"Knowledge is more than an accumulation of information. It involves the ability to view that information with the right perspective and to use it for its proper end... It is the fear of the Lord that gives us the right perspective and prompts us to use it for the right end...Our main goal should be to glorify God. That is the ultimate goal to which all knowledge should be directed. Regardless of how helpful an item or body of knowledge may be to society, if it does not have as its final purpose the glory of God, it remains defective."
- Jerry Bridges The Joy of Fearing God
Did you know that Charlotte Mason founded schools across Victorian England? If you thought she was solely related to home education, that fact might come as a surprise to you. After all, in recent years she's been crowned the "founder of the homeschool movement". It is true that many mothers taught their children at home using Miss Mason's methods, but, yes, she founded out-of-the-home schools as well. To give you the super quick run down, her schools were originally formed as Parents' Review Schools (PRS), while later the titles evolved into what became known as Parents' Union Schools (PUS). Got those acronyms down? Good, because there are a few more :)
Before the inception of the first Parents' Union School, however, Miss Mason formed a club of sorts with parents and likeminded educators. This club sprang out of a series of lectures Miss Mason presented, detailing her educational philosophy and calling for change in England's educational system. The club was called the Parents' Education Union - later, the Parents' National Education Union. That's right! The PNEU :) Sound familiar?
We all know how deeply Miss Mason believed in the absolute necessity of ongoing education and she fervently wished to equip parents and educators to teach thoughtfully "for the children's sake". Before long, a magazine (with articles written by PNEU members and edited by Miss Mason) was published regularly in effort to keep the PNEU unified and focused. Can you guess what it was called? That's right - The Parents' Review (PR).
Can you narrate all of that back to yourself after a single reading? ;)
I mention all of this because I plan to take a close look over the next few weeks at several PR articles available through Ambleside Online. Before all that, I wanted to make certain everyone was clear on what the PR even was. AO's advisory has graciously permitted me to link directly to these pages. If you would like to do the same, I encourage you to ask their permission as well.
For those of you interested in a more in depth look at the Parents' Review, you might enjoy reading the synopsis AO offers or consider taking a look at the reproduced issues Karen Andreola has available for purchase. Or, for a more general overview of Miss Mason's work, the Wikipedia article is actually pretty thorough. Shhh... don't tell, but I used it to double check my chronology :)
... that this is just a blog. It's not real life. Because I want the posts and photos I share to encourage and inspire our readers, I don't often write about the negative, discouraging times. Believe me, though, they are there. Every day. By the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, we are sinful people striving to live lives of obedience that glorify Him and to love one another. Anything good is all of His grace and all of His work in us. Let God Almighty have the glory.