CMP Review 2023-06-27

CMP Review 2023-06-27

June 27, 2023

The “way of reason,” like the “way of the will,” is one of the least explored and understood aspects of the Charlotte Mason method. Few articles in the historical Parents’ Review or the modern blogosphere attempt to interpret or apply it. It is natural to wonder whether this unusual principle should be treated as a museum piece, of interest perhaps to Charlotte Mason historians, but not to home educators.

It is perhaps surprising to learn that in the late 1950s, teachers and educators wanted to learn the Charlotte Mason method. To meet this demand, Helen Wix introduced a correspondence course where interested and motivated persons could be paired with a “tutor” who had been certified by the House of Education or the Charlotte Mason College. One enrollee in this program turned out to be a star, and she was a homeschooling mother.

This forerunner of ours did not shy away from the “way of reason.” In fact, she wrote an essay about it. As a mother in 1961, did she consider this principle to be a relic of a bygone era? Not at all! “It is apparent that some systematic training in what Charlotte Mason calls ‘the way of reason’ is vitally necessary,” she wrote, “perhaps even more today than in her time.” In fact, the conditions of her own time that gave her this conviction are even stronger and more pressing in ours.

Today we share this essay by a mother whose context was not so dissimilar to ours, and who said that training in the way “of the reason should help to provide that stability of mind which will run like a shining thread through the inevitable changes and upsets of life.” Listen or read here.