host summer parent practicums around
the country each summer. In our geography drawing camps, children aged 6–8
learn to draw and label the continents and
oceans in just three days. Some of them
have even managed to memorize the states
and capitals as well. In my grammar school
curriculum guide (Foundations), families
focus on three cycles of geography across
three years. ;e maps we use in our programs were drawn by a 12-year-old student in the Challenge A program in which
students spend an entire year learning to
draw a detailed map of the world according to the methods I have described above.
Principle #3: Make the geography
lessons a fun family activity.
Because we were working to recover a “lost
tool of learning,” my family chose to draw
our maps together during the evenings,
when all of us could be home. We would
play classical music or listen to audio books
as we drew together. If the weather was
nice, we drew our maps while sitting on the
porch. If you start utilizing these lessons in
your home during the winter, light a ;re in
your ;replace and enjoy a cozy time together as you learn something new.
; Teaching our children to draw and
memorize the world is a priceless gi;.
Knowledge of world geography in detail
equips our children with tools to read
classical literature with greater interest and
comprehension. It piques their interest in
the news and in missions. Hopefully, they
will have deeper interest in and sympathy
for all of God’s people around the globe.
Leigh A. Bortins is author of the recently published book ;e Core: Teaching Your Child
the Foundations of Classical Education. In
addition, Ms. Bortins is the founder and CEO
of Classical Conversations, Inc. and host of
the weekly radio show, Leigh! At Lunch. She
lectures about the importance of home education nationwide. She lives with her family in
West End, North Carolina. To learn more, visit her website,
.com, or her blog,
1. In my book, ;e Core: Teaching Your Child the
Foundations of Classical Education, I have devoted
an entire chapter to explaining this method of instruction, including a plan for grades K– 8 that allows children to master each continent in detail.
The first powered airplane only flew 12 seconds on its maiden voyage, and the first car could only move 2 miles
an hour. The first Greek epic, however,
was invented even before the finishing
touches were put on the Greek alphabet in which it would eventually be recorded. Homer’s Iliad, and his smash
sequel the Odyssey, have been moving
the world ever since.
adventures keep the
reader happy, Homer’s
Odyssey is teaching the
big life lesson that we
are each de;ned by our
generosity to strangers.
Bronze Age city and witnessed how most
tourists climb the giant Trojan Horse replica for a fast photo before hastily leaving. ;e site of Troy is no Coliseum or
Parthenon, because its claim to fame is
its destruction. Archaeological evidence
suggests that something calamitous happened there around 1180 B.C. when the
city was nearly leveled.