Thursday, January 30, 2014

Form I: Would you like Shakespeare with that?

Romeo and Juliet before Father Lawrence, by Karl Ludwig Friedrich Becker

Shakespeare in elementary?

I never thought that such high-quality literature would be suitable to read to a child. And I, like many others from centuries past to the present-day, apparently have been spoon-feeding our children a watered-down, uninspiring version of the freshest, purest nectar available.
And it's just ok. Because we didn't know any different.

We have...put into the children's hands lesson-books with pretty pictures and easy talk, almost as good as story-books; but we do not see that, after all, we are but giving the same little pills of knowledge in the form of a weak and copious diluent. -Vol 1, p.176

But now we do know different. And different is so much richer and tastier!

Taking into account that ideas are for the mind as nutritious food is for the body, why wouldn't we offer a great array of these to our knowledge-hungry children? 

This process of feeding goes on with peculiar avidity in childhood, and the growth of an idea in the child is proportionably rapid. -Vol 1, p. 174

One of the ways to provide for our children's appetites for knowledge is through the brilliant mind of Shakespeare.

And just how do we put this into action with the lofty and incomprehensible talk that a 6-, 7- or 8-year-old ... oh, heck, even a 40-year-old! ... must presume is being babbled out in the original manuscripts of this English fellow from ages past?

By the way, I just love that my young ones are getting exposed to the storylines of Shakespeare's works at this stage in life. And I just love that I am getting a better grasp on them. Because not only are my children's minds hungry for knowledge, my mind is as well. I love this about homeschooling (as a student myself) under Charlotte Mason's inspired thoughts and writings!

So through Beautiful Stories from Shakespeare to Tales from Shakespeare, our minds together are getting a bounty of delicious aliment. 

And it is so satisfying!


  1. Oh I love your sketch. We usually do stick people but I think we'll have to switch to faces now!

    1. Amy, my son loves to draw and really enjoys making them look their part as best he can :-)