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Convince me of Classical Composition :-)

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    #16
    Thanks for your honesty and for writing that out, Fireweed Prep. None of us are perfect and we all have regrets looking back. And each one of us would be helped by a large dose of humility, particularly in today's world and culture. So no emojis needed.

    Teaching a person how to write a five paragraph paper or an APA style research paper is fairly easy. Classes and prep sessions abound for that sort of education, some good and some not so good. MP even lays out the five paragraph style in a simple one page document somewhere that I have seen floating around these parts.

    But teaching a person how to think, how to analyze, how to synthesize, and how to write takes work. It takes time. A lot of time. It takes repetition. It even takes failure, and learning from those failures. It takes instruction from a learned instructor. And it takes....."meandering". There is a method to the "madness". Trust the system. It takes faith. Most good things in life do.
    Last edited by Beorn; 03-22-2021, 01:06 PM.
    21/22 - 4th MP Year, Dad & Quadrivium Teacher
    S - 8, 2nd MP @ HLN & Home
    D - 6, K MP @ HLN & Home
    S - 4, Jr K MP @ Home

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      #17
      Originally posted by jen1134 View Post

      In recent years, Silicon Valley giants have said they want to hire liberal arts grads rather than STEM majors precisely because LA students know how to think. They know how to interpret what they hear, see, and read, and how to spot a faulty interpretation. As others have said, they not only know how to do things, but can evaluate whether those things should be done. The higher levels of CC give tons of practice in such evaluations and their related methods of argument/development.

      Beorn your career is in a science field isn't it?
      Agreed to what you say about Silicone Valley. Having a college degree isn't even required in many places anymore. Part of the reason why is that we have watered down what it means to be college educated.

      And yes, my educational background is in the Sciences.
      21/22 - 4th MP Year, Dad & Quadrivium Teacher
      S - 8, 2nd MP @ HLN & Home
      D - 6, K MP @ HLN & Home
      S - 4, Jr K MP @ Home

      Comment


        #18
        Originally posted by Beorn View Post

        But teaching a person how to think, how to analyze, how to synthesize, and how to write takes work. It takes time. A lot of time. It takes repetition. It even takes failure, and learning from those failures. It takes instruction from a learned instructor. And it takes....."meandering". There is a method to the "madness". Trust the system. It takes faith. Most good things in life do.
        That was really helpful to read - thank you!

        -------------------------------------------------------------------------

        I, too, have trouble "trusting the system." Classical composition has been exceptionally hard to trust, as I have minimal frame of reference for it. I thought Fable was the craziest thing ever (why oh WHY would we start in the middle to retell it??), but I'm slowly starting to see how it comes together. For those of us with zero background in classical education and minimal writing instruction in high school and college, it's been hard to wrap my brain around CC!

        My oldest two are thriving in CC via MPOA, I am happy to report!
        Mama to 5 Sweet Ones

        2021-2022:
        11th grade DS: Mix of MP materials, MPOA, and BJU
        9th grade DD: Mostly 9M, MPOA, and French
        7th grade DD: 7M
        5th Grade DD: 5M
        4.5 yo DS: Outside as much as possible beating on things with sticks; MP Jr. K and Mom made fun things

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          #19
          Originally posted by Enigma
          So why would you use CC over say CAP Writing and Rhetoric? I, too, cannot wrap my head around CC. Online classes are not an option for us which leaves me on my own. Even with dvds, I just do not get it.
          We used Writing & Rhetoric for two years before switching to MP. Students do far less actual writing in that program and it's more of a fill in the blank format. Here's a copy/paste from an old forum thread as to why I like CC:

          When we first switched to MP, I was going to skip CC. It looked bone-dry and *I* couldn’t even understand the terms they were using! We eventually decided to switch and I’m so glad we did. We had been using CAP’s Writing & Rhetoric but several people said it felt like their kids we’re doing more fill-in-the-blank work with it than actual writing.

          What I like about CC:

          The exercises in each lesson directly build upon each other. The exercise you do at the beginning of a lesson is actually integrated into, or in some way informing the development of, your final draft for that same lesson.

          Each level is preparing you for future levels. You learn (and hopefully master) the three most important plot elements in the Fable stage, imitating and varying how they’re presented in the original Fable. Then in Narrative, you learn the remaining six plot elements and again work with them but this time in the context of longer narratives (*much* longer by the end of the level!).

          Chreia/Maxim is where it all comes together: with their mastery of the nine plot elements, they’re ready to write their own original narratives in support of a wise saying/proverb. At that level, they also learn how to support their point through examples, analogies, and the testimony of others.

          Ref/Con builds further, but that is where I hand them over to MPOA so I can focus on my little people who still need a lot of mom-time

          An interesting note: I was talking to a friend at church today and she told me they had planned to skip CC. Then recently, her husband (a doctor of philosophy) was looking through one of the books she had on hand and he was amazed at the level of thinking involved in it. They’re now looking at using CC [I'm not sure what they decided]

          My oldest two are in Encomium/Invective right now (part of HS Comp II in MPOA). They know how to make an argument, they know how to think through the various parts of it, and they know that they know it. And in the words of Cheryl Lowe, that’s where true delight comes from.They’re taking HS Comp III next year [they're taking it now!] and I know that even my son who is going into a trade will be able to hold his own in considering the arguments of others — even if those others have been to college.
          Jennifer
          Blog: [url]www.seekingdelectare.com[/url]

          2022
          DS18: Graduated and living his dream in the automotive trades
          DS17: MP, MPOA, headed to his favorite liberal arts college this fall
          DS15: MP, MPOA
          DS13: Mix of SC 5/6 & SC 7/8
          DD11: Mix of 5M and SC7/8
          DD10: SC3
          DD7: MPK

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            #20
            Enigma, here are a few relevant threads for consideration:

            https://forum.memoriapress.com/forum...al-composition

            https://forum.memoriapress.com/forum...g-and-rhetoric

            https://forum.memoriapress.com/forum...g-and-rhetoric
            21/22 - 4th MP Year, Dad & Quadrivium Teacher
            S - 8, 2nd MP @ HLN & Home
            D - 6, K MP @ HLN & Home
            S - 4, Jr K MP @ Home

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              #21
              I found the thread with the Rhetoric Essay Template linked if anyone is interested:

              https://forum.memoriapress.com/forum...aragraph-essay
              21/22 - 4th MP Year, Dad & Quadrivium Teacher
              S - 8, 2nd MP @ HLN & Home
              D - 6, K MP @ HLN & Home
              S - 4, Jr K MP @ Home

              Comment


                #22
                Oh Beorn your reply that a five paragraph essay is easy to teach; but thinking is difficult to teach reminded me of a talk I went to when my eldest was a toddler. The woman was a Waldorf instructor and she said, "I can teach a 25 year old to work a computer in a month. I cannot teach a 25 year old to have an imagination no matter how long I have."
                Emily…a hunter who prefers coffee to chocolate and dreams of the mountains

                Beech Tree Boarding School, 2021-2022
                DD (age 10): MP 5
                DD (age 8): MP 2
                DS (age 5): MP K
                "Maybe stalking the woods is as vital to the human condition as making music or putting words to paper. Maybe hunting has as much of a claim on our civilized selves as anything else.” Steven Rinella

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                  #23
                  I forgot that I started one of the forum posts linked above. Right or wrong, I have learned to become a bit detached when it comes to writing curricula. While I embrace the prgymnasmata philosophy, no program will do its magic on its own, and "you just have to trust it". We shouldn't forget, moreover, that MP offers many different tools to practice thinking, analyzing, etc. - it's not all on CC's shoulders. There is Latin, of course, but any MP student guide is a perfect way to work on those skills without even knowing it. And I like to think no one really teaches you how to have an imagination: it's something definitely shaped by life experiences, but the possibility of it exists at all times for everyone, simply because we have an intellect and a soul.
                  DS (16)
                  DD (15)
                  DS (7)

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                    #24
                    For a few different reasons, this is a timely discussion. As my eldest is working her way through Narrative, I recognize it is unfamiliar, time consuming and different from the way I learned to write. I have to prioritize CC in our day because it’s too easy to ignore it and the hard work it brings.

                    After rereading a Classical Teacher article, I’m encouraged to keep up the hard work.

                    “As Christians, we are not concerned just with being good citizens of Christ ourselves (though this is crucial), or with merely raising professionally successful children, but ultimately with equipping our children for every good work for the benefit of others. Our desire is to make the next generation eager and ready to labor for Christ, or as Augustine put it, to defend “the glorious City of God against those who prefer its own gods to its Founder.” This requires a firm, surefooted understanding of what is right and good and what is not, along with the ability to clearly explain and persuade others of that good—an act that draws both the speaker and the audience closer to God. Classical Composition addresses the two aspects of man’s fallen nature—the damage to the soul and the damage to the mind—which can help repair the ruin we have made of our culture and ourselves.”

                    https://www.memoriapress.com/article...ore-exercises/
                    Heidi

                    For 2021-22
                    dd- 6th
                    ds- 3rd
                    dd- 1st
                    ds- adding smiles and distractions

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