Writing
Tales
History
Geography
Natural History
Picture Study
Foreign Language
Math
Brush Drawing
Recitations
Reading
Music
Music Appreciation
Singing
Drill
Work
World Religions, Philosophy and Logic


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Writing

The PNEU programmes specified a particular handwriting program to be used.  She felt that handwriting should be beautiful, and recommended in Book 1 printing before cursive.  There is current controversy over print-first vs cursive-first.  We recommend you do your own research and choose what is right for your family.

The program that CM used and recommended is similar to today’s italic handwriting.  We recognize that not everyone will want to use italics.

A few handwriting programs to consider:

Two letters to be mastered each lesson.  Transcribe from reading books, and write words and short sentences from dictation.

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Tales

  • Term 1

Tales of Troy and Greece by Andrew Lang, 4-5 pages per week
The Legends of King Arthur and His Knights by Sir James Knowles, 5-6 pages per week

Note:  Tales of Troy and Greece and The Legends of King Arthur and His Knights are both scheduled over a two year period (1A).  Since different editions have different page counts, we recommend you find the total number of pages per book, and divide by 6.   Shoot for reading that amount per term.

— [optional] Chinese Fairy Tales (Dover Children’s Thrift Classics) — choose 6 tales

— [optional]  (Hero Tales)   Amelia Earhart: The Legend of the Lost Aviator by Shelley Tanaka
OR
The Ballad of Mulan by Song Nan Zhang (not easily found in print, but it is in Kindle edition)

  • Term 2

Tales of Troy and Greece by Andrew Lang, 4-5 pages per week
The Legends of King Arthur and His Knights by Sir James Knowles, 5-6 pages per week

— [optional] North American Indian Tales by W. T. Larned  (Dover Children’s Thrift Classics) — choose 6 tales

— [optional] (Hero Tales)  Lewis and Clark
OR
Sacagawea by Liselotte Erdich

  • Term 3

Tales of Troy and Greece by Andrew Lang, 4-5 pages per week
The Legends of King Arthur and His Knights by Sir James Knowles, 5-6 pages per week

[optional] Irish Fairy Tales  (Dover Children’s Thrift Classics) — choose 6 tales

— [optional] John Muir: My Life with Nature by Joseph Cornell
OR
Untamed: The Wild Life of Jane Goodall by Anita Silvey

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History (of your own country )[see Options page for Canadian substitution]

Read this blog post for a discussion of America First

  • Term 1

–America First by Lawton Evans. (not all stories are read; use the following)

Henry Clay; John C. Calhoun; The Heroes of the Alamo; Sam Houston Wins Freedom for Texas; The Invention of the Electric Telegraph; The Discovery of Gold in California; Crossing the Continent; The Pony Express; The Boy Who Saved a Village; The Rescue of Jerry

— [optional bio] Buffalo Bill by Ingri d’Aulaire
OR
Bad News for Outlaws by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson (wild west)

  • Term 2

–America First by Lawton Evans. (we use the rest of the book with no omissions)

Abraham Lincoln to Laying the Atlantic Cable

*note – as with the Revolutionary War, there is no background given before tales of the Civil War begin.  You will want to briefly introduce the Civil War to your children.  A short explanation is fine at this age.  Remember that they are still very young, and we will revisit this time period twice more in their school careers.

— [optional bio] Abraham Lincoln by Ingri d’Aulaire
OR
Escape North: The Story of Harriet Tubman by Monica Kulling (Step Into Reading Level 4) (Civil War)

  • Term 3

–America First by Lawton Evans.

The Story of the Telephone to the end of the book.

— [optional bio] The Story of George Washington Carver by Eva Moore
OR
Helen Keller  by Margaret Davidson (early 1900s)

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Geography

  • Term 1

Elementary Geography by Charlotte Mason (or on google books as Geographical Readers for Elementary Schools):  Map of a County, How Maps are Made, The Surface of the Earth parts 1 & 2

Marco Polo by Demi

— Pace and make plans of schoolroom, dining room, landing, staircase (or similar).

— Children to be able to tell about 6 places father and mother have visited.

— Six map questions before readings, then reading and narration; no additional material to be introduced  (before starting the readings, have an atlas out with the area of the reading shown.  Ask questions about the area, point out rivers and mountains, etc.  This should take only a few minutes)

  • Term 2

Elementary Geography:  Highlands and lowlands, Rivers, Countries

—  Adventures of the Treasure Fleet by Ann Martin Bowler (Zheng He)

— Children to be able to tell about 6 places father and mother have visited.

— Six map questions before readings, then reading and narration; no additional material to be introduced.

— Pace distance on each of four 4 roads for 2, 4, 5, and 6 minutes and say in each case in which direction you are walking

  • Term 3

Elementary Geography:   The Waters of the Earth Parts 1 & 2, The Oceans and their Parts 

Are We There Yet? by Alison Lester, OR Where Is the Great Barrier Reef by Nico Medina

— Children to be able to tell about 6 places father and mother have visited.

— Six map questions before readings, then reading and narration; no additional material to be introduced

— Trace on a globe or map of the world journeys to India, Africa, Australia, Canada, Europe, Asia

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Natural History

Keep a Nature Note-Book.  Click here for nature study resources.

[because you may be starting in any season, be sure to do fruits in autumn, twigs in winter, flowers in spring]

  • Term 1

Find and describe (a) 6 wild fruits; watch, if possible, and describe (b) ten birds, (c) five other animals.

— Birds of the Air by Arabella Buckley, ch 9-end (continued from lower 1A)
—  Tommy Smith’s Animals by Edmund Selous ch 1-5

  • Term 2

Find and describe (a) 6 twigs of trees; watch, if possible, and describe (b) ten birds, (c) five other animals.

— Insect Life by Arabella Buckley, ch 1-5
Tommy Smith’s Animals by Edmund Selous ch 6-10

  • Term 3

Find and describe (a) 6 wild flowers; watch, if possible, and describe (b) ten birds, (c) five other animals.

— Insect Life by Arabella Buckley, ch 6-end
Tommy Smith’s Animals by Edmund Selous ch 11-end

* All Arabella Buckley books are available in print and ebook from www.yesterdaysclassics.com  For a pdf version from archive.org, click here

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Picture Study 

Click here for this term’s selections

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Foreign Language

Choose a foreign language spoken widely in your area, or one that is culturally relevant for your family.  We suggest Spanish or French, depending on where you live.  For 1B, work should be entirely oral.  Though we have not used it ourselves, the language programs from Cherrydale Press come recommended.  Please see Home Education for further instruction on how to teach this subject.

*Learn at least 1 children’s song in the target language each term.  It is preferable to listen to CDs sung by native speakers.

Click here for other resources.

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Math

Use the math program of your choice.

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Brush Drawing

Click here for parent resources.  [Since you may be starting this in any season, remember fruits in autumn, twigs in winter, flowers in spring]

  • Term 1

6 wild fruits and (from memory) 6 animals you’ve been able to watch; scenes from your Tales, in brushwork.  Children should draw occasionally in brush or chalk from memory.

  • Term 2

6 twigs of trees and (from memory) 6 animals you’ve been able to watch; scenes from your Tales, in brushwork.  Children should draw occasionally in brush or chalk from memory.

  • Term 3

6 wild flowers and (from memory) 6 animals you’ve been able to watch; scenes from your Tales, in brushwork.  Children should draw occasionally in brush or chalk from memory.

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Recitations

Focus on one poem per week, reading the same one every day, but also reading a few other poems of choice.   Read at meals, tea times, in the evenings, etc.

  • Term 1

When Were Very Young, or Now We Are Six by A. A. Milne

  • Term 2

A Child’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson

  • Term 3

Christina Rossetti

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Reading

Poetry and books used for History, Geography, and Tales.

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Music

Piano resources:  Faber Piano Adventures

Free piano resources:  Hoffman Academy  Let’s Play Music

The PNEU programmes that we based this curriculum on specify piano; however, we understand that many of us don’t have access to one.  We humbly suggest that learning any instrument is better than learning no instrument. To that end, here are two other programs that come highly recommended:

Nine Note Recorder Method (Penny Gardner)
Living Music from the Heart (the penny whistle — this is a Waldorf resource)

If an instrument is not an option, Legends of the Staff of Musique  teaches music fundamentals through singing (based on Kodaly method).  It is written directly to the homeschool parent and presumes no prior music background.  It brings in Waldorf elements such as storytelling, but is fully compatible with a Charlotte Mason education.  It is wonderful and we highly recommend it.

Jolly Music Handbook is also based on the Kodaly method, and the Beginners level covers the same material as Legends of the Staff Level 1.  It is written for the classroom teacher and some activities will need to be modified or skipped for the homeschool classroom.  The material is sound, but the activities are not as engaging in a one-on-one setting as they would be in a classroom.

This page from Charlotte Mason Help has good ideas for learning an instrument inexpensively:  Learn to Play Piano on a Shoestring

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Music Appreciation

Click here for the current year’s choices

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Singing

Click here for the current year’s choices

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Drill

Two types of drill are mentioned specifically in Home Education:  Drill in good manners, and Swedish drill.  Swedish drill is a specific set of movements for grace and physical education.    Here is one example from the era.   Swedish drill was not simply free play.

As to drill in good manners, the following is from Home Education:

Just let them go through the drill of good manners: let them rehearse little scenes in play,––Mary, the lady asking the way to the market; Harry, the boy who directs her, and so on. Let them go through a position drill––eyes right, hands still, heads up. They will invent a hundred situations, and the behavior proper to each, and will treasure hints thrown in for their guidance; but this sort of drill should be attempted while children are young, before the tyranny of mauvaise honte sets in.  Encourage them to admire and take pride in light springing movements, and to eschew a heavy gait and clownish action of the limbs.

Swedish drill can be replaced with yoga for children.  There are several options available.  If yoga is a sticking point due to personal beliefs, it is by no means a requirement.

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Work

Helpful resources for all terms (more resources here):

Sewing School by Andria Lisle
Roots, Shoots, Buckets, and Boots by Sharon Lovejoy
Kids Knitting by Melanie Falick or A First Book of Knitting by Bonne Gosse
Martha Stewart’s Favorite Crafts for Kids by the editors of Martha Stewart Living

  • Term 1

— Help in house or garden
— sew a drawstring bag, or choose a project from Sewing School
How to Crochet  has videos for both right- and left- handers.  Begin with a simple washcloth or bracelet (cord).
— Origami (6 models) or make paper books – Resources
— Family Craft: stencilled cloths (can be used for decoration as-is, or as the base for another projects like the Five Minute Apron, or a pillowcase)

  • Term 2

— Help in house or garden
sew a treasure bag, or choose a project from Sewing School
— crochet:  hackysack ball
— Origami (6 models) or make paper books – Resources
— volunteer work (Options page)

  • Term 3

— Help in house or garden
— sew a pouch with fold-over flap (button and buttonhole),  or choose a project from Sewing School
— crochet: frisbee
— Origami (6 models) or make paper books – Resources
clay or beeswax modelling (see our notes on the Options page)

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World Religions, Philosophy and Logic
Charlotte Mason’s original curriculum included comprehensive Bible readings alongside optional Sunday readings. Wildwood encourages each family to include books on their own spiritual traditions, and as those are so plentiful, it would impossible for us to include them all. As an alternative, we are offering some suggestions for those who may be interested in readings on World Religions, Philosophy or Logic.

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The following instructions are taken directly from the PNEU programmes:

  • In Upper IA  students should read their own books as much as possible, and should sometimes write narration.
  • In home schoolrooms where there are children in A as well as B, both forms may work together, doing the work of A or B as they are able.
  • For methods of teaching the various subjects, see Home Education and School Education.