In the past, correct spelling, the multiplication tables, the names of the state capitals and the American presidents were basics that all children were taught in school. Today, many children graduate without this essential knowledge. Most curricula today follow a haphazard sampling of topics with a focus on political correctness instead of teaching students how to study.
Leigh Bortins, a leading figure in the homeschooling community, is having none of it. She believes that there are core areas of knowledge that are essential to master. Without knowing the multiplication tables, children can't advance to algebra. Without mastery of grammar, students will have difficulty expressing themselves. Without these essential building blocks of knowledge, students may remember information but they will never possess a broad and deep understanding of how the world works.
In this book, Bortins gives parents the tools and methodology to implement a rigorous, thorough, and broad curriculum based on the classical model, including:
Rote memorization to cement knowledge
Systematic learning of geography, historical facts, and timelines
Reading the great books and seminal historical documents instead of adaptations and abridged editions
Rigorous training in math and the natural sciences
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Great, Practical Application
Listening to this book once a year while my children are under 10 will be a must! The book is jam-packed with tools I can use in our homeschool over and over again. Even as a 5th year Foundations Tutor in Classical Conversations, I learn something new every time I hear/read The Core.
I personally wish the narrator would have been a little more mature. The sing-song tone she uses throughout the book can drive me batty - especially in the first few chapters. Once I get about mid-way through the audiobook, my ears sort of learn to deal with it and get past the distraction of her style in order to absorb the content.
The tips in the later chapters when she starts breaking things down subject by subject are invaluable. Reading, Geography, Spelling, Math, you name it - Leigh Bortins is simple, practical, and thorough.
Hoping they will soon have The Question and The Conversation available on Audio as well. Although I hope they choose a different narrator for those.
A must read!!
- Michael C Patton