We believe that our children are born persons created in the image of God, and that education is an atmosphere, a discipline and a life. Ravi Scott Jain defines Christian classical education in his book The Liberal Arts Tradition as an education that, “cultivates the virtue of the student in body, heart, and mind, while nurturing a love for wisdom under the lordship of Christ.” At Meadowlark Collective, we seek to cultivate the virtue of our students through the restful, contemplative pursuit of all that is good, true and beautiful in this world God has created, while agreeing with Charlotte Mason when she writes that “God the Holy Spirit is Himself, personally, the Imparter of knowledge, the Instructor of youth, the Inspirer of genius.” Our goal as parent educators is to faithfully create an atmosphere where our students can grow in wisdom and knowledge, and where their character can be shaped and formed through the work that God has for them in these early years of their lives.
We believe that an important part of that work revolves around the relationships our students are able to develop with other fellow-learners and dedicated mentors. We also believe that students excel when they are presented with a feast of ideas and the freedom to contemplate them. Because of those beliefs, we aim to create a space where the relationships between students, mentors and ideas can grow and flourish. Meadowlark Collective exists to provide an effective, communal and restful learning experience for multiple grades through proficient educators in specific core subjects such as literature, writing, fine art, logic and science. At Meadowlark Collective, our goal is to help fellow parent educators to fulfill the calling of faithfully educating their children through a rigorous curriculum, engaging mentors and an atmosphere that draws their hearts, souls, and minds to love what ought to be loved.
“The true aim of education is to order a child’s affections–to teach him
to love what he ought and hate what he ought… We have been charged to
cultivate the souls of our children, to nourish them in truth, goodness, and beauty,
to raise them up in wisdom and eloquence.
It is to those ends that we labor.”
Sarah MacKenzie, Teaching from Rest
The Upstate is fortunate to have a myriad of homeschool co op options. We’re grateful for the freedom of choice, thankful for the mixing and the merging and the wide variety of paths down which we can walk. From our inception, we have not desired to be just like another co-op, nor to be different just for different’s sake. We, as a board, have been motivated through years of educating our own children, years of reading and self-education, to develop a collective that promotes gentle learning and steady exposure to good and true and beautiful words and ideas.
We’ve developed a list of reading materials that we encourage our teachers to read. As a parent of a Meadowlark Collective student, you are not required to read these books. However, if you want to see how our plans and methods have formed and the framework from which we operate, this list is a fabulous starting point. We hope you’ll be as encouraged and inspired as we have been.