Scholé : What is it, anyway?

What is Scholé?
You may have heard, or will hear this word a lot in coming months and years, I imagine.
It may seem strange or confusing when you hear it in different contexts, so let’s look at it:
Scholé = really cool Greek word.
Currently, you’ll hear it often in the realm of Classical education and Classical Home Education. Its very popular these days! 🙂


1.  freedom from labor, leisure.
2. according to later Greek usage, a place where there is leisure for anything, a school
Dr.Christopher Perrin, who has, together with Sarah Mackenzie, really welcomed classical home educators into this realm of thought, says it like this:
‘The word scholé (pronounced skoh-LAY) comes from a Greek word that means “restful learning,” with the connotation of “contemplation,” “conversation,” and “reflection.” Ironically, it is also the basis for our English word school, which no longer holds for us these restful connotations. “
This concept was perhaps originally intended as a way of communicating that learning and  thinking [contemplation, conversation, reflection] (which cannot really be done apart from one another) were things that took time, and needed to be done slowly, persistently and at a leisurely [not lazy] pace. 
When I think of LEISURE, I think of resting and restoration; something that offers me some peace but kind of gets me ready to ramp up for the hard stuff. 
The richness of teaching and learning from a place of restfulness is being [re]discovered by many homeschooling parents, especially Classical home educators. 
Doesn’t it sound equal parts impossible and absolutely lovely?!? 🙂
This past year, our SCV Classical Conversations (CC) Families have been invited to meet in the evening each month to discuss, contemplate and practice ways to engage in a more RESTFUL approach to teaching and learning…not a LAZY approach, but a more peace-filled one. 
We ripped off a title from some really cool groups of moms all over the country who have been meeting to grow themselves and to contemplate discuss and reflect on things that interest them, to build themselves into ‘more fully human’ humans 🙂 They call is Scholé Sisters- so we did, too…
but we saw that we are all just newly embarking on this Classical Education adventure (that Pioneers in its revival like Leigh Bortins, Andrew Kern, Martin Cothran, Christopher Perrin and others made possible for us) and that we really needed to dive in and understand HOW to learn this way. 
We asked a lot of questions, and they keep coming!
Here are a few that we looked at:
What methods or “pedagogies” would we implement to cultivate a love of learning and a deep wonder and curiosity in our children? 
How would we do it without buying yet another curriculum, or packing our days with lots of worksheets, frustration and no. fun. at. all? 
How would we model a love for learning as “lead learners”?
What exactly would that look like in our individual homes?
How does this repetition and memorization train our brain to retain?
How do we shift gears to do MUCH of a few things and not a little of MANY things?
How can I embrace a “less is more” mentality in life and learning?
What liturgies or rituals could we practice in our home that would cultivate virtues in our family?
SO, our CC Scholé Sisters became a place where we could discuss an approach, apply it, and check back in with one another. 
It has been pretty beautiful. 
Since we have already enjoyed the richness of COMMUNITY with one another through CC(even amongst different CC communities, the threads woven between us were already there)we had a connection and there was a vulnerability and  willingness to openly share our defeats as readily as we shared the shining moments.
We endeavored to discover how to relish the beauty, truth and goodness we found in what Classical Conversations has laid out before us, learn from those who have gone before us, and to dig deeply and linger in a way that could help order our affections in the culture of our home through learning in life together this way.
Looking at teaching from a place of rest, or scholé, I start to see with fresh eyes what Leigh Bortins has been telling me all along in each of her trilogy of books, The Core, The Question, and The Conversation. 
We are so excited as the current school year slows and we ready ourselves for a new one over the summer though prayer, reading, CC’s free parent Practicums, Homeschool Conventions like CHEA and GHC, and I’m sure numerous other ways,  to continue to equip each one of you in your Classical education journey with CC [or any way], and invite you to JOIN the conversation and find ways to walk it out with others in your community!
It’s always more fun to walk through life together, trying things out with companions, and learning from one another. 
And that’s exactly what we are on track to continue doing (!), while we enjoy all the benefits of Classical Conversations nearly 20 years of experience, knowledge and leadership in developing an outstanding CORE program for our kids and us, and a well laid- out plan that we don’t have to create! [I love that!]
As we aim to embrace a more restful, steady, deep-digging, “marinade in the facts and ideas” kind of learning, let’s do it together.
It would be wonderful to have you here- because even if you don’t believe it- we need you! You have valuable insights that others need- because you are the only ‘you’! – and that means you have a unique and valuable perspective to offer.
Let’s have a little scholé in our “school” days! 
…and tell us all about it!



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