This post is part of the iHomeschool Network’s 10 in 10 link up. Today’s topic is top 10 must haves. So I’m putting a Charlotte Mason twist on the topic and sharing the top ten resources I would recommend to someone who wants to teach with a Charlotte Mason style of homeschooling.
These are resources I own (or owned) and have turned to time and time again over the years.
Charlotte Mason’s own Works
1. Charlotte Mason’s Original Homeschooling Series
Since that is a rather expensive volume. I recommend reading it free online.
You need to start at the source. Read exactly what Miss Mason said instead of what others say about her. I have found it helpful over the years to revisit her works as I give myself a “homeschool check up.” When you fall off the CM wagon, a refresher course will get you back on track.
2. Drawing With Children by Mona Brookes
For drawing instruction, there is no better foundation than Mona Brookes’ Drawing with Children. Begin using it with elementary aged children all the way through to middle school.
3. The Annotated Mona Lisa: A Crash Course in Art History from Prehistoric to Post-Modern
For artist study and general reference, it is necessary to have an art encyclopedia on hand. This is a new addition to our library and one that I wish I had added many years ago. Obviously there is not enough detail in this volume for it to stand alone as all you need for artist study. But it serves as a great reference for providing a historical backdrop of each artist you study. It also helps you understand all the -isms in art.
4. Last Child in the Woods by Richard Louv
If you are not convinced of the value of nature study, you need to read Last Child in the Woods. Then you will be. If you already believe in the positive power of nature in a child’s life, you will love the research that Louv shares. All people — children especially — need nature.
This classic that can also be found in the public domain is a timeless resource for CM educators. Most elements of nature are covered at least briefly in this hefty volume. Begin outdoors and then use the Handbook of Nature Study as a supplement to your observations.
6. Family Math
This is where my journey to living math began. I can’t recommend it highly enough for making math real, concrete, hands-on, and fun. If math is a battle, get this book.
7. The Kingfisher Science Encyclopedia
Since the CM way of learning is with living books, a science reference is essential. You often come across scientific terms or concepts that you haven’t formally studied. But having an encyclopedia makes it easy to learn as you go.
Every homeschool, especially a CM one, needs maps. You may prefer an atlas or outline maps. The great thing about WonderMaps is that it is both. The range of customizable features is only possible through the power of technology. Although this software is a bit pricey, it is a resource that you will turn to every week over the course of your homeschool journey.
9. History Through the Ages CD-ROM Set Creation to Present
I bought my timeline CD many years ago and have never regretted it. I admit it is expensive. But when you calculate the fact that you can use it your entire homeschool career for timelines, notebooking, and lapbooking, it is a worthy investment. The time you save searching for timeline figures makes it worth it.
10. Notebooking Pages Treasury Membership
Although there are plenty of freebies online and you can certainly use plain paper for written narrations, specially designed notebooking pages make narration easier for many children. And they offer a very attractive appearance. Read my full review of this resource over at The Notebooking Fairy.
This post is linked up at Angie’s Top Ten Tuesday.
If you want to join in, post a top ten post of any topic and link up there.
Hmmmm. I already have most of these. Maybe I’m really a CM-style momma at heart. Really need to read her books. I’ve started, but only a few chapters.
I found a link to your post on pintrest. I will be repining. This is a very helpful list- esp. to us new to homeschooling.
Eddie - The Usual Mayhem says
I haven’t read Last Child in the Woods yet; I should see if the library can get hold of it for me.
To the list, I’d also add Barb’s Handbook of Nature Study challenges and at least a quick read of Catherine Levison’s Charlotte Mason Education and its sequel.
LOVE LOVE LOVE your list. I recently found some great Living Books for Math…I need to look into the one you listed!!!!
well there you go I have 95% of your list:) Actually the only one I don’t have are the maps and nature Study (not so relevant to Aussies;)
That is a great list. I am fasinated with the idea of a Charlotte Mason education but have yet taken the jump. I will be checking out some of these. Thanks!
I am definitely going to look into the Family Math. This is an area we struggle in. Love the list. I have purchased a couple of the books mentioned and am looking forward to a new approach to our school year this fall.
Dana Wilson says
Great list! Wondermaps is relatively new on the seen but the price is definitely worth paying for something that can be used for years! I also like Timetables of History as a resource.
I am going to look at the drawing book you recommended. My girls are very interested in art & design.
I love Last Child in the Woods…so true! I have started a homeschool playgroup that meets in a state forest once a month, no toys or props, just kids exploring.
Amber @ Classic Housewife says
Thanks for the art resources!
We have some similar resources! I have the Handbook of Nature Study (haven’t used it yet), the first History Through the Ages set, Family Math (used some) and not that Kingfisher encyclopedia but their First Human Body and First Animal encylopedias– my son has loved those since he was three, he’d just sit and flip through them again and again!
I really, really, really want the WonderMaps — I’ve been eyeing them for a while. I’m putting them on my wishlist for next year. Thanks for sharing!
Terry Holliday says
Hi Jimmie: You do great work here. I wanted to recognize you so I have written about your blog and given you an award. Read more here: http://mycreativityblog.com/the-kreativ-blogger-award/
Thanks for helping homeschoolers.
Kim Bennett says
I have seen your stuff referred to on many homeschool sites and shared often on Pinterest. I’ve recently become a “follower” and I just love your site!
This post really hit home. Our youngest son went to an urban PS through the middle of 1st grade, when we (all of us) had had enough, and just stopped sending him. We spent a lot of time reading, discovered Ambleside Online and the Charlotte Mason method of homeschooling, then went from there.
We moved to another town in the middle of this year, so he went back to Grade 3 in PS (he wanted to try), and we are all underwhelmed. Kids progress so quickly in HS that he is way ahead in many areas, and doesn’t get to be creative, at all — which is why I loved your daughter’s advice about creativity and specializing. Very encouraging, as we are deciding to return to HS for Grade 4.
I have nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. I have pinned so many of your ideas on my Pinterest boards, and am really falling for the focus on creativity you share. Thank you for all you do!
See my post for more information on the award. http://bugsandstuff.wordpress.com/2012/06/09/very-inspiring-blogger-award/