Pre-conference Immersion Sessions


Designed to provide adults with a more intimate experience and in depth discussion about targeted topics, Pre-conference Immersion Sessions are offered on Wednesday, 19 July 2017 from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. for a registration fee of $85.95 each. The cost for each attending adult covers registration but not lunch.  An attendee may bring their own lunch or select a 4 day meal ticket option if staying for the rest of the conference. 

The immersion sessions are intended for adults and only babes-in-arms may accompany parents. If the infant begins to cry, we ask parents to please leave until the child is quiet so that others' learning is not hindered.

Shannon Goods

Secondary Science in a Charlotte Mason Paradigm

Much has changed in the realm of science since Charlotte Mason’s days, so are her ideas still relevant to how we should teach science to our children today?  Can her methods work equally well for the student who loves science and wants to pursue a career in the field and the student who is less interested?  How can a busy parent with little scientific background teach science anyway, especially the experiments?  We will explore these questions and more to begin our time together.  I will share from my experiences teaching science in a public high school compared to teaching science to middle and high schoolers in a CM co-op.  Then we will dive into the practical aspect of how it works by doing some science readings and experiments together.  Come prepared to explore, question, and rediscover the wonder of science for yourself, and leave armed with some tools and strategies to bring science to life in your home with Charlotte Mason’s methods.

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The Monument to Chopin in the 

Luxembourg Gardens  1909

Nancy Kelly

Multi Age Homeschool

Nancy will demonstrate a morning in a multi-age homeschool using Mason’s methods.  Despite the large age range in many homeschools, adherence to the principles and practices in every area can make this rich education possible.  The focus will be on subjects that can successfully be combined with multiple ages. Subject areas that may be presented include Bible, dictation, citizenship, Shakespeare, history,  geography, hymn, folksong, poetry, copywork, composer study, picture study, handcrafts, nature study, literature, and natural history – all subjects that Nancy has years of experience teaching to all ages at the same time. Attendees assume the role of the student, experiencing the different forms of narration and the banquet of ideas which will bring a deeper understanding to the method. 

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The Walk in the Forest  

1886 -1890

Andy Smith

Stewarding One’s Neurochemistry:  Habit Formation Strategies for Those with Executive Function Deficits 

“The man who can make himself do what he wills has the world before him, and it rests on parents to give their children this self-compelling power as a mere matter of habit” (School Education, emphasis mine). Self-governance, a hallmark of a Mason education, can be sabotaged by poor habits for people like Inconstant Kitty whom Mason describes in Formation of Character as “wayward,” “unsteady as a young colt,” “neither steady in play nor steadfast in love” who grow up to be “ready to undertake anything but they carry nothing through.”  

In this in-depth seminar we will examine Mason’s advice for Inconstant Kitty and see how the ADD/ADHD research on executive function (EF) in the past several decades complements and supplements this advice. EF skills are the cognitive processes that help one prioritize, plan, organize, self regulate, start and finish tasks.   While many children develop these in the normal course of things, others have conditions that bring innate deficits in the areas of working memory, organization, sustained attention, time management and impulse control. These deficits can undermine habit formation in many areas of life and learning, but happily specific strategies can help. We will discuss such strategies through topics such as labels, excuses and responsibilities; ADD vs pseudo ADD; types of ADHD; moral and physiological lens; pain and shame; living with thorns; EF developmentally; EF deficits in students and adults; CM & Inconstant Kitty; medication pros and cons; EF strategies to help kids and adults manage time, space and stuff; how CM ed supports those with EF deficits; how EF deficits may affect parts of CM education (narration, nature study, math, etc.). Participants will assess a child or adult they know, will generate strategies specific to that person, and leave with dozens of practical strategies to put into practice the next day. Since EF deficits can wreak havoc in children and adults alike, this seminar will be applicable to adults wanting to address these issues with their kids or themselves. A questionnaire will be sent out and needs returning beforehand.

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Woman in Red in the Forest


Dr. Jennifer Spencer

Mason's Methods Immersion for the Beginners

This immersion will be an introduction to Mason's methods. Attendees will participate as students as they learn how to implement penmanship, copywork, dictation, narration, picture study, composer study, and more. There will be some discussion about what these methods accomplish and how to adapt them for children of different ages, but the primary focus will be helping the beginner understand how to do Mason's methods.

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