SS #127 – Curriculum as Crutch

And we’re back to kick off another fall season!

Today we are going to discuss two kinds of curriculum: scripted and non-scripted. There seems to be a misunderstanding out there – there’s an idea that an unscripted curriculum is not a curriculum.

As a long-time user of AmblesideOnline, which is a rich curriculum, but about as unscripted as one can get, Brandy just doesn’t get it. Join us as we talk about the role of curricula in our homeschools.

Listen to the podcast:


Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher

Scripted Curriculum

  • [2:35-17:50] Scholé Everyday segment
  • [18:47] What is a scripted curriculum?
  • [24:41] What is a curriculum, according to the dictionary?
  • [26:59] What is a crutch? Are they ever needed?
  • [29:36] Who is the expert? Do we need an expert to educate?
  • [43:43] Abby using a grammar crutch
  • [46:42] Brandy using a Plutarch crutch
  • [50:30] Can crutches ever be dangerous?
  • [56:35] How do we grow stronger and let go of our crutches?

Today’s Hosts

Brandy Vencel
homeschools the two kids left in her homeschool and has grown strong using the crutches & barbell weights of Charlotte Mason.

Mystie Winckler
homeschools the three kids left in her homeschool and has a hard time following instructions and doing what she’s told.

Abby Wahl
homeschools the three kids left in her homeschool and knows first hand the intellectual and educational recovery possible via homeschooling.

Scholé Everyday: What We’re Reading

Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World
The Divine Comedy (The Inferno, The Purgatorio, and The Paradiso)
Rembrandt is in the Wind: Learning to Love Art through the Eyes of Faith

The Divine Comedy, Dante

Mystie has read Inferno several times, but is finally finishing the trilogy with one of her local book clubs.

Rembrandt is in the Wind, Russ Ramse

Abby is being inspired to continue artist study and appreciate great art as a Christian by this author.

Range, David Epstein

Brandy is finally getting around to reading this title by assigning it to her local book club.

What is a scripted curriculum?

A curriculum is not necessarily a script, telling you exactly what to do. Instead, a curriculum is a path to take. It might be more or less laid out or prepared for us, but it’s just a plan. It’s not even a scope and sequence.

Can we even answer the question people ask, “What curriculum do you use?” What kind of answer do people even expect? How do we answer that question? Most homeschoolers do not use a single curriculum.

Also, most people don’t use curriculum exactly as laid out and directed. That’s ok!

Although it’s a basic question homeschoolers are asked, it’s not one people ask school parents. Do school parents ask this question of the schools they choose? How important is the curriculum chosen?

A curriculum is just a course of study, not methods or schedules or any other technique is specified when specifying a curriculum.

Scripted curriculum can be a crutch

Crutches help you recovery from an injury. They are necessary under certain circumstances, but it’d be weird to use them if you had healthy, strong legs. When a crutch is used permanently, rather than as a temporary therapy, it is not a crutch, it is a tool.

Mentioned in the Episode

The Plutarch Primer: Publicola
Our Mother Tongue: A Guide to English Grammar

SS #89: Dorothy Sayers’ Latin Lament

Dorothy Sayers is author of the essay that brought back classical education as a major school movement: “The Lost Tools of Learning.” However, that was not the only essay on education she composed. Today, Mystie Winckler, Brandy Vencel, and special guest Renee Shepard discuss Sayers’ other essay, “Ignorance and Dissatisfaction,” to better understand Sayers’ thoughts…
Read More SS #89: Dorothy Sayers’ Latin Lament

SS #60: History as a Center Cannot Hold (with Angelina Stanford!)

Our guest today is the lovely and delightfully controversial Angelina Stanford. Angelina has an Honors Baccalaureate Degree and a Master’s Degree in English Literature from the University of Louisiana. For over twenty-five years, she has shared her passion and enthusiasm for literature with students in a variety of settings — everywhere from university classrooms to…
Read More SS #60: History as a Center Cannot Hold (with Angelina Stanford!)

Want to talk about the ideas presented here? The conversation is happening inside Sistership.

Similar Posts