The ICP guides are written for grammar level students (K-5th grade) and are organized around the four major eras of world history (ancients, middle ages/renaissance, early modern, modern). There will also be a fifth guide that focuses on American or Canadian history and geography, as well as national artists, writers, and musicians.
Each memory guide consists of 30 weeks of core memory work including history catechisms, geography locations, science and math facts, English grammar, Greek (in the Ancients guide), and Latin and French grammar and vocabulary.
Additionally, each memory guide includes three hand-drawn then digitized maps per week that correlate to the history catechism. There is one colored/labeled, one colored/blank, and one black and white/blank.
Finally, each memory guide includes 30 weeks of Pulchre Tempore (Beautiful Time) that focuses on a morning basket of hymns, poetry or scripture, catechisms, and various lists, as well as picture study, music selections, and read aloud suggestions that are all integrated with the memory work.
How does it work?
All core memory work is on the front page of each week. The facts can be chanted, sung, written out (for penmanship practice), dictated, paraphrased, narrated back, cut-up word by word, phrase by phrase, or sentence by sentence, scrambled, and then put back together in order, orally answered, drawn, acted out (with costumes!), recorded for play-back later, diagramed – there are many ways to approach it! It should be a varied, pleasurable and joy-filled time! You can bring the memory work alive and into context through living books, nature studies, conversations, field trips, and fun. The memory work is a jumping off point for further studies and, in general, is not intended to be learned in isolation. Further, we highly recommend integration of subjects as much as possible, as well as plenty of opportunities for narration.
Here is an example:
For example If your student is memorizing a history catechism about the Israelites, their history and Bible reading for the week should relate to the Israelites; the history should inform the geography and map work studied. Additionally, read-alouds and picture studies should touch upon them in some way, and, where possible, even the music listened to should center around the culture. Will this always be possible? No, and there is never any reason to stress out about it, but if the goal of integration is in the back of the teacher’s mind, then it will happen, even in very small ways. In the beginning it may seem forced, but as integration becomes more familiar, it will happen organically.