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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Plutarch Study - Alexander

"Using history as a mirror I try by whatever means I can to improve my own life and to model it by the standard of all that is best in those whose lives I write. As a result I feel as though I were conversing and indeed living with them; by means of history I receive each one of them in turn, welcome and entertain them as guests and consider their stature and their qualities and select from their actions the most authoritative and the best with a view to getting to know them. What greater pleasure could one enjoy than this or what more efficacious in improving one’s own character?"
~ Plutarch

So, we carry on in our study Plutarch... last term was Caesar, which was fun as it coincided on the AO schedule with our reading of Shakespeare's Caesar AND the boys have just come to Y6 in which they began reading Augustus Caesar's World. YAY! ...for making LOTS of connections! :)

This term Plutarch's life of Alexander is scheduled. Which we are REALLY enjoying. As we're piling up several terms of Plutarch studied now, we've been excited to discover several connections between famous men of the ancient world. This time as we were reading along, the boys' ears both pricked up as they heard the name of one of the generals opposing Alexander... (you'll have to read it to find out who! ;) He was just mentioned at first in passing (later in more detail), but the mere mention of his name sparked an afternoon flurry of research! Yippee!

Now, in general with Plutarch, we've kind of just taken it as another reading. I like to encourage meaningful discussion if it comes up, but mostly I'm hoping that a lot of the lessons will sink in naturally. ;) I haven't been lucky enough to coincide our study of Plutarch with a term when one of Anne's study guides was available. I like how she puts in a few new vocabulary words to watch out for, a tiny bit of background info, etc. I really like her guides. I really would like to use them. :) So, obviously, I can't wait 'til we get to a life that we can use one her studies for!!!

In the meantime, we are studying Alexander, and alas there is no study for Alexander... so, in my zeal of trying to implement our studies of Plutarch for the purpose intended (*see quote above) - encouragement of citizenship and character training... and not having the time nor skill to do what Anne's done, I've made a character sketch printable for Alexander. Keep in mind, this is intended for Plutarch beginners! I made it to help to get my student's thinking about why we're studying these ancient guys. It isn't a worksheet to be graded. Matter of fact, I gave a copy to each of my boys at the start of the term, and they are free to fill out or not fill out whichever things strike their fancy, as they go. I'm hoping this will help them keep their head wrapped around the man as the 12 week term progresses... especially as we'll have kind of an interrupted term this time around.

Download the Alexander Printable HERE.

Helpful Links:
Ambleside Online Plutarch Rotation
Why Read Plutarch?, article by George Grant
"Plutarch's Lives" as Affording Some Education as a Citizen, A Parent's Review Article, by Miss M. Ambler.
How We Study Plutarch, by lindafay - She lists some great practical ideas...


Richele said...

Ooh, I believe we enter the Roman Empire next year. Thank you very much, Amy. I'll print it out and get it in the folder right now!

Jennifer said...

Thanks so much for this! I enjoy popping onto your site, as we're AO'ers as well. You share such marvelous insight!
Just curious, what version of Plutarch are you using for Alexander? We used North's for Caesar but can't find one online for Alexander.
Thanks SO MUCH!
<>< Jennifer

amy in peru said...

I am entirely at your service my friend ;)

There's one here (Young Folks' version a la baldwin project):

and you can right click to save this text (from the Internet Classics): Alexander
Written 75 A.C.E.
Translated by John Dryden

Here's the link to the index of Plutarch's works translated by Dryden ONLINE.

Jeanne said...

We're starting Plutarch with one of Anne's studies next year. We'll work our way through all of hers before we 'go it alone' as it were. Care to join us? Poplicola first...

Audrey said...

You're awesome! =)

Traci's Teaching Times said...

Hi Amy, you make your studies sound so awesome. I had read your article about hands on things, do you just basicly rad books on what you are studying with your children? Do you do anything to bring in vocabulary/grammar/narration/creative writing or anything along those lines? Could you give a general outline of a lesson plan with one of your lessons. I'm just curious to see how others do with their children. You'd think after 6 years of homeschooling I'd quit wondering these things by now, wouldn't you.

Nancy Kelly said...

Thanks for sharing this, Amy. We just finished Dion and are now heading into Caesar. Plutarch really begins to come alive after you have a few under your belt, as you mentioned. So excited that you will be administrating the CM carnival. Will you do anything different or new with it?
Ring true,

Lynn in Indy (US) said...

Wonderful outline. We are doing AO5 and my son just LOVES Plutarch. Thanks so much.

Pretty Pauline said...

I always enjoy it when we are reading Plutarch regularly. Sadly we are hit-or-miss sometimes. Although that sent me to your blog, I hafta say I'm a wee bit jealous! I've wanted to see the mural of The Last Supper in Peru (where everyone is of a different nationality) since the 4TH GRADE!!!!!! AAHHHHH!

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