Resources: First Half of Classical Conversations Cycle 1

Disclosure Statement: As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission from the purchase of these favorite picture books and read-alouds.  Thank you so much for your support!

First Twelve Weeks

In case you have missed it, I would love to share my take on a Charlotte Mason approach (READ: living books) to Classical Conversations Cycle 1, Weeks 1-12. We are currently enjoying some of the books on this list! In case you missed any, I have linked the list here. The page will take you to Week 12, so scroll up the page if you need to find a previous week.

Also, if there are any living books you have found particularly helpful during CC Cycle 1, please do not hesitate to comment here, or let me know! I love getting ideas from you all.

Life is Full!

I wish I could update you on all the things we have been able to enjoy this year so far, but alas! I have to keep up with life. If I get off the treadmill mid-stride, I will surely trip and fall. I do not like that analogy, but for now, it will have to do.

A few of the things we have been up to the first 10 weeks of our school year:

  • starting a new Charlotte Mason co-op
  • reading aloud The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis (the kids and I are loving the full-color edition)
  • teaching each other watercolor painting. I (Holly) am taking this on as a thing for myself, really
  • continuing our Charlotte Mason book club (moms only) we started last summer
  • returning refreshed from a week in the NC mountains
  • reading about Martin Luther for Reformation Day
  • watching the Torchlighters Series together on Redeem TV
  • nature study in the sunshine, reading about frogs and trying to find them at our local lake (using Pond and Stream Companion)
  • getting dressed up and going to friends’ homes, where we have enjoyed crafts, games, and food
  • discovering the piano and learning to build the habit of practicing

Our lives have been full! If you’d like to stay updated in a more personal way, I invite you to sign up for our newsletter. It’s still there for you- to encourage you, give you ideas, and foster community. If you want to contribute to a future issue of the My Little Brick Schoolhouse Newsletter, make sure to sign up. I will be involving some of my readers over the next few months. Collaboration can be wonderful!

A moment in time – the family at High Falls

Cheering You On

I sincerely want to cheer you on. You are doing a great job. I trust God is using what you have and doing what He does: making a feast out of our five loaves and two fish. If you feel like a slump or burnout is coming on, you are not alone! Find something life-giving. You are making your plan work for you, not the other way around. Whatever needs to GO in your schedule, after consulting God and His wisdom, make that change. Also, if you have children and you are entering the holiday season, make the time to have some down time with your family. Events will fill up the calendar. You know it. Carve out time to just play and read and have fun together with the family, without expected deadlines or meet-ups.

I love hearing from you and look forward to the next chapter we have together!



Classical Education Mini-Series: Education and Character

I have two takeaways I’d like to share with you as you go into your first week of school.  I think these embody the heart of classical education.  I take my ideas from the Classical Conversations area practicum I attended back in June 2021.

NOTE: This is a transcript taken from my video.  Therefore, it is written verbatim.  I hope that my speaking is easy to follow. You can find the video at the bottom of this post.

Education Is Not the Same as Training

When I was in high school, I trained for a summer job as a lifeguard.  Okay, so you can imagine what that was like: we watched a lot of training videos, we completed a lot of worksheets, we were even able to perform some underwater rescues.  I remember diving to the bottom of the pool, picking up those big bricks and bringing them back up, safely to the surface.  So, I was being trained for a particular job, and I had specific skills that I had to learn.  It was for a certain future.  It was finite. I would be trained on the job to do X, Y, and Z and I would perform my task.  That was what I did: I lifeguarded that summer.

Education is different.

Education is when you are being taught, for lack of better word, for an uncertain future.  And what does the future usually hold, guys?  Suffering. You are going to suffer.  I am going to suffer.  We are all going to have some suffering that we are going to have to endure, and education that prepares us for that uncertain future is paramount.

So, if you’ve lived, you know, that we are going to have to give kids the tools to suffer across callings (to suffer well).  Training doesn’t shape the soul, but education does.  Education shapes character – training doesn’t.  Education is for life.  Training is for the here-and-now.  So, it’s a good distinction to keep in mind.

Teaching Character Is Paramount to Academics

Okay, so this was an excellent analogy that Mr. Nale gave yesterday.  He was talking about the two types of old people that you will meet.  There are two types, guys.  Two types: the grumpy, dissatisfied, discontented type and the joy-filled, cheerful, life-giving type.  I thought it was brilliant.

So, let’s go back to children.  Do you think the most important thing in a childhood is academics? The most important thing in a childhood (and I’ve said this before) is not academics.  No. We are forming character first.  Academics are important, but character must be in place… if you’re going to teach anything, you need to be focusing on shaping the character first.  And, of course, the academics are a gift. 

Thinking back to the old people, how do you think they got to be this way? How did the grumpy, old “whoever” become this way? Well: habits… character.  When were those habits and when was the character formed? At an early age.  It’s something to think about.

“The child who starts out in life with say, twenty good habits, begins with a certain capital which he will lay out to endless profit as the years go on.”

Charlotte Mason

So, think about that and how you will train your children.  Character is paramount. 

“The habits of the child are, as it were, so many little hammers beating out by slow degrees the character of the man.”

Charlotte Mason

Dear Homeschool Mama: Refresh Your Home’s Atmosphere + Habits

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission from the purchase of this Lara Casey book about setting goals, at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for your support!

I made something for you.

If you head on over to my Goals page, you can read all about it.

in the meantime…

Cultivate: A Grace-Filled Guide to Growing an Intentional Life

Simply Charlotte Mason: On Habits

I hope this blesses you in some way!



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