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.

Pre-Reading Lesson
Pre-Reading Lesson

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.

Planning Your Homeschool

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 

Charlotte Mason Drawing Resources
Charlotte Mason Drawing Resources

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 French Lesson

A Charlotte Mason French Lesson

A Charlotte Mason French Lesson

French with Preschoolers
French with Preschoolers

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.

Planning Your Homeschool Term

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

Picture Study
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.

History Lesson Biography Pack

A Charlotte Mason History Lesson

A Charlotte Mason History Lesson

History Lesson Biography Pack
History Lesson Biography Pack

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason History 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 History Lesson

WHAT

“The children should have the joy of living in far lands, in other persons, in other times–a delightful double existence; and this joy they will find, for the most part, in their story-books.” (Mason, vol. 1)

First, Charlotte Mason reiterates we should begin with the child. Then, we work outward from there. Since we live in America, this is where we will begin for a Charlotte Mason History lesson.

The first year student should hear Heroic Age tales from his own country. Therefore, the time explored in History spans 1000-1600 AD. So, this period covers tales during the time of Discovery of America, which is before colonization.

WHAT WE ARE READING FOR HISTORY

While there are many good quality Living Books, this is what we are reading:

These seem like appropriate selections for a six year old. Also, I’m including picture books, and inspiring tales to hold their interest.

HISTORY SPINE

Charlotte Mason used a History spine. In other words, one book was used to cover a large period of time. Therefore, a spine is often used for several years. I choose America First: One Hundred Stories From Our Own History since it was recommended and was affordable.

While there will be only a few stories covered in our first formal year of education, the remainder of the book will be used for the upcoming early elementary years as our History spine.

OTHER HISTORY SPINE RECOMMENDATIONS

Also, you can find And There Was America for free here: archive.org.

America First History Lesson

BIBLIOGRAPHIES

“Though he is reading and thinking of the lifetime of a single man, he is really getting intimately acquainted with the history of a whole nation for a whole age.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Next, Charlotte Mason advocated to read Biographies, in addition to the History spine. I choose Leif the Lucky and Columbus by Ingri D’Aulaire to start with, since they fit in the time period.

Also, I choose to order from Beautiful Feet Books. Right now, they are offering a D’Aulaire Biography pack 40% off! These books are such a great resource because they will be read for several years to support the History spine.

A Charlotte Mason History Lesson
A Charlotte Mason History Lesson

Also, one more recommended History Biography: The Book of Indians.

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes a History Lesson as occurring twice a week. Each lesson should last about 20 minutes.

WHY

Charlotte Mason placed the History Lesson second in importance behind the Bible Lesson. Therefore, it was very important to her.

“Their lessons, too, history and geography, should cultivate their conceptive powers” (Mason, vol. 1)

History lessons should inspire the child with wonderful concepts and ideas.

“Here, too, is a subject which should be to the child an inexhaustible storehouse of ideas…” (Mason, vol. 1)

According to Living Books Library, “The best books reveal the living ideas of another mind that was very much alive when the potent ideas were put into words. We read and our living mind grabs hold of and runs with those ideas, feeds on them, is nourished by them.”

“Moral teaching falls, no doubt, within the providence of history…” (Mason, vol. 1)

Another article written by Living Books Library defines Living Books, “exemplify virtuous living.”

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.

Charlotte Mason used a child’s natural “narration” skills as a starting place. She observed even very small preschool age children want to narrate their life, their play, their stories, and their experiences. So, Ms. Mason builds on this inherent capability in children.

Though I have not yet read this, I have heard Know and Tell: The Art of Narration by Karen Glass is a great resource. It shows a deeper understanding for the process of narration as a valuable tool for education. So, it may be worth a look.

MAPS

Additionally, we can include maps so our children can visually see America. This could occur before reading the lesson. Then, the lesson continues with the reading and narration.

Since we have Maps and The 50 States: Explore the U.S.A. , we may pull these out from time to time! I was lucky to find these at Half Price Books, since the price is so good!

Also, I have these LOVELY maps, and I can’t wait to decorate our Homeschool space with them!

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 History Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON HISTORY RESOURCES

  • A Delectable Education podcast on Why Study History
  • Another A Delectable Education podcast on History Chronology
  • Suggestion of History Books podcast from A Delectable Education
  • Volume 1 Charlotte Mason’s Home Education (pg. 279-295)

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! Also, 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.

Preschool Living Books

29 Charlotte Mason Inspired Preschool Books

CHARLOTTE MASON PRESCHOOL BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS

Preschool Living Books
Preschool Living Books

 

First, I list our favorite preschool, or early years, read alouds! Next, I explain my journey of how I began homeschooling my children. Next, I discuss my favorite method and philosophy of Education.

  • Please keep reading to the bottom for some great homeschooling resources!

FAVORITE BIBLES FOR PRESCHOOLERS

A big part of Charlotte Mason was her belief in God. However, I also come across another secular early years CM resource and it can be found here if that suits you better: Wildwood Curriculum.

BIBLES FOR PRESCHOOLERS
BIBLES FOR PRESCHOOLERS
 

Click the Links below to view the book more in depth or to purchase through Amazon!

  1. The Jesus Storybook Bible – ABSOLUTELY our favorite Bible for the younger years!!!
  2. The Complete Illustrated Children’s Bible – gorgeous illustrations and more in line with a traditional King James version of the Bible…a nice transition before the real deal for little ones!
  3. Random House Book of Bible Stories – gorgeous illustrations and more in line with a traditional King James version of the Bible…a nice transition before the real deal for little ones!
  4. The Wonder Book of Bible Stories – recommended by Ambleside online

FAVORITE GENTLE LEARNING BOARD BOOKS FOR PRESCHOOLERS

Click the Links below to view the book more in depth or to purchase through Amazon!

GENTLE LEARNING
GENTLE LEARNING
  1. 1 is One – Beautiful, timeless illustrations and gentle introduction to counting numbers 1 through 20
  2. Counting with Barefoot Critters – you can’t beat these sweet illustrations and carefully created stories for each number 1 through 12
  3. Adventures with Barefoot Critters: An ABC Book – the illustrations are incredible and I love how this story includes both ABC’s and the calendar months
  4. B is for Bear: A Natural Alphabet – a nature-inspired alphabet book
  5. In a Pumpkin Shell – a beautifully illustrated alphabet book based on mother goose nursery rhymes
  6. A to Z Picture Book – wonderfully illustrated alphabet book by Gyo Fujikawa

CHARLOTTE MASON PRESCHOOL BOOKS TO PREPARE FOR HOME EDUCATION

Click the Links below to view the book more in depth or to purchase through Amazon!

Although I’m no Charlotte Mason expert, I believe these books in the list below, represent Living Books. These books:

  •      create imaginative play in my children
  •      contain beautiful stories that my children ask for over and over
  •      are comprised of beautiful literature and pictures
  •      inspire good values and
  •      are passed down from generation to generation
Preschool Living Books
Preschool Living Books
Charlotte Mason Preschool Books
Charlotte Mason Preschool Books

Click the Links below to view the book more in depth or to purchase through Amazon!

  1. Albert – a sweet story about a man overcoming his fears and how nature helped him learn how
  2. Blueberries for Sal – a sweet story, we just love almost everything from this author
  3. Corduroy – a sweet story of hope, adventure, and an adorable bear
  4. Make Way for Ducklings – both kiddos (ages JUST now 4 and 5) LOVE this book
  5. Miss Rumphius – what a lovely story…I may have shed a tear or two… We have read this one MANY TIMES by request of my kiddos
  6. One Morning in Maine – I just love everything by this author
  7. Roxaboxen – what a lovely story about the freedom of childhood and playing in nature
  8. The story of Ferdinand – a lovely, classic story about self-control and kindness
  9. The Complete Adventures of Peter Rabbit – my oldest REALLY loves these stories
  10. The Complete Tales of Beatrix Potter – if you can swing the whole set, this is wonderful and my children love these stories! (The literature is rich, so its a nice preparatory for their future formal school readings)
  11. The Little Engine that Could – I love this version because of the lovely illustrations
  12. The Little House – a sweet tale of patience and kindness
  13. The Little Red Hen – if you can swing for a set from Paul Galdone, I think they are delightful versions of these classic tales
  14. The Three Bears – if you can swing for a set from Paul Galdone, I think they are delightful versions of these classic tales
  15. The Three Billy Goats Gruff – if you can swing for a set from Paul Galdone, I think they are delightful versions of these classic tales
  16. The Velveteen Rabbit – love this original version and illustrations
  17. The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree – this one has made me cry happy tears each time I have read it aloud to my children
  18. The Complete Tales of Winnie the Pooh – I can’t recommend this one enough! My boys love these stories
  19. Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes – we love this version by Tomie DePaola so I highly recommend it in the early years.

FAVORITE PRESCHOOL/KINDERGARTEN/FIRST GRADE READERS

Finally, here are some suggested wonderful First Readers if you are Preschoolers are beginning to read on their own!

Click the Links below to view the book more in depth or to purchase through Amazon!

First Readers
First Readers
  1. Frog and Toad Storybook Treasury – my children BOTH love the stories in this Treasury. It’s going to be a great stepping stone to reading on their own!
  2. Little Bear – My children LOVE these stories and I’m excited for them to learn read them aloud to me one day!
  3. Treadwell Primer – these contain the classic stories hopefully your kiddos will grow up with and be inspired to learn how to read
  4. Treadwell First Reader– these contain the classic stories hopefully your kiddos will grow up with and be inspired to learn how to read

PRESCHOOL YEARS

My greatest joy is spending as much time with my children as possible. Have you read The Five Love Languages? It was recommended to me by a friend to strengthen my marriage, and I highly recommend it! The most important thing, to me, is building a relationship with my family.

CHARLOTTE MASON

Charlotte WHO???

When I first heard about Charlotte Mason, I had NO CLUE who she was. I searched homeschooling styles, and took this quiz and was surprised I scored the highest in a Charlotte Mason education style. Since I had no idea who she was, I did some research! WAY TOO MUCH RESEARCH.

Then, I reached out to the Peaceful Preschool Facebook group I was a part of, and the creator of the group, (and a very experienced homeschool mama) along with other mamas, steered me in the direction of some of my favorite and first Charlotte Mason resources: A Charlotte Mason Companion and For the Children’s Sake.

 

Have you read these? If not, please do yourself a favor and start reading!

 

LOVE AT FIRST READ

From the first few pages into A Charlotte Mason Companion, I was IN DEEP! It was like the author, and Charlotte Mason herself was speaking directly to my heart. Since what I was reading made so since much sense to me, I wanted to begin educating my children using the Charlotte Mason method immediately!

CHARLOTTE MASON PRESCHOOL BOOKS

The BEST WAY to learn about a Charlotte Mason Education is to read her volumes. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you begin with Volume 1 Home Education. Really, I recommend the whole set of Charlotte Mason’s volumes since they have SUCH great value to parents, mamas, home educators or anyone caring for children.

Home Education lays the foundation for children ages 0-9 years old therefore it is a perfect starting point for your preschoolers. Charlotte Mason (CM) stresses the importance of forming good habits, points out the value of spending long hours outdoors daily, reading good quality literature through reading aloud, and introduces the concept of the early lessons. She recommended formal education began at age six for the child.

Some of my favorite Charlotte Mason quotes:

  • “Never be within doors, when you can rightly be without.” CM Home Education pg. 42
  • “In this time of extraordinary pressure, educational and social, perhaps a mother’s first duty to her children is to secure a quiet growing time, a full six years of passive receptive life, the waking part of it spent for the most part in fresh air.” CM Home Education pg. 43
  • “An Observant child should be put in the way of Things worth observing.” CM Home Education pg. 69

 

 

EARLY YEARS (PRESCHOOL) CURRICULUM RESOURCES 

These are MY FAVORITE PRESCHOOL CM RESOURCES and I’m happy to share them with YOU!

  1. Ambleside Online – Year 0 Explanation and Book List (Children Ages Birth – 6 Years Old)
  2. Charlotte Mason Help –  Preschool and Kindergarten Book List and Schedule (Children Ages Birth – 6 Years Old)
  3. A Delectable Education – Episode 79 Podcast: The Early Years (Children Ages Birth – 6 Years Old)
  4. A Charlotte Mason Soiree – Free Charlotte Mason Courses and a wonderful Facebook Community!
  5. Exploring Nature with Children – A Beautiful and Gentle Introduction to Nature Study that we LOVE! Make sure to click on “Preview” if you click on this link to see a sample of the curriculum!
  6. Simple Living Mama – plenty of wonderful Charlotte Mason Preschool resources listed on this page! I particularly love her page about developing good habits – and I have it linked at the bottom.

FAVORITE PRESCHOOL BOOKS

Favorite-Books
Favorite-Books

Reading has always been a big part of my family culture. My mom would scour countless garage sales for me and bring home boxes of books, much to my delight! I was an early reader and an avid reader and I know this is because my parents and Grammie made it a priority to read aloud to me daily. As I entered middle school, my parent’s built their dream home and created a room dedicated to books…so we had our very own library!!!

Finally, I have used the Early Years Curriculum Resources above, as well as suggested books from the Peaceful Preschool, to hone and curate my very favorite Preschool books. I hope you enjoy this list as much as we do!!! Since we have ALL OF THESE BOOKS, I highly recommend them to you! If you have any questions about a particular book, please let me know because I would love to help!

LIVING BOOKS

Part of Charlotte Mason’s educational philosophy was utilizing Living Books. Listen to this wonderful podcast to hear a description of what Living Books are and why you might want to use these. According to Livingbookslibrary.com, Living Books contain, “literary power, rich ideas, are virtuous, inspiring, told in narrative form, span generations, and inspire imagination.”

Why Living Books

 

 

 

GENTLE LETTER LEARNING

Also, read about our gentle letter introduction. We are currently slowly and carefully are moving through Exploring Nature with Children in order to provide a gentle introduction to learning.

Finally, here are our favorite Preschool Supplies!

In conclusion, I hope this helps provide a resource to you in your preschool and early homeschooling years. If you are taking on a Charlotte Mason education, what are your favorite resources? I would love to hear from you!

 

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More Easter Ideas

9 Gift Ideas for Your Child’s Easter Basket

NINE EASTER GIFT IDEAS FOR YOUR PRESCHOOLER, TODDLER, BABY

Here is an Easter gift guide list including some of the favorite things that we love!

Hopefully, this inspires you with some Easter gift ideas! I start with nine gifts for your preschooler, four more gifts I couldn’t resist including, and finish with some lovely Easter books. Many of these items we have and love, and many are on our wish list! Most items included have a nature theme since we are heavy into Charlotte Mason over here and two little boys and nature mix together very well!

EASTER BASKET IDEAS FOR PRESCHOOLERS

9 Easter Basket Ideas for Preschoolers
9 Easter Basket Ideas for Preschoolers

  1. Montessori Flower Nature Puzzle – At $15, I feel like these are a great quality, beautiful and the your Preschoolers would learn about nature as they put these puzzles together. HINT: there are MANY lovely puzzles when you click on this link…I wouldn’t mind owning several of these!
  2. Wood Jar Paint Holders – I have been thinking about these paint jars for more than a year. My oldest (5) LOVES to paint with watercolors and I have seen this recommended by many mamas. I know this will serve us well for many years to come as we learn to draw, paint, and enjoy art!
  3. Jesus Storybook Bible – I cannot say enough GREAT THINGS about this Bible version. We have read probably 3-4 different children’s Bible versions and this is BY FAR our FAVORITE!!! The way the author tells the stories coupled with the beautiful illustrations is phenomenal. Since we love it so much, I have gifted to this other kiddos! It is truly beautiful.
  4. Live Butterfly Kit – We have never hatched butterflies before but it is definitely on our bucket list! I like this version because it looks like it has everything included and it seems inexpensive!
  5. Watercolor Paint Set – We own a similar travel watercolor set and LOVE it. This set caught my eye since it contains so many colors with the set. I think its beautiful! Its nice to have an inexpensive set to take with you on nature walks especially as the children grow.
  6. An Egg is Quiet – We have this one, along with some of the other books in the set, like A Seed is Sleepy, and A Nest is Noisy. I really love these books. The illustrations are lovely and they are full of information. My children particularly love the Egg book and enjoy drawing and coloring in their own eggs from the book pages.
  7. Wooden Eggs – Some of our favorite toys are ones that are open-ended and inspire imaginative play. Play is SO important for a child’s development. The best ones, in my opinion, are simple, well-made and inspire the child to act out scenes and prepare for real-world life. We love our kitchen toys and these eggs would make a nice addition!
  8. If You Plant a Seed – We do not own this book but the illustrations look lovely! I have seen it in the bookstore and the story plot seems like a great character building book. The adorable bunny plants carrots and cabbage in the garden to watch it grow, and wonders what would happen if you plant kindness or selfishness in the garden?
  9. Organic Beeswax Crayons – these organic,  non-toxic crayons look lovely! My oldest, at age 5, loves to get out his coloring book and color. These crayons would make a lovely addition to any Easter basket!
  10. Flower Families – a Go Fish game with beautiful flower illustrations.

MORE EASTER BASKET IDEAS

More Easter Ideas
More Easter Ideas

  1. Match a Pair of Birds Memory Game – We have Bug Bingo, which is a game by the same illustrator/creator. My two boys (ages 3 and 5) LOVE Bug Bingo and honestly, so do I! I love it because it is simple enough for them to understand how to play, the game is beautiful, and they are learning as they play! Memory Games are generally wonderful for Preschool/Toddler ages and this game would be a delight!
  2. Kids Garden Tool Set – Over the years, we have been gifted various garden sets (I think our families have gathered that we love nature and spend time outside!!!). This adorable bag and garden set caught my eye, and at $7 for the set, you can’t beat the price!
  3. Window Bird Feeder – I have seen window bird feeders recommended many times from Mamas. I need to take their advice and order it for our family! Spring is the PERFECT time of year to view birds since they are returning from winter to build their nests!! They are clear so you can literally look right out your window and view them!
  4. Eco-Eggs Color Kit – We have this set and have already had a head start on the kit! It comes in an egg carton, and everything you need is included in the kit. We have grown our own wheat grass together, and the next step will be coloring eggs with the natural dyes that are included in the set, and then coloring the eggs with the natural beeswax crayon included!
  5. Sibley Backyard Bird Flashcards –  This makes learning about birds so fun!

EASTER BOOK IDEAS FOR GIFT BASKET

Easter Book Ideas
Easter Book Ideas

  1. The Story of the Easter Robin – This book was recommended by Sarah Makenzie from the Read Aloud Revival. I was fortunate enough to attend a homeschooling conference and see her this weekend and she was so lovely! This story has beautiful illustrations and the story teaches compassion and faith.
  2. The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes – We picked up this lovely story last Spring. Its a lovely story of a Mama and I think any Mama should read it to herself and little ones.
  3. Rechenka’s Eggs – This book is included in the Peaceful Preschool curriculum. I love exposing my children to different cultures. Through stories, they can learn about far off lands without us traveling there and it is such a great learning opportunity.
  4. A Tale for Easter – This was another book recommended by the Read Aloud Revival. I have other Tasha Tudor’s books that we love such as A Time to Keep. Her illustrations are always inspiring and the explanation of Easter and how it relates to family traditions are inspiring!
  5. The Very First Easter – A new Easter gift that will arrive in their basket this year!
  6. The Story of the Easter Robin – Another sweet book that must be shared with little ones!

I hope this guide was helpful to you in your Easter gifts selections for you and your loved ones. 🙂 Wishing you all a wonderful Easter and Spring time!!!

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OTHER LINKS YOU MAY BE INTERESTED IN

Rooted Childhood’s Easter Basket Ideas

Top Preschool Supplies

Exploring Nature with Children

Exploring Nature with Children Journal

NATURE BOOKS GIFTS

Top Gift Ideas for Mama, Toddler, and Baby

TOP GIFT IDEAS FOR MAMA, PRESCHOOLER, TODDLER AND BABY

Over the last six years, we have found some wonderful children’s items. I wanted to share some of them with you!

This post includes a list of some of our favorite things. Hopefully, this inspires you with some Christmas gift ideas! I start with gifts for baby, learning toys, gifts for nature loving kids, nature book ideas, and finish with gifts for mama. Many of these items we have and love, and many are on our wish list! Most items included have a nature or natural theme since that is one of the things we value and cherish.

GIFT IDEAS FOR BABY

Baby Gifts
Baby Gifts

  1. Organic Muslin Swaddle Blanket – We had similar blankets for the boys when they were babies and LOVE them. I almost always try to give this as a gift to my mama to be friends. They are super soft, organic and so versatile. They are large enough that you can swaddle babies and use them as the children grow! My boys continue to seek their blankets in cold weather.
  2. TinyTot Wooden Balance Bike and Tricycle – This is so adorable. It is so beautiful! I would have purchased one of these for my boys in their younger years if I had seen it! This seems to be a great price for a balance bike.
  3. Nature Wooden Mini Puzzles – These are super cute and perfect for little fingers.
  4. Natural Wooden Baby Teether – These are super cute and so important when baby wants to explore by putting objects in their mouth.
  5. Baby/Toddler Bamboo Spoons – I didn’t include these on the picture above, but these are so adorable. Its great when you can find perfect feeding spoons for the first couple of years!

GIFT IDEAS FOR LEARNING

LEARNING TOYS
LEARNING TOYS

  1. Wooden Xylophone – I’m not sure about your children, but my children would LOVE this toy! Last Christmas, we purchased them a mini piano and drum set and they STILL love to play on them! Children can learn so much from music, songs, and learning to play an instrument.
  2. PlanToys Wooden Bee Hive – This is so adorable and great for learning! Children can count, recognize colors, make patterns, and work on fine motor skills with this fun toy!
  3. Hape Alphabet Learning Puzzle – We have a colorful wooden alphabet puzzle but I have always been interested in this one. It seems this year, Hape has reduced the price quite a bit! If I we didn’t already have a wooden alphabet, we would snatch this up.
  4. Oil Pastels – I had to include these here too. My youngest son (age three) especially loves making art with these!

Here is a helpful list of our favorite, well-used Preschool Supplies.

GIFT IDEAS FOR NATURE LOVING KIDDOS

Nature Gifts
Nature Gifts

  1. Classic Wooden Swing for Adults and Kids – I have a hunch my nature loving boys will love a wooden swing hanging from the oak tree out front. This one can also hold an adult as well! It seems like such a great price!
  2. DIY Terrarium Succulent Planter Kit –  We made a terrarium this year as part of our Exploring Nature with Children curriculum and my boys loved the whole process. They really enjoy caring for plants of their own. Also, its such an easy and beautiful addition to your home!
  3. Wooden Hand-Carved Jump Rope – This would make a great pastime outdoors. My children love to be outside and active. What a unique jumprope to add to their outdoor collection!
  4. Lift and Learn Leaf Puzzle – This would be a beautiful puzzle to have lying around. Kiddos are learning so much about leaves, trees, and each leaf lifts up to reveal more facts about the leaf.
  5. Wooden Insect House – I have seen these at the garden center and I know my boys would delight at housing some insects!

GIFT IDEAS FOR NATURE BOOKS

NATURE BOOKS GIFTS
NATURE BOOKS GIFTS

  1. Animalium Activity Book – This looks amazing and I have heard many mamas recommend it! This would have been super to have on our long road trip we recently took. The Animalium Activity book and also Animalium is on our wish list.
  2. Usborne Outdoor Book – I supported a friend who sells Usborne books and the boys are getting this book for Christmas! My boys love the Usborne books. They are so informative and captivate their attention so these are a win.
  3. Nature Anatomy Collection – We use these books almost every other day with our homeschool preschool studies. They are SUCH a wealth or resources. I love the simple, watercoloring drawings and my oldest loves to draw and watercolor using these images as examples. There are so many fun projects in these books to try out as well.
  4. The Complete Tales of Winnie the Pooh – I think this is a MUST on any children’s book list. We have several copies from when I was a child. This particular copy is so beautifully illustrated and my boys and I have begun reading it through the second time. I highly recommend it!
  5. The Elves and the Shoemaker – I love the classic fairytales. The boys are getting this book for Christmas. I thought it would be a perfect addition for this time of year. I love the author and illustrator so I can’t wait to share this story with the boys!
  6. Tommy Smith’s Animals – Now that my boys are a year older, we have started formal school lessons. This is one of my son’s favorite books. It is a GOOD animal story and so informative.

GIFT IDEAS FOR MAMA

Mama gifts
Mama gifts

  1. Dead Sea Bath Salts CALM – Anything that evokes a warm, CALM, bath captures my attention. One of my favorite self-care indulgences is a long slow soak in the bath. My boys have even taken this on and we sometimes purchase bath salts at the grocery store to add to their bath. Such an indulgence and pretty inexpensive.
  2. Puracy Natural Household Cleaning Bundle – I have the Puracy dish liquid, hand soap and multi-purpose cleaner on Amazon subscription, which ships to us regularly. I love these cleaners because they are a wonderful product free of harsh chemicals you don’t want in your home. They do a great job and cleaning and smell wonderful too!
  3. Weck Glass Airtight Food Storage Jars – We cook most meals in our home. I’m always on the watch for functional, affordable glass containers to store our pantry items. These are beautiful as well as functional and I can’t wait to snag some for my pantry grains!
  4. Handbook of Nature Study – This giant book is a wealth of information on nature study. I have only scratched the surface, however, I have learned a great deal already. This helps me feel comfortable exploring nature with my children, therefore, it is highly recommended!

GIFT IDEAS FOR FITNESS MAMA

FITNESS GIFTS FOR MAMA
FITNESS GIFTS FOR MAMA

  1. Kitchen Aid 5 Speed Blender – We have this blender and it has been well loved and used. I love this bright, cheerful red Christmas color too!
  2. Yoga Mat Bag – This would be a great bag to store your yoga mat in when running to class or while traveling.
  3. Dumbbells – Over the last year, I have added weights into my workout routine. I feel its super important to use some weights occasionally with your workouts especially as we age (hello 35!). I really enjoy these weights and I personally use 3 and 5 lb. weights.
  4. Lululemon Juice Energy Sports Bra – Lululemon makes some really great workout clothes. They are my favorite brand because of their quality and comfort. I have this bra in white but would love it in pin as well!
  5. Stainless Steel Water Bottle – This is not pictured above, but I love a nice quality stainless steel bottle that is not terribly expensive! These are so versatile and we have smaller ones for the boys.

I hope this guide was helpful to you in your Christmas gifts for you and your loved ones. I could keep going….but Mama is ready to rest now 🙂 Wishing you all a wonderful Christmas season!

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