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The Latin-Centered Curriculum: A Homeschooler's Guide to a Classical Education Paperback – 2008

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 236 pages
  • Publisher: Memoria Press (2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0838828418
  • ISBN-13: 978-1930953710
  • ASIN: 1930953712
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 0.2 x 27.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 295 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,525,181 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 15 reviews
61 of 62 people found the following review helpful
Simply the best Classical homeschooling resource June 25 2006
By Gloredhel - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book is THE manual for why and how to implement a traditional, Latin-centered education in the homeschool. In a nutshell, a traditional Classical education is streamlined, focused on Latin and Greek, with fewer "subjects" than other methods, and built on a foundation of the principle of multum non multa, "not many but much". This means that traditional Classical is "simple but deep". Rather than attempting to shallowly cover a vast quantity of material, a few selections of the best are chosen, and are studied in great depth. Let's face it, many many good resources are available, so many that it can be overwhelming. Why not simply have your student(s) focus on those few that are The Best?

The bulk of the book is an outline of a K - 12 course of study based on this philosophy. The information is organized by subject area (e.g. Latin). Campbell gives a general overview of what you should hope to accomplish in each stage of the child's schooling: Primary (K - 2), Grammar (3 - 8), and Secondary (9 - 12). (e.g. "During the primary years, give your students a gentle introduction to Latin that emphasizes vocabulary words, phrases, and prayers. Plan to spend no more than 15-20 minutes a day on Lain at this stage.") Then, grade by grade, he recommends specific curricula and other resources to help you reach this goal.

The result is a book with tremendous appeal to old pros and newbies alike. If you were lucky enough to be Classically Educated yourself, and already know the ins and outs, this could still provide a very useful framework for giving your child a Classical Education. If you're new to the idea, this simple, straight-forward, concise guide will give you the reassurance and confidence that you can do this, and it won't be as hard as you might fear! If you are familiar with neo-Classical education, this streamlined approach may appeal to you for the way it can simplify your life while giving your child a truly great education.

Finally, as a non-Christian myself, I deeply appreciate the way this Christian author writes to a broad audience, and keeps an inclusive tone. Some Christian curricula are recommended, and a course of Bible study is outlined, but there is plenty of valuable information here for people of all faiths (including a note to non-Christian parents in the appendix about how to approach the Bible as literature).
41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
Pared down, still intellectually challenging Aug. 20 2006
By L. Beasley - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In The LCC, Campbell brings a much-needed perspective back to the table for those homeschoolers interested in a classical education for their kids. He presents what the term "classical education" used to mean; how it differs from the "neoclassical" approach popularized by Susan Wise Bauer, Douglas Wilson, the Bluedorns, etc.; and how homeschooling families can put such an approach into practice. It's a slim volume, highly readable and very practical. For the historical and theoretical background, he draws heavily from Simmons' Climbing Parnassus (highly recommended reading). For the scope and sequence section, he draws heavily from Highlands Latin School/Memoria Press.

The LCC is recommended for those interested in a more traditionally "classical"--as opposed to a "Great Books"--education. The emphasis, first and foremost, is on the classical languages, Latin and Greek. Campbell's mantra is that less is indeed more: Making these languages the central focus of study means that other "elective" courses of study--and even other really wonderful classics--should fall away or be reserved for independent reading. This is a freeing perspective for parents who look at the 20-30 great books their 7th grader is "supposed" to be reading and want to just throw up their hands.

Another interesting difference is that Campbell takes a multi-thread approach to history as opposed to strictly chronological. I'll leave it to the book to explain more fully, but in a nutshell, he has students doing English Studies, Classical Studies, Christian Studies, and Modern Studies simultaneously (though on different days and possibly in different weeks). Very different from The Well-Trained Mind or Veritas Press chronological, cyclical approach.
34 of 36 people found the following review helpful
Answering a need in home education June 26 2006
By L. Joyce - Published on
Format: Paperback
Before discovering the Latin Centered Curriculum, I had become dissatisfied with our mode of homeschooling. I felt we were trying to cover too much, in too shallow a manner. Then I stumbled upon a sample chapter from LCC, and discovered the concept of "Multum Non Multa": not many things, but much. This approach of digging deeply into a few essential subjects answered the need I had perceived in our homeschool. Making Latin the center of our curriculum not only simplifies, but magnifies my childrens' educational experience. Author Andrew Campbell provides the methodology to follow, recommends materials to use, and suggests schedules to follow. I have no doubt his book will help to guide us to a new level of academic excellence. My only regret is that we didn't have the LCC when we started homeschooling 8 years ago!
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
THE handbook for the classical homeschooler June 26 2006
By Spinneretta - Published on
Format: Paperback
The Latin Centered Curriculum

by Andrew Campbell

Basically a how-to manual on giving your child the best education you possibly can, the Latin Centered Curriculum (LCC) is a book that bases it's ideology on the education the Greeks and Romans gave to their kids.

It starts out with apologetics... why you should follow the LCC, and puts forth great arguments both for it and against it's detractors.

Then it tells you how to do it... giving outlines, sample schedules and in depth descriptions of the courses of study and recommended texts.

The most amazing aspect of the book is that it fits all this into 160 pages... (not including the appendices) but then, that is the beauty of of the LCC... the ideal of Much, not many... about which you can read more either in the book itself.

I found myself agreeing with the book, nodding my head and thinking with pleasure of all the things my children and I will be learning in the years to come!

It was hard not to get up and start right away...

A must read for all Classical Homeschoolers! Drew Campbell has provided us all with an amazing resource.

The book is fantastic... definitely bedside table material.
34 of 41 people found the following review helpful
Latin still on the periphery Aug. 25 2007
By J. R. Bombadil - Published on
Format: Paperback
It is a worthy effort. It relies heavily on Climbing Parnassus, which is a wonderful book, the best apology for the study of Latin and Greek.

Mr. Campbell's failure I think is to really make Latin the center of the curriculum. I have grave reservations for Latina Christiana. More importantly, I have a stern caution regarding Henle's Latin. Students will achieve great success at mastering the grammar of Latin, but will hit a road block if they ever try to read Latin texts. They will not acquire the idiom of Latin, the knack for the language.

Mr. Campbell would do well to look at Sayer's other essay in which she deplored the fact that she studied Latin 20 years but never mastered it. THat is what will happen to those who use Henle.

I recommend speaking Latin and the Oerberg approach. Younger kids need a more natural approach. Anyone serious about making Latin the center of the curriculum really, should read Newman's essay on Elementary Education in "Idea of a University". It is the finest piece Newman ever wrote (or at least out of the three books of his I've read). Newman's essay is online. Caveat: some sections are in Latin, and it is worth reading many times over many years. Also one should look very carefully at Sayer's other essay, especially the reference to Augustine at the end (concerning how and why he never learned Greek). Finally, one should carefully consider Oerberg's Latin books. Kids love then and will learn the idiom (as well as the grammar). Moreover, there is almost no "memorization" of Latin to English words. My 6th grade students are delighted (and much less frustrated than with other texts).

That said, I do admire Campbell's attempt. I would give it more stars but for the cautions named above. Keeping these in mind, I highly recommend it to any homeschoolers intereested in "classical" education.