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a charlotte mason pre-reading lesson

A Charlotte Mason Pre-Reading Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Pre-Reading Lesson

a charlotte mason pre-reading lesson
a charlotte mason pre-reading lesson

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Pre-Reading Lesson …

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be awe inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly first grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

a charlotte mason pre-reading lesson
a charlotte mason pre-reading lesson

A Charlotte Mason Pre-Reading Lesson

WHAT

My son is five, almost six. According to Charlotte Mason’s methods of learning to read, he will be in the pre-reading category when we begin formal lessons. So, if your child is not yet reading proficiently, this post may be helpful to you! As my son progresses, I plan to compose an additional post with some ideas for A Charlotte Mason Reading Lesson (Reading by Sight and Sound).

“But the learning of the alphabet should be made a means of cultivating the child’s observation: he should be made to see what he looks at.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Charlotte Mason recommended that a child be able to visualize the words, learning from sight, in addition to learning phonics.

“Accustom him from the first to shut his eyes and spell the word he has made.” (Mason, vol. 1)

WHAT WE ARE USING

  • Home Education by Charlotte Mason – there are about 30 pages devoted to the reading lesson. Its gentle, effective and delightful.
  • Discover Reading by Amy Tuttle – this book was also recommended by Ambleside online as a reading resource. Here is a description from her website: Discover Reading will help you and your child develop vital skills such as phonemic awareness, mental imaging, auditory blending and word building. It will serve as a guide for you as you lead your child through the stages of pre-reading, beginning reading, and fluency.
  • Also, here is another FREE resource using Ms. Mason’s methods for reading, written by Jennifer Spead.
  • A good alphabet book or four (I LOVE these: B is for Bear, A to Z Picture Book, In A Pumpkin Shell, An ABC Book).
  • Wooden Moveable Alphabet
  • Or, these wooden letters

 

FABULOUS ALPHABET BOOKS

 

WHEN

“When should he begin? Whenever his box of letters begins to interest him.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Charlotte Mason describes the Pre-Reading Lesson as occurring five times a week. Also, each lesson lasts about ten minutes.

You can begin pre-reading activities when a child begins to be aware of letters. A typical age of a child may be anywhere from two to six years old when you begin pre-reading.

WHY

Reading is important. It is also required to teach reading in the state of Texas. I vividly remember books playing a vital role in my education. They shaped me to be the person I am today. Living Books Library defines characteristics of a Living Book as: full of ideas, virtuous, inspiring, narrative, generational and imaginative.

“It is better that children should receive a few vital ideas that their souls may grow…” (Mason, vol. 1)

Some of my happiest times with my children are sharing good books with them. Therefore, I look forward to the day when my children discover the joy of reading for themselves.

Discover Reading
Discover Reading

HOW

“A tray of sand is useful at this stage.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Charlotte Mason says a child can first learn the sounds of letters and then recognize the upper case and lower case letters. Additionally, the child should practice “air writing” the letters or drawing them in a tray of sand.

“There is no occasion to hurry the child: let him learn one form at a time, and know it so well that he can pick out the d’s, say, big and little, in a page of large print.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Here are some suggested activities to introduce the concept of reading to children.

STEPS TO PRE-READING

  • First, playfully teach your child the sounds for each letter of the alphabet.
  • He should be familiar with upper case letters first, and then lower case letters.
  • Teach all consonant sounds and at least the short vowel sounds.
  • While your child is learning sounds, he should take a mental picture of the letter.
  • Then, your child can trace the letter in the air.
  • Finally, take any word and stretch out the sound of the first letter. Amy Tuttle from Discover Reading, writes to think of Dori’s whale language in Finding Nemo. One example here could be: “Can you find the /S/ for Sssssnake?” using your box of letters.
  • An alternate pre-reading learning game is to have him search for the letter sound /d/ on a magazine page. You could ask your child to point out the letters, or sometimes circle them.

IDEAS FOR A PRE-READING LESSON

PART 1

  1. Introduce the letters and sounds one per day or several per day if your child can master them. Review all letters until the child knows each letter/sound combination.
  2. When a child can recognize the letter by sight and sound, and can draw the letter in the air, the letter is learned, and he can put it in a letter box.
  3. This could happen in one week’s time, or last over several weeks, depending on your child. I love how Amy Tuttle reminds us to enjoy the process, because he only learns to read once.

PART 2

  • Once a child is confident with all letter sounds, begin with short words that are as interesting as possible. Use simple consonants and short vowel sounds to introduce blending. Pick letters that will make words he knows.
  • He should place a letter before “at” for example, to make b-at, c-at, h-at. Repeat the sounds slowly, and let him discover the word.
  • Ask him to see the letters in his mind, with his eyes closed. Then, trace the letters in the air.
  • When he can do all of these steps, Mama writes the word on a chalkboard (or the child can if he is writing already).
  • Next, ask him to dictate the words that you learned for the lesson, and write them down in a notebook.
  • Finally, the next day, review the words from his notebook, and begin with new word blends.
  • Repeat with all short sound vowels before moving onto long vowel sound word blends. Example: “ate” to make h-ate, l-ate, m-ate, and r-ate.

Ms. Mason says,

“This is not reading, but it is preapring the ground for reading; words will no longer (be) unfamiliar, perplexing objects, when the child meets them in a line of print.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Also,

“Require him to pronounce he words the makes with such finish and distinctness that he can himself hear and count the sounds in a give word.” (Mason, vol. 1)

One final quote:

“Accustom him from the first to shut his eyes and spell the word he has made.” (Mason, vol. 1)

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason Pre-Reading Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON PRE-READING LESSON RESOURCES

OUR PICKS

 

Also, check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Finally, please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. Finally, I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson …

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be awe inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly first grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

 

A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson 

WHAT

“The child should speak beautiful thoughts so beautifully.” (Mason, vol. 1)

The Meriram-Webster Dictionary defines recitation as: the act of reading or repeating aloud in public. According to a podcast by A Delectable Education (ADE), recitation is beautiful thoughts, spoken beautifully.

“All children have it in them to recite…” (Mason, vol. 1)

Charlotte Mason observed children could easily pick up recitation. Therefore, it is a wonderful subject to include, especially from a young age.

“Let the child lie fallow till he is six, and then, in this matter of memorizing, as in others, attempt only a little, and let the poems the child learns be simple and within the range of his own thought and imagination.” (Mason, vol. 1)

WHAT WE ARE USING

A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson pulls selections from: poems, parables, Bible passages, Psalms, and hymns. With this in mind, we are using:

 

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes the Recitation Lesson as occurring three times a week. Also, each lesson lasts about ten minutes. Additionally, the recitation lesson should follow the mid-morning play break. This was a great way to ease back into lessons.

WHY

According to this Parent’s Review article, as children begin reading, they loose their expression. Recitation helps restore their expression. Charlotte Mason says:

“…in the coming days, more even then in our own, will it beehove every educated man and woman to be able to speak effectively in public; and, in learning to recite you learn to speak.” (Mason, vol. 1)

We are particularly looking forward to recitation because my oldest son doesn’t always speak carefully. Sometimes, it is difficult for others to understand him. His tone of voice is low. Therefore, I believe this “children’s art” of recitation is going to serve a practical purpose in his life. Recitation forms the basis for public speaking.

Perhaps most importantly, recitation helps provide a service to the listeners. It can bring understanding, arouse emotions, and demonstrate the heart of the piece’s author. Finally, recitation helps others understand what is read.

“The gains of such a method of learning are, that the edge of the child’s enjoyment is not taken off by weariful verse by verse repetitions, and, also, that the habit of making mental images is unconsciously formed.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Even as adults, it can be challenging to learn something we are not excited about. Allowing the child to choose poems, staying within the child’s range of imagination, and keeping a positive tone about the lesson, can help the child stay engaged in the Recitation Lesson.

Finally, recitation can also be fostered in the reading lessons. During a reading lesson, especially as the lessons progress slowly at first, the emphasis should be from the beginning on clear and perfect enunciation.

A Charlotte Mason Recitation LessonA Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson

HOW

“Recitation and committing to memory are not necessarily the same thing, and it is well to store a child’s memory with a good deal of poetry, learnt without labor.” (Mason, vol. 1)

First, memory and recitation are not the same. Memory comes incidentally from the art of recitation. Often, memory happens by the way, however, it is not the end goal of recitation.

“Half a dozen repetitions should give children possession of such poems.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Memory may naturally occur, because the child has heard and repeated the piece six or so times.

RECITATION GOALS PER TERM (ABOUT 12 WEEKS)

Alternate each lesson below, each week, in order to gain familiarity with the readings.

FOR EXAMPLE- WEEK ONE: read a poem for the first lesson, a hymn for the second lesson, and a passage from the Old Testament, for the third lesson that week.

ONE TERM

  • One poem (child chooses the poem)
  • Two hymns (learn the words, without singing)
    • It is recommended to choose Christmas hymns when appropriate.
  • One Psalms (Psalms 150 is recommended)
  • One Passage of six verses from the Bible (Old Testament plus one from the New Testament)
    • One passage from Joshua Chapter 1 and St. Mark Chapter 6 are recomended

STEPS TO A RECITATION LESSON

“The teacher reads with the intention that the children shall know, and therefore, with distinctness, force, and careful enunciation; it is a mere matter of sympathy, though of course it is the author and not himself, whom the teacher is careful to produce.” (Mason, vol. 6)

For this example, we are discussing a poem.

  • First, give a short explanation of the poem. Introduce new words the child may be unfamiliar with. Also, show a picture if one is included.
  • Next, read the poem. Remember, you will read this about once a week. Other types of pieces should be read for recitation (such as a hymn and a parable).
  • Read the poem again the following week.
  • Then, a couple of weeks later, read the poem line by line.
  • Ask the child to repeat back the first line of the poem with you.
  • Also, if a child can read the poem, they can read the poem one line at a time.
  • Finally, try to work on clear pronunciation, understanding, and intonation. The teacher should model these while reading to the child as well.

The following Do and Don’t List come from a Parent’s Review Article on Recitation: the Children’s Art which is recommended by ADE.

NOTES ABOUT RECITATION A “DON’T LIST.”

  1. Don’t imitate the stage or exaggerate in voice and gesture.
  2. Avoid tragic or sentimental pieces.
  3. Don’t give lessons in the presence of a third person.
  4. Try not to praise your child excessively.

Now, for the “DO LIST.”

NOTES ABOUT RECITATION A “DO LIST”

  1. Do have your child be careful about pronunciation.
  2. Let pieces be learned, bit by bit, after a careful explanation is given.
  3. Ask the child to stand while he reads.
  4. A piece once learned should be occasionally repeated.

Finally, one of my favorite references regarding recitation: “In tone, not in noise, good recitation consists.” (Recitation: the Children’s Art)

It is also suggested one hour per month, to “sit around a fire” and read or recite some pieces learned.

A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason Recitation Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON RECITATION LESSON RESOURCES

OUR PICKS

Also, check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Finally, please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. Finally, I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

 

A Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson …

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be SO inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly first grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson 

WHAT

Here is one of my favorite Charlotte Mason quotes about Art:

“This is what we wish to do for children in teaching them to draw-to cause the eye to rest, not unconsciously, but consciously, on some object of beauty which will leave in their minds an image of delight for all their lives to come.” (Mason, vol. 1)

First and foremost, drawing provides a child with valuable skills, such as: observation, memory, and fine motor skills. Perhaps more importantly, however, learning how to draw gives a sense of beauty and expression. This allure can last throughout a child’s whole life.

Occasionally, in order to inspire this artistry, Mama can point out beauty in nature to the child, By observing things like sunlight, shadows, colors, and forms of all things lovely of earth and sky, the child can use these as inspiration for appreciation of art.

“Children have art in them.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Since my oldest son already enjoys painting, I decided to get him a few basic art supplies. My aim is to foster his natural love and ability of art. I’m hoping to watch it blossom, as we learn more about brush drawing as an educational subject.

WHAT WE ARE USING

“Children are worth of the best, and some half-dozen tubes of really good colors will last a long time, and will satisfy the eye of the little artists.” (Mason, vol. 1)

While you do not have to purchase the most expensive supplies, choosing good quality supplies that will last over the years, and across many children, is sensible.

RECOMMENDED RESOURCES:

The resources listed below come recommended, so they are the drawing supplies we will use:

  • WATERCOLOR COURSE.

Brushdrawing: A Basic Course by Emily Kiser and Richele Baburina. Here is the description about this course: This watercolor course in brush drawing features carefully prepared lessons that take students step-by-step from the most basic brush exercises to beginning painting from nature.

  • DRAWING BOOK.

What to Draw and How to Draw It by E.G. Lutz

Or, HERE it is FREE on archive.org

  • WATERCOLOR TUBES.

Daniel Smith 6 Tubes of Essentials Introductory Watercolors or 30 Economical Professional Watercolor Tubes

  • NOTEBOOK.

Canson Mixed Media Notepad

  • WATERCOLOR ROUND BRUSHES.

Watercolor Wooden Brush Set

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes the Drawing Lesson as occurring two times a week. Also, each lesson lasts about twenty minutes. Additionally, it is recommended to have one afternoon drawing lesson per week, lasting about twenty minutes.

WHY

A Parent’s Review article written by Miss K. Loveday says: “And yet Art, when rightly directed, is educational…for it trains the hand and the eye, and it trains the head and the heart; it teaches us to see and to see truly…it disciplines the emotions.”

Drawing is useful because it trains exactness and decision. So many useful skills are learned by honing art skills, yet it is also such a rich subject to study. Therefore, we are looking forward to this subject immensley.

A Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson

HOW

Ms. Mason says that a child may not produce a beautiful work of art at the beginning, however, the study of drawing is beautiful in itself.

“Children of six or seven draw budding twigs of oak and ash, beech and lark, with such tender fidelity to color, tone, and gesture, that the crude little drawings are in themselves things of beauty.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Children have a natural desire towards observing beauty in nature, therefore, it seems fitting to focus in the beginning, on drawing objects observed in nature.

Charlotte Mason also observed that children should start out with easy materials in drawing, such as chalk and watercolors. She believed by avoiding pencil and pen, it would allow the child to more easily produce well-observed drawings, which could allow their interest in art to continue. She says:

“…also, he should work in the easiest medium, that is, with paint brush or with charcoal, and not with a black-led pencil.” (Mason, vol. 1)

One more note about brush drawing indicates the brush should be held with the tip facing the child. This ensures that the child can view the brush more carefully, as he is adding color to the paper. Also, the child can move his arm from the wrist more freely, in order to have better control over his drawing.

“We must show the children how to hold their brushes and how to use them; they must see the whole, not only the tip.” (A Parent’s Review Article)

Drawing GoalS Per Term (about 12 weeks)

  1. Six brush drawings from nature

    • (Six wild fruits in fall, Six twigs in winter, and finally six wildflowers in spring)
  2. Six drawings from memory of animals they have observed

    • (Examples: dog, cat, birds, insects, squirrel, rabbit etc.)
  3. Original brush or chalk drawings of characters from their tales readings

  4. Drawings in nature notebook entries

NOTES ABOUT DRAWING

  •  A typical lesson could be: First, spend a few minutes on a drawing lesson. Perhaps, show your child how to hold the brush, and make a few simple strokes. Next, attempt to draw a natural object they can see before them. (A Parent’s Review Article(Examples: simple leaves, birds)
  • Another idea is to take a walk in nature. Then, bring home objects from nature, copy them in brushwork in a Nature Journal, record the date, weather, and location.
  • One article also points out to lay objects on a white piece of paper, in order that the child can more easily see true depth of colors and shadows, and the main shapes.
  • It is also suggested to keep the object you want to draw, at a distance to avoid over focusing on details.
  • Also, I plan to update this post with more ideas once we receive the Brushdrawing: Basic Course.

MORE NOTES ABOUT A DRAWING LESSON

A Parent’s Review article written by Juliet Williams, mentions a process for drawing:

  • OBSERVE. First, ask the child to see the object in nature. Ask your child to look carefully at the shape and colors of the object. Then, ask them to notice the shadow, and where they come from.
  • DIGEST. Second, is a lesson in memory and reflection.
  • EXPRESS. Finally, a child can express himself using the brush drawing to depict a careful observation of the object. One article mentions above all, we should encourage imagination and originality of expression.

Also, the act of observing is mentioned many times because of its importance.

“We must be sure that the children paint what they really see and not what they imagine they see; a great deal depends on making them look properly and carefully before beginning to paint, especially when it comes to considering light and shades in colors.”

Finally, Mr. Ruskin, whom Charlotte Mason references frequently in her Home Education volumes, says:

“It is only by the habit of representing faithfully all things, that we can truly learn what is beautiful and what is not.”

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason Drawing Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON DRAWING LESSON RESOURCES

OUR PICKS

Also, check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Finally, please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. Finally, I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson …

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be SO inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly first grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson 

WHAT

Poetry can be intimidating, because its almost like a foreign language. We don’t often hear poetry included in our daily culture. Also, more than likely, we did not grow up hearing or being exposed to it. Charlotte Mason says that children: “must grow up upon the best.” (Mason, vol. 2)

She goes onto say:

“There must never be a period in their lives when they are allowed to read or listen to twaddle or reading-made-easy. There is never a time when they are unequal of worthy thoughts, well put; inspiring tales, well told. Let Blake’s ‘songs of innocence’ represent their standard in poetry; De Foe and Stevenson, in prose; and we shall train a race of readers who will demand literature – that is, the fit and beautiful expressions of inspiring ideas and pictures of life.” (Mason, vol. 2)

Poems are wide and varied, just as stories are. Some poems are written about seasons, nature, help answer questions, or are merely enjoyed because they are delightful. Therefore, there is poetry for everyone.

Miss Mason urges:

“…it is the part of parents to bring the minds of their children under the influence of the highest, purest poetic thought we have.” (Mason, vol. 5)

A variety of poems from a good anthology like A Child’s Book of Poems may be a great way to begin if you are unsure of which books to pick. Since I’m unfamiliar with poetry, I’m choosing many books that are highly recommend to begin with. Eventually, it would be great to highlight maybe a poet per term.

WHAT WE ARE USING

A Child’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson is recommended many times as a introduction into Poetry. Also, since Tasha Tudor is the illustrator, I’m delighted to share this book with my children. Two other must-have books by Tasha Tudor are: A Time to Keep (a beautiful introduction to holidays and the calendar) and 1 is One (a gentle introduction to numbers great for preschoolers). Once you see her illustrations, you notice how beautiful and special they are.

A Child’s Book of Poems by Gyo Fujikawa is another well recommended first book of poems. The illustrations are also lovely, and I believe this will add to the appeal to my young boys.

Finally, the two books by A.A. Milne were also recommended: Now We are Six and When We were Very Young. Since poetry can be shared at anytime (not just during formal education), I have begun reading a couple of poems per day to my children. To my amazement, my boys beg for more! This shows just how appropriate these poetry selections seem to be for the young child.

Poetry Teatime
Poetry Teatime

Below, I share samples of some poetry I feel would be appropriate for beginners. Included are poems by Robert Louis Stevenson and William Blake, who are mentioned by Charlotte Mason as good poetry standards.

EXAMPLES OF GENTLE POEMS TO INTRODUCE TO YOUR CHILDREN:

MISS MUFFET
by Mother Goose

Little Miss Muffet
Sat on a tuffet,
Eating of curds and whey;
There came a big spider,
And sat down beside her,
And frightened Miss Muffet away.
FOREIGN LANDS
by Robert Louis Stevenson

Up into the cherry tree
Who should climb but little me?
I held the trunk with both my hands
And looked abroad on foreign lands.

I saw the next door garden lie,
Adorned with flowers, before my eye,
And many pleasant places more
That I had never seen before.

I saw the dimpling river pass
And be the sky's blue looking glass;
The dusty roads go up and down
With people that tramping into town.

If I could find a higher tree
Farther and farther I should see,
To where the grown-up rivers slips
Into the sea among the ships,

To where the roads on either hand
Lead onward into fairy land,
Where all the children dine at five,
And all the playthings come alive. 
LAUGHING SONG
by William Blake

When the green woods laugh with the voice of joy,
And the dimpling stream runs laughing by;
When the air does laugh with our merry wit,
And the green hill laughs with the noise of it;

When the meadows laugh with lively green,
And the grasshopper laughs in the merry scene;
When Mary and Susan and Emily
With their sweet round mouths sing ‘Ha ha he!’

When the painted birds laugh in the shade,
Where our table with cherries and nuts is spread:
Come live, and be merry, and join with me,
To sing the sweet chorus of ‘Ha ha he!’
A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes the Poetry Lesson as occurring daily. Also, each lesson lasts about five to ten minutes.

WHY

“Poetry, too, supplies with tools for the modeling of our lives, and the use of these we must get at for ourselves.” (Mason, vol. 4)

Also, Susan Schaeffer Macaulay, author of For the Children’s Sake, says: “All children should have an excellent diet of mind-food to be nurtured on, so that their true education can begin.” She includes poetry as one of the essentials to nourish a child’s mind.

Perhaps my most favorite quote about why to include poetry in the educational feast:

“All our aspirations for the young are likely to be defeated unless we hand on to them a certain moral stability, a belief in beauty, truth, and goodness for their own sake; whereas if we give them these – … poetry will surely be included – we have at least the assurance that we have done our best to equip them adequately for the certain difficulties of this uncertain world.” (Parent’s Review Article)

A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson

HOW

Poems should be enjoyed regularly from a very young age.

  • First, read a few poems aloud to your children.
  • No narration required, just enjoy the feast!

Notes about poetry

As the children grow, poems are often added to a Nature Journal to support their Nature findings.

Poems can eventually be written down as copywork (writing).

A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON POETRY LESSON RESOURCES

OUR PICKS

Also, check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Finally, please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. Finally, I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

A Charlotte Mason French Lesson

A Charlotte Mason French Lesson

A Charlotte Mason French Lesson

A Charlotte Mason French Lesson
A Charlotte Mason French Lesson

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason French Lesson …

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be SO inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly first grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

 

A Charlotte Mason French Lesson 

WHAT

“The initial ideas, that we must acquire a new language as a child acquires his mother tongue, is absolutely right….” (Mason, vol. 1)

In the beginning of a CM edcuation, children typically learned French as a second language. Furthermore, they continued French lessons for the remainder of their education. Additionally, three more foreign languages were added over the course of their 12 years of education. Therefore, by the end of their formal education, the children will have been introduced to four different languages in total.

After our first year, I plan to introduce Spanish as a foreign language. Since we are in Texas, this seems particularly practical for us to learn next.

WHAT WE ARE USING

While you do not have to use all of these resources, this is a great list to get started with. Also, be sure to note the ones marked (FREE).

FRENCH BOOKS

These books replace a French Text book, because they cover the basis for the young French lesson, using Charlotte Mason’s educational philosophies.

VOCABULARY LESSON

POEMS/RHYMES

SONGS

SHORT STORIES

A Charlotte Mason French Lesson
A Charlotte Mason French Lesson

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes the French Lesson as occurring three times a week. Also, each lesson lasts about 10 minutes.

Ms. Mason writes you could begin teaching French words, and in general speaking French to your children, from a very young age; perhaps before formal lessons. In general, it seems easier for a younger child to pick up a foreign language, so introducing it early has its advantages.

WHY

“To train the ear to distinguish and the lips to produce the French vocables is a valuable part of the education of the senses, and one which can hardly be undertaken to soon.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Delectable Education (ADE) mentions the English language is most influenced by French. This is because when William the Conqueror was King of England, French influenced language and culture for approximately 300 years.

According to the Linguist.com, 60% of English words come from the French language, or from Latin, which originated from French. Emily Kiser from ADE, mentions learning French allows greater ease for learning subsequent languages. Finally, according to some, French is an easy language to learn.

However, I find it to be intimidating to teach a new language, that I don’t know anything about! So, I’m seeking out resources to help me teach French to my children.

HOW

“The child should never see French words in print until he has learned to say them with as much ease and readiness as if they were English.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A child should hear the language spoken first, before seeing the words in print. So, just as a baby learns to speak his first language, by listening to words spoken, the same holds true for learning a second language.

“Again, the child’s vocabulary should increase steadily, say, at the rate of half a dozen words a day.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Learning new vocabulary is a wonderful means of learning a new language.

“A notebook in which she (Mama) enters the child’s new words and sentences will enable the teacher to (ensure new words are put into sentences, and are kept in use daily).” (Mason, vol. 1)

Therefore, I plan to record new words the boys learn in a notebook, so that we can revisit the words often.

“The organ of language – ask the child – is not the eye; it is the ear.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Language acquisition is first acquired through the ear. Children learn a new language by first hearing it spoken in conversation. This step is necessary to occur before the child sees the written words with their eyes. This method is more natural, and effective for the child to learn the new language.

A CHARLOTTE MASON FRENCH LESSON

VOCABULARY LESSON

Attempt to learn two to six new vocabulary words at each lesson, in order to gain understanding of French.

  • First, prepare audio files with a few new French words. Also, find pictures to go along with the vocabulary words.
  • Then, show the child one picture. Listen to the audio of the word three times. Next, ask the child to repeat the word after hearing it.
  • If applicable, gesture to show meaning of a verb or noun.
  • Finally, put the new word into a sentence. Speak the sentence three times. Ask the child to speak back the phrase. Also, if they don’t get it perfectly, its okay!

POEMS/RHYMES

A goal of memorizing two French poems per term can be attempted in order to teach the child French. One term lasts about three months.

  • First, prepare a picture and an audio file of a French poem.
  • Then, listen to the poem, one phrase at a time, and have the child simultaneously look at the picture.
  • Point to the picture as you hear the vocabulary words in the poem.
  • Then, listen to the poem two more times.
  • Finally, ask the child to repeat the poem along with the audio.

SONGS

Hearing, and memorizing one French song per term is also a great means of learning French as a second language.

  • First, prepare one picture and one audio of a French song.
  • Then, listen to the song, one phrase at a time, and gesture to the picture when applicable to point out new vocabulary.
  • If time allows, listen to the song three times.
  • Also, invite the child to sing along and gesture as well.

SHORT STORIES

Listening to one short story per term is another wonderful tool to learn French.

  • First, begin with one sentence at at time. Move forward reading longer passages as the child becomes more familiar with the language.
  • When possible, use pictures or gestures to introduce new words, while simultaneously saying it orally.
  • Next, ask the child to repeat the new word.
  • Continue reading the story, stopping after each sentence at first.
  • Then, ask the child to narrate back the story. Its okay if they can’t recite much back to you at first.
  • Read through the passage one final time.

NOTES FOR MAMA

One podcast I listened to, mentions if you can stay ahead of the child by one term, than you will be well prepared to teach the French lesson.

Also, Ms. Mason asked her teachers to read Hachettes Illustrated French Primer by Henri Bue in preparation to teach French. Or, you can find it online for free instead.

A Charlotte Mason French Lesson
A Charlotte Mason French Lesson

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason French Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON FRENCH LESSON RESOURCES

OUR PICKS

Also, check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Finally, please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. Finally, I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson …

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be SO inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly first grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson 

WHAT

“Of all his early studies, perhaps none is more important to the child as a means of education than that of arithmetic.” (Mason, vol. 1)

First and foremost, math is essential to teach to children. We use math in our daily life, therefore, it must be taught. In the state of Texas, the homeschool law states:

“A home school may have whatever curricula the parents decide upon in whatever mode they choose, provided the curricula cover the five basic subjects of reading, spelling, grammar, math, and a study in good citizenship…”

Therefore, math is a required subject. Richele Baburina, who has created some Charlotte Mason Math resources, states: math is due to the person. Also, she says math is beautiful and delightful.

“The reason why mathematics are a great study is because there exists in the normal mind an affinity and capacity for this study, and too great an elaboration, whether of teaching or of preparation, has, I think, a tendency to take the edge off this manner of intellectual interest.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Math can be simple, straightforward, and a source of delight.

WHAT WE ARE USING

First grade math focuses on: rapid mental work with manipulatives, numbers and sums, and working with money.

1. CHARLOTTE MASON MATH ELEMENTARY BUNDLE, BOOK 1

We are using the Charlotte Mason Elementary Math: Book 1 Bundle from Simply Charlotte Mason because it is beautiful and affordable. This is a complete set, including: Arithmetic Book 1, dry erase board, graph notebook, and manipulatives. The set contains: buttons, beads, craft sticks, chenille stems, number cards, and a lacing cord. I love that common objects found in your home, are incorporated.

2. MATHEMATICS: AN INSTRUMENT FOR LIVING TEACHING

Also, we are using Mathematics: An Instrument for Living Teaching. This book encompasses beginning numbers and their meanings, all the way through algebra and geometry. Richele Baburina said she created the Mathematics Handbook to help guide the teaching of math, from first grade through calculus.

MATH BOOKS

A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson

“A bag of beans, counters, or buttons should be used in all the early arithmetic lessons, and the child should be able to work with these freely, and even to add, subtract, multiply, and divide mentally, without the aid of buttons or beans, before he is set to ‘do sums’ on his slate.” (Mason, vol. 1)

ALTERNATIVE CHOICES FOR MATH

While I’m beyond excited to use the Charlotte Mason Math resources from Simply Charlotte Mason, my second choice for a math program was Right Start Mathematics. When comparing price, Right Start is three times the cost with the starter set. This factored into my decision. The Right Start Mathematics Math Manipulative Set is Here. The abacus appears to play a big role in this math program.

Also, I purchased Math Lessons for a Living Education Level 1 and ultimately returned it. While I love that this program offers math problems through story form, it seemed very reliant on the workbook, and didn’t move as slowly and carefully as the program I choose.

In conclusion, I ultimately decided on: Charlotte Mason Elementary Math: Book 1 Bundle.

A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes the Math Lesson as occurring daily. Also, each lesson lasts about 20 minutes.

WHY

“The chief value of arithmetic, like that of the higher mathematics, lies in the training it affords to the reasoning powers and in the habits of insight, readiness, accuracy, intellectual truthfulness it engenders.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Math is very practical. Yet, it also is a gradual unfolding of absolute truth, which points to God, the creator.

“The future is before him: he may get the next sum right, and the wise teacher will make it her business to see that he does, and that he starts with new hope.” (Mason, vol. 1)

The ladies at ADE recommend to end the daily Math lesson with an easy problem. This is to encourage the child and leave them in good spirits about math.

Finally, my favorite Charlotte Mason Math quote:

“Let his arithmetic lesson be to the child a daily exercise in clear thinking and rapid, careful execution, and his mental growth will be so obvious as the sprouting of seedlings in the spring.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson

HOW

“Engage the child upon little problems within his comprehension from the first, rather than upon set sums.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A child should not be given math problems to work, which are beyond his comprehension. Therefore, a Charlotte Mason Math moves from concrete to the abstract, to help the child gain knowledge.

“Care must be taken to give the child such problems as he can work, but yet are difficult enough to cause him some little mental effort.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Ms. Mason encourages we should challenge a child to use their minds. Yet, the material should not so advanced, that the child becomes discouraged.

“Carefully graduated teaching and daily mental effort on the child’s part at this early stage may be the means of developing real mathematical power, and will certainly promote the habits of concentration and effort of mind.” (Mason, vol. 1)

The math lesson progresses in an orderly fashion. Constant reviewing and scaffolding are implemented, in order to aid the student in learning.

Finally, Ms. Mason reiterates:

“…nothing can be more delightful than the careful analysis of numbers and the beautiful graduation of the work, ‘only one difficulty at a time being presented to the mind’.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A CHARLOTTE MASON MATH LESSON

  • First, use concrete objects, such as buttons, beads, beans, or rocks, to understand the concept of one number. Ex. “Show me ‘two’ with your beans.”
  • Then, math stories/problems can be given to the child. Ex. “If Jackson had two apples, and gave one to Emily, how many apples does he have left?”
  • Finally, move forward to abstract thinking. Ex. “Two minus one equals?”

NOTES ABOUT THE MATH LESSON

  • Of most importance, move along at the pace of the child. Therefore, the child should be able to completely understand one number, or one concept, before moving onto another.
  • Full attention and focus is required, which is why the lesson is short.
  • Next, use of the senses helps the child understand math.
  • At the end of the Math Lesson, ask the child to tell back what he learned. Also, he is free to use manipulatives as a helpful tool to explain his narration.
A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Math Lesson

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason Math Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON MATH LESSON RESOURCES

OUR PICKS

Also, check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Finally, please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. Finally, I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study
A Charlotte Mason Picture Study

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Picture Study Lesson …

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be SO inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly First Grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study Lesson 

WHAT

“The six-year-old child should begin both to express himself and to appreciate, and his appreciation (of art) should be well in advance of his power to express what he sees or imagines.” (Mason, vol. 1)

First of all, while a young child may not be able to create a masterpiece of art, he is capable of appreciating the beauty found in art and picture study.

WHAT WE ARE USING

We are using art print sets from Riverbend Press because they are beautiful, a complete set, and affordable. I choose one artist per term, so I have three artists for the whole year.

ARTISTS

  • Winslow Homer
  • John Constable
  • Sandro Botticelli

BIOGRAPHIES

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study
A Charlotte Mason Picture Study

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes the Picture Study Lesson as occurring one time a week. Also, each lesson lasts about 10 minutes.

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study
A Charlotte Mason Picture Study

WHY

“We cannot measure the influence that one or another artist has upon the child’s sense of beauty, upon his power of seeing, as in a picture, the common sights of life; he is enriched more than we know in having really looked at even a single picture.” (Mason, vol. 1)

First, the A Delectable Education ladies mention art is beautiful. Since Charlotte Mason believed education should provide beauty, art helps fit in as an important piece of the puzzle.

“There are always those present with us whom God whispers in the ear, through whom He sends a direct message to the rest. Among these messengers are the great painters who interpret to us some of the meanings of life. To read their messages aright is a thing due from us.” (Mason, vol. 4)

Also, art focuses attention and allows observation of details. These two skills help serve all of the other subjects. Therefore, art study is essential.

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study
A Charlotte Mason Picture Study

HOW

“When children have begun regular lessons (that is, as soon as they are six), this sort of study of pictures should not be left to chance, but they should take one artist after another, term by term, and study quietly some half-dozen reproductions of his work in the course of a term.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Six pictures, done by one artist, are studied per term. Therefore, there are three artists studied per year.

A Charlotte Mason Picture Studies Lesson

  1. First, the child looks at the picture for a few minutes. If this is the first picture observed by this author, a brief biography can be given by the artist as a means of introduction.
  2. Second, the child should try to see the picture in their mind fully and in detail.
  3. Then, Mama flips the picture over.
  4. Next, ask the child what he saw. This is essentially narration for Picture Study.
  5. Then, as an option, Charlotte Mason Poetry notes of Lessons suggest: ask the children questions concerning the season, time of day, river and chief features.
  6. Finally, ask them what they think is the story of the picture. Show that every artist has an idea which he wishes to be interpreted.

“As in a worthy book we leave the author to tell his own tale, so do we trust a picture to tell its tale through the medium the artist gave it.” (Mason, vol. 6)

It is enough, more than enough really, for the child to do the work. It is not necessary for Mama to do a big lecture. When the child observes the beautiful art print, and tries to see it fully, it becomes his own.

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study
A Charlotte Mason Picture Study

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason Picture Study Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON PICTURE STUDY LESSON RESOURCES

A Charlotte Mason Picture Study
A Charlotte Mason Picture Study

OUR PICKS

Also, check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Finally, please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. Finally, I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! Above all, they are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson

PART 3

A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson

 

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson …

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be SO inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly First Grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson 

WHAT

“In this time of extraordinary pressure, educational and social, perhaps a mother’s first duty to her children is to secure for them a quiet growing time, a full six years of passive receptive life, the waking part of it spent for the most part out in the fresh air.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Above all, Charlotte Mason advocated time in nature as essential. The child who spends ample outdoor time gains much, such as: physical growth, observational skills, sense of beauty, reverence for life, classification skills, and a basic foundation for science. Therefore, daily outdoor time is beneficial.

She goes onto say:

“…here is the mother’s opportunity to train the seeing eye, the hearing ear, and to drop seeds of truth into the open soul of the child, which shall germinate, blossom, and bear fruit, without further help, or knowledge of hers.” (Mason, vol. 1)

This takes some pressure off of the mother, or teacher, since it is best if the child observes, attends, questions, and consequently learns for himself. Besides that, the goal eventually, is for the child to provide a self-education.

PRACTICALITY OF SPECIAL STUDIES

Next, Charlotte Mason discusses the educational practicality of sight-seeing in nature:

“This is all play to the children, but the mother is doing valuable work; she is training their powers of observation and expression, increasing their vocabulary and their range of ideas by giving them the name and the uses of an object at the right moment–when they ask, ‘What is it?’ and ‘What is it for?’” (Mason, vol. 1)

While experiencing Special Studies, a child will learn how to investigate, question, and explore, as a result. They will also increase their vocabulary skills, plus gain valuable ideas exploring nature.

 

A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson

WHAT WE ARE USING

 

SPECIAL STUDIES

Next up, the book list!

First, since we plan to use these for many early elementary years, I made sure to include a nice variety! Charlotte Mason refers to a wide feast, so I sought out many good authors to include over the next few years for Special Studies books.

Hopefully, you find some of these books at your local library, since tons of books can be expensive.

Fortunately, (or unfortunately) I have a love affair with good books. Therefore, I have been collecting books since my boys were babies. Many of these we have already enjoyed in our preschool years. However, since they will be great for Special Studies, I’m pulling them out again!

Consequently, because we will use these books for many years, they are a great investment.

Since it is recommended to pay attention to the seasons, I have broken up the books we are reading by term.

FALL SPECIAL STUDIES BOOKS

(Wildflowers, Fruit, Spiders, Birds)

WINTER SPECIAL STUDIES BOOKS

(Evergreen Trees, Birds in Winter)

 

SPRING SPECIAL STUDIES BOOKS 

(Wildflowers, Trees, Insects)

A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson

OBJECT LESSON

Additionally, I’m using the Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Comstock, because this is such a valuable tool for Nature Study. A Delectable Education, Ambleside Online, and Exploring Nature with Children all recommend this book. Mamas read the relevant parts of the book to prepare for a Special Studies or Object Lesson. Therefore, its going to be a staple for the years to come!

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes the Special Studies Lesson as occurring one time a week. Each lesson lasts about 10 minutes. Typically, you could read about 30-40 pages per term. Therefore, you would read about 4 pages out of your book per lesson.

Additionally, Charlotte Mason describes the Object Studies Lesson as occurring one time a week. Each lesson lasts about 10 minutes and should occur outdoors, if possible.

WHY

“Consider, too, what an unequalled mental training the child-naturalist is getting for any study or calling under the sun–the powers of attention, of discrimination, of patient pursuit, growing with his growth, what will they not fit him for?” (Mason, vol. 1)

Nature Study is so valuable for children; perhaps it is the most valuable lesson. A child gains so much by studying nature because the acquired skills easily assist him into adulthood. Since Natural History (Nature Study) serves as a foundation for all Sciences, we will be spending time in nature daily.

“It would be well if all we persons in authority, parents and all who act for parents, could make up our minds that there is no sort of knowledge to be got in these early years so valuable to children as that which they get for themselves of the world they live in.” (Mason, vol. 1)

BENEFITS OF SPECIAL STUDIES

There are many benefits of spending time in Nature, so Special Studies is a vital lesson.

  • First, according to this article, nature supports mental health.
  • Second, physical activity outdoors helps improve academic performance.
  • Third, nature helps one manage stress.
  • Fourth, spending time outdoors is good for physical health, because it lowers blood pressure and supports longevity.

“Let them once get touch with Nature, and a habit is formed which will be a source of delight for life.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Perhaps most important, as children observe Nature, it allows them to begin to build a relationship with God. When a child observes nature, he observes the magnificence of God’s creation. I wish to provide my boys a full, rich, and interesting life, therefore, observing nature daily is one way to do this.

Finally, Ms. Mason states:

“And, pari passu with his knowledge of things, his vocabulary grows; for it is a law of the mind that what we know, we struggle to express. This fact accounts for many of the apparently aimless questions of children; they are in quest, not of knowledge, but of words to express the knowledge they have.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson

HOW

 

SPECIAL STUDIES LESSON READINGS

  • First, the parent reads to the child. For a six year old, many parents can expect to read the school books to the children. Once the child is able to read the materials on their own, they can begin reading their own school books.
  • Second, the parent asks the child to tell back what he heard. This is called narration.
  • Finally, through this process, the child knows the materials.

This process of reading, narrating, and knowing was the typical method of a lesson in a Charlotte Mason education.

Also, a sample of a Charlotte Mason Lesson Notes from a 1B Class is shown on Charlotte Mason Poetry.

OBJECT STUDIES LESSONS

“Children should be encouraged to watch, patiently and quietly, until they learn something of the habits and history of bee, ant, wasp, spider, hairy caterpillar, dragon-fly, and whatever of larger growth comes in their way.” (Mason, vol. 1)

  • First, go outside. This could be a park, a field, or even, your own backyard.
  • Then, observe an object from your Special Studies. Depending on what season you are in, this could be wildflowers in bloom during Spring, or evergreen trees in winter. Since these are just examples, you would choose what makes sense for where you live.
  • Next, Mama could say something like, “Wow, look at the interesting flowers!”
  • Then, let the child observe the flowers.
  • Finally, Mama could then say, “What shape are the petals?”

NOTES ABOUT OBJECT STUDIES LESSONS

  • First, try to allow the child observe as much as he can on his own.
  • Then, let the child have time to ask questions from what he is noticing.
  • It is okay for Mama to not know the answers. For example, I’m prepared to say, “I don’t know. Let’s find out together.”
A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON SPECIAL STUDIES LESSON RESOURCES

A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Special Studies Lesson

OUR PICKS

Also, check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Finally, please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

A Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson

PART 2 

A Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson …

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be SO inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly First Grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson 

WHAT

“That the child should be taken daily, if possible, to scenes–moor or meadow, park, common, or shore–where he may find new things to examine, and so add to his store of real knowledge.” (Mason, vol. 1)

First, a Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson uses stories about science which include scientific facts, according to A Delectable Education. These books are often written by Naturalists.

“It is in no sense a text-book, although the fundamental principals underlying the sciences treated are here laid down. Its main object is to help the child to understand the material world about him.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Finally, one of my favorite quotes about Nature:

“An observant child should be put in the way of things worth observing.” (Mason, vol. 1)

TYPES OF BOOKS COVERED EACH TERM

  1. NATURE BOOK 1 (GENERAL OR ECOSYSTEM)
  2. NATURE BOOK 2 (PLANT OR ANIMAL)
  3. NATURE BOOK 3 (SPECIAL STUDIES)
  • The first type of book covers a general topic. An example could be THIS book.
  • The second type of book specifically looks at narrowed down types of plants or animals. Also, an example of a specific book could be THIS.
  • Finally, the third book, covers Special Studies, which is the topic of the next blog post! We have checked THIS book out before, and we would do so again, because it would be perfect for Special Studies!

NOTES ABOUT NATURE LORE BOOKS

 

Charlotte Mason mentions Nature Lore Books should be written by a Naturalist, because they are experts in their field. Yet, the books can also be engaging and interesting to the child.

“There are many (Nature Lore Books) to be had, all pleasant reading, man of them written by scientific men, and yet requiring little or no scientific knowledge for their enjoyment.” (Mason, vol. 1)

I choose books that would support Nature we have close to us in our yard, since this would be more attainable.

Also, I looked closely to the seasons to use books that would support what would be naturally occurring throughout the year. Therefore, we should be able to go outside, and observe what we are reading about during our Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson.

WHAT WE ARE USING

Since we plan to use these for many early elementary years, I made sure to include a nice variety! Charlotte Mason refers to a wide feast, so I sought out many good authors to include over the next few years for Nature Lore books.

A Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes the Nature Lore Lesson as occurring one time a week. Each lesson lasts about 10 minutes. Typically, you could read about 30-40 pages per term. Therefore, you would read about 4 pages out of your book per lesson.

WHY

First, Charlotte Mason advocated using Naturalist Books because:

“The real use of naturalists’ books at this stage is to give the child delightful glimpses into the world of wonders he lives in, to reveal the sort of things to be seen by curious eyes, and fill him with desire to make discoveries for himself.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Also, Nature Study in general, was such a significant part of a Charlotte Mason Education because:

“It is infinitely well worth the mother’s while to take some pains every day to secure, in the first place, that her children spend hours daily amongst rural and natural objects; and, in the second place, to infuse into them, or rather, to cherish in them, the love of investigation.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Finally, Ms. Mason mentions the importance of Nature Study because it serves as the basis of Science.

“That the child’s observation should be directed to flower or boulder, bird or tree; that, in fact, he should be employed in gathering the common information which is the basis of scientific knowledge.” (Mason, vol. 1)

HOW

  • First, the parent reads to the child. For a six year old, many parents can expect to read the school books to the children. Once the child is able to read the materials on their own, they can begin reading their own school books.
  • Second, the parent asks the child to tell back what he heard. This is called narration.
  • Finally, through this process, the child knows the materials.

This process of reading, narrating, and knowing was the typical method of a lesson in a Charlotte Mason education.

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason Nature Lore Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON NATURE LORE LESSON RESOURCES

  • A Delectable Education Podcast on Nature Lore
  • One more A Delectable Education Podcast on Nature Lore lesson with a seven year old
  • Sabbath Mood Homeschool Nature Lore Book List – an AMAZING resource of Nature Lore books per Form (Grade)
  • Exploring Nature Curriculum with Children – A Nature Topic for each week, based on a Charlotte Mason education. Each week, she includes lovely books that could easily serve as Nature Lore books, so I wanted to include it here! (HINT: If you click on this link, make sure you click “Preview” to check out the curriculum!)

OUR PICKS

Also, check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Finally, please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

Nature Study

A Charlotte Mason Nature Study Lesson

Exploring Nature
Exploring Nature

Part 1 

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Nature Study Lesson

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. Also, I include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be SO inspiring and helpful.

Next, please keep reading to see the break down of implementing lessons, the schedule, and resources I’m using that fit our family. Finally, I share the wealth of quality Charlotte Mason resources I have found helpful, from those mothers who have gone before me.

PREPARING THE FEAST

“Our aim in education is to give a full life. We owe it to them to initiate an immense number of interests.” (Mason, vol. 3)

There are MANY subjects included in a Charlotte Mason education because she believed in spreading a wide feast. Sometimes, it feels a bit daunting for a new homeschooling mama.

Therefore, I’m attempting to learn, digest, and absorb how I’m going to be teaching each subject. I have decided to compose a blog post on each subject for Form 1B (roughly First Grade). This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

“The mind feeds on ideas, and therefore children should have a generous curriculum.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason Nature Study  

WHAT

“We were all meant to be naturalists, each in its own degree, and its inexcusable to live in a world so full of the marvels of plant and animal life and to care for none of these things.” (Mason, vol. 1)

When I think about Charlotte Mason, I think about Nature Study, because it was such a big part of her educational philosophy.

WHAT WE ARE USING 

MIX MEDIA JOURNAL

Since Charlotte Mason advocated keeping a Nature Journal, we are using this simple one to record our outdoor findings. This is a mix media journal, so it will accommodate our notes, drawings, and watercolors. It is also compact enough to pack in a backpack when we go to a natural park, or the playground, or simply outside in the yard.

This Nature Journal looks amazing too, and I have seen many people purchase it!

WATERCOLORS

Although Charlotte Mason said children are worthy the best, we are using these great, inexpensive watercolors. These do a nice job, and since we already have them, we use them until they are used up. Then, we will probably purchase a nicer quality set, per Ms. Mason’s suggestions, and purchase these: Stockmar Watercolors. Also, I have this beautiful Cherry Wood Paint Holder, which we love to use when we are drawing.

Nature Drawing
Nature Drawing

HANDBOOK OF NATURE STUDY

In Home Education, Charlotte Mason says, “The mother cannot devote herself too much to this kind of reading, (Nature Study) not only that she may read tid-bits to her children about matters they have come across, but that she may be able to answer their queries and direct their observation.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Although the Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Comstock is intimidatingly large, it holds a wealth of knowledge on Nature Study. This is meant as a resource for Mama to read, in order to prepare for Nature Study Lessons.

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes the Nature Study Lesson as occurring daily. The goal should be to spend two to three hours outside in tolerably fine weather. Therefore, we plan to spend two hours outdoors per day in the afternoons, after finishing morning lessons.

A Charlotte Mason Nature Study Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Nature Study Lesson

WHY

Charlotte Mason volumes say it best, so here are three AMAZING quotes pertaining to Nature Study.

“That the knowledge most valuable to the child is that which he gets with his own eyes and ears and fingers (under direction) in the open air.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Nature Study lays the groundwork for Science.

“…the children will adore her (Mama) for knowing what they want to know, and who knows but she may give its bent for life to some young mind destined to do great things for the world.” (Mason, vol. 1)

The ladies at A Delectable Education note that Nature Study is the foundation for all school work: Reading, Math, Writing, Art, Geography, Language Development, and finally, Science. Therefore, Nature Study is not to be missed.

“…there is no sort of knowledge to be got in these early years so valuable to children as that which they get for themselves of the world they live in. Let them once get touch with Nature, and a habit is formed which will be a source of delight through life.”(Mason, vol. 1)

HOW

“In the first place, the child gets his rudimentary notions of geography as he gets his first notions of natural science, in those long hours out of doors of which we have already seen the importance.” (Mason, vol. 1)

After morning lessons, Charlotte Mason advocated ample time spent out of doors on a daily basis. Thus, Nature Study would occur daily, in the afternoons.

NATURE STUDY LESSON

  • First, go outside! This can take place in your own yard!
  • Next, the child observes nature. 
  • A very young child tells about the time they spend outdoors and his observations. This is narration. Or, the child can simply record observations in his Nature Journal.
  • Then, the child notes the month or date. Mama can write this in for the child if needed.
  • Sometimes, the child can include a drawing if they want to support their notes.
  • Keep a flower list and a bird list in columns in the Nature Journal.
  • Also, keep a list of anything interesting to the child (ex. mushrooms, trees, leaves, plants).

IMPORTANT NOTES ABOUT NATURE STUDY

  1. First, keep formal lessons short.
  2. Allow the child plenty of time to observe nature on their own.
  3. Also, Mama goes with the kiddos when possible! It is as nourishing for Mama as it is for the children.

NATURE JOURNAL

“As soon as he is able to keep it himself, a nature-diary is a source of delight to a child. ” (Mason, vol. 1)

Often, we see beautiful drawings and illustrations used for Nature Journals. In reality though, the drawings are used to support the field notes and observations. Its amazing if the child can create beautiful drawings, however, it is not necessary.

Therefore, the purpose of a Nature Journal is to support observations in nature.

In the beginning, the mother writes notes for the child, until the child is able to record his own notes in his Nature Journal. The child is encouraged to take notes, and draw in his journal anytime, because this is such a valuable part of their education.

Eventually, it is suggested to keep lists of flowers and birds, and of anything interesting to the child. Also, a child could also additionally include poetry in their Nature Journal.

Also, this Parent’s Union article suggests the schedule would have been:

  • Find and describe six wild fruits
  • Watch and describe, if possible:
    • Ten birds and
    • Five other animals
tree study
tree study

SOME HANDY RESOURCES TO SUPPORT NATURE STUDY

 

FAVORITE RESOURCES

Finally, I have come across some outstanding resources in learning about a Charlotte Mason education. I’m so happy to share them with you! Some of these are sources I return to daily because I’m preparing to teach my children. Additionally, I list specific resources for a Charlotte Mason Nature Study Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON NATURE STUDY LESSON RESOURCES

OUR PICKS

Additionally, if you are interested in additional Charlotte Mason information,

check out these previous blog posts in the series:

Thank you so much for checking in! Please stay tuned for the next ‘A Charlotte Mason Subject Lesson’ post.

Homeschool Preschool Supplies List

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason. The Living Press published my favorite version of her books. I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.