Registration is now open for the 2018 Charlotte Mason Educational Retreat. Please, visit the CMER 2018 Website to see our speakers, sessions, schedule, and so much more. This year, we have reserved the entire Hideaway retreat and conference Center. Come and join us! There is a place at the table for you.
By Dawn Rhymer
When: Friday, August 11th, 10 AM - 4 PM
Where: Fox Run Regional Park at the North Oak Meadows Field (see the Park Map on the website)
Bring: Drinks and lunch for your family, snacks, folding chairs, blankets, sunscreen, outdoor games
Feel free to come and go as you need. We hope to see you there!
We are excited to announce the Charlotte Mason Educational Retreat, 2018.
The CMER Team and Nancy Kelly
We are honored, humbled, and very thrilled Nancy Kelly has accepted our invitation to serve as a plenary speaker for CMER 2018.
Nancy Kelly lives in a little town on the prairie called Windom, Minnesota. She and her husband Kent have home-educated their six children for over 20 years using the principles and practices of Charlotte Mason. Nancy has helped build a thriving educational community in southwest Minnesota that continues to learn and grow. She administrates the Parents’ Midwest Educational Union (PMEU), a parents’ book discussion group; Truth, Beauty, Goodness (TBG), a student learning cooperative; the teacher-training Awakening sessions; and the Living Education Retreat, now in its 12th year of sharing and spreading the ideas of Charlotte Mason. Speaking, consulting, and mentoring are three of her favorite things to do. A trip with Kent and dear friends to Ambleside, England in 2014 forever changed her understanding of Mason’s teacher training and deepened her love for Mason’s relational philosophy. She is a current board member of the Charlotte Mason Institute and writes at her CM-inspired blog, Sage Parnassus. Her newest project, Living Education Lessons, is an online mentoring community. She enjoys family, 'bright eyes', flower gardening, collecting vintage honeypots, exploring the flora and fauna of new places, and of course...books. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out Nancy's blog by clicking HERE!
Friday, February 2, 2018, to Sunday, February 4, 2018
Colorado Spring, CO
Registration for CMER 2018 will open in August. At that time, a schedule, session descriptions, and policies will also be available.
Registration includes a Friday afternoon preretreat introduction to a Charlotte Mason Education and six meals from Friday dinner through Sunday lunch. Everyone lodging with us will have an individual bed but may be in a 2, 3, or 4-person room. Private rooms are available for an additional fee of $82.
Early Bird registration closes on December 10th and fees will increase by $40 after that date.
By Dawn Rhymer
At the 2017 Charlotte Mason Educational Retreat, we shared the following invitation with those in attendance. We also share this invitation with those who attended the CMER in 2016.
self-education is the only possible education; the rest is mere veneer laid on the surface of a [our] nature
Charlotte Mason, Philosophy of Education, p. 240
The seeds for the idea of “Thoughts That Burn” were first planted at the November Journey Society meeting. A public invitation was given to those in attendance to write for their future blog. A good friend immediately responded to the invitation, and I remember thinking, “No, no! Write for us.” I never spoke the words to her, a bit embarrassed at my selfish reaction, but the idea took root.
Then, in January, I began listening to the audio version of Chris Anderson’s TED Talks: The Official TED Guide to Public Speaking. In it he shares how TED, seeing the vital role of self-education but understanding the motivation to take the time is often difficult, gives its employees every other Wednesday off to devote to learning about something for which they have a passion. In return, the employees then give back to TED by sharing what they learn in a TED Talk for the company. “That meant we all got to benefit from one another’s knowledge but, crucially, it also provided the key incentive for people to get on with it and actually learn.”1
In Mr. Anderson’s words, we see the double benefit of self-education. It is necessary for our own growth and through what we learn, we can also serve our community. Miss Mason, more than a century ago, shared Mr. Anderson’s vision with the graduates from the House of Education, the teacher training school at Ambleside.
By Dawn Rhymer
The event of CMER 2017 has come to a joyful end, but for the hearts and minds stirred there, Lord willing, it is not over. Here is my response to a friend who was praying for us.
We look forward to sharing parts of it with you over the next several weeks. To begin, this is the Welcome Letter shared at CMER 2107.
“Mom, why are you doing this thing with this retreat?” This was the question posed to me by my oldest son just days ago.
I had not been directly asked that before by anyone, let alone a teenager who had been listening to and watching his mom for months preparing for the Charlotte Mason Educational Retreat (CMER). How was I to answer? Why was he asking? What did he want to hear? I had no short, well-rehearsed answer. I thought the answer required time and perhaps a story. He, of course, was not looking for that. So I fumbled and said, “Because I like doing these kinds of things.”
The question reverberates in my mind, “Mom, why are you doing this thing with this retreat?” I should have had a better answer ready for him, because there is a better answer. I should have been ready to share with him the mission and vision of the Charlotte Mason Educational Retreat.
It is with great joy I share this weather post with a forecast from Weather Underground. It looks like it is going to be beautiful. Last year, I only paid attention to the temperature, but as my children and I are currently studying weather, my eye has been drawn to other factors as well. The sun will be shining and the winds will be gentle. This is no small thing, and I'm beyond grateful.
In regards to clothing, our nights will still be cold and much of The Ponderosa is shaded by tall pines, so I'm still expecting areas with snow on the ground. Therefore, though it doesn't look like you will need to pack your full winter weather gear, you will still want appropriate outdoor shoes and potentially a hat and gloves. You may not need a jacket for the day, but plan for a coat in the early morning and evening, as before the sun has warmed the earth and once it drops behind the mountains, it can still be quite cold.
I think this beautiful weather may open up the possibility of trying some of the trails on The Ponderosa during our free time. I'm looking forward to the adventure.
The Ponderosa is under a fire ban, so we will be unable to use their fire pits for singing and roasting marshmallows. We have come up with some alternate activities for Friday and Saturday night.
Friday Night: Game Night
After the plenary session, drinks and snacks will be available as we gather together to play games. Bring a favorite game to share, try another's favorite, or simply join us for the laughter and conversation which is sure to ensue.
Saturday Night: Contredanse
After the Spouses' Panel it will be time to swing your partner. Whether you move to the beat or have two left feet, the evening of dancing is sure to be a joy. Here is a description of Contredanse from our caller:
Would you love to be able to attend the Charlotte Mason Educational Retreat but are unable to because of your family's current financial situation? Although we were able to greatly reduce our costs for CMER this year, we know there are some for whom this is still a stretch. We are excited to announce we have received money which we are to use for scholarships for the CMER. Please, contact us, if you are in a situation where for financial reasons you are unable to attend and a scholarship would be a blessing to you.
By Dawn Rhymer
Near the end of November, we went back out to the Ponderosa for a final walk through, much needed for our transition into the nitty-gritty details of our planning. Which location was best for each session? Where did we want to put refreshments? What made sense to decorate and what was best left alone? What was it like to walk between our separate buildings? You were high in our thoughts as we considered each question.
Though there was business to accomplish, as we walked and talked, we drank in the beauty of the location. One shared how when her husband travels to amazing locations, he often may not even step outside of the self-contained building. We took joy in sharing with our tour host why Ponderosa seemed to be the perfect location for our small retreat.
There is only a week left before early bird registration closes. Though we attempted to make the CMER more flexible this year, we know we cannot address every situation. If there is something unique to your situation, please don't hesitate to contact us with your questions. We will do all we can to help so that you, too, may have the opportunity to go out to play.
At the CME Retreat Blog we hope to share with you more information about a Charlotte Mason Education, the retreat, the speakers, the workshops and so much more!
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