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.

A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Poetry Lesson

 

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 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 Geography Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Geography Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Geography Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Geography Lesson
A Charlotte Mason Geography Lesson

Before we begin A Charlotte Mason Geography 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 Geography Lesson

WHAT

First, Charlotte Mason discusses the educative and practical purposes of geography:

“for educative purposes, the child must learn such geography, and in such a way, that his mind shall thereby be stored with ideas, his imagination with images…” (Mason, vol. 1)

Geography supplies the child with an education, yet it also gives beautiful ideas and pictures for the mind.

Then, Charlotte Mason goes onto say, “…for practical purposes he must learn such geography only as, the nature of his mind considered, he will able to remember; in other words, he must learn what interests him.” (Mason, vol. 1)

It is not necessary to simply have children recite facts and names of places, since a child may not remember dry facts. Instead, we can seek to make geography interesting, so that the child retains more knowledge.

“The first ideas of geography, the lessons on place, which should make a child observant of local geography, of the features of his own neighborhood, its heights and hollows, and level lands, its streams and ponds, should be gained, as we have seen, out of doors..” (Mason, vol. 1)

Finally, the geography lesson can be very simple to accomplish, since you can simply use whatever outdoor situation you have in your own yard. It is not necessary to travel daily to a beautiful natural park, though that is always nice to work in when you can!

A Charlotte Mason Geography Lesson Pack

WHAT WE ARE READING FOR GEOGRAPHY

Since I trust these two resources immensely, we are following A Delectable Education and Ambleside’s recommendations for geography.

ELEMENTARY GEOGRAPHY

For the first year of formal education, Form 1B (First Grade), we will read 40 pages of Charlotte Mason’s Elementary Geography. This includes Lessons 1-13. Examples of lesson topics include: Our World, The Star, The Sunshine, Day and Night, and Poles and Axis.

  • Elementary Geography by Charlotte Mason – I prefer to have an actual hardcopy of the book to hold, and read, therefore, I choose to purchase this book. It is only $9, and will serve us for a few years as a geography resource.
  • Elementary Geography by Charlotte Mason – Also, if you prefer, this is a free version of the book.

BOOK OF CHILDREN LIVING AROUND THE WORLD

Additionally, it is recommended to read a book about children living around the world. Since we live in Texas, I choose books written about places close to home. Therefore, we will be reading:

  • Tree in the Trail by Holling C. Holling – I’m so excited for this book, because the illustrations are lovely! The story begins with an Indian boy and the tree. Here is the description from Beautiful Feet Books: The history of the Great Plains and the Santa Fe Trail is told in text and pictures by focusing on a cottonwood tree and the events that happen around it. The 200 year pageant of history on the Santa Fe Trail will acquaint readers with the story of the earliest American Indians, Spanish Conquistadors, French Voyageurs, buffalo stampedes, and finally the Conestoga wagons moving west.
  • Strawberry Girl by Lois Lenski – This book tells the story of Birdie, a young girl, who has moved with her family to the backwoods of Florida. She is excited to begin their strawberry fields. This tale shows the life of living on a farm. I was born in Tampa, FL, and we have been growing small strawberry plants, so I’m eager to share this story with my children!
  • Children of Foreign Lands by Elizabeth McCrady – A classic collection of stories about the everyday lives of children from around the world, lavishly illustrated in full color and black and white. The stories include stories about Norway, China, Holland, Mexico, Hawai’i, Siam, Spain, and Arabia.
  • Little Folks of Many Lands by Lulu Maude Chance. Since my boys have loved Children of Foreign Lands so much, we will read this one next!

 



Here are all of the wonderful Holling C. Holling books. I’m slowly acquiring them all because we will eventually read through them.

    

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes a Geography Lesson as occurring twice a week. Each lesson should last about 15 minutes.

WHY

“But the peculiar value of geography lies in its fitness to nourish the mind with ideas, and to furnish the imagination with pictures. Herein lies the educational value of geography.” (Mason, vol. 1)

A Charlotte Mason education seeks to supply rich ideas for the child, to carry him through life. She says, “the question is, not how many things does he know, but how much does he know about each thing.”(Mason, vol. 1)

Next, here is a beautiful CM quote that I just adore.

“But let him be at home in any single region; let him see, with the mind’s eye, the people at their work and at their play, the flowers and fruits in their seasons, the beasts, each in its habitat; and let him see all sympathetically, that is, let him follow the adventures of a traveller; and he knows more, is better furnished with ideas, than if he had learnt all the names on all the maps” (Mason, vol. 1)

This quote above is perhaps one of my favorite Charlotte Mason quotes because it shows clearly and visually what the child can gain in the geography lesson.

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, geography study would continue in the afternoons.

FORMAL GEOGRAPHY LESSONS

Formal Geography lessons for a young student can be very simple since they can occur outdoors, in whatever environment you have on hand. In addition to reading the above books for our morning geography lesson, we will continue to explore the ideas gained from our lessons, outside in the yard.

  • First, the child gains a “pictorial geography” (Mason, vol. 1). The child can easily imagine a forest by observing the trees outside, a lake from a small creek, and the mountains from the hills. Since the child has access to trees, creeks, and hills, (or whatever your particular landscape outdoors looks like) the child can use these to understand larger concepts such as a forest, lake, or mountains.
  • Then, have the child make islands, isthmuses, mountains, straights, and lakes in a tray of sand. This was taken from A Charlotte Mason Plenary’s resources, therefore, I believe it be essential.
  • The child can next draw maps in the sand with sticks, or a simple rough sketch of a map with pencil and paper. Ms. Mason suggests to “always give a rough sketch-map of the route you took in a given journey” (Mason, vol. 1)
  • Then, read books of travelers or “give him next intimate knowledge, with the fullest details, of … any county or district of his own country” (Mason, vol. 1).
Geography Pack
Geography Pack

INFORMAL AFTERNOON GEOGRAPHY LESSONS

Afternoon lessons can cover a multitude of geography learning because the child is encouraged to be outdoors as much as possible. These lessons make up Physical Geography.

These are great topics to touch on throughout the year…not necessarily on a daily basis.

It is easier for a child to think about concrete ideas, and then advance to more abstract thinking. Therefore, the steps Ms. Mason lays out, follow this sequence:

  • First, learn to observe the position of the sun, in order to tell the time of day. (Mason, vol. 1
  • Next, observe the weather (ex. clouds, rain, snow, hail).
  • Third, learn about distance by measuring the child’s steps or the steps of a sibling.
  • A child can also learn about directions – north, east, south, and west. Teach your child the sun rises in the east and sets in the west.
  • Then, a child can learn to use a compass.
  • Once the child understands directions, you can move onto learning about boundaries, such as the boundaries of this field, the boundaries of my front yard, etc.
  • Finally, they can learn to draw rough sketches of maps of what they see. The plan is “done with chalk on a rock, or with walking-stick in the gravel.” (Mason, vol. 1)

 

MAPS

First, Ms. Mason says:

“…geography should be learned chiefly from maps” (Mason, vol. 1).

We can, therefore, include maps to compliment living books, because they allow the child another means to explore geography. Maps provide such useful tools for a child, therefore, a child must learn to use a map well.

Ms. Mason states: “Maps must be carefully used in this kind of work,–a sketch-map following the traveller’s progress, to be compared finally with a complete map of the region” (Mason, vol. 1).

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!

“At the same time, he gets his first notions of a map from a rude sketch, a mere few lines and dots, done with pencil and paper, or, better still, with a stick in the sand or gravel” (Mason, vol. 1)

A child should learn:

…the meaning of a map and how to use it” (Mason, vol. 1).

Also, I have this LOVELY map, and this magnetic chalkboard. I love the magnetic chalkboard because we can display our children’s artwork on it, as well as use it for a chalkboard.

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 Geography Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON GEOGRAPHY 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.

9 Great Literature Books for Elementary Student

A Charlotte Mason Literature Lesson

A Charlotte Mason Literature Lesson

9 Great Literature Books for Elementary Student
9 Great Literature Books for Elementary Student

 

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 Literature Lesson

WHAT

FAIRY TALES

Albert Einstein said, “If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read more fairy tales.”

Since I’m homeschooling my son for the first time this Fall, I focus first on a Charlotte Mason Literature Lesson for a very young Elementary student. It is recommended to cover three Fairy Tales per term. Since there are three terms per year in a Charlotte Mason education, you should cover about nine Fairy Tales per year. In addition, you should read three Fables per term. This also adds up to nine Fables per year.

“But let them have tales of the imagination, scenes laid in other lands and other times, heroic adventures, hairbreadth escapes, delicious fairy tales in which they are never roughly pulled up by the impossible–even where all is impossible, and they know it, and yet believe.” (Mason, vol. 1)

WHAT WE ARE USING

I’m choosing to use the Blue Fairy Book by Andrew Lang. We also have Grimm’s Fairy Tales since this and Anderson’s Fairy Tales were recommended on the official schedule for a beginning student. Additionally, I’m using this BEAUTIFULLY illustrated book of Aesop’s Fables. Because I continue to hear how much young elementary students loves these two books, I’m very excited for this subject!

“Fables…should form the basis of moral instruction.” (Mason, vol. 2)

POETRY

Poetry is also included in Literature. A poem, from a good anthology, should be read daily to students. We are using A Child’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson, and I’m so happy because Tasha Tudor illustrated this version! Also, since we love Winnie the Pooh, we are reading A.A. Milne’s When We Were Young and Now We Are Six for poetry options.

Ms. Mason says in Home Education, that all children’s lesson-books “should be written with literary power.” 

 

WHEN

Charlotte Mason describes a Literature Lesson occurring twice a week, and should last about 20 minutes per lesson.  I’m choosing to alternate a Fairy Tale and a Fable each week, because there are only two Literature Lessons per week.

Also, a great goal is to read poetry to your children each afternoon. I plan to implement this after Nature Study (future post coming on this subject!). Since we already typically share an afternoon snack, I plan to read aloud a poem or two during this time.

Finally, we plan to continue with our afternoon read aloud and bedtime readings, as we do now. The books for these read alouds are carefully chosen for their authors, ideas, and great stories. I look forward to diving into these with my kiddos because we have already begun a few since they just couldn’t wait!

SUGGESTED GREAT READ ALOUDS

 

While this list does NOT include all of the great options for read aloud choices for the very young student, here is what we are planning to read for our First Grade year!

9 Great Literature Books for Elementary Student
9 Great Literature Books for Elementary Student

HOW

“It is the very nature of an idea to grow: as the vegetable germ secretes that it lives by, so, fairly implant an idea in the child’s mind, and it will secrete its own food, grow, and bear fruit in the form of a succession of kindred ideas.” (Mason, vol. 1)

STEPS

  • First, read a Fairy Tale or Fable for about ten to fifteen minutes.
  • Then, ask the child to narrate back what they heard.
  • Most importantly, this method of narration, where the child puts what he heard into his own words, allows the child to know the material.

According to Charlotte Mason, a Literature Lesson could be: read a Fairy Tale for about ten minutes, then ask your student to narrate back what they heard for about the next ten minutes.

For the afternoon Poetry reading, you simply read aloud a poem or two to your child. You do not have to ask for a Narration at this time from your child.

Finally, for the afternoon/evening read alouds, the goal IS to ask for a narration by the student.

WHY

One of Charlotte Mason’s mentors said, “…much of the selfishness of the world is due, not to actual hard-heartedness, but to a lack of imaginative power.” (Mason, vol. 2). 

It is necessary to explore Literature with our children because we are exposing them to the books and thoughts that develop character. J.H. Newman said, “literature stands related to man as science stands to nature.”

Also, in Home Education, Charlotte Mason says, “…for it is only as we have it in us to let a person or a cause fill the whole stage of the mind, to the exclusion of self-occupation, that we are capable of large-hearted action on behalf of that person or cause.” (vol. 1)

Children are deserving of the very best materials, and access to the very best thinkers, ideas, and stories through Literature. Emily Kiser, from A Delectable Education, says that literature is knowledge touched with emotion, and therefore, helps children find their place in the world. 

In conclusion, Ms. Mason states, “Therefore, the selection of their first lesson-books is a matter of grave importance, because it rests with these to give children the idea that knowledge is supremely attractive and that reading is delightful.” (vol. 1)

FAVORITE RESOURCES

 

Books about Books for Literature Lesson
Books about Books for Literature Lesson

 

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 Literature Lesson.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON WRITING LITERATURE RESOURCES

OUR PICKS

Additionally, if you are interested in additional Charlotte Mason information, feel free to 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. Finally, I TRULY recommend any parent read Charlotte Mason’s books! Since they are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

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Bible

A Charlotte Mason Bible Study Lesson

A CHARLOTTE MASON BIBLE STUDY LESSON

“But let the imaginations of children be stored with the pictures, their minds nourished upon the words, of the gradually unfolding stories of the scriptures, and they will come to look out upon a wide horizon within which persons and events take shape in their due place and in due proportion.” (Mason, vol 1)

Bible
Bible

First, I explain why I’m focusing subject by subject. I also include Charlotte Mason quotes because I find her original lectures on education to be 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. This will help me prepare to teach my oldest son in the Fall.

SPREADING THE FEAST IS GOOD

“As a matter of fact, it is the man who has read and thought on many subjects who is, with the necessary training, the most capable.” (Mason, vol. 6)

Ms. Mason suggests spreading a wide feast in education, in order to nourish a child’s mind. A Charlotte Mason curriculum aims to be wide and varied. This gives the child a chance to develop many interests and become well rounded. A Charlotte Mason education certainly intends to be rich, varied, and life giving, and this is partly why I choose to focus on her philosophy of education.

“He requires much knowledge, for the mind needs sufficient food as much as does the body.” (Mason, vol. 6)

I became interested in healthy eating almost 12 years ago as a yoga instructor. Once my children were born, I became more focused on nutrition. Thankfully, I was able to breastfeed both children, as babies, because it was a wonderful nutrition option for them.

When I became a Health Coach last year, I focused even more on nutrient dense foods to nourish my family. I aim to give them a great start in their little lives.

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

Presently, I continue to to give them a varied and nourishing feast. This carries over to their education.  I take it as my job to give a nourishing feast for their minds and body.

Ms. Charlotte Mason also says,

“But, believing that the normal child has powers of mind that fit him to deal with all knowledge proper to him, we must give him a full and generous curriculum…” (Mason, vol. 1)

Bible
Bible

A CHARLOTTE MASON BIBLE STUDY

WHAT

“Children between the ages of six and nine should get a considerable knowledge of the Bible text.” (Mason, vol. 1)

First, Charlotte Mason says a standard Bible should be used. The Bible lesson should not come from a children’s Bible or devotional. Instead, the child should hear the actual text of the Bible since the stories of the Bible are so rich. Therefore, children are worthy of the very best, and rise to the occupation of listening to the Bible in its whole form.

Personally, I choose a beautiful and journaling Bible because I thought I would really enjoy it. So, I’m using a King James Version. Its called Praise: A Creative Journaling Bible.

In Parents and Children, Ms. Mason says the child, “should not be able to recall a time before the sweet stories of old filled his imagination.” (Mason, vol. 2)

If you have preschoolers, this is my FAVORITE Children’s Bible…though the true Bible should also be read to them from a young age.

Finally, THIS is my dream Bible set! Look how beautiful! But, clearly, for a special occasion, because its a little expensive!

WHEN

Charlotte Mason called the Bible lesson, the “chief lesson.” Its upheld as the most important subject, since it teaches a child right from wrong. Therefore, she urges the Bible lesson to be the first lesson of the day. The lesson should be about 15 minutes long. A Charlotte Mason Plenary has linked to the Parent’s Union school Form 1 schedule, which shows “in all cases the Bible text must be read and narrated first.”

Finally, a Bible lesson should occur once a day, five days a week.

Additionally, Sunday readings were recommended from: Parables from Nature.

WHY

“And perhaps it is not too beautiful a thing in this redeemed world, that, as the babe turns to his mother though he has no power to say her name, as the flowers turn to the sun, so the hearts of the children turn to their Savior and God with unconscious delight and trust.” (Mason, vol. 1)

I love this quote because it shows we should model humility, and faith for our children so they may come to have a relationship with God. Perhaps most importantly, the child learns to have a heart for God, and to develop a personal relationship with God.

“Who is the greatest in the kingdom of Heaven? And He called a little child, and set him in the mist. Here is the divine estimate of the child’s estate.” (Matthew 18: 1-2 King James Version, and Mason, vol. 1

Then, the Bible goes onto say that those who enter Heaven must be like the child. Since children are so precious to Jesus, we should respect them as persons and nurture them in this endeavor.

“…their Bible lessons should help them to realize in early days that the knowledge of God is the principle knowledge, and therefore, that heir Bible lessons are their chief lessons.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Also:

“It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord, and to sing praises unto thy name…” (Psalms 92: 1 King James Version)

The purpose of the Bible lessons is to lead the child to the knowledge of God.

HOW

“Read your Bible story to the child bit by bit; get him to tell you in his own words (keeping as close as he can to the Bible words) what you have read, and, then, if you like, talk about it; but not much.” (Mason, vol. 2)

For Form 1B, in other words, first grade, the Bible lesson encompasses most of Genesis from the Old Testament. Also, it is suggested to cover the appropriate portions of Matthew from the New Testament. A Delectable Education recommends to alternate Old Testament and New Testament daily for lessons because it may hold a child’s attention better. Each Bible lesson should cover about 10-20 verses per day.

Additionally, Charlotte Mason says the parent should continue to read aloud the Bible passage, even after a child can read it on his own.

NARRATION

  • First, read the Bible passage to the child once.
  • Then, ask the child to tell back what he heard, using as close to the words he heard as possible. This is narration.
  • Finally, Mama and child can discuss what was read.
  • As an option, Charlotte Mason Poetry notes suggest on how to begin the lesson: ‘Tell the story to the child, only giving the necessary explanations.’

RESOURCES FOR MAMA

Here are some suggested readings for Mothers to prep Bible lessons and discuss with their children following their narration.

“But it is well to let the pictures tell their own tale. The children should study a subject quietly for a few minutes; and then, the picture being removed, say what they have seen.” (Mason, vol. 1)

PICTURES

Moreover, you can choose to share pictures to compliment the Bible stories following the narration or Bible lesson.

RECITATION

“The learning by heart of Bible passages should begin while the children are quite young, six or seven.” (Mason, vol. 1)

Finally, you can have young children learn by heart parables and stories from the Bible. For recitation purposes, the Homeschool Mama should read aloud the passage a few times. Then, the child can narrate back only when they feel they know the words.

praise-bible
praise-bible

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. Also, some of these listed below are specific to a Charlotte Mason Bible lesson study.

GENERAL CHARLOTTE MASON RESOURCES

CHARLOTTE MASON BIBLE LESSON RESOURCES

OUR PICKS

Finally, if you are interested in additional Charlotte Mason information, feel free to check out these previous blog posts:

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 since I have gained so much from them! They are truly treasured words I believe I will be reading and re-reading for many years to come.

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flower press

A Charlotte Mason Summer

A CHARLOTTE MASON SUMMER

flower press
flower press

WHAT WE HAVE BEEN UP TO …

A Charlotte Mason Summer

I’m preparing to teach my oldest son his first, formal year of school at home. In November, he will turn six.

Where did the time go?

I have been planning for this moment for many years and I’m beyond blessed to teach him his first year of school at home.

SUMMER TIME PLANS

In an attempt to ease into formal homeschool later this year, I’m going to begin to implement NOW some parts of his future formal education, yet in a fun and casual way.

Charlotte Mason calls this type of learning “by the way” (Home Education pg. 72).

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 HIGHLY 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.

Playing with Letters
Playing with Letters

ELEMENTS OF EDUCATION

SUMMER MORNING SCHEDULE

+ Work on Morning Habits  (Brush teeth, Make bed)

+ Review Letter Sounds and Letter Recognition … We gently use the Peaceful Preschool to learn letters … Also, here are some of our favorite wooden letters and sandpaper letters

+ Read Bible Stories at Breakfast … My favorite Bible for Preschool Age Children

+ Free playtime

SUMMER AFTERNOON SCHEDULE

+ Nature Play and Free Time

+ Poetry Reading with Snack … Suggested poetry here and here and here

+ Learn a few French and Spanish words each day … We use this audio French CD in the car

+ Free playtime

+ Clean up Toys Before Bed

+ Read Aloud at Bedtime … My favorite stories for preschoolers 

Raising Butterflies
Raising Butterflies

OUTDOOR TIME BASICS

All of the quotes mentioned in this blog post, come from Home Education by Charlotte Mason.

“…the chief function of the child-his business in the world during the first six or seven years of his life-is to find out all he can, about whatever comes under his notice, by means of his five senses; that he has an insatiable appetite for knowledge got in this way; and that, therefore, the endeavor of his parents should be to put him in the way of making acquaintance freely with Nature and natural objects…” (pg. 96).

I love this quote because it takes the pressure off us Mamas to “entertain” the little ones. It is perfectly
fine NOT to keep up with the pressures of society that implore the youngest of children must be shuffled
around from activity to activity, as if they are adults! I believe it is more important to protect this sweet, innocent time for our littles…and allow them the freedom to explore, move, and be in nature as much as possible.

“…Never be within doors when you can rightly be without” (pg. 42).

Before I had heard of Charlotte Mason, we were already spending copious amounts of time outdoors. We
are fortunate to live on acreage, and we live in the country outside of Austin, Texas. There are so
many lovely nature opportunities that surround us – many that we have visited, and so many more that we
haven’t explored.

It is so calming and encouraging to spend time outdoors. We aim to spend time in Nature daily!

“As soon as he is able to keep it himself, a nature-diary is a source of delight to a child” (pg. 54) and “While he is quite young (five or six), he should begin to illustrate his notes freely with brush-drawings” (pg. 55).

My children are only four and five, and we have begun to keep a nature diary. However, I have not been
consistent with it, and I plan to work on more consistency throughout the summer. I was recently gifted the Diary of an Edwardian Lady and its a stunning example that I believe Charlotte Mason would have approved of! The book includes mostly notes from the author’s time in nature with beautiful watercolor illustrations. I look forward to keeping a diary of my own alongside my children!

“…I venture to suggest, not what is practicable in any household, but what seems to me absolutely best for the children; and that, in the faith that mothers work wonders once they are convinced that wonders are demanded of them” (pg. 44).

This quote is in response to the fact that children and mothers should spend four to six hours outdoors on
a tolerably fine day. We are currently not spending that much time in this Texas heat, but I do attempt for
us to get outdoors in the morning and we always take a walk in the evening after dinner. When the
weather is more mild, we spend much longer outdoors and its a blessing for ALL of us.

“…she will point to some lovely flower or gracious tree, not only as a beautiful work, but a beautiful thought of God, in which we may believe He finds continual pleasure, and which He is pleased to see his human children rejoice in” (pg. 80).

I delight in seeing how excited my children are when they discover a new flower outdoors! Occasionally,
it is nice to remark how beautiful God made the world. Its so amazing to hear my children talk about God
as if he is an old friend sometimes.

Flower Sorting
Flower Sorting

OUR FAMILY OUTDOOR TIME

(During our Charlotte Mason Summer)

1. Allow children one or two hours of free time to play and explore in nature daily. This is a great opportunity for ME to sit outdoors with them to read more on the teaching philosophies I will be implementing, prepare for lessons, write out meal plans, list of house chores, or simply read for pleasure.
2. Send them off to a sight seeing game to paint a mental picture of what they see…so they can hold the
image in their minds forever (about 15 minutes).
3. Observe the flowers, birds, trees, or insects. Watch the creatures’ habits and learn something new simply by paying attention for a few minutes.
4. Jot down any notes in our Nature Journals to remember.
5. Note the weather and date in the Journal.

Observing Flowers
Observing Flowers

FAVORITE NATURE JOURNAL AND SUPPLIES

A Charlotte Mason Summer

Finally, here are my favorite Preschool Supplies all in one, comprehensive list.

Wildflowers
Wildflowers

OUR PICKS

 

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. The 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. 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 Bill 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 – this version by Tomie DePaola looks fabulous!

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. Its 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.

 

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, were 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 read alouds, 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!

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 into 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 education philosophy was utilizing Living Books. Listen to this wonderful podcast which describes 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

Read about our gentle letter introduction. We are currently slowly and carefully are moving through the Peaceful Preschool and 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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