Are you considering using the Charlotte Mason homeschool approach and wondering how to find a curriculum? Maybe you already have a curriculum or program in place, but you’re wondering how to enhance your lessons or implement Charlotte Mason principles. While there are boxed Charlotte Mason curriculum programs you can purchase, you can very easily put your own program together or add some Charlotte Mason flair to what you currently use. Read more to learn how to add Charlotte Mason principles and style to your current homeschool curriculum.
In the world of homeschooling, diving into Charlotte Mason’s way of teaching feels like stepping into a magical learning journey. Simple subjects such as science and language arts can become engaging and hands-on with a few simple steps.
Adding Narration to Your Homeschool
At the core of Charlotte Mason is narration, a method that can transform education into a captivating journey. Through the art of storytelling, children not only absorb knowledge but also cultivate the skill of expressing themselves.
It’s a dynamic combination of immersing in the wisdom of literature and crafting personal narratives, fostering a love for receiving and sharing knowledge with others.
One way to infuse narration seamlessly is through daily read-aloud sessions. Choose captivating books that align with your curriculum, and after each reading, encourage your children to narrate the story in their own words. This simple practice reinforces comprehension and hones their ability to articulate ideas effectively.
Another avenue to explore is incorporating narration into hands-on activities. Whether your child is creating a piece of art, conducting a science experiment, or working on a historical project, encourage them to narrate the process. This transforms the activity from a mere task into a narrative journey where they not only grasp the subject matter but also develop the art of expression.
Extend the concept of narration beyond the academic subjects. Implement it in everyday conversations—discussing a movie, sharing experiences from a family outing, or even describing a recipe they enjoyed. This seamlessly integrates narration into daily life, making it a natural and enjoyable part of their communication skills.
By infusing narration into various aspects of your homeschooling routine, you align with Charlotte Mason’s philosophy and cultivate a dynamic and expressive learning environment where knowledge is not just absorbed but shared and celebrated.
Offering a Feast of Subjects
At the heart of the Charlotte Mason approach is the belief that education should be a feast for the mind, offering a diverse array of subjects to nourish a child’s intellectual and creative appetite. This might mean you simply add more subjects to your current curriculum or program. Poetry, handicrafts, artist or composer studies, or hymn studies are great ways to offer your child a wide variety of subjects to feed their mind.
Mason encouraged short lessons, so adding additional subjects doesn’t necessarily mean adding more time to your homeschooling. You can explore these subjects daily, but even a weekly or bi-weekly frequency would be sufficient.
Short lessons recognize the balance between engagement and attention span, ensuring that each educational interaction is purposeful and leaves a lasting impression.
Enhancing Current Subjects
There are lots of ways you can modify or tweak your current program or plans to fit a Charlotte Mason learning model.
History and Geography can become exciting subjects by adding living books either in addition to or as a replacement for your textbooks. Build your living book library and have plenty of options for your child to explore that correlate with their current topics.
Rather than dry facts, Charlotte Mason advocated for narratives that breathe life into historical events and geographical wonders. Through compelling stories and firsthand accounts, children don’t just memorize dates and locations; they develop a profound sense of connection with the past and an appreciation for the diversity of our world.
Science and nature take a hands-on, experiential approach in a Charlotte Mason education. Mason encouraged children to step outside, observe the natural world, and engage in the joy of discovery. This can be as simple as blocking outdoor time in your daily schedule or planning nature studies.
Whether it’s studying the life cycle of a butterfly or marveling at the intricacies of a flower, science becomes a living, breathing exploration that nurtures curiosity and a sense of wonder.
Be sure to allow for plenty of independent study and exploration. Provide your child with lots of opportunities to let their curiosity drive the lesson.
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Providing Hands-On Activities
Handicrafts are often overlooked in traditional education but have a meaningful place in the Charlotte Mason homeschooling method. From simple sewing projects to woodworking, these hands-on activities develop practical skills and instill a sense of accomplishment and self-reliance.
You can easily add handicrafts to your weekly or even daily schedule. Find what most interests your child, and let their curiosity drive the lessons. Handicrafts can be as simple as learning to sew basic projects or papercrafts. You may even find that your child takes a greater initiative in their handicraft lessons, wanting to choose their own projects or asking to work on them more frequently.
In this holistic approach, each subject becomes a piece of a puzzle, contributing to the formation of a well-rounded, curious, and imaginative individual. Charlotte Mason’s philosophy invites us to view education not as a checklist but as a lifelong exploration that nurtures the whole person. Whether you’re using a boxed curriculum or piecing together your subjects, remember that you can use the simple principles of Charlotte Mason to enrich your child’s learning and provide them a feast of knowledge for the taking.