Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Masterly Inactivity

There has been some discussion lately on the Well Trained Mind Boards about the Charlotte Mason concept of "masterly inactivity." In a nutshell, masterly inactivity is when you provide the tools and resources for a child to learn but you step back and let them do it on their own.
I do this for art and nature studies mostly. For nature studies, the kids have a garden to explore with field guides, bug boxes, magnifying glasses and butterfly nets. For art, they have a nice table and drawers filled with a variety of supplies: paper, coloring pages, colored pencils, markers, crayons, stencils, stamps, stickers, glue, glitter, etc. Since we are done with school by lunch time they have most of the afternoon to explore their talents and curiosity.
The pictures above were drawn by my oldest daughter during her free time. She loves graphic novels and I had picked up some books on drawing in the Magna style from the library. She used the books and made her own characters.
Over the last few weeks quite a bit of her non-school time has been spent at her desk with the art supplies drawing. I think she did a good job.
What do your children do during downtime?

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