Derby Scholé Community
Derby Scholé Community is a small group of families pursuing a Christian, liberal arts education and way of life for our families. We started out as a history project-based group and morphed into a Scholé group during the beta year. We are now finishing our sixth year together as a group! The past five years we have averaged eight families and have offered a variety of classes for 1st-8th grade including Latin for Children, Writing & Rhetoric, history, literature, logic, art and music. At the end of last school year, we underwent a pretty huge turnover which left us with only three families for this year. The 2020-21 school year has looked totally different from any previous year as a result, and we are so grateful for the beauty that God has brought from what appeared to be ashes at the beginning of the year.
With only three moms and 13 kids ages 1-15, our previous structure was not possible this year. So we went back to the drawing board, and it’s been a wonderful year. We have met twice per month as a large group with everyone together. At our first meeting, we open with Convocation which is like a group Morning Time. We sing the Lord’s Prayer in Latin, and everyone has the opportunity to share recitations of memory work. We’ve had some great narrations of Scripture like Romans 12, poetry like The Jabberwocky, and even some beautiful musical pieces on piano, violin and viola (by moms too!). Students also have the opportunity to present essays they’ve written from Writing & Rhetoric. We have students in almost every book of Writing & Rhetoric, and it’s been pretty great seeing the progress from the beginning to the end of the series. We then have a read aloud and discussion time together, followed by a watercolor art project. Our second meeting each month has been an “Enrichment Day.” If the weather is nice, we’ve gone on nature walks. If the weather isn’t nice, we’ve watched movies! We made a list of cultural icons we wanted to share with our kids, and so we’ve watched things like A Midsummer Night’s Dream, the ballet of Cinderella, The Magic Flute opera, and a Broadway musical, Newsies.
This year has been such a wonderfully restful year for us. Next year, we are adding a couple of families and will be a little more structured with age-based groups, but our experience this year with our Convocation and recitations has forever changed our group for the better, and Convocation is not going anywhere anytime soon.
One thing I love about our group is the united desire to grow as women. Each of the moms in our group has a strong desire to learn, to read, and to discuss with each other what we’re learning. Part of our expectation as a group is that every mom involved creates a goal and a plan to reach her learning goal. We share those and encourage each other in them. We have a chat stream that is very active, even with just three of us, with thoughts and observations and quotes from things we’re reading, studying, learning. That has been the most encouraging thing for me personally as a director and a fellow homeschool mom in pursuit of a Christian liberal arts education. Scholé Groups has allowed us to find each other, share our visions, and encourage each other.
Spero Virtual Scholé Community:
Spero Virtual Scholé is a brand new group as of 2020! Through the CAP Homeschoolers Facebook group, several moms with high schoolers started chatting. We all found ourselves in a situation where we had no one locally pursuing the same kind of education around us with high school age kids, but we wanted to share the load of high school teaching while not totally removing ourselves from the picture. So we figured out a way to do that!
Spero Virtual Scholé is focused on 7th-12th grades and in 2020 offered three different literature classes. We hold our classes by Zoom and communicate using Google Classroom. This year we’ve had five families involved with about 15 students. Every mom has a role, whether it’s to coordinate a class, facilitate a specific book study, or to facilitate our monthly Convocation meeting. We have offered classes on Ancient literature, Church Fathers, and Christendom literature. In each class, moms of the students involved take turns teaching the books so that no mom has to teach all year. Moms are also welcome to sit in on class when they’re not teaching and are encouraged and even expected to be reading along with the kids all year.
We’ve also semi-regularly held a monthly Zoom get together for moms we call Spero Moms Potato Peel Pie Society. Each month, we all show up with our current book stack and just share with the other moms in our group what we’ve been reading and what we think of it. We’ve all gotten great ideas of next reads from each other, and we even have an aspiring author in our group who has been reading us a chapter each month from a novel she’s been working on which has been so exciting!
All of our families are in Pacific, Mountain and Central time zones, so we are an ideal group for people in the west and midwest that struggle to get up early for east-coast based online classes. We hope to grow and add more class offerings and subjects in the future!
In-Person and Virtual Scholé
with Megan Preedy of Derby Scholé Community & Spero Virtual Scholé Community
Megan Preedy is a Kansas girl that dreams of living in Scotland one day. She’s been married to Paul since 2003 and they are parents to four kids: Luke 15, Kiryn 14, Levi 11, and Meryn 9. Megan graduated from Ouachita Baptist University with a degree in Biblical Studies and Counseling and then served as a missionary with the International Mission Board in Thailand in 2001-2002, and later with Paul as a family in India from 2007-2014. She began homeschooling reluctantly as a missionary becaue it was a last resort and only option, but through some good mentors, fell into classical education and was hooked. She’s been homeschooling now for eleven years, and teaching and directing a Scholé group for six years. When she’s not homeschooling, she loves to read educational philosophy, follow along with Close Reads podcast, spend time with the youth group at church, crochet, cook food from all around the world, and dream up their next trip abroad.
Kimberly Dugger is a mom of six children whom she has been homeschooling for the past eleven years. In her free time, she enjoys helping new homeschoolers get started on their homeschooling journeys through their local homeschool support group. Her favorite area of study is history, and she collects books especially on the history of Christian education. Kimberly and her family live in northern California, where she grew up and was homeschooled herself.