to K-12 students.
  9. It’s an interesting question. Do online and physical classical schools, and resources recommended for homeschoolers, even recommend or use the same methods? It doesn’t seem like there is a lot of uniformity. I personally like Susan Wise Bauer’s approach. Discussions of any aspect of classical education always have that problem of several thousand years. But a common factor seems to be that the composition was primarily done in Latin. And for many years and many students, this would have been an acquired language. Perhaps the modern equivalent would be educating students to a high level in an inflected language, and then requiring them to compose in that language. Even imitative, or “in the style of” assignments would be a mental workout and probably result in stronger writers. According to this book, British schools such as Westminster, Eton and Harrow used greater or lesser amounts of various methods over the years, but primarily in Latin. Assignments would have included letter writing, themes (progym), declamations (sort of like debate format from what I remember), and practice with copia. Later on, more verse writing in Latin was hugely popular. and students did a lot of it. Even reading a book like this, it’s difficult to understand just how the teaching was done and what was involved in assignments like this, but to my eyes it seems rigorous. Teaching composition in one’s native language isn’t the same thing. It does reinforce the idea that today’s classical education movement does or should have more in common with Charlotte Mason; she also was wanting a broader education for all, and a rigorous one, but not limited to the study of Latin and Greek, and not attaining anywhere near the same level in those languages.
  10. That list is strange and has been commented on in the past. I don’t think it is typical of Classical recommended book lists.
  11. I agree. I like a lot of what Circe puts out, but there are particular authors I don’t always appreciate. I read a book by one of them, and it had some good things to say. But it also reminded me of when I was in my thirties with younger children and thought there were more Answers than there really are, and that I had some of them. 😉 Reading or listening to Cindy Rollins or Karen Kern, on the other hand, is a breath of fresh air.
  12. I think it’s the opposite, actually: the current neo-classical “revival” began with private Christian schools in the eighties and nineties. Most people didn’t have access to one of these schools, so enter Veritas Press and then The Well-Trained Mind. Followed later by Circe, Classical Academic Press, and others. Many of the people involved in these enterprises were involved in the classical school (not only homeschool) movement as well (I think The Well-Trained Mind was so beloved partly because it said some version of this could be done at home and that there are many different resources you could use to do it). I think a lot of the growth in the school models and in the movement did happen as a result of interest from homeschoolers, but it isn’t something that began with homeschoolers. In fact, some of the people involved in starting the early schools were vocal about the fact that a true classical education could not be achieved with homeschooling. I think they are right! But I also think some of the schools probably aren’t able to provide a “true” classical education (whatever that is, lol), either, for many of the reasons mentioned in this thread.
  13. Agree with this. What does a credit like that even mean? And if a university looks further into it at a course description, then it just looks like you are giving credit for an Eagle project which is part of an extracurricular and is also listed again separately as an honor/award. I can’t think of another award on the same level as Eagle that would receive high school credit.
  14. Yes, and if you look around at school documents, they are not always perfect. I started working on these things at the end of last year, but every time I looked at them again, I’d find some little thing. It’s good to be meticulous, but I realized at some point I was stressing over such little things that I just needed to be done.
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