Charlotte Mason and SCM Beliefs

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  • Natalie

    Hi Sonya, I was wondering if you would be willing to share YOUR thoughts on a few topics? First, do you agree with Charlotte Mason when she said that, “Children are not born bad but with possibilities for good and for evil.” Chapter 3 in her book Towards a Psychology of Education. Scripture tells us in Psalm 51:5 that “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me.”

    Is there Psychological “bend” in her methods and thinking? Do you agree that “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;” 2 Timothy 3:16. Does the SCM curriculum reflect this truth? Or is the thinking, JESUS plus something more?

    Thank you!


    OK…..I always post something and THEN shortly find the answer on the website. Just read the “What we believe” on the Guidelines post 🙂 Thank you!


    In an old thread on this topic, Sonya said this (Sonya, I hope it’s okay for me to requote you):

    It’s a great question. In the research that I’ve done, I’ve come to the conclusion that Charlotte’s remarks about a child being born neither good or bad has to do with character, rather than theology. It seems that during the era in which she lived, there was a mind-set that if a child inherited a particular trait that ran in the family (for example, a bad temper), there was nothing the parent could do to change that. The child was “born bad” and would be “bad” his entire life. Charlotte’s emphasis on habit-training focuses on many character traits and demonstrates that a parent can help a child change a negative trait. So as far as character issues go, a child is not locked in to natural tendencies. Habit is stronger than natural tendencies and can change those inherited traits for the better.

    Doug Smith

    Glad you found our What We Believe page, Natalie. And thanks, alphabetika, for finding Sonya’s previous answer.

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