Keeping in 2019-20

What is Keeping?

For more information about the big picture of Keeping, please take a look at the Keeping resource page.

Recommended Keeping in 2019-20

This year, we are encouraging our study group to keep a Commonplace Book and a Nature Journal.

This is an optional practice meant to help you grow in your understanding of Mason’s principles and methods.

What is a Commonplace Book?

Laurie Bestvater in her book, The Living Page, describes a commonplace book:

The Commonplace collects student-selected passages from any and all reading on any and all subjects. Mason also refers to it as a Reading Diary. (p.32)

You could consider it to be a collection of quotes from your readings. It might be something that inspired you or that caught your attention or a well-crafted turn of a phrase; in essence, ‘worthy thoughts, well put’.

How will we use a Commonplace Book?

We encourage you to capture quotes in your commonplace book* as you pre-read Volumes 1 and 5 in anticipation of our monthly discussion.

What about a Nature Journal?

At the heart, a nature journal is like an empty space, waiting to be filled with ideas, observations and responses to the created world around you. Write notes, make lists, track events, sketch, diagram, paint or even copy poetry in yours.

At each meeting we will touch on the topic of Nature Study. Use the regional, seasonal nature study prompts to begin to keep a personal nature journal, if you haven't already.

*These journals are not included in the Resource Fee. They can be a lovely journal, a composition notebook, or as simple as some sheets of blank paper. They will become life-long companions and a documentation of your experiences with books and nature. Eventually, you might prefer something more attractive and designed to last. For now, we are building habits, so feel free to experiment to see what format you prefer (lined/unlined? bound/loose-leaf? etc.)