Charlotte Mason is a homeschooling style that has dominated the homeschool world for years. The beauty of this homeschooling style is that it is one of the most frugal options for homeschooling. In fact, you can homeschool Charlotte Mason for free quite easily.
Charlotte Mason believed that nature study, narration, forming habits, copywork, picture and hymn studies, foreign language, and Shakespeare was important above all other things. She encouraged “twaddle free” and gentle learning.
She believed that the academic, emotional, and spiritual needs of children must be met. No homework, no dry textbooks, no crossing off long lists of assignments and no endless worksheets.
How to Homeschool Charlotte Mason for Free
The first place you should check out for free Charlotte Mason resources is your own bookshelves. Even if you have never taught Charlotte Mason before chances are good you have some lovely books on your bookshelves.
Not sure what type of books you’re looking for? Try looking for a field guide for birds, a book of Shakespeare plays or a volume of art prints.
Keep it simple. You don’t need an entire library of books to begin. Just a few simple living books that will inspire your children to learn. There is no need to “dumb it down” for them. Children want to learn naturally.
“An observant child should be put in the way of things worth observing.” Charlotte Mason
The great outdoors is one of the primary CM foundations is nature study. The best part? It is most definitely free! So, head outside and begin putting your child in front of the beauty of nature. Let them explore and discover at no cost.
Allow them to bring home pinecones, interesting rocks, abandoned bird nests, leaves, feathers, etc… They can then use their treasures to create a nature table which they can return to time and again to explore. You can even add a book or two for them to thumb through on their next visit.
“Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life.” Charlotte Mason
The library is always a fantastic place to get free materials for your homeschool. Get started easily by researching a variety of Charlotte Mason style books. Put in a request and have the library place them on hold for you to pick up.
If you or your child really love a particular book, you can renew most of them. If you really love it, you can purchase a copy for your home library!
Your local library is the host of a wealth of children’s living books, classics, Shakespeare, and adult instructional books.
“Wise and purposeful letting alone is the best part of education.” Charlotte Mason
Instead of purchasing pricey ready-made math manipulatives for math class, make your own! Use real money, grab a small clock you already have for learning time, turn old blocks, beans or sticks into counters and make Cuisenaire rods from sturdy craft foam.
Manipulatives are tools to be used when teaching your children mathematical concepts. They are meant to present or help your student examine an idea. They should only be used until your child understands the idea and then put away until it is time for them to learn a new one.
Free Charlotte Mason Homeschool Resources
This free online homeschool curriculum is based on Charlotte Mason. You’ll utilize their book lists to cover history, literature, poetry, geography, and science. The only subjects you’ll need to find elsewhere are math and foreign language.
Get started with English studies with this free online first book for studying English/Grammar with your students. Each lesson, aside from reading lessons, features questions for you to ask your children.
The first volume of Charlotte Mason’s Home Education Series details her method of education. This is a classical reference that is still highly used today by homeschoolers around the world.
By using this free online curriculum you can teach math from Kindergarten through high school. The lessons are printable and there are solutions as well, however, once you reach the high school math in years 10 and 11 you may need to email them to request a password to access the solutions. On their website, they state that they are homeschool friendly, so do not be afraid to reach out and ask!
This is an amazing resource for nearly every study of nature that you could possibly want to complete. I do believe that once you’ve flipped through a few of the pages online though that you will want to purchase a copy to own for yourself.
You can blend technology with the CM style! A quick check on Pinterest for “Free Charlotte Mason” will provide you with more than enough to get started. You will find everything from Charlotte Mason style planners to narration cards, prints for art study and hymns for your hymn study. There are also free videos for hymns and classical music and even entire curriculums!
I often see Charlotte Mason style books free or for only $.99. As of the publishing date of this article, the books below were free for the Kindle, but Amazon does change frequently, so be sure to check the price in your cart before you check out.
The freedom to be outdoors with your children, the use of quality literature and lack of textbooks truly will give your children the opportunity to learn from the world around them. This is the best way to educate them — through life!
What are your favorite free Charlotte Mason homeschooling resources?