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I just finished finalizing all of our Charlotte Mason homeschool curriculum choices for the upcoming 2023/2024 school year.
If you’re new here, we switched to The CMEC last year and it was wonderful! I highly recommend using their program. That being said, I’ve adapted or changed several of the recommendations to best accommodate our family.
In fact, I receive the most comments and emails asking about the Traditional Catholic based resources we use to supplement with in our homeschool.
This year I have a Form 2 (4th grade), Form 1 (2nd & 3rd grades), and kinderleben (pre-school) students. Last year I combined a few of our subjects and that worked really well for us. So I will be doing that again this year!
For the most part, the suggestions in the post are combined unless otherwise noted.
Religion & Catechism
My oldest child is preparing for Confirmation and so we are also reading through The Soldier of Christ together.
We do not follow along with the recommendations of Charlotte Mason for the Bible. I wanted to put together a plan based off of the Liturgical Season. However, I think we have a lot to cover as it is so I skipped this plan.
However, we will be reading through Read- Aloud Bible Stories. And I’ve put together selected scripture quotes on pretty floral index cards for memorization. They are stored in this lovely floral recipe box.
- Jesus of Nazareth by Mother Mary Loyola
- Read Aloud Bible Stories
- Bible Atlas by Tim Dowley
- Atlas of the Bible Land by Harry Thomas Frank
- The Ancient World of the Bible by Malcolm Day
- Heroes of God’s Church by Henry Matimore
- The First Christians by Marigold Hunt
- Angel Food series (great for supplementing catechism lessons with related stories).
- A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture by Frederick Justus Knecht
How do we fit in all of this beautiful feast each week? Basically, we alternate days. So M,W,F are catechism days. T & Th are bible days.
We schedule religion in during our “morning time” portion of our timetables.
If you are looking for more information on Traditional Catholic sources, I have written a blog post sharing our favorite catechism books.
History & Citizenship
Again something that I supplement with for Catholic options is history. I used something that I found from St Jerome’s library last year. However, I won’t be using it in the future. While it is a great Traditional Catholic option, I just didn’t love it. Personally, I found that the language in the book was not beautiful & inspiring.
Since then, I found this Founders of Freedom series that Tan has republished. While, they are more of a text book vs living book, I did pre-read the whole book already and feel like it is a great catholic history option for us.
We will not be following with the chapter questions. Instead are using Charlotte Mason’s method of a lesson questions.
- Founders of Freedom
- The History of England for Catholic Children (form 2) I really loved pre-reading sections from this book & know that my children will love it too. We are reading only a few chapters per term so it will carry over for next year as well.
- Stories from the History of Rome (form 2)
- & Assorted Historical Biographies
I am skipping the recommended Citizenship book as I did not agree with some of the content in the beginning. I have a vintage copy of The Christian Citizen, and since it is a bit advanced for this age, I may just use a few selected ideas from it. Still to be determined.
We are continuing our wall timeline this year and next year, my form 2 student will move on to her own book of centuries.
Reading & Grammar
My form 1 students have been taught reading by following Charlotte Mason’s method as she described in Home Education. We have also have used some of the suggestions from the Discover Reading book.
- Discover Reading by Amy Tuttle
- New this year, I purchased this set of American Cardinal Readers to give more of a Catholic focus in our lessons.
- First Lessons in Grammar by Charlotte Mason (form 2)
Narration is done at the end of each lesson and we use a variety of methods depending on the day’s lesson. And new this year, my form 2 student is beginning dictation lessons.
- Narration: written, oral & drawn
- Dictation (form 2)
- Beautiful Stories from Shakespeare by Edith Nesbit
- A Wonder Book for Boys & Girls by Nathaniel Hawthorne
- Tales of Troy and Greece by Andrew Lang
- The Heroes of Asgard by Annie Keary
- Shakespeare Plays: The Tempest, Henry V, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (form 2)
I have not pre-read any of these books yet. So, it is tbd if we love them, but I’m sharing what are plans are for the upcoming year.
- Crusader King
- The Winged Watchmen
- Crossbows & Crucifixes
- Florence Nightingale’s Nuns
- The Cross Our Compass
- Black Beauty
- Blessed Marie of New France
- The Children of La Salette
- King David and His Songs
- Patron Saint of First Communicants
- Saint Margaret Mary
- Saint Rose of Lima
Charlotte Mason recommended special Sunday readings to help encourage building a family culture around Truth, Beauty, and Goodness.
Sunday reading books as recommended by Charlotte Mason includes:
- liturgical living books, focused on the church year, spiritual reading, truths of our faith/catechism, bible readings
- stories of saints, martyrs, and missionaries
- folk tales
- cultural stories
- inspirational books & tales
This year we are reading:
- With the Church series by Mother Mary Loyola – great option for following along with the liturgical season as a family.
- We are also reading these two books, Saints and Festivals & The Queen’s Festivals
- And because we are Narnians, we are reading through the Narnia series again as a family!
- The Mass in Slow Motion
- Grimm’s Complete Fairy Tales
- Poetry Every Catholic Should Know
- Harp & Laurel Wreath
- The Oxford Book of Children’s Verse (form 2)
- A Child’s Garden of Verses (form 1)
- Historic Poems & Ballads (form 2)
- Speaking Spanish with Miss Mason and Francois by Cherrydale Press
- Latin: We will begin with learning basic Catholic prayers in Latin, simple quotes, and liturgical responses. This will be especially helpful for my son who is anticipating becoming an altar server. I also found this vintage First Book of Latin primer (free PDF) that we will start using later on in the year.
- Lingua Angelica by Memoria Press (form 2)
- Latina Christiana by Memoria Press (form 2)
- Burgess Seashore Book by Thornton Burgess (form 1)
- Birds of the Air by Arabella Buckley (form 1)
- Insect Life by Arabella Buckley (form 1)
- Life and Her Children by Arabella Buckley (form 2)
I also shared some of our favorite nature study resources here.
- Elementary Geography by Charlotte Mason
- Outdoor Geography by Herbert Hatch
- Ambleside Geographical Reader by Charlotte Mason
- North America by Nellie Allen (4th grade only)
Math is another subject that we are changing this year. Last year, we used the Charlotte Mason Arithmetic series and one of my children really struggled with it.
This year we are using a recommendation from The CMEC, Beauty & Truth Math. It looks pretty promising from just reviewing & prepping the materials. However, time and experience will tell!
- Art – brush drawing, chalk drawing, clay modeling (1 per term)
- Artist Study – Selected artist per term.
- Music – Solfege, Justine Ward Music method, Hymns & Folk Songs, Piano lessons
- Composer Study – One selected composer per term.
- Recitation – poetry & bible
- Handicrafts – needlework, paper & cardboard modeling, weaving or needle felting
- Physical Exercise – Swedish Drill & folk dances
- book of mottos aka commonplace – we lightly started using this last year and I’ll have my form 2 student try to make it a regular practice slowly through the year. We are using a pretty floral notebook that she picked out to make it a little extra special.
- foreign language & latin notebooks — we are just using one composition notebook for this with the first half for Spanish and the second half for Latin.
- science notebook – we are using one of these for science this year.
- current events — my form 2 student will use this notebook for small narrations and scrapbooking her favorite articles through the week.