Overview of Our Courses

Overview of Dreaming Spires’ Method

What makes us unique? The short answer is - you do! 

Our courses are small and our approach, versatile, so your children can thrive from the start at whatever stage they find themselves in, but more than that, we use a time-tested method for helping students go beyond what they thought possible. 

Which method, you my ask? It’s called the Charlotte Mason method. You may have heard of it but never knew what it was. Basically, it’s an approach to education that encourages children to think for themselves while filling their zest for learning with great books, low-key writing tasks, and connection with their studies, their tutors, and their classmates.

You can see more details about this method on the page called "Our Method".

How exactly do the courses work? At Dreaming Spires, we meet live and online for weekly one-hour webinars, using high-quality and stimulating books, and assigning fairly simple written tasks that build on a student’s own understanding and experience. 

The commitment is usually around four hours per week, and our courses last a full academic year, or 30 weeks.

Some courses have add-on extension options like English, art history, some history, some of the French/Spanish ones. These offer more focused attention on individual attainments and entail another 2-3 hours of homework a week. We have a separate page about these on the website.

Webinars are conducted along these lines: the tutors talk and use a Powerpoint for visual aids while the students type their responses in a chat box. We rarely use webcams because the bandwidth requirements are sometimes too much for our students in foreign mission fields. Some students feel a bit self-conscious at first about typing in the chatbox, but they soon learn that spelling, punctuation, and that sort of thing, are no big deal in terms of accuracy. As long as their ideas are coming across, that’s what matters (the one exception is “would of” - I will definitely pipe up with correction on that one!).

The overall approach at Dreaming Spires is a great leveler: we’ve had students with special needs, those who travel the world, youngsters who are gifted, and even some attending from hospital beds, and no one is the wiser. Everyone feels welcome.

What’s the end result? We're well placed to help you on whatever path you've planned for your secondary-school student. We design our curriculum to support the main examination providers: CAIE, Edexcel, and OCR. We can also help you navigate the novel desire for uni entry without GCSEs and A-levels, using the American transcript and SAT approach instead.

If you're still unsure about what's the best choice for you, then just send us a quick message on the contact form or message us on the Facebook page. 

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Suggestions, ideas, tweaks, or maybe you're just a happy Dreaming Spires student who wants to leave some encouraging words! Thanks for posting! Kat