Preview: “Nature Study by Months”


bookcoverpreview-2We’re pleased to announce the upcoming re-release of Nature Study by Months for Elementary Grades by Arthur C. Boyden (1898).  This title has been out-of-print for many years, and  Simple Pleasures Press is bringing this work back into print—in both paperback and ebook formats.

For home educators following Charlotte Mason‘s ideas on studying nature, Nature Study by Months will be an excellent supplement to Mason’s The Outdoor Life of Children: The Importance of Nature Study and Outdoor Activities. Although Mason and Boyden had an ocean between them (Mason in Ambleside, England while Boyden was in Massachusetts, USA), they were espousing similar ideas on sharing nature with children during the same time period.

Nature Study by Months is the first in a series of reprints of out-of-print and other nature-related titles.

The following is a preview of what you can expect from this upcoming title.


PREVIEW:
Nature Study by Months for Elementary Grades

by Arthur C. Boyden


INTRODUCTION

Suggestions for Nature Study

Love of Nature

The study should include the child’s environment, –the living animals and plants, the earth substances, and the forces that work upon them. The child’s observation should be the starting point. The teacher serves as the guide, suggesting material, stimulating and directing the observation and thought. This work should, above all else, lead into a strong love of Nature, an appreciation of the beauty, harmony, adaptation, and plan in the world about us; a sympathy for all living things, which manifests itself in thoughtful care and kind treatment.

Training

The aim is to cultivate in the child what may be termed the elementary equivalent of genuine scientific spirit, so that out of his native fondness for things about him shall come an enthusiastic, truth-seeking, reverent attitude toward Nature, with boldness to question her, patience to study her, and readiness to be taught by her. Plan in all possible ways for out-of-door observations, as this is the true field of Nature Study.

Expression

Cultivate the various forms of expression, such as drawing, coloring, oral and written language, and in cases that readily admit of it, construction. The work should be closely related to language, spelling, reading, and particularly literature. It should appeal to the imagination, and the artist and poet should be called upon to help the child interpret the beautiful. Some of the best selections should be committed to memory. Many applications of number, form, and color will suggest themselves.

As the child understands his own environment, he is prepared to appreciate geography as the study of the home of man. The thoughts of the life throbbing through the plant and animal, and the forms at work about us, all in perfect harmony, and for definite purposes, are suggestions of infinite law. Such thoughts are among the loftiest that can possess the human soul.


Nature Study by Months for Elementary Grades will be available for purchase in mid-2017 (perhaps earlier!).  Stay tuned for more information as the release date approaches.


Book Excerpt: Charlotte Mason on “Ideas”


Excerpted and adapted from
Ideas and Books: The Means of Education
by Charlotte Mason


Book CoverThe Life of the Mind Grows Upon Ideas

Now that life, which we call education, receives only one kind of sustenance; it grows upon ideas. You may go through years of so-called ‘education’ without getting a single vital idea; and that is why many a well-fed body carries about a feeble, starved intelligence; and no society for the prevention of cruelty to children cries shame on the parents. Continue reading

Book Excerpt: Out-of-Door Geography


Excerpted and adapted with permission from The Outdoor Life of Children, Volume Two of the Charlotte Mason Topics series.


“OUT-OF-DOOR GEOGRAPHY”

by Charlotte Mason

The Outdoor Life of ChildrenSmall Things May Teach Great

This pleasant earth of ours is not to be overlooked in the out-of-door education of the children. ‘How do you get time for so much?’ ‘Oh, I leave out subjects of no educational value; I do not teach geography, for instance,’ said an advanced young theorist with all sorts of certificates. Continue reading

Book Excerpt: Using Up Leftovers


This post is excerpted and adapted with permission from The Original Simple Mom’s Idea Book by Deborah Taylor-Hough (Simple Pleasures Press, 2015).


61ghrkhptflLeftovers. We all have them, don’t we? But what do we do with them? I don’t really like keeping them in my refrigerator until a science project on mold develops, but sometimes it’s hard to know what to use leftovers for without driving the family crazy. I don’t care to hear another chorus of that all-too-familiar song, “What?! Meatloaf… AGAIN?!” Continue reading

Excerpt from The Outdoor Life of Children


The Child Should Be Made Familiar with Natural Objects 
by Charlotte Mason
Excerpted from The Outdoor Life of Children


517pDeJHtkLAn Observant Child Should be Put in the Way of Things Worth Observing

But what is the use of being a ‘very observant child,’ if you are not put in the way of things worth observing? And here is the difference between the streets of a town and the sights and sounds of the country. There is plenty to be seen in a town and children accustomed to the ways of the streets become nimble-witted enough. But the scraps of information to be picked up in a town are isolated fragments; they do not hang on to anything else, nor come to anything more; the information may be convenient, but no one is the wiser for knowing which side of the street is Smith’s, and which turning leads to Thompson’s shop. Continue reading

Excerpt from The Kingdom of Heaven


Excerpted from The Kingdom of Heaven (The Saviour of the World – Vol. 3)
by Charlotte M. Mason
Part of an epic six volume set of poetry on the life of Christ.


BookCoverImageThe Passover was Nigh

The Passover was nigh; high Spring had come;
As when an army passing through a land
Leaves track of desolation, charred and sere,—
E’en so another host had passed that way
Leaving the land apulse with life and light!
Life had made her royal progress, hung her boughs
With rosy blossoms; made the waste to bloom—
Garden of flowers rich-painted, odorous; Continue reading

Excerpt: Homeschooling with a Rock Bottom Budget


51BlGAcUHnLby Deborah Taylor-Hough

The following is excerpted and adapted with permission  from A Twaddle-Free Education: An Introduction to Charlotte Mason’s Timeless Educational Ideas (Simple Pleasures Press, 2015).


Over the years, I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve had newbie homeschooling moms cry on my shoulder about all the myriads of choices available for home education curriculum and supplies.

“We’re just a struggling single income family! We can’t afford all this awesome sounding stuff! But I want to give my children  a rich and wonderful educational experience!  What do I do?” Continue reading

Excerpt from Habits: The Mother’s Secret to Success, by Charlotte Mason


The following excerpt is from the book, Habits: The Mother’s Secret to Success, by Charlotte Mason: a compilation of Mason’s writings on the topic of habit formation in children.


We Think as We are Accustomed to Think

HabitsHow does this bear on the practical work of bringing up children? In this way. We think, as we are accustomed to think; ideas come and go and carry on a ceaseless traffic in the rut— let us call it—you have made for them in the very nerve substance of the brain. You do not deliberately intend to think these thoughts; you may, indeed, object strongly to the line they are taking (two ‘trains’ of thought going on at one and the same time!), and objecting, you may be able to barricade the way, to put up ‘No Road’ in big letters, and to compel the busy populace of the brain-world to take another route. Continue reading