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Need more Charlotte Mason help... with Sonlight


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I switched from The Well Trained Mind with Sonlight to Charlotte Mason

style. I have 13 read alouds from Core K picked out for 1st grade. Is

this too many? Should I choose 4 books to start with at the same time?

How much should we read each day (page wise)?:confused:

 

I was planning on following the Sonlight schedule for the readers. (2

regular) is this okay?

 

Thanks for any assistance! :D I might think of more questions once I get responses.

 

Carmen

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Well, we're just reading through the Core K read-alouds now (just finished Light at Tern Rock) so take this with a grain of salt. The SL read-alouds are a lot shorter than the Ambleside selections, so you can do a more of them. I personally would only read one novel at a time (Light at Tern Rock, Apple and the Arrow, 100 Dresses, etc.) I read only one of the James Herriott stories in a week. We look at one 2 page spread of the Usborne Encyclopedia per day. Since the stories in SL are longer (versus Blue Fairy Book or Just So Stories) I think you have to read them more frequently than once a week or you lose the story line. You might just have to experiment a bit to see what works best for you.

 

Good luck!

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Okay, so are you only reading one at a time, but still only once or twice per week, instead of everyday?

 

In case anyone is wondering, this is what I was talking about:

http://www.amblesideonline.org/AOSlowReading.shtml

 

"Two years ago, I deliberately decided to re-schedule our school books so that the pace matched the pace described by Charlotte Mason. So, we were reading 6-7 books (maybe more) at a time, but they were read only once or twice per week. We took the whole 12-week term to read through a book that would have been finished in 2 weeks at the (faster) pace. Was there a difference? YES!"

 

Though I do not have a Sonlight schedule, I only got the LA IG, I was told that the books are read one at a time in quick succession, and this is not good according to CM.

 

Thanks for the input.

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Disclaimer: I do not use Ambleside...

 

Following CM is more than just slowly reading books...

 

also one important key that it mentioned many, many times in The Original Homeschooling Series is:

that Charlotte Mason, herself, said that children should be fed with worthy books: MANY worthy books... there is a definite emphasis on variety and quantity of quality and interesting books throughout the volumes.

 

I do not think thirteen books is too many for one year of school... however, you would have to flesh it out with your child yourself.

 

I think as far as what to do would depend on what thirteen books you chose. Are they a variety like: history, literature, etc. I would have no problem starting in one of each type all at once- for example: poetry, history, literature, etc.

Then just read a small portion from each book a week.... when you finish those- begin the next set of selections...

If you want those books to last for your whole year- pace them for 36 weeks...

 

FWIW, we have been using Living Books Curriculum- we are reading out of science, american history, world history, literature, art, etc. all during the same week- my children have had no problem "staying" with the stories...

In fact last week, I was reading two american history books ( a chapter at a time) to my second grader because we lost one by accident for a week or so! and had to catch up...)

 

I hope this helps...

Rebecca

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Ambleside has quite a few direct quotes from Charlotte Mason herself. If you read the full information at the link, it is not far off the mark.

 

We are studying culture/geography and zoology for science, and we also have a Bible curriculum. I did not include these books in with the 13. Out of the 13 I have some fiction, some non-fiction, some historical, one poetry, some about animals... others about people, etc. so I think you are helping me get some ideas to start with several but of a different genre. I was hoping someone was familiar with how much we need to read out of the K books to get them done, but really, I don't care if we have to read some of them next year. We are taking a break from Sonlight until American History in 5th grade, so I will have quite a bit of leeway with my own scheduling. I am figuring things out and answering myself as I type! I have always been of the philosophy "do the next lesson" and usually don't schedule things out.

 

Your input was helpful.

 

Carmen

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FWIW, I did read the full quote you linked. I have also read a lot of other information on the site at different times. I am not unfamiliar with it.

 

As Ambleside says- and other CM programs- there is more than one way to implement the method... so I was just offering a different perspective on the amt. of books point of view.

 

It sounds like you have a lot of school besides those thirteen books!

 

Unfortunately- I don't know how much to read to get them done... maybe someone else will chime in...

 

Sincerely,

Rebecca

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I have been using the CM method of 'slow reading/many books on the go at a time' this year and I have found it really good. My dc have had no trouble at all keeping with the story line and it lets them 'live' with the story for longer. We also have a family read-aloud which we read at whatever pace we like.

 

As far as how much to read, I would take all the books you want to cover in the year then sort them into terms - maybe 4x10 weeks or 3x12 weeks or however you divide your year up. Say you decide to cover 3 or 4 books a term then work out how many pages or chapters a week you would need to read to complete the book in a term and share them into one or two reading sessions a week. Some smaller books may only spread out over 6 weeks or so at reading one or two chapters a week. If so, just have another shorter book to take its place in that time slot once the first book is finished.

 

I hope this makes sense; not sure I've explained what I mean very well.

All the best.

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FWIW, I did read the full quote you linked. I have also read a lot of other information on the site at different times. I am not unfamiliar with it.

 

As Ambleside says- and other CM programs- there is more than one way to implement the method... so I was just offering a different perspective on the amt. of books point of view.

 

It sounds like you have a lot of school besides those thirteen books!

 

Unfortunately- I don't know how much to read to get them done... maybe someone else will chime in...

 

Sincerely,

Rebecca

 

I hope I didn't come accross as combative, it was not my intention. I see where you are coming from. There was something about quality over quantity in the link. And you thought I was only doing the 13 books, but they are just the read-aloud section of SL. On top of that SL has history, readers, science, and bible. I have run into people before who think that ambleside online is the only CM resource out there too. I have one book, and I am just learning more about it and need to use my time wisely, so I am trying not to over-research IYKWIM.

 

My plan is to us a combination of SL, tanglewoodeducation.com, and suggestions from these boards (simply spelling, writing tales) I am actually not using amblesideonline, as far as curriculum. It just has easily accessable CM info.

 

Your comments helped me figure my original question out though... and the reminder on variety was relevant, so thanks!

 

Carmen

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Thanks Linda,

 

So if I have 2 books for history and 2 for science, 1 for bible, and a reader going, then how many read alouds would you add to that? Sonlight actually has all that plus around 22 read alouds for the school year if I remember. I cut out quite a few.

 

Right now we are doing bible about half the time I would like to, and alternating days on handwriting and phonics, but doing math everyday. We started one read aloud and I am starting readers next week.

 

I have a one year old. I am adding more gradually. I am very scared that I can't do this. Especially with CM emphasizing nature study, foreign language, and the arts. I am not a full-time tutor, I have other responsibilities. I think I need to look at the CM homeschool books some more.

 

thank you for the support!

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Hi Carmen,

 

You CAN do this. It might look scary but it's actually quite an achievable, rewarding way of doing things once you get the hang of it.

 

When you say 'reader' do you mean an easy reader that your dc reads to you? Just checking. If it is then I would just add one literature book to the history and science books you have already planned. How old are your dc? I'm kind of assuming that you are reading all those books aloud at this stage - sorry if I'm wrong.

 

I add a family read-aloud to our mix because I have six children at various levels. My olders do all their own readings while I still read a lot of my youngers material to them. A family read-aloud brings us all together and usually is not related to our other themes. My kids love this. You might not need this if you are already reading their other books aloud. Maybe just a literature chapter once or twice a week would be enough with the other topics you already mentioned.

 

As for Bible, we read Bible daily, usually at breakfast or first thing before we start other subjects. That way we make sure it doesn't get missed.

 

BTW , I think adding things gradually is a great idea.

 

Hope this helps.

Please let me know if I can help in any other way.

 

Linda:)

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Yes, an easy reader that she reads to me. Okay, so when a CM homeschooler has 6 books going, they are probably already counting history, science, and bible. That makes sense. She will be 6 in July. I know she is young, but she was already reading and doing addition at 3 years old. I think I would be cheating her if I stall things any more. I had to quit for a while b/c I was on bedrest and then baby was sick and needed extra care. I will make sure we do bible daily even if it is a small amount. That should have been a no-brainer...get your mindset on the right things in the morning.

 

Thanks,

 

Carmen

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Yep, that's it! The 6 or so books they have on the go are from a variety of subject areas and read over time, not ncessarily in chunks like SL schedules them. SL has some great books but the process of reading them is set out differently with a CM method.

 

It sounds like you'll have a great time.:)

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My daughter loved listening to almost all the sonlight books. So much so that after I finished reading the suggested chapter for the day, she would beg for another and another and another. We finished The Boxcar Children in 3 days. I think their schedule was 10 days. We read almost every book suggested by sonlight, and then some. The only ones we substituted for were Johnny Appleseed. I already had a different version about him. And we didn't read Twenty and Ten. My daughter is sensitive, and from what I knew about the book, I thought she was too young at the time.

 

We just read The Wonderful Wizard of Oz this winter, a year after doing sonlight's K read-alouds, and she loved it. Again we read several chapters a night. She really enjoyed the story.

 

I am always big on reading to your children, in whatever amount you think that they will listen to, and whatever amount you have time for. Read Jim Trelease's Read-Aloud Handbook to confirm that young children excel in school the more they are read to.

 

Good luck.

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Yep, that's it! The 6 or so books they have on the go are from a variety of subject areas and read over time, not ncessarily in chunks like SL schedules them. SL has some great books but the process of reading them is set out differently with a CM method.

 

It sounds like you'll have a great time.:)

 

 

Could someone please explain this to me?

 

Well, let me back up a bit, if anyone is willing to indulge me here. I have used Sonlight. I've used My Father's World. For most of this year, I've patched my own thing together. I'm now using Biblioplan. So, finally, I am getting a feel for what I like and what I don't like.

 

I don't know WHAT my problem is, but I am finding out that I just do not like having a spine book. I mean, it is burdensome to me to have to read little tidbits from a spine and then to coordinate our other reading around that. It doesn't matter if that other reading is already all planned out for me or not. I don't know why. I just don't like it. For example, I was miserable reading A Child's History of the World over a year period. We wanted to just sit down and read it. We could have read it in a few weeks (as a read aloud, I mean). Now, I am reading from both Story of the World 1 and The Mystery of History 1 and I'm finding the same thing is true. I don't want to take a whole school year to read them. It becomes "school" rather than just enjoying a book. We just want to read the books and not have to stop and coordinate other reading around it.

 

Now, I understand the reason for having a spine book. I guess it helps the child understand the flow of history. But, we use our timeline books to pull it all together, so I don't know how valuable this really is to me.

 

Could someone address this here? Is that what you mean about with CM you don't read books in the same way that SL would plan them out? I feel like I need permission to just read and not have everything so very coordinated. Am I making any sense at all? Probably not, because for the life of me, I can't really figure out what my problem is. It just seems like reading becomes quite a chore to me because it's all so complicated when what I'd really like to do is just relax and enjoy a book all the way through... and, we often have five or six books going at a time when I'm not trying to follow a schedule. I'm not happy with taking a book or two and making a whole "curriculum" out of them. I guess I'm primarily talking about history here.

 

Can anyone comment on this? I know I'm not explaining my "issue" very well. I guess the bottom line is that it feels quite unnatural to me to stop at a certain point because we have other reading we need to do before we can go on.

 

Thanks for any feedback!

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I do understand what you are asking (I think :) ).

 

I see the CM Mason way of reading whole books slowly over time as different to a set program where there is a spine with other books co-ordinated with it. I think that the idea is to just to take whatever history book you want to read, and read it over time - not necessarily stopping to tie other books in with it - just enjoying the book for what it is. Using a timeline along with it is a great idea. CM would schedule a history based story or two set in the same time period as what was being covered in the other history book, but it would be read concurrently with the main history book. You didn't have to stop to fit the second book in. I find it easier this way than trying to coordinate everything in together. I just choose our history time period, find a good book to read that will cover that period then add a biography or story to go along with that same time period to be read alongside the main book. This way the second book doesn't interrupt the flow of what we are reading, but adds depth to our knowledge of the time period.

 

But really, it's only one way of doing things. I like taking time with books, and having lots on the go at a time. It sort of allows us to 'live' with the time or person we are reading about for longer. One book may be only read once or twice a week, but we have other things to read on the other days. We also have a family read-aloud on the go that we just read as much as we like of - for those times when we just want to keep on reading. And my children have their own reading which they do at their own pace (as well as scheduled literature reading) so it all balances out. If you love to just sit and read without a schedule then just do it :) . You really don't have to fit in with a program. I guess that's one of the beauties of homeschooling.:001_smile:

 

I hope some of that ramble made sense.

All the best.

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