Last month, we introduced Charlotte Mason and discussed her influence on homeschooling. Her method is popular among many homeschool families, and it’s important to understand it so you can create resources that support families who follow this method. So far, we’ve talked about living books, copywork, dictation, science, and nature study. Let’s explore some additional topics today.
Art and Classical Music
By repeated and purposeful exposure, Charlotte Mason believed children benefited from the masters and were inspired to create beautiful things of their own.
Handicrafts and Life Skills
Charlotte Mason knew learning wasn’t limited to academic subjects. She put great importance on allowing children to explore talents and gifts that were outside the scope of traditional subjects.
Living math uses concrete objects and stories to teach the principles of math rather than relying solely on strict memorization and endless practice with worksheets. It includes things such as counting tangible objects like jelly beans or seeds, creating songs and games to help memorize math facts, and practicing math skills in real-life settings such as at the grocery store, on a walk, while playing games or building with plastic bricks, or any other way parents can combine math with daily life.
History and Geography
This is one section where living books are essential in a Charlotte Mason approach to education. She wanted students to connect with history, not just read about it. Which is more interesting: three hundred words in a text book about a turning point in history or the chance to relive it either through quality historical fiction or through nonfiction first-hand accounts? Similarly, a study of geography in the Charlotte Mason method isn’t restricted to maps and lists of countries and their capitals. The world is explored and experienced through books that transport readers there with pictures and characters children can relate to.
Bible and Character Development
Charlotte Mason believed in the importance of a child’s spiritual development, not only their academic knowledge. Studying the lessons the Bible teaches, the foundations for a life pleasing to God, and the steps necessary to developing a God-honoring character were an essential part of her approach to education.
I hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know a little bit about the Charlotte Mason method. Do you have any questions so far? Please leave us a note in the comments below. Next month, we’ll look at ways you can create resources that support this style of teaching.
Bonnie Rose Hudson lives in central Pennsylvania. Along with spending time with her family and writing, making kids smile is her favorite thing to do. Her heart’s desire is for every child to feel the love of God and know how special they are to Him. She loves creating curriculum and working for SchoolhouseTeachers.com, the curriculum arm of The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, as the site’s executive editor. At TOS, she found a place where her love of God and history combine with her love of writing to bring encouraging, educational, and entertaining material to students and their families. She would love for you to visit WriteBonnieRose.com to discover how you can write for the homeschool market.