Book Title:  A Charlotte Mason Education: A Homeschooling How-To Manual

Author:  Catherine Levison

Genre: Homeschooling; Education

Pages:  89

Publisher: Champion Press

Why Did I Choose It?  To give myself a better overall picture of the Charlotte Mason method to help determine if it truly is the method I wish to use for my youngest child.

A Bit From The Back Cover:  The immensely popular ideas of Charlotte Mason have inspired educators for many decades.  Her unique methodology as written about in her six-volume series established the necessary protocols for an education above and beyond that which can be found in  traditional classroom  settings. In A Charlotte Mason Education, Catherine Levison has collected the key points of Charlotte Mason's methods and presents them in a simple, straightforward way that will allow families to quickly maximize the opportunities of homeschooling.  With weekly schedules, a challenging and diverse curriculum will both inspire and educate your child.  A Charlotte Mason Education is the latest tool for parents seeking the best education for their children.

Review:  Why did I not pick up this book over 8 years ago when I began our homeschool adventure?!  Oh, I know why.... at the time I was just overwhelmed by all that was happening in our lives to extensively learn anything other than what I already knew... but oh I wish I had!  I believe Catherine Levison gives a wonderfully simplistic overall introduction to the Charlotte Mason method and demonstrates how to begin the journey in a way that is not over boggling to the homeschool parent's mind in any way.  The book, though only brief, is chock full of resources and suggestions on how to approach the subject areas using the Charlotte Mason approach.   It is well-organized and easily understood.  Each chapter is only a few pages long at most and gives a brief but thorough overview on how to approach the subject with Charlotte's methodology, an approach unlike that of the public schools of our day  - school days should be fun, relaxed and igniting a passion for learning within our children. It has given me the affirmation that I needed that this is the approach for us and that it will be most doable and, most likely, by far less time-consuming than any other method I've used previously. This will be a resource that I will keep handy to refer to over and over again.

Other Books By This Author:

More Charlotte Mason Education: A Homeschooling How To Manual,  A Literary Education


Fellow homeschoolers, let me know what you think of this book! And feel free to list other recommendations for my other readers!


“Self-education is the only possible education; the rest is mere veneer laid on the surface of a child's nature.”  ~ Charlotte Mason

One of the biggest things I find attractive about the methodology of Charlotte Mason is the self-education.  I find that in all the methods I've tried or researched or discussed with others, it is the method that seems best able to offer a child the ability to learn self-education. This is so because it focuses on developing a love for learning using methods involving all five senses without methods that kill that love.  It is not a methodology like our public schools where they test to see what a child does NOT know, but gives 'examinations' to determine what a child does know.  There is no dry boring textbooks with countless questions to answer, no weekly quizzes or tests to memorize the information for and forget the following week,and no lecturing.  The child develops a true love for learning in Charlotte Mason's techniques involving the heavy emphasis of LIVING books and short lessons with a large variety of subjects taught each and every year.

I'm really enjoying  reading A Charlotte Mason Education (A Home Schooling How-To Manual) by Catherine Levison.  It's providing a great overview of teaching various subject matter with the Charlotte Mason method. It's  a quick read and is covering lots of subject matter that I won't necessarily use just yet (my son is only 4) but gives me a great resource to determine when I might start introducing things and a book I can turn to over and over again for review and ideas.

The book is broken down into 20 chapters.  The first three chapters focus on an introduction to Charlotte Mason, the basic methodology and narration.  The remaining chapters all cover how to cover basic subject matter:  literature, poetry, art appreciation, music appreciation, science, math, history, etc.  I'm about halfway through.

Just last night I ordered a sketch pad for my son and I to use as a nature journal.  I have some ideas on how to introduce this concept to him this year in a basic way.  I'm really excited about developing a habit of nature walks and nature observation outdoors.  We

This is an acorn, something we observed quite a few of the other day on our walk. The picture isn't mine - I borrowed it from the internet this morning I'll either start taking my phone with me on our walks (I really should buy a new camera and learn how to upload my pictures) or use the computer to show him how to find pictures and print them out for our notebook.

started last week but without a notebook.  My plan is to simply spend time outdoors with him (my goal really is 5 times a week but I'm not sure I'll be able to keep up with it in winter - I'm a true sissy when it comes to the cold so if you have pointers on this, I'd love to hear them!) and allow him to pick something new several times a week to come back and either draw a picture of something we discovered or find a picture on the web to print, cut and paste into his notebook so I can label it for him.  He's four, so I won't have him write the words in his notebook unless of course, he wants to in which case I'll write the word somewhere else for him to copy.  It won't be something forced.  If there's a day he doesn't want to do the notebook, we'll let it go.  This is just our introductory year - for him and for me.

Are  you using the Charlotte Mason method?  Feel free to share your favorite resources or favorite activities.  I'd love to hear about them!


“...my object is to show that 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...”  ~Charlotte Mason