Catholic Homeschool Review
Copyright 2000. All Rights Reserved. Keeping It Catholic
Mother of Divine Grace
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+Mother of Divine Grace
PO Box 1440
Ojai, CA 93024
Phone: (608) 348-6976
Fax: 805) 646-0186
Financial Aid: None
Special Needs Services: Yes, offered as a supplement to Basic Enrollment for those students who may require or would benefit from a highly specialized education program. There is a fee for this assistance: $50 Per Year, Per Student.
Payment Plan Available: Yes
Please Note: This page, updated May 27, 2000 when Mother of Divine Grace contacted KIC, now reflects their current changes concerning their enrollment plans and fees.
Mother of Divine Grace (MODG) is another "independent study program," and a welcome option in the state of California on account of that state's laws on homeschooling. They are accredited by NISAC, and they are also in candidacy for WASC accreditation.
There are two kinds of services offered - the Enrollment (or Basic) Program and the Teacher-Assisted Program (which is an "add on" to the Basic program and is not a separate kind of enrollment). Non-Catholics are welcome to substitute their own religion text selections to replace MODG's religion program.
Enrollment offers certain services but it does not include any texts or lessons plans (syllabi) . (Texts must be attained elsewhere but parents may purchase, at additional cost, MODG's various lesson plans. Syllabi with day-by-day breakdown for a 32 week school year are sold separately.) Parents may also purchase lesson plans for other grade levels without full enrollment.
Both programs follow the format earlier developed by the author/director for her own children. These can be found in her book Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum. MODG limits its inventory to just a few books - those written by director Laura Berquist (including Designing and The Harp and the Laurel Wreath) and a few texts which may not be available elsewhere.
Parents may choose to follow the course suggestions exactly or make changes accordingly. While parents are free to exchange one book for another, they will still be asked to discuss their selections with their MODG consultant.
MODG's recommended high school credits are based upon those indicated by Thomas Aquinas College. (Laura Berquist is an alumna and her husband is one of its co-founders.) However, MODG does clarify that the recommendations from Thomas Aquinas College are suggestions for the best preparation for their program. They are not requirements. Thomas Aquinas College evaluates every application for admission on an individual basis. Since each college is different, MODG also recommends that parents or students contact those colleges in which they are interested and request detailed information about their acceptance requirements.
Enrollment with MODG includes three mandatory phone consultations (up to 7 hours total) with an experienced homeschool mother who acts as counselor. MODG also offers transcripts, a newsletter, and a diploma upon completing graduation requirements.
With the enrollment program, MODG's official policy is that parents determine the grades awarded to their children. The school and the consultants do require students up to 8th grade to send in their work on a monthly basis. Grades 9-12 are required to send in a few samples of their work each semester. In each case, this is done so the consultant can help parents in their grading assessment. (In the Teacher-Assisted Program, the teacher determines the student's grades.) Like those enrolled in grades 4-6, students in grades 7-12 (as well as their parents) are free to contact their teachers at any time. However, at the junior/high school level, the student and teacher mutually decide on a certain time each month to "touch base" (with the student taking responsibility for making the phone call).
The Teacher-Assisted Program, offered "on top" of basic enrollment, also offers the three required consultations per year. This program offers parents the option of having a teacher correct the student work. Students are still expected to send in sample work on a monthly basis. Parents are responsible for setting the family curriculum with their consultant's help. Teachers and consultants are willing to work with each student to put together a Teacher-Assisted Program for almost any text the student might use. (When using a text of the student's choice rather than that suggested by MODG, additional minimal charges may apply when teachers or consultants assist a student in planning the approach.)
However, teachers take no responsibility in creating daily lesson plans for their students, although they do make grading decisions. The teacher receives the student's sample work, makes an assessment and then passes on the work to the consultant. The consultant makes arrangements for children to begin their monthly phone meetings. The consultants can also help determine which subjects and assignments will be part of the yearly program.
Recommended texts by Mother of Divine Grace:
The Children's Bible, Child's Bible History, Baltimore Catechism, Faith and Life, Fr. Laux's high school history series, Golden Step Ahead workbooks, Ruth Beechick's An Easy Start in Arithmetic, Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons (the Distar phonetic method), Honey for a Child's Heart (a book listing literature selections for reading aloud), Abeka Arithmetic (as a publisher, Abeka is on our Top Tip Off List), Jacob's Geometry, Exploring God's World (also by Abeka), Saxon for mid-elementary grades, Sound Beginnings (on our Top Tip Off List because the program is based upon and uses a Protestant children's bible), The Music Masters, Explorations with Earth Science (secular, from Fearon Teacher Aids),Usborne's Science With Plants and Science (secular), the Concepts and Challenges in Science series (secular), Exploring Creation with Physics by Dr. Wile (a Christian text), Learning Language Arts Through Literature (on our Top Tip Off List), The Writing Road to Reading (secular), Latina Christiana (Catholic Latin series with the historical language connection keyed to various Greenleaf books), The Old World and America (Catholic), Our Roman Roots (study of Latin language), Henle Latin (by Fr. Robert Henle), Anne Carroll's Christ in the World, Warren Carroll's The Founding of Christendom, the encyclical Casti Connubi, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and Warriner's English and Composition (secular).
History selections in the upper levels include Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw, Julius Caesar and Antony and Cleopatra, Beowulf, The Ballad of the White Horse by G.K. Chesterton, Murder in the Cathedral by T.S. Eliot, The Federalist Papers, Summa Theologiae of St. Thomas Aquinas (various selections), and Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville. For those who desire a history text, MODG offers an alternate suggestion of American Government and Economics in Christian Perspective published by Abeka and written by Hicks, Thompson, Lowman, and Cochran, The Insect World by J. Henri Fabre, edited by Edwin Way Teale, and King Solomon's Ring by Konrad Lorenz. Upper level science resources include Life Science: All Creatures Great and Small by Michael Spear (a Seton Home Study text) and Biology: The Easy Way (Barron's Educational Media, Inc.), Darwin's Black Box by Michael Behe, Humani Generis, and The Chemical History of the Candle. MODG also recommends appropriate selections from the director's book The Harp and the Laurel Wreath.
The program does not offer a separate spelling course but suggests narration and dictation to teach both grammar and spelling.
Please Note: Parents can find many of the texts recommended by MODG through various outlets - both Catholic and Protestant. MODG directs its clients to Emmanuel Books (Catholic-owned) in the United States as they carry all of the texts as well as Laura Berquist's Syllabi, grades k-8. An Emmanuel catalog can be requested by calling (800) 871-5598. In Canada, More than Books also carries MODG's lesson plans and recommended books. Their phone number is (613) 592-5338.
Fees (do not include the cost of books or lesson plans. There is no additional fee for Latin in the Basic Program.)
Choice 1: Basic Enrollment
Enrollment Fee: $265 Per Year, Per Family
Consultation Fee: $195 Per Year, Per Family
Transcript Fee: $25 Per Year, Per High School Student
Choice 2: Teacher-Assisted Program
The Teacher-Assisted Program is offered as a supplement to Basic Enrollment. This program is only available to those families who choose the particular books recommended by Laura Berquist in "Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum."
Cost Per Child: $30 registration fee.
Grades 4-6: $15 per semester, per subject. (Price is $22.50 for Latin, $50 for math, or $120 for all subjects.)
Grades 7-12: $25 per semester, per subjects (Price is $37.50 for Latin, $50.00 for math; or $175.00 for all subjects.)
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