Charlotte Mason emphasizes gentle learning through reading. I myself am a testament that learning through reading works. I began reading for pleasure in the fourth grade. My teacher, sensing that I was bored with the (everybody at the same pace, private school) curriculum, and stressed from the bullying for being too smart, loaned me The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. I read that book, the rest of the series, and everything from classic to best sellers for the next 8 years. (Once I started college, recreational reading became a thing of the past.) In those eight years, my knowledge of history was widened to new dimensions, my curiosity became boundless, and my vocabulary soared to new heights.
While the Charlotte Mason approach to homeschooling does not subscribe to reading anything and everything like I did, I try not to limit my children’s reading choices. Meanwhile, however, I do strongly suggest specific books that will round out their history and science lessons.
This year while studying the modern time period, I have had my children read many time appropriate books. For example, When my children were studying 1910-1920, I had them read Voyage on the Great Titanic and A Time for Courage,The Suffragette Diary of Kathleen Bowen. Last year when my kids were studying the Victorian Time Period, my daughter read the Little House series, and both kids read The Heading West Collection of the Dear America Series. In fact, I find the Dear America Series to be an excellent way to get my kids to talk about American History.
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