Posted by : Karen Tuesday, May 15, 2012

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"The time has come," the Walrus said,

"To talk of many things:  (...)"

It's true. The time has come, and as I started writing this post, Lewis Caroll's poem just would not leave my head!

Since the beginning of the year I've wanted to do something on Fridays (as we run a 4 day school week and it's technically our 'free' day), and initially thought it would take the shape of a Nature Club. At the beginning of the year I leapt into it with great gusto, and then circumstances caused me to stop, slow down, take a step back and spend many weeks in deep thought and prayer! I'm thankful now, for the way the year started and the time I've had to reflect on this, because now I'm ready to launch something...
 ...a little bit different...
....something a little bit ...

On an outing with other homeschoolers to Groote Schurr in the first term, I was struck by three things -
  1. There is so much South African history I know nothing about, because I am a foreigner...
  2. There is such a historical, cultural and natural richness right here on my doorstep in Cape Town... 
  3. Unless I step into this area deliberately (it seems this is my word for the year!) and boldly, it is likely that we, in our homeschooling, will never fully embrace all that is here to be soaked up through experiencing it first hand.
Alongside that, is the fact that I ache for Africa to be given its own time and place in History books. I don't know what your school experiences were like, but mine went something like this: For the first two years of high school, we did both Geography and History. Then in our third year, when we started our "O" Level syllabus, (present day IGCSE), we had to choose between them. I enjoyed both, but loved Geography more, and so chose that. I did find it amusing that the only history I ever learnt was about Ancient civilizations and World War I and II - and it has only been over the last few years and Zimbabwe's demise that I realized how little I knew about my own country and it's political history, and how so much of the history I was taught was from a Eurocentric world view. I'm saddened by how much rich literature there is for my children to devour on America's history, or even English history, and seem to be forever struggling to find living books on Africa's history.

And so....I'm launching

Cape Explorers!

Cape Explorers, in its infancy, is an elementary geography, history and nature course run through outings that happen twice a month, accompanied by living letters written to members about the geography, history and nature of the Cape. Outings happen twice a month, and I'll be adding all kinds of value to the outings, like maps, timelines, printables etc. If you'd like to know more, then please hold on just a few days longer, as the website will be up and running this week!!! It's been a long time but it's almost here! And I'll sneak this in here...perhaps, just perhaps, when it's grown up a bit, I might even follow my heart's desire and write a living book on Cape Town...perhaps...

There is much, much more that could be said about the process, the structure, the way I'm feeling - but I shall leave it here for now. I'm really thankful for Braveheart and the folk who have backed me in this venture, listened to my wild ideas, been patient whilst I've sifted out the realistic ones from the idealistic ones, supported me with suggestions and encouragement. Thank you!

Here's to a new season of exploring and discovering!

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