Frequently Asked Questions
What is a is a Good/Great Books style humanities program?
A Good/Great Books style humanities program means the ideas and the literature lead. Practically this means that more time will be spent on the literature and in coaching writing and reading skills. History will be present for sure, but there may be shorter discussions or class time devoted to the specific history topics. Whenever possible the class will seek to see the common thread of ideas woven through both the history and the literature and respond to these ideas with writing, discussion, and other projects or activities.
Does my High School student need their own books?
Yes, especially the literature books, and a student planner. Students may be asked to take notes in their books or highlight a variety of passages. They need their own copies of books so they can do these things.
How much time will my student spend working outside of class?
High School students can expect to spend around 7-10 hours per week outside of class on their work for this class. If students are taking longer we can work with your students to refine their focus and study skills throughout the year.
How do you handle grades and transcripts?
High School mentors/teachers will assess your student’s work in two ways. First, by using a mark of complete or incomplete with written feedback about what to improve. Second, they will employ the use of rubrics and traditional grades where fitting. If a student receives an incomplete and they turned it in on time, they have the opportunity to fix their error and turn it back in, for a complete. Parents will receive an end of semester report that outlines all of the completes, incompletes, and late work. At the end of the year, the teacher will translate everything into a concise transcript with letter grades. Parents can choose whether to share that grade with their students.
What classes do I need to teach at home? Do you have suggestions for online or local classes for these additional courses?
Additional Electives, as needed
Note: As much as possible, a liberal arts course of study should include, Living Books on a variety of topics, related and integrated into the above studies, and written & oral narrations in response to readings in the number of at least 1 per day.
Remedial Work (If Still Needed)
Spelling (if still needed)
Handwriting & typing (if still needed)
Formal grammar (if still needed)
At the Paideia Fellowship, we recommend the local dual enrollment programs to help fill in the other classes students need to take locally. Online, we recommend the Classical Learning Resource Center, which offers almost every class you could think of, The Raphael School, which offers Greek and Orthodox Catechesis, Polymath Classical Tutorials, which offer outstanding liberal art mathematics classes, and Memoria Press Online Academy as well as The Schole Academy, by Classical Academic Press, both of which offer a large variety of classes.
The PFHC Learning Guide provides more tips and suggested resources that follow the Classical and Charlotte Mason traditions.
What do you suggest for annual and college entrance testing?
The PFHC recommends Woodcock-Johnson Testing to comply with state Annual testing laws if it is required in your state. For Information about PSAT (usually in 9th grade) and SAT/ACT (usually in 10th-12th grades) visit collegeboard.com for info and testing locations. With that said there is a new standardized test that many colleges are now accepting in place of the SAT and ACT, which aligns with our values and course of study more than the ACT and SAT. It is called the Classic Learning Test (CLT). You can read more about it on its website, Classic Learning Test, and see which colleges are currently accepting it and how to prepare for it.
What supplies will my 9th-12th Grade student need for PFHC?
You will receive a complete and finalized book and supply list no later than August 1st.
Can you tell me more about PFHC’s approach to writing?
Writing is a skill that takes years to develop. We can know that our students are on the path to excellent writing if they are moving along the milestones that lead to excellent writing. Charlotte Mason had a thorough understanding of these milestones and laid out a practice for leading our children in the development of writing skills. This practice is called narration. Narration is the art and science of composing our thoughts, first in our minds, then in our spoken words, and finally in our written words. Narration allows the student to really know something, rather than simply know about it. The idea and practice of narration takes a student through this process seamlessly. Karen Glass’s book Know & Tell: The Art of Narration gives a structure and path to walk on this journey of learning to write well. Not only does she give a grand understanding of the art of narration, she outlines how to teach and assess writing as our students move through the writing milestones.
Students at Paideia Fellowship Homeschool Community will receive consistent and developmentally appropriate instruction and assessment in the art, practice, and particulars of writing, grammar, and logic from 1st -12th grades. We use Karen Glass’s book as our primary guide to structuring our writing program from 1st – 8th grade. In addition, 1st-8th grade students will receive grammar instruction as is appropriate for each grade level. In high school, students will work through formal rhetoric and logic using The Lost Tools of Writing & Memoria Press’ Traditional & Material Logic programs. A complete outline of the language skills taught in each class is provided in the PFHC learning guide.
“I’ve been looking at LToW and love the concept, but my concern comes from my friends I’m surrounded by who keep saying, “What about MLA?” So, I wanted to ask y
MLA is all about formatting and how you deal with the bibliography, etc. Therefore, I start having them attend to some of those details within LTW and then make them aware that they will have to attend to more of those details when they get to college. Next, I show them how to use the resources that are available to help them with MLA. MLA a small particular in the big scheme of all that writing is and the learning curve is not that huge. I feel it is much more important to cultivate the virtue that takes years to cultivate rather than spend years training in particulars that have nothing to do with virtue. Plus there so many resources where you can just copy and paste your essay into websites and it’ll automatically format it to MLA or whatever other styles you’re having to use in formatting. Furthermore, students may not be using MLA, they may have to use APA or Turabian depending on what their major is. I find it much more effective just to make them aware that these are realities they will face and teach them where the resources are so they can master it as needed.
“I know that LToW uses the persuasive essay, but will they also do research at some point?”
They do research with every essay. The only difference, in the beginning, is that they do research using the one piece of literature we are writing about at that time. Then when we get to the topic of authority (part of LToW) they learn how to use outside resources appropriately. As students move further along in high school they begin to learn how to research multiple resources related to a specific topic. Nevertheless, it is all research and they can apply those five topics of invention to every single possible research project or other writing assignments they would ever have. In other words, they learn the principles of research using literature in the Lost Tools of Writing. Those principles transcend to every single writing assignment or research project a student will face in the future. Furthermore, we do assign additional writing assignments requiring the students to write primarily in the other forms of writing. When assigned, students will be made aware the basic outline/form of the essay and resources they can utilize to learn more specifics about the other forms of writing as necessary.
Lastly, the biggest difference between a long research paper and what they complete in LTW2 is that a longer research paper usually has a much longer narrative at the beginning of the paper and includes more illustrations and textual evidence for each proof. The form stays the same.