Topic | Are they prepared for today’s colleges?

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  • Jodie Apple

    I’ve homeschooled for 4 years and God is so good to be constantly renewing my mind on what education truly is. Over these years I’ve been drawn to the CM approach and have incorporated tid bits here and there. I really want to ditch everything that doesn’t go along with the CM approach, but coming from the “good old public school” setting, I’m having a hard time letting go of the mind set that is engrained. I totally believe in her approach, but we live in a different time, and I guess I would like my fear of “what if they aren’t prepared for the college OF TODAY?” to be put to rest. Understand that our goal and reason for homeschooling is to train them in God’s word and nurture them according to their “bent”. I also understand and am totally okay with the fact that our children may not feel led by God to attend college, but I think we need to prepare them for the possibility that He may. Anyone care to comment on this and help liberate me??

    Secondly, can CM be used (and preferably enjoyed)as the exclusive method in the home regardless of the different personalities and learning preferences of each family member?


    Hi MJ,

    I thought I could describe our scenario to you to help with your hesitations:

    I have two college students. One has been studying for and taking CLEP tests to gain college credits over the past year. When he has CLEP’d out of all that he can, he will enroll in distance learning. This will complete a degree for him within the next year (it will have taken him about 2 1/2 years for a bachelors degree). Then he *plans* on enrolling in a ‘brick and mortar’ college for his masters. The other student is just beginning the CLEP’ing process and will concurrently take distance learning classes. She plans on completing two years of college over the next year and be ready to go to the college for her remaining classes in fall of ’09.

    The reason I am telling you all of this is to help explain that teaching the love of learning to your children is so much more important than ‘facts.’ Education comes in stages. The tiniest ones are taught to just enjoy looking around and discovering their world. Next comes telling you what they have learned. Then they learn to write about it. Next comes the rigors of high school where they are immersed in more ‘texty’ kinds of learning but have not been burned out on it earlier so they welcome the opportunity to dig deeper into hard stuff.

    CM methods teach the child to be a self-learner. I am convinced that is why my guys can study for college courses on their own at an accelerated pace. They have learned to absorb what is fed to them versus just spitting it back out at test time.

    But not only that, they are also learning to know why they believe what they believe and to challenge ideas that are not Biblical. That will also help them in college tremendously.

    You are right to consider college. It would be wrong of us to just assume college is not for our children. But our experience has been, thus far, that the cm approach has helped, not hindered.



    Jodie Apple


    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!!!!!! It’s so good to hear testimonies from those students who are “on the other side” of the K-12 years who have been educated this way. I attend home school groups and receive newsletters from our umbrella school on events and workshops and Charlotte Mason hasn’t ever been a topic that’s come up; also, none of our homeschool friends use this approach, so I have felt like I’m being somewhat eccentric in my endeavor. What I have read on this website has really encouraged me. (It’s always good to know that you’re not the only one!!) I am very thankful for this forum.

    I hadn’t thought of the CLEPing process. Excellent idea.

    Thanks again for your words of encouragement.


    Sonya Shafer

    MJ, on the CLEP topic, I highly recommend the book College Without Compromise. It encourages us to keep a Biblical perspective about college and also walks us through the CLEPing process step by step. Very practical and helpful!

    Jodie Apple


    Thank you for the tip. Our oldest is entering her senior year of high school and I am so hesitant to just “send her off on her way”. I feel like we’re throwing her to the wolves, so to speak. But I know we can’t keep her in a bubble. Keeping a Biblical perspective is of the utmost importance to us. It’s good to know there are resources such as that.

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