Education is an Atmosphere | Principles #4-6
In today’s episode I’m talking about the next few principles of Charlotte Mason’s Twenty Principles. We’re covering principles #4-6. The sixth principle is the first of three instruments of education; “Education is an atmosphere.” Today we discuss what this instrument of education means, and how we can apply it in our own homes.
Principle #4:” These principles are limited by the respect due to the personality of children, which must not be encroached upon whether by the direct use of fear or love, suggestion or influence, or by undue play upon any one natural desire”.
Principle #5: “Therefore, we are limited to three educational instruments – the atmosphere of environment, the discipline of habit, and the presentation of living ideas. The P.N.E.U. motto is: ‘Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life.’”
Principle #6: “When we say that ‘education is an atmosphere,’ we do not mean that a child should be isolated in what we may be called a “child-environment” especially adapted and prepared, but that we should take into account the educational value of his natural home atmosphere both as regards persons and things, and should let him live freely among his proper conditions. It stultifies a child to bring down his world to the child’s level.”
- Atmosphere can be two things: “persons and things.”
- We as parents need to focus on atmosphere over environment.
- We must remember that atmosphere isn’t just the things we keep, the toys or books we buy, or the home in which we live. It’s the very essence of ourselves, as mothers.
- Simplicity is key. Keep your home free of unnecessary clutter.
Listen to the podcast above to hear more!
“Set an example… in speech, in life, in love, in faith, and in purity… be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.” (1 Timothy 4:12, 15-16 NIV).
“When we say that ‘education is an atmosphere,’ we do not mean that a child should be isolated in what we may be called a “child-environment” especially adapted and prepared, but that we should take into account the educational value of his natural home atmosphere both as regards persons and things, and should let him live freely among his proper conditions. It stultifies a child to bring down his world to the child’s level” (A Philosophy of Education).
“It is not an environment that these want, a set of artificial relations carefully constructed, but an atmosphere which nobody has been at pains to constitute” (A Philosophy of Education, p. 96)
“We all know the natural conditions under which a child should live; how he shares household ways with his mother, romps with his father, is teased by his brothers and petted by his sisters; is taught by his tumbles; learns self-denial by the baby’s needs, the delightfulness of furniture by playing at battle and siege with sofa and table; learns veneration for the old by visits of his great-grandmother; how to live with his equals by the chums he gathers round him; learns intimacy with animals from his dog and cat; delight in the fields where the buttercups grow and greater delight in the blackberry hedges” (A Philosophy of Education, p. 96)
“It is worth while to remember that space is the most precious and also the most pleasing thing in a house or room; and that even a small room becomes spacious if it is not crowded with useless objects.” (Ourselves, Book 1, p. 177).
Home Education by Charlotte Mason
A Philosophy of Education by Charlotte Mason (pages 94-99)
Ourselves by Charlotte Mason (Book 1, page 177)
The Lifegiving Home by Sally Clarkson
The Lifegiving Table by Sally Clarkson
(*some are affiliate links)
I hope you enjoyed this episode of the Charlotte Mason Motherhood podcast. Thank you so much for listening!
- Mason, Charlotte. Home Education. Simply Charlotte Mason, LLC, 2017.
- Mason, Charlotte. A Philosophy of Education. Simply Charlotte Mason, LLC. 2017.
Join the Charlotte Mason Motherhood Community
Connect with like-minded homeschool moms. Get exclusive videos, monthly Q&A sessions, free downloads and more!