Very few homeschool moms start their journey with the Charlotte Mason method. Often, as you become more comfortable with your homeschooling abilities, you may find yourself leaning toward a more organic approach to homeschooling, and the Charlotte Mason method begins to pop up on all of your internet searches. It seems to be the answer to everything you want your homeschool to be. But…
as you are drawn into the Charlotte Mason way of homeschooling, it is very easy to become overwhelmed. And for the large family, Charlotte Mason can be downright stressful!
In my book Large Family Homeschooling, I explain how the Charlotte Mason method must be tweaked to be successfully implemented by the large family. It is very difficult for the large family to handle a full-blown, traditional Charlotte Mason homeschool with all its different elements among all the varying ages. Yet, CM is a great way to homeschool your large family, if you take it slow and learn what needs to be tweaked as you go.
This is exactly why I love Cindy West’s ebook,
While this ebook is not written specifically for the large family, it is very large family friendly in its approach. (I would also highly recommend this ebook for the smaller family as well! Read on, and you’ll see why!)
Charlotte Mason Homeschooling in 18 EASY Step-by-Step Lessons breaks down each aspect of the Charlotte Mason method into easy-to-implement steps. Cindy suggests you only work on one per week, adding the next one in the following week. This gives you plenty of time to tweak and adjust as you go. (Confession Time: I was so excited about this book, I didn’t wait the full week with the beginning chapters. I slowed down later on. ;) )
Trying to implement all of Charlotte Mason from the get-go can quickly overwhelm any homeschooler, especially the large family because you are trying to do everything with everyone. However, Cindy’s ebook handed me Charlotte Mason in bite-sized pieces! Rather than being overwhelmed, I was excited! (And I was super excited to be able to tell all of you about this wonderful find!)
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Let me give you an example of how we used this book to tweak our large family homeschool and bring in more Charlotte Mason elements.
Lesson 2 in the book is:
Living Literature as Education
This is something we already did well, so not much tweaking was needed. However, at the end of each chapter, Cindy has “homework” to help you implement the lesson. Doing this homework helped me see where I was able to add in more living literature. I also realized many of the books we were already reading had aspects of several school subjects, and if I would simply take the time to point them out, I was killing two birds with one stone, so to speak.
The next week, we moved on to Lesson 3:
The Short Lesson Model
While I thought I was executing this one well, I realized while doing Cindy’s “time card” exercise that I was actually expecting way too much of our History time. I had the living literature thing down when it came to History, but I was trying to cram too much of it in there! That was an “Aha” moment, and I was able to actually carve out more time in our day by shortening the History reading.
You will also find that Cindy never implies there is only one right way to do things. She gives gentle suggestions and a place to start. This is especially evident in Lesson 9: Nature Study. She doesn’t tell you that you must take a nature walk every day or always journal what you see in order to do Charlotte Mason the “right way”. This is especially beneficial for the mother who has several little ones in tow!
Quick Glance Review:
ON SALE FOR $10.00!
*lots of ideas, resources, and links
*makes Charlotte Mason method feel doable and less overwhelming
*homework offers easy ways to implement each lesson
Highly recommended for anyone wanting to implement Charlotte Mason methods,
but has found themselves overwhelmed by all the information out there
as well as all the different aspects and elements of the method.