Jump to content

Menu

Has anyone heard David Hazell (My Father's World) speak?


Recommended Posts

I heard him speak about 6-7 years ago when MFW was just getting started. He was energetic and engaging, and I thought he had a very balanced view of childhood and education. It wasn't about other curricula, so I can't speak to that.

 

HTH,

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've not really heard David vent or rant about other programs in public or private. That would have been an interesting session to hear. That doesn't sound like David at all :confused: There are certainly times that he is more exhausted at the end of the 2nd day of a convention. (Aren't we all?) But he really tries to stay focused on what MFW does and why MFW does it and avoids talking about other programs. I've heard him mention other things in the context of why he doesn't do something the same way. But I can remember a time I was talking with him and I got a little on the snarky side about some program and David gently suggested that I perhaps say it nicer. So, he doesn't like to hear bad stuff about other programs. He will defend his decisions to use what he uses and he knows his reasons.

 

I think David is worth hearing. I didn't actually get to hear him until I had been using My Father's World curriculum for 3 years. So it was nice to hear him after I already was clicking with the teaching and manuals.

 

But in many of his workshops he'll really connect with other homeschooling parents because he's been a full time homeschooling dad and knows what we go through. Then, in some workshops you really get to hear his heart for Bible translation.

 

You might take a listen to some free online streams of his talks to evaluate it without having to be there or pay for it.

 

Here's some links:

This one is for his Occupying Preschoolers while Teaching Older children talk

http://hche.org/Mp3.jsp?id=164

 

and this one is about Combining Classical and Charlotte Mason and Unit studies

http://hche.org/Mp3.jsp?id=186

 

there were recorded in 2007.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Did you go to a vendor session or a conference session? David Hazells' talk on Isolated, Insulated and Exposed is one of the best I've heard and I've been going to homeschool conventions for 20 years. (5 + as a student and then as a parent).

 

FYI - husbands love David and he gives a great speech on how working Dad's can home school too. My dh firmly came on board for home schooling (after MANY debates on whether private schools are better) after hearing and talking to David.

 

I'm a big fan although I understand how he could come across intimidating.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You know, I'm tremendously relieved by this POV.

 

I listened to a talk of his once (from a conference where I bought a CD of all the talks), and I was horrified. He spent a large portion of the time dissing other programs, and it was obvious that many of his remarks were a directed at SWB/WTM (a deal-breaker for me!). I couldn't even stand to finish the talk I found it so offensive--and I *really* like to finish things I start, so that reaction was very unusual.

 

I have steered clear of his stuff ever since and could not really understand the appeal/buzz of how it was so popular. So, I have felt kind of alone/crazy/whatever. Thanks for speaking up! I feel less alone now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I went to a workshop and I really thought he showed his heart there and it made me take a serious look at MFW.

 

We are changing completely over to MFW net year. He made an impression on both me and dh. I think it is worth it to hear him and hear his heart.

Edited by Marie in Oh
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've heard David speak several times. He can come off sounding intimidating because as one pp stated, he knows what he believes and knows how to explain it. He has a deep, gruff voice and is a pretty big guy, so that combined with his straightforward personality might scare some people off. He's kind of a no-nonsense guy.... but he really knows his stuff.

 

I can't imagine David venting against other curriculums at ALL... unless it was his explanation of classical education from a different perspective than say, SWB or Doug Wilson? He hasn't named names in any of the talks I've heard (either individuals or publishers), but just the fact that he has a different viewpoint of classical education than most people on this board could be perceived as venting, I suppose. That's not venting against other curriculums, though. That's just explaining a different viewpoint of the definition of "classical" (and there are many -- see www.triviumpursuit.com as another example). IOW, it's not personal against anyone in particular.

 

However, his explanation was incredibly helpful to me, as it helped me find the balance between what I read in TWTM and what I knew we wanted for OUR homeschool (more biblical emphasis). It gave me confidence to go forward.

 

He does make comments about the "worksheet gestapo". Maybe that's it? I don't know, our entire family laughed at that part because it's so true! :lol: Admittedly, I've often felt like David was peeking in our windows and watching because he's so right on! He *knows* what we're struggling with.

 

And I agree with the pp who said husbands really like to hear him. My dh was totally on board with MFW once he heard David speak for the first time. They seem to have the same vision for our children, future generations, ministry, and how to tie academics into all that, so maybe that's why. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Did you go to a vendor session or a conference session? David Hazells' talk on Isolated, Insulated and Exposed is one of the best I've heard and I've been going to homeschool conventions for 20 years. (5 + as a student and then as a parent).

 

 

 

I agree. That was one of my favorites...though I've only heard him on cd. I wouldn't say that he really inspired me or made me super excited over homeschooling or that curriculum by his talking (I was already sold on mfw before hearing him speak), but that particular cd was really helpful!

 

Teresa

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree. That was one of my favorites...though I've only heard him on cd. I wouldn't say that he really inspired me or made me super excited over homeschooling or that curriculum by his talking (I was already sold on mfw before hearing him speak), but that particular cd was really helpful!

 

Teresa

 

It was to me, too, Teresa. I had been feeling very anxious about that issue (just how much sheltering is good or bad?), but after listening to that one, it gave me some relief.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One of my pet peeves are curriculum vendors that seem to think they need to put down other curriculum plans in order to promote their own and that was my impression of David Hazell. We have decided to go with MFW for next year and I had been looking forward to hearing him at the convention and was probably doubly disappointed because I really, really wanted to like him.

 

One of the things he said that just grated on my nerves was a side remark he made about teaching the ancient languages of Greek and Latin. His point was that Romans learned Latin because it was the language of the day, Greeks learned Greek because it was the language of the day and his intent seemed to be that we that are teaching those two languages are wasting our time. :glare: My dh just laughed when I told him that and reminded me of why we are teaching those languages but I found it hard to dismiss.

 

Just my two cents worth,

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You know, I'm tremendously relieved by this POV.

 

I listened to a talk of his once (from a conference where I bought a CD of all the talks), and I was horrified. He spent a large portion of the time dissing other programs, and it was obvious that many of his remarks were a directed at SWB/WTM (a deal-breaker for me!). I couldn't even stand to finish the talk I found it so offensive--and I *really* like to finish things I start, so that reaction was very unusual.

 

I have steered clear of his stuff ever since and could not really understand the appeal/buzz of how it was so popular. So, I have felt kind of alone/crazy/whatever. Thanks for speaking up! I feel less alone now.

 

:iagree:

 

I couldn't believe the way I overheard him talking in his booth, either. Ugh!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I saw him at a conference a month ago because I was very interested in MFW. I was shocked that he would talk about other methods of teaching the way he did. He put down classical ed. big time! He said it was a dead end street. Latin and Greek are a waste of time, the history cycle was pointless. I was uncomfortable with the way he made his curriculum seem like the only way to fully educate your children. :glare: I know that for a person to sell their curriculum they have to believe what they are selling is good, but to put others down is just wrong IMHO.

I was mad that I wasted my time there, but it also helped me decide to stick with TOG!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

He put down classical ed. big time! He said it was a dead end street.

 

for others who haven't heard him.... listen to the link I gave earlier to the Combining Classical and Charlotte Mason with Unit studies, you'll hear clearly that David makes the analogy that some parts of classical education are like coming to the dead end parts of Route 66 and you feel like you didn't get where you were heading. David is a strong classical educator for the most part. He spends a lot of time explaining several "roads" of education.

 

Latin and Greek are a waste of time, the history cycle was pointless. I was uncomfortable with the way he made his curriculum seem like the only way to fully educate your children.

 

 

Very interesting how different people can listen to the same person and hear very different things. It's ok if you don't like him. I wasn't impressed with all speakers at conventions either.

I own a lot of David's workshops on CD. I've attended MFW only conferences. He does not say that Latin and Greek are a waste of time. He does say that MFW only focuses on Latin and Greek roots and prefers a Charlotte Mason approach to choosing a full foreign language to select, and prefers more of Charlotte Mason approach to grammar. That's not a put down. The other thing he says is that in his family they would rather spend more time on community service projects instead of studying Latin or Greek as full programs. But I know plenty of MFW users who study Latin anyway.

 

Clearly MFW does not think the history cycle is a waste of time. MFW has 3 history cycles. They encourage folding in the younger kids into one program so that you aren't juggling 2 or more different history programs in one year and encourage you not to worry about it being 3 perfect cycles for each kid in the family.

 

I've heard over and over in many of his workshops where David will say things like our program is not the only way to do it.

 

Very interesting how differently everyone can hear him in those workshops, so hopefully the links I gave earlier will let people decide for themselves. It's free. and easy to hit quit and leave if needed :) and decide whether or not the curriculum is right for you even if you don't like David's voice or height. ;)

 

-crystal

Link to comment
Share on other sites

David Hazell came to speak at my local homeschool group this year, and even though I am not using MFW, I did enjoy hearing him. I didn't agree with everything he said, but I found him to be thoughtful and engaging.

 

Maybe my experience was different because it wasn't a vendor seminar, it wasn't at a curriculum fair, and many of the other people in my group are already using the curriculum.

 

Just wanted to present another view.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

you'll hear clearly that David makes the analogy that some parts of classical education are like coming to the dead end parts of Route 66 and you feel like you didn't get where you were heading.

 

I'll have to listen to your link; it sounds interesting, at least. I've never heard him speak and waver every year whether or not I should try MFW. I would be curious, tho, as to what parts he thinks are like coming to a dead end. I just don't see that at all, with a truly classical education.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Even having used MFW for over 7 years now, I don't agree with everything David says, but then again who do I agree with 100%? Not even my dh, eho is my favorite person. ( I think he might fall over in shock if I did agree with him all the time)

 

I certainly fall more into the classical camp than CM so I just disregard those parts or argue with David.;) It's one of my favorite things to do, as a matter of fact.

 

I wonder how much of this comes down to personality? David has a very strong personality and I think that can come across to other personalities as too much, but that shouldn't discount what truth he does say or whether MFW is the right curriculum for you. Having also heard Marie Hazell speak, you might not like the presentation of one or the other but the mix of the two very different personalities is what makes MFW so strong, imho.

 

I do think it's interesting that no matter what you think of David Hazell, it's definately memorable. It might make a difference to the OP depending on why she asking about him?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

David Hazells' talk on Isolated, Insulated and Exposed is one of the best I've heard and I've been going to homeschool conventions for 20 years. (5 + as a student and then as a parent).

 

 

 

Can you elaborate on what is discussed in this lecture? I don't have an interest in using MFW but this topic sounds interesting. If it's a plug for his curriculum, I'd rather skip it. He's speaking on this topic at my bookfair this weekend.

 

Thanks,

Michelle

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Can you elaborate on what is discussed in this lecture? I don't have an interest in using MFW but this topic sounds interesting. If it's a plug for his curriculum, I'd rather skip it. He's speaking on this topic at my bookfair this weekend.

 

Thanks,

Michelle

 

I didn't think it was about curriculum. Although there are some concrete examples from the program to explain some of the topic when it comes to when/what style of books to read to introduce tough topics. It's more about balancing act of when and how to introduce various topics (wars, other religions, etc). (and it is Christian content). Here's the official description of what is discussed in that workshop:

 

 

"In our world it is very difficult to protect our children from the influences of those who seek to pollute our children's minds. Some respond by giving up and just leaving it to prayer; after all, it is a tough battle, and we got through it okay when we were young. Others withdraw, seeking to protect their children from the world. Is there a better way? Learn how we can insulate our children from evil, and at the same time equip them to battle against it, spreading God's Kingdom into a dark world."

 

 

-crystal

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would be curious, tho, as to what parts he thinks are like coming to a dead end. I just don't see that at all, with a truly classical education.

 

It was more about not getting bogged down while teaching.

 

There are some people when they hit some parts of doing things in a classical model get bogged down and it stops working well. So, he was saying it is ok to "get on the interstate road or scenic route" for a while to get back on track. In the talk he has a power point that shows various parts of Route 66 where it is in a desert so if something isn't working, you can change to get to the other part of the road. In other words, there isn't necessarily just one and only way.

And there are (according to his preferences) certain things that might be better introduced later (wars, other religions) to an oldest child so you don't hit "road blocks" spiritually. In other words, he applies the first history cycle differently than other people.

 

or at least that's been my interpretation from hearing that talk several times, combined with hearing a few other of his talks over the years.

 

-crystal

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow - thanks for all of the input and info. I'm going to listen to the links and see if I can find a few more talks to download. I appreciate all of your comments - they have given me lots to think about.

 

I don't know of other free downloads, but here's a link to the MFW workshops for his talks with descriptions and how to order. The reviews on that thread are from MFW customers who liked them.

 

http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=3234

 

-crystal

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hmm, I actually love a strong personality in a man. That's not what I got from him at all. I got a lot of fear. Fear of education, fear of knowledge, fear of the world.

 

He talked for about a third of the one talk I went to about how spectacular his family was. *grin* (And not in a "let me share what worked for us" kind of way.) Then he spent a third discussing how we were harming our children if we didn't use his program. The last third was reserved for going through the various clasical methods available and making negative remarks, sometimes based on content and sometimes based on the author/leader. This was not a vendor workshop, btw.

 

It definitely turned me off to his curriculum. It's a shame, as the title of his talks sounded so very promising.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

He talked for about a third of the one talk I went to about how spectacular his family was. *grin* (And not in a "let me share what worked for us" kind of way.)

 

Usually he also talks about things that he did very wrong with his kids and how they aren't perfect and how they fight. Even to the point that with some of his kids he won't put them working at the same convention. :lol:

 

He is very honest that he messed up big time with his oldest. But he is also a proud dad of the things they've done well as a family and he should be. We all should.

 

In most of his talks he says things like "I don't want you to come away thinking that you need to be just like my family. I want you to be your own family. I hope you can take with you some of the good things that we've done. But we're not a perfect family." In fact, in one of his talks that I have on CD he specifically says "some of these speakers make it sound like they have it all right and you are the ones who have it wrong. I hope I don't come across like that. " (that was from Empowering Your Homeschool with Eternal Purpose, Iowa 2008)

 

I guess he had a terrible day at Ohio this year :confused:

 

-crystal

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Usually he also talks about things that he did very wrong with his kids and how they aren't perfect and how they fight. Even to the point that with some of his kids he won't put them working at the same convention. :lol:

 

He is very honest that he messed up big time with his oldest. But he is also a proud dad of the things they've done well as a family and he should be. We all should.

 

 

 

That's the thing I remember too. He very blatantly says the specific ways he messed up with her. I remember feeling very much that he is wanting to get the point across that they are not a perfect family nor is there one, but that God is in it and they glorify Him. He put me at ease on this point...there are still times I will put so-and-so no a pedestal while I don't know what goes on behind the scenes.

 

It's quite surprising to hear such point-blank comments about him like that when my experience from his talks (I think I've listened to 4) were much the opposite. But then, I have heard highly negative things about other homeschool curriculum creators, so I guess there is always the human factor.

 

I'm so thankful I never heard one of those talks and allowed it to turn me off of MFW. It has been such a blessing to our family and God is so all over it!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think he had a bad day in MN also!

 

Maybe I just misunderstood him, but I was not the only one who seemed put off by his session.

 

True. I'll be praying for him since I know him in real life and know he doesn't want to come across that way and doesn't think any thing like that. I know after some talks I've heard I've gone to him directly to give feedback. But then again, I've known him for several years (don't always agree or get along with him, but that's the human factor in it too).

 

Maybe I'll have to hit him with my Cat in the Hat hat" :hat: :lol:

 

 

-crystal

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Then he spent a third discussing how we were harming our children if we didn't use his program.
I will say one thing about this.... they lived in Russia for 8 years and they were there when the wall came down. They *know* from experience how Christians and Bibles have to go underground in a socialist/communist society, and I think he sees some similarities in the way things are going over here. Their curriculum (if you use it in the upper years and for more than just a little while) brings out how to live as a Christian that is going that direction. You see it in a lot of the read-alouds they have scheduled, as well as how closely Bible and history, government and civics are tied together. But you may not "see" that from just one or two convention talks. Y'all are making assumptions about this man based on interpretations of a few remarks he's made here and there, without knowing his background or understanding how it relates to the curriculum? That's a dangerous thing to do -- make assumptions about *anybody*.

 

There's a 12-CD set available where he talks about their family's testimony and experiences, and if you ever get that far or have any interest in knowing the heart and soul that's gone into the curriculum, that's a good one to listen to. I realize, obviously, that some of you have no interest whatsoever, but if that's the case, then why not just say "MFW isn't for me"? Why bash the man personally when you don't know everything about him or his life or the reasons they wrote the curriculum in the first place? They've lived in Russia under a communist regime, so they have good reason to worry about how families might be harming their children, and that comes from *experience*, not just trying to sell curriculum.

 

Anyway, that's the background behind MFW. Everything David says in the conference talks is going to reflect some of that, from somewhere along the way. Basically he's sharing *their* journey and what prompted them to write the curriculum. That's the bottom line. If you go into one of his convention talks expecting to find reasons why their curriculum is better than another curriculum for *academic* reasons alone, you may or may not find it. But if you went into a convention talk looking for things to pick apart and somehow "prove" that TWTM is still better (or that MFW is still somehow inferior) no matter what David Hazell says in that one connersation, then maybe you shouldn't have gone into the workshop in the first place, kwim? It's obvious that MFW isn't for you, and that's fine. But it's not fair to bash the man personally when you don't even know where he's coming from and are making assumptions about some of the comments he made out of context of the bigger picture.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you go into one of his convention talks expecting to find reasons why their curriculum is better than another curriculum for *academic* reasons alone, you may or may not find it. But if you went into a convention talk looking for things to pick apart and somehow "prove" that TWTM is still better (or that MFW is still somehow inferior) no matter what David Hazell says in that one connersation, then maybe you shouldn't have gone into the workshop in the first place, kwim? It's obvious that MFW isn't for you, and that's fine. But it's not fair to bash the man personally when you don't even know where he's coming from and are making assumptions about some of the comments he made out of context of the bigger picture.

 

I went into his workshop not knowing anything about him. I had heard some good things about MFW and was seriously going to consider switching to it from TOG if I liked what I heard. I do like the ideas behind MFW, but I was just so turned off by how he presented his workshop. You are right that I don't know him or where he is coming from.

I have seen other curriculum vendors present their materials in a way that showed their enthusiasm, but in a respectful way. I think I was just so turned off by his superior attitude, but I really wanted to like his curriculum. I'm sure he is a great person with a lot to share, but maybe he really was having a bad day!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I went into his workshop not knowing anything about him. I had heard some good things about MFW and was seriously going to consider switching to it from TOG if I liked what I heard. I do like the ideas behind MFW, but I was just so turned off by how he presented his workshop. You are right that I don't know him or where he is coming from.

I have seen other curriculum vendors present their materials in a way that showed their enthusiasm, but in a respectful way. I think I was just so turned off by his superior attitude, but I really wanted to like his curriculum. I'm sure he is a great person with a lot to share, but maybe he really was having a bad day!

 

So why do you think you wouldn't like the curriculum just because you didn't like David's personality? Did you stop at the booth and look through the curriculum or talk to anyone else at the booth? It seems unfair to throw out a potentially good curriculum just because you don't like the personality of one person, especially if you went into it thinking you *would* like it based on what you'd heard up to that point.

 

Now if we were talking about the business practices of the *company*, I can see where one might toss the curriculum. But based on one individual's personality.... :confused:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So why do you think you wouldn't like the curriculum just because you didn't like David's personality? Did you stop at the booth and look through the curriculum or talk to anyone else at the booth? It seems unfair to throw out a potentially good curriculum just because you don't like the personality of one person, especially if you went into it thinking you *would* like it based on what you'd heard up to that point.

 

Now if we were talking about the business practices of the *company*, I can see where one might toss the curriculum. But based on one individual's personality.... :confused:

 

I'm not trying to have an argument here. I just wanted to share my experience as the OP asked!

I did check out their booth. I looked through a lot of their books and actually have a lot of them already. David Hazel was at the booth one of the times that I visited, but he was busy with someone else so I didn't get a chance to talk to him personally.

 

I have just decided that I want to stick with TOG for now. I really like TOG, but I wondered if MFW might be a better fit for us. Maybe someday I will switch to MFW. I'm still not clear on how it all works together.

 

I will stick with what I said earlier, I have heard many vendors share their curriculum with great enthusiasm, but not with the superior attitude I felt he came across with.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess he had a terrible day at Ohio this year :confused:

 

-crystal

 

I was wondering the same thing - maybe he was just having a rough weekend like we all have sometimes. It seems like a lot of the same comments are coming from the same session in Cincinnati.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[quote name=Donna A.;936634

If you go into one of his convention talks expecting to find reasons why their curriculum is better than another curriculum for *academic* reasons alone' date=' you may or may not find it. But if you went into a convention talk looking for things to pick apart and somehow "prove" that TWTM is still better (or that MFW is still somehow inferior) no matter what David Hazell says in that one connersation, then maybe you shouldn't have gone into the workshop in the first place, kwim? It's obvious that MFW isn't for you, and that's fine. But it's not fair to bash the man personally when you don't even know where he's coming from and are making assumptions about some of the comments he made out of context of the bigger picture.

 

I was disappointed because I had already made the decision to use MFW and I wanted to appreciate the authors (I didn't meet Marie, but would like to). I didn't go into the session looking for things to bash about him or looking for critisms of his curriculum. But, his statements (regardless of his background) evidentially turned a lot of people off to his curriculum and that is worthy of discussion. I stopped using another curriculum because of the strong words of it's owner and I was really hoping that this time I would like both the curriculum and the owner/writer.

 

So yes, I'm disappointed in some rather strong, rash statements he made that were very derogatory and completely unnecessary about other approaches to education but despite that, and despite not knowing their complete family history, I'm still continuing to use MFW.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I realize, obviously, that some of you have no interest whatsoever, but if that's the case, then why not just say "MFW isn't for me"? Why bash the man personally when you don't know everything about him or his life or the reasons they wrote the curriculum in the first place?

 

Because the OP didn't ask about MFW; she asked about him as a speaker.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I heard him last year (2008) in Cincinnati.

 

I went to the "How to combine Charlotte Mason, Classical, and Unit Studies" or something to that effect. Sounds great, doesn't it? Certainly something I could learn from. I'd already made a purchase from their booth (just an art book), but it was my first real conference, so I didn't really know what to expect. I did *not* expect to hear that Charlotte Mason is too circuitous over back roads, Classical is a road to no-where, and unit studies are too unfocused. Then, he says, if you use MFW, you won't have these problems because we're truly Christ centered unlike these other curricula which make compromises in their focus. Rigorous education isn't as important as learning service to others and having free time to do so, therefore you should be able to be done with school in the morning 4 days a week.

 

I was *angry* about the talk. I wish I had left, but I had a 9 month old and would have made quite a ruckus. My poor friend, I ranted for approximately 45 minutes on the way back to my in-laws (where we were staying) ... I even missed the exit, I was so disgusted with his arguments, presentation, mischaracterization of classical ed (and even CM), and that I'd wasted my time on something that wasn't what was billed. This seemed to be the talk; he didn't seem out of sorts in any way; I'm not intimidated by many people (I'm from a tall, hearty stock myself); in fact, he seemed like a pretty nice man who truly has a heart for Christ and Christian service.

 

I'm a Christian, and I want a Christ-focused education for my children because He created all things and holds all things together (Colossians 1:16-17) I just think it can be done in a rigorous, truly classical manner and still point to Christ and service to Him. I don't intend to purchase from them in the future because their philosophy doesn't align with mine.

 

I only post this because people seem to be thinking it was a one time talk.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Again, I know him in real life and know that he would appreciate feedback directly to him if he has personally offended anyone in the booth or in a talk.

 

This has been an interesting discussion to me because I've had mostly very positive experiences listening to his talks and enjoy his presentations for the most part.

 

I think I've picked up the pattern here of the Why's of various reactions to the same talk and speaker. It's what we are listening for to fill in the picture.

 

David is a big picture thinker. In order to appreciate many of his talks, it helps to realize he is always talking big picture.

 

This is how I have heard David's talk about Combining methods.

In Combining Classical, CM and unit studies, he is trying to describe a cross country road trip, but not really wanting to focus on the definitions of the types of roads. He's trying to help listeners see the big picture of finishing the road trip with high goals of classical education without sacrificing the fun parts of other educational methods. He's not really wanting to say that the different types of roads are bad in of themselves. He's trying to show a vision for how and when to use each of them at their best and to avoid them at their "road blocks" to the overall journey. In some of the talks (maybe not in his early season of March and April) he does say that each of those types can finish the job at a different time point in the big picture and not always have the same end result. So, maybe his analogy is breaking down too quickly? I don't know.

 

I got it now why Dawn said something like husbands like listening to him: he's a guy with a guy plan to staying on the road trip to get to the finishing point. He's not trying to say that unit studies or CM or Classical are bad. But trying to stay on the focus on getting as much done from each one as possible.

 

So, I can certainly understand how various people are hearing his definitions in his analogy. But I don't agree with the emotional reaction it is causing. He's trying to present a big picture of a long road trip, not really talking about the zoom in map of the route.

 

So, with that in mind, when you go to one of his workshops, or listen to the online stream I linked to, keep in mind he has his guy brain on and he is talking about the start to finish point of the road trip (Point A and Point B) and keeping big picture focus. He's trying to give an overall analogy. Every analogy has a break down point. Try not to get too upset when how he is trying to quickly define the terms of the analogy (that's where I'm hearing the negative reaction -- the definition of the analogy terms in respect to the trip). Remember, MFW uses Classical and CM and unit studies -- so they like those things. Scenic routes aren't bad. Interstates aren't bad. Old roads aren't bad.

 

It's like driving on the interstate with your family, coming to a rest area and having your dh tell you that the rest time is done and time to get back in the van and keep on. Remember, you do get to the rest areas and scenic routes - they are not bad things. David tries to talk to the big picture of what's going on based on their research and experiences.

 

and it's a lot like talking and listening to my own husband - he gets picky about wrong part of the details that I say.

oh well. Or listening to the same sermon, how different people will pick up different stuff and reaction differently. oh well.

 

Not everyone is going to click with his style. I hope that my positive experiences with most of his workshops can explain why I'm not hearing the same things that others are hearing and shed some light on why I like his talks and it might help others to know if they would like them or not like them.

 

-crystal

Edited by cbollin
wrong word
Link to comment
Share on other sites

He's trying to help listeners see the big picture of finishing the road trip with high goals of classical education without sacrificing the fun parts of other educational methods. He's not really wanting to say that the different types of roads are bad in of themselves. He's trying to show a vision for how and when to use each of them at their best and to avoid them at their "road blocks" to the overall journey.
What you say makes sense (and I don't know why I'm answering since I haven't heard any of his speeches :D).....but this, combined with the post right above yours, seems to say that he thinks that classical ed, or CM, sacrifice fun, and have road blocks. These are educational philosophies and ways of life. The books and curric. are just tools to aid you in that philosophy. You can't just hit a road block in classical ed. You might hit a road block in a certain book, but then you choose a different book. You don't choose an entirely different method b/c one thing didn't work. Obviously you can choose to completely switch methods and philosophies, and people do, but it makes no sense at all to say 'I'm going to do CM for 2 years, and then Classical for 3 years, and then unit studies for 1 year and then and then and then....'...............that just seems very disjointed.

 

You don't just pick and choose to use them at various times - either you agree with the philosophy, or you don't. I guess, using your (his) analogy, I see the books/curriculum as the roads, and the philosophy as the car.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

(and I don't know why I'm answering since I haven't heard any of his speeches :D).....

........

but it makes no sense at all to say 'I'm going to do CM for 2 years, and then Classical for 3 years, and then unit studies for 1 year and then and then and then....'...............that just seems very disjointed.

 

well, MFW doesn't do CM for X years and then Classical for Y years and Unit studies for Z time. It's not like that at all.

 

 

-crystal

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well said, Crystal and Sally. I think, too, that the more of his talks you (the general "you") listen to (or other MFW staff that give workshops, too... maybe it would help if you get to sit in on someone else speaking), the more you understand the Big Picture that David *is* trying to describe. Crystal mentioned the analogy of a sermon.... That's a good analogy because I always tell people who are visiting a new church not to make a decision about that church based on just one visit. You don't really get the whole "personality" of that church until you spend some time sitting under that pastor and getting to know the people. Likewise, having listened to *numerous* of David's talks, I know for sure that he does fill in "gaps" at different times... so you hear him discuss A, B, D, and F in this workshop but are wondering where C and E are? Oops, David was running out of time and didn't say everything that could be said... he had to summarize because he's on the clock. My dh would do the same thing. But then if you listen to a different workshop, he may discuss C, E, G, H and I. Oh, NOW I get it! That makes more sense. Okay, I don't hate him so much now. LOL

 

Would I have used MFW if I'd heard David speak before I started using the curriculum? I don't know. At that time I'd never even been to a homeschool convention, let alone listened to a workshop speaker. But since we'd already started with MFW before I ever heard David Hazell, then David's workshops made sense to ME because it helped explain what I was already doing. I'd already dabbled in a lot of other curriculums, philosophies, and methods, so to MY ears, David was simply telling it like it is. If you (again, the general "you") have not experienced that wandering, then his road trip analogy (and some other analogies, both abstract and real, that he makes here and there) might not make sense and I could see how some folks could be offended. I guess I happen to agree with David that there are both benefits and road blocks to the classical method, the CM method, the textbook method, and unit studies, and that's what makes it so confusing for both me and a lot of other homeschool moms... how to decide? Well, for us, MFW just wraps up some elements of each of those methods and puts it into one neat package with lesson plans, and THAT is what David's trying to explain in his talks. :001_smile:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess I happen to agree with David that there are both benefits and road blocks to the classical method, the CM method, the textbook method, and unit studies, and that's what makes it so confusing for both me and a lot of other homeschool moms... how to decide? Well, for us, MFW just wraps up some elements of each of those methods and puts it into one neat package with lesson plans, and THAT is what David's trying to explain in his talks.

 

:lol: I finally understand why every year I consider MFW and then ultimately not get it. That totally makes sense, but I disagree with him. LOL. It's not such a mystery to me anymore. :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know, but it sounds like that's kind of what he's advocating...if you do one method until you hit a roadblock, then you switch to another method that works, and then when you hit a roadblock with that, you switch to something else.

 

Sally,

 

You did say that you hadn't heard his workshops. That is not what he says.

 

I realize at this point the rest of my answer is way off topic of David as a speaker and trying very weakly here to explain a bit how it is blended throughout the year and program -- not switched from year to year or month to month.

 

Each year in MFW has it's classical and CM and unit studies points. They get blended in each year and over the whole trip. It is not a disjointed thing where you play curriculum switch.

 

One of the ways it gets played out is in approach to when and how to teach parts of speech. MFW recommends more CM style on that. But they don't stop using Chronological history during that time. Most classical educators like to teach or at least try to teach Latin. MFW does just latin and greek roots, but then for a full foreign language feel, they take a CM approach and choose a language that is applicable to your neighboring lands.

 

Many classical program do map work, but don't have a focus on current places/cultures/geography. Instead they have an influence to stick to cycles of history. One of the CM influences is:

Study other countries as early as possible to avoid an "arrogant habit of mind."

 

I like how MFW does this. ECC is done before a start of world history. But at the same time MFW doesn’t introduce other ideas and other cultures too soon in the curriculum. I like that a foundation is built on learning more about God’s word in the earliest of years.

 

***

So the ideas get combined over the year and over the cycles. Not switched back and forth. see?

 

now the interstate influence is for using some textbooks some of the time. but while using textbooks, you don't leave out living books either.

 

-crystal

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One of the ways it gets played out is in approach to when and how to teach parts of speech. MFW recommends more CM style on that. But they don't stop using Chronological history during that time. Most classical educators like to teach or at least try to teach Latin. MFW does just latin and greek roots, but then for a full foreign language feel, they take a CM approach and choose a language that is applicable to your neighboring lands.

 

And there was just recently a great thread over on the K-8 board that talks about different ways to make MFW "more classical" for folks who prefer it that way. The two are not mutually exclusive.

 

now the interstate influence is for using some textbooks some of the time. but while using textbooks, you don't leave out living books either.

 

Yes, and textbooks are used primarily as a *resource* in MFW.... not a main spine.

 

These are all things that David attempts to explain in his various workshops.... though obviously he isn't able to explain every detail of every aspect in every workshop, because there just isn't time. I'm so sorry he's offended some of you.... but I truly do believe he's not doing it to be mean. It's just his all-business mannerisms coming through. I can relate to him on that. I tend to offend people easily when I didn't mean to because I'm usually pretty "all business" when describing something, and I step on people's toes in the process. :glare: :blushing: Maybe that's why I can be so sympathetic to David's style. I "get" him. :tongue_smilie:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...