High school is such an exciting time, and the rich program of a Charlotte Mason education invites students to partake of the vast feast of ideas we find in books and things.
Since homeschooling high schoolers can bring unique challenges, the CMEC provides helpful support:
Mason’s vision for high school reflects a step up in maturity and challenge without sacrificing living quality. The key descriptor for this Form's course of study is Mason’s aim for all levels: breadth and balance.
The CMEC curriculum for high school is based on the PNEU programs so it covers core subjects like history, science and literature, but also art history, philosophy, economics and other unique subjects Mason started in the high school years.
Our high school curriculum team is comprised of women who majored in science, philosophy, history, economics and literature in college. They are either homeschooling high schoolers themselves or have graduated children from the homeschool (or both!), and they have all steeped themselves in Mason’s work for many years.
Each member of the team focuses on finding the best books for each slot on the program, but then the team looks carefully to see the balance of the program overall. We aim that to provide a breadth that is refreshing and inviting, but also the balance needed for the many pursuits that high schoolers take on in their leisure time.
We have guides written for each Form and for particular subjects, like Plutarch, Shakespeare and geography. These guides cover helpful tips for narration and background resources, as well as discussion topics to help mothers to get to the heart of the key ideas of these texts and aid student writing as well.
High School Form Meetings
There are three Form meetings each year, one per term, for high school parents to receive guidance, ask questions, and meet with moms who are in the midst of the high school years for the first time or have gained insights from children who’ve graduated and flown the nest! One of the real strengths of the CMEC lies in our community of mothers, and the high school years are no exception.
Form Leader Support
Members are invited to contact their Form Leader throughout the term with questions. These questions may be answered immediately or may be sent along to the CMEC Team to be answered live during the Form Meetings. We cover a range of topics, from navigating afternoon occupations and leisure, to working toward independence, to the parent’s role in student compositions, to navigating the challenging books in the CMEC high school program, particularly in science, history and philosophy.
Our January 2021 Parents’ Night
Based on member feedback, we will focus this year’s Parent’s Night on high school and preparation for the years after graduation. A panel of parents, teachers, admissions counselors, and university professors will take on key topics!
Ongoing Education and Training
All members of the CMEC are welcome to attend our retreats, workshops and Mother’s Education Course, and at these events we always have an eye to our upper-level students and their families.
So often we find that homeschool resources cater to younger students because it is so much more common to home educate in the early years. But we have found that without a good sense of Mason's approach to the later years, it is hard to know what those early years are aiming toward. Toward that greater goal of understanding her sense of the student and his development over time, we have put careful work into teasing out her thoughts on older children, and we pass those findings along to the community through our training events.
Perhaps it is because so many of us on the curriculum team have high schoolers ourselves, but we at the CMEC have a special dedication to making our high school program reflect the life-giving education Mason envisioned.
What members with high school students are saying:
This program in unique in its approach to treating children as persons. It allows them to make the connections and form the ideas from each lesson on their own with little guidance instead of telling them what is important and what they should think. And in this way it makes them masters of their own education ... The CMEC curriculum is so rich and varied that I am excited as I look forward to high school with my Form 3 students. I did not feel my older students, who were homeschooled in a more traditional method, though with very difficult material, were as well prepared for college as they could have been. The natural progression of the curriculum's breadth and difficulty allows to students to feel challenged each year without feeling out of their depth. As I see them forming relationships with ideas and their ability to articulate them verbally and in writing, I am confident that they will be more than well prepared for higher learning.
- Judy in PA
The CMEC has provided materials so that I can further educate myself in the Charlotte Mason method. I'm very grateful for the support provided and the cheerfulness of the team wanting to support me. I'm able to dig deeper into the CM method but I'm also able to spend more time with my family and less time preparing for school. - Cassie in MO