November 2012
A Message from Leigh Bortins, founder of Classical Conversations


Greetings from Berlin, Germany! My family, the Classical Conversations leadership team, and the Home School Legal Defense Association are so thankful for your prayers for the Global Home Education Conference. Please keep praying for safe travels, a productive conference, and for the education rights of families around the globe.


Several of you have asked us, "Why Germany?" The answer is that homeschoolers in Germany have few rights and are treated very poorly by the state. In fact, many German homeschoolers are in exile or are homeschooling underground. We met a family this week who have had one of their children taken away from them. Another family wanted to attend the conference but were too ill to make the trip because of the actions of their "democracy."


We hope that this conference will inspire changed homeschooling laws in Germany. We have had some good media exposure, and some German leaders have come to the conference. All of the homeschooling Germans I have spoken to feel very supported by our presence and have expressed that they no longer feel alone.


Over twenty-nine countries are represented at this conference. We are excited by the presence of attendees from Kenya--a country that is writing a brand-new constitution at this very moment--who are trying to determine how to persuade the politicians to allow parents to homeschool. We have encountered attendees from countries where homeschooling is legal, but very new, and people from countries without any homeschooling laws. Our experience at the conference has been both heartbreaking and encouraging. Please continue to pray for persecuted homeschoolers around the world, and please pray for those affected by Hurricane Sandy in the northeast United States.




 Leigh Sig
P.S. Check out my (almost) daily blog posts at
The Truth About Thanksgiving
Courtney Sanford

Thanksgiving has come to mean parades of fanciful floats, gourmet feasts, and football, but amidst all of that have we lost the true meaning behind the historical event? As creative homeschoolers, we try to add some meaning to the day by making paper chains that list all the things for which we are thankful. We put on pageants. We make pinecone turkeys, hand print turkeys, construction paper turkeys, and cupcake turkeys. Wouldn't it be better, though, if we actually helped our children imagine what the Pilgrims really felt on their Thanksgiving Day feast?


These were people who had survived the crossing of an ocean on a small wooden ship. They had barely survived a harsh winter in which over fifty percent of their population had perished. They had built each house by hand and had coaxed crops out of sand. They had worked harder and had lost more than we can imagine. Yet, their attitude is breathtaking. They did not cry, "Unfair! Some have more than I!" Instead, they cried out, "Glory to God who has given us the earth and everything in it!"


What makes me think that this was their attitude?
Read more
Five Secrets to Learning Latin (or Any Other Subject) Well
Jennifer Courtney

The project: keep up with a group of high school Latin students for Henle Second Year. My response: challenge accepted!


The first hurdle: I had never taken Henle First Year. The solution: Latin by the pool over the summer. This summer I committed to get as far as possible in Henle First Year to prepare. I opened the book and got started. Along the journey, I remembered some important habits for studying new subjects, particularly languages.


1. Copy the vocabulary, more than once.


For each new vocabulary list, I copied the words and their translations onto a sheet of paper in the first section of my notebook, onto notecards, and into a second section in which I made my own Latin dictionary. This was three days' worth of vocabulary review. On the fourth day, I reviewed the notecards and quizzed myself.


2. Copy the grammar rules.

Read more


Parting Words

Come, ye thankful people, come, raise the song of harvest home;
All is safely gathered in, ere the winter storms begin.
God our Maker doth provide for our wants to be supplied;
Come to God's own temple, come, raise the song of harvest home.


All the world is God's own field, fruit unto His praise to yield;
Wheat and tares together sown unto joy or sorrow grown.
First the blade and then the ear, then the full corn shall appear;
Lord of harvest, grant that we wholesome grain and pure may be.


For the Lord our God shall come, and shall take His harvest home;
From His field shall in that day all offenses purge away,
Giving angels charge at last in the fire the tares to cast;
But the fruitful ears to store in His garner evermore.


Even so, Lord, quickly come, bring Thy final harvest home;
Gather Thou Thy people in, free from sorrow, free from sin,
There, forever purified, in Thy garner to abide;
Come, with all Thine angels come, raise the glorious harvest home.


"Come, Ye Thankful People, Come"

Words: Henry Alford, Psalms and Hymns, 1844.

Music: "St. George's Wind­sor," George J. El­vey, 1858


FREE with your order of $25 or more: A Contemplation of Nature CD from the CiRCE Institute.

Select classical education resources are now 30% off.
In This Issue
The Truth About Thanksgiving
Five Secrets to Learning Latin (or Any Other Subject) Well
Parting Words
L@L Icon

November 7

Andrew Kern

CiRCE Institute 


November 14

Dr. Christian Kopff

Professor of Classics at the University of Colorado Boulder 


November 21

Thanksgiving (OFF)


Thurs, November 29

(Note change of schedule)
Larry Schweikart

A Patriot's History of the United States

Did you miss any of our guests on Leigh! at Lunch? You can still listen here!

COMING IN JANUARY: the PreScripts series of cursive writing copybooks.

We're excited to announce this new series from Classical Conversations MultiMedia! If your home school looks like many of ours, learning often cascades from older students to younger ones, particularly if the younger one can "see the pictures." Beautifully designed for your youngest students, these four books develop fine motor skills while reinforcing the lessons of history from our memory work.

L@L Icon Listen as product developers from CCMM discuss this exciting new project on Leigh! at Lunch.
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