Although I consider our family to be eclectic home educators, there are plenty of things that we do that could be considered to be a bit Charlotte Mason-y. For example I am a big fan of short lessons, and our table work is made up of a series of them, covering key skill areas including maths, spelling, reading practice, grammar, sight words etc. We also do a lot of learning through stories and living books, and though I don’t think I could get through the amount of readalouds that some CM families do (covering 3 or 4 subjects every day for example), I have been adding daytime readalouds alongside the reading we do at bedtime.
The difficulty is that a lot of the Charlotte Mason book lists are US centric, not only in history, but also in their choices of nature study authors. So I have been researching which of the vintage authors are/were British to make sure that we are learning about things that are directly relevant to our day to day lives.
Birds of the Air book by Arabella Buckley – British-Based living book authors for Charlotte Mason homeschooler/home
Arabella Buckley is a fantastic example of an author of living books that Britain-based home educators can use. She was a naturalist and scientist who wrote extensively for children, in a chatty, clear way. We are currently reading ‘Birds of the Air’ originally published in 1901, and it is as relevant now as it has ever been.
And her books are easy to get hold of at low cost, assuming you are willing to use digital copies. Two of her books (The Fairy Land of Science, and Through Magic Glasses and other Lectures) are available via gutenberg.org in various digital formats at no cost. Others are available at Yesterday’s Classics and amazon.co.uk for less than £3/$3 per book.
We are planning to read a number of her books this year and next, so I’ll let you know what I think of them as we get more familiar with her work.
I really liked the first Sherbetbox – the illustrations are great and it’s a good mix of cards and stationary. However you can only buy a 3 month subscription at the moment, and I’m not sure I’m in a place to spend £45 up front. But it’s a kit I’ll be keeping my eye on, and hopefully come back in at a later date.
I was really excited to get both these sets as I’d been keeping a keen eye out for them in the post. However they both came of friday, after the results of the EU referendum had been announced, and so I was really low and obviously you can tell. I still love both kits, but they weren’t going to be enough to raise my spirits.
Again, I really loved the Papergang box, particularly because Gemma Correll is fantastic, but I’ve put my subscription on hold until I have a better idea of what I can afford on a monthly basis. But it’s worth looking into and I think it was good value for money.
I’m a bit HappieScrappie fan, and so I’m definitely sticking with that subscription at the moment, and I’m looking forward to the June kits which I know has arrived in the country, and will hopefully be delivered by the end of the week. So stay tuned for another unboxing then.
Hi. I’m Katie and I hand dye yarn as OxfordKitchenYarns. I’m a maker and a planner, who loves non-fiction and children’s books. I am mum to three young children, a home educator, and wife to a bee-keeping, outdoors-loving man.