Why We Only Use Classical Conversations at Home

I love Classical Conversations' memory work. I so appreciate their global timeline. I love the idea behind their communities, especially the weekly presentations. I read The Core and The Question. I stalked CC blogs like Half a Hundred Acre WoodMt Hope Chronicles, and Homegrown Learners. I attended 3 Parent Practicums (the first when my son was only 2 years-old). My husband and I toured 4 local communities before choosing one. I was so excited on our first day! I knew this would be the perfect fit for my Type A son.

Then, we dropped out after only one semester.

Our last month we left early every single week with one or both of us in tears. My husband took him one week to see if he could figure out why this wasn't working. I emailed the tutor and the director for suggestions.

But nothing worked. He was miserable. He did not want to go.

Let me stop here to say that the community we joined was AWESOME! It was diverse. There were adoptive families, and there were tons of denominations represented. The moms were smart & funny & supportive. His class was half-full of active boys just like him. His tutor was experienced & engaging. It checked all our boxes.

But Dragon did not want sit still to draw or play the tin whistle for 30 minutes. He did not want to repeat the memory work for 30 minutes. He did not want to watch someone else demonstrate a science project for 30 minutes. While he loved sharing his presentation, he simply could not sit still for 30 more minutes to hear everyone else's. We rarely made it to the review games for the last half hour, but he did enjoy those. And keep in mind, this is a child who's gone to preschool two mornings a week since he was 2. It's not like he wasn't used to a few hours of "school."

After leaving in tears, the rest of the day was ruined as he was overstimulated and frustrated. After all, he was only 4 years old.

The rest of the week he loved reviewing the memory work with me. He enjoyed the CDs, the App, and the review games. Because of this, we're going to continue with CC at home, but we're joining a more relaxed co-op. He'll have P.E., messy art, and messy science projects at co-op, then he can do the more academically rigorous stuff with me at home.

Also, by using the CC memory work only at home, I can skip disturbing sections. For example, my 4 year-old does not need to memorize a sentence about the atom bomb. Some of the hand motions for the Timeline used in our community (every community has their own) made me uncomfortable. At home, we can edit as we see fit for his age.

We're going to start Story of the World in 1st grade, which aligns perfectly with CC Cycle 1. Then when we're on Story of the World Volume 4, we'll skip CC memory work for a year in favor of longer poems, speeches, and Scriptures. Then, we'll start the whole thing over in 5th grade. I'm envisioning returning to a CC community one day, hopefully for the Challenge program.

For now, we're not anticipating joining another CC community any time soon, but we're going to keep up with the memory work at home. And that's how we went from CC stalkers to CC drop-outs. 😊

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