I read Echo in Celebration: A Call to Home-centred Education
because the author founded Classical Conversations, a homeschool co-op group that we hope to join in the fall. I read the book in electronic format, which made it hard for me to interact with the material in the same way that I do with print books, but I thought the book was interesting and engaging in spite of my format issues.
In the book, Leigh Bortins writes about her own view of learning as a life-long journey, and uses her story and stories of other families she has worked with to provide context to her larger points. I found her background interesting: she was an aerospace engineer, stopped working full time after her second child was born, began homeschooling her kids, found out about classical education, and developed a way for families to connect and classically educate together while still remaining home-centered.
In addition to the author’s own experiences, Echo in Celebration considers topics such as the history of literacy and education, ways to recover successful educational methods used in the past and in different cultures today, how to develop a life-long love of learning and ability to learn in your children, and how to think about a home-centered education.
I particularly appreciated the author’s use of the term “home-centered” education because so often people get the idea that homeschooling is this solitary, narrow thing. In reality, a home-centered education is the most broad opportunity available and can encompass all sorts of amazing components depending on your family’s interests and gifts. I like Leigh Bortins’s vision for parents being involved in education and partnering with their children in learning, and I think parents would get a lot out of this book even if you are putting your children in public or private schools.
This books is high on vision and low on implementation, but if you’re in need of encouragement about your educational choices, or if you really NEED a vision for your child’s education, this book might be very helpful to you. The author’s next book, The Core: Teaching Your Child the Foundations of Classical Education reportedly contains much more detail and focuses on implementation of the vision. I’ll review that in a future post.
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