Archive for March, 2012

And the Winner is….!

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

Using the website, (which actually works on more than 100 entries),  we randomly picked a winner from all of your sweet comments!

And the winner is…drum roll…. Sally T. from Burnet, Texas!! Congratulations, Sally!

And to Thank You for Entering Our Giveaway…

We are offering you very special pricing on our Daily Lesson Plan CDs!

If you have been homeschooling any length of time at all you know how difficult it is to find the RIGHT homeschooling curricula.

It’s either…

  • too hard to follow
  • takes too long to plan and/or prepare to teach
  •  too expensive
  • too traditional, full of monotonous textbooks and worksheets written from a secular worldview
  • does not incorporate HISTORY, SCIENCE, LANGUAGE ARTS and FINE ARTS in one, simple to follow plan, OR
  •  is just plain boring!

Read What Others are Saying About our Curriculum…

[I was concerned about] buying the books and the price of the first grade daily lesson plan curriculum, [but found] it was awesome!!!!!! So much better than doing Charlotte Mason on my own and we tried {popular Christian, literature-based curriculum} and it doesn’t compare. I like how everything is incorporated. It has been put together so much better than anything else I have looked at. The books are great, the schedule is easy to follow. If I were to write a curriculum ( as if I had the time) this would be it, but this is so much better that what I would have put together. My daughter loves it too!!!  –Wendy

The greatest part of Epi Kardia is the wonderful collection of (recommended) whole book titles for the different time periods and the way arts and science are already woven together for me to use. An added benefit is the love of learning this curriculum has helped instill in my children. They are NEVER bored with this program.  –Jennifer

I would absolutely recommend Epi Kardia especially for any family that is interested in well-planned curriculums that are literature-based using a Charlotte Mason approach… I was impressed with how comprehensive the Daily Lesson Plans were and our family was not disappointed with the results of using it… I have learned so much about our history and Charlotte Mason’s methods…I think I learned more from your curriculum than I did in school. –Tracey*

Our Daily Lesson Plans were written by homeschooling moms, just like you!

By God’s grace, we successfully homeschooled our children through high school.

Although I occasionally chose to put my children in a class taught by someone else, especially for that high school math, I never sent them out to any of the recently popular and expensive “homeschooling” options where someone else chooses the curriculum, someone else does the teaching, and I was only responsible to make sure their (overabundance) of ‘homework’ was done.

Instead, we chose to keep our children at home, where we could focus on mentoring and discipling them, training them from our
Biblical worldview, and teaching them how to love and serve each other, our family, and others.

Rather than trying to do “school at home,” as in many of the popular “canned” textbook curricula, we chose to teach the way children naturally learn, using Charlotte Mason’s methods of superior, well-written literature, short lessons, plenty of time out of doors, and early focus on instilling obedience and habit training.

This was our mindset in creating our Daily Lesson Plans…

…which feature

  • integrated daily lessons in history, science, reading, vocabulary, spelling, grammar, literature study, poetry, fine arts, and more
  • weekly themes and objectives outlined at the beginning of each week in all of the subjects we cover
  • reading assignments, discussion questions, science experiments, history activities, art projects – with weekly materials and list of supplies to make preparation a cinch
  • vocabulary and spelling (up to middle school) words and copy work selections already chosen from the history and science reading
  • short grammar lessons with answer keys provided

VERY Special Pricing for One Week Only!

Beginning TODAY and continuing until Thursday, March 28th at midnight, we are offering our Daily Lesson Plans CDs at a whopping 50% off — with FREE SHIPPING* on all CDs ordered!

This applies to one set or several! Save as much as $100 + shipping fees on one CD if you buy one complete year of lesson plans!

 Set I, II, or III of any grade level – usually $75 + shipping charges, now only $37.50!!

Complete Year’s Plans – usually $200 + shipping charges, now only $100!!

All you have to do to place your order is go to our online catalog and order. Your shipping cart will automatically calculate your savings – no coupon to have to remember and type in.

If you would rather order by mail, please let us know what you would like to order by email and we will immediately invoice you. Remember, there is no shipping charge on CDs. If you choose to order other items at the same time, shipping will be calculated only on those items.

To take advantage of these spectacular prices, head over to our online catalog. Remember, the sale prices will be reflected in your shopping cart once you add one or more CDs to the cart!

 *for U.S. orders


Best Regards,

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*Take a look at the rest of Tracey’s detailed review of our First Grade Lesson Plans!

Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival – Education is a Discipline

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

Welcome to the March 20th edition of the Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival!Christian literature-based homeschooling curriculum using Charlotte Mason methods

If you are new here, you will want to carve a little time out of your day, grab a cup of coffee or tea and spend some time perusing the articles  from homeschooling moms who use Charlotte Mason’s methodology in their home schools. Expect to learn, be inspired and encouraged!

This edition’s theme is “Education is a Discipline,” but there are always posts that relate to other areas of Miss Mason’s philosophy included in the carnival. And we usually squeeze in a few posts on the last edition’s topic as well. :-)

I hope those of you who are in ‘cold country’ especially, will enjoy the photos! Your flowers will come soon, I promise.

Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival, Education is a Discipline

Parenting = Teaching and Training

The parent who believes that the possibilities of virtuous training are unlimited will set to work with cheerful confidence, will forego the twaddle about ‘Nature,’ whether as lovely in itself or as an irresistible force, and will perceive that the first function of the parent is that function of discipline … — Volume 2, p. 65

Nancy, from Sage Parnassus, posts Parents as Rulers, Inspirers, and Revealers – Charlotte Mason on Thoughtful Parenting, wherein she suggests that Miss Mason had much to offer not only the educator, but also the parent.  Melissa also shares her thoughts and ruminations on our topic from her blog, Educating Mother: Education is a Discipline {chewing on a couple of things}.  Barb at Harmony Art Mom offers us food for thought with her post entitled Homeschooling for Life and Not a Lifestyle. I agree that Charlotte would have wanted to see her charges develop a lifelong love for learning.

Editor’s Note:  Due to a technical problem, this is a post that is being added a few hours after the publishing of this issue:

Here is Erin’s post, Education is a Discipline, from her blog, Seven Little Australians and Counting.

A very clear presentation of how Sarah instills morning habits in her children, Discipline and the Two R’s,  is posted on her blog, All That’s Good. I love these concrete examples, don’t you?  Another beneficial post along these lines is by Tammy, who chronicles her experience Curing the Habit of Frustration, presented on her blog, Aut-2B-Homeincarolina.

Why Homeschool? Retaining Sibling Relationships, is a thoughtful post by Kelly at The Homeschool Co-op. You will not only enjoy the post – the photos of her kids are too cute!  Nadene also talks about her children, and transparently shares a current struggle  implementing the ‘perfect’ Charlotte Mason home school.  Read her post, Stresses and Struggles, on her blog, Practical Pages.

Daily Lesson Plans for Charlotte Mason homeschoolingPoetry Study

Here are a few posts that either didn’t make it into the last edition of the carnival or were included after it was initially published: Laura shares her first experiences sharing poetry with her son at her blog, Windy Hill Home School in her post entitled Poetry.  At the other end of the homeschooling spectrum, here is an inspiring poem with suggestions for middle and high school lesson plans included on the Epi Kardia Blog, Poetry Study: Anne Bradstreet: Puritan Poet.  Additionally, Amy from Fisher Academy International shares her very useful post on how to analyze poetry For Novel Poetry Analysts…Like Me!.

Nature Study & the Arts

The Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival would not be complete without celebrating nature and all we may learn there, especially during the delightful Spring season! Barb at her Handbook of Nature Study blog shares her informative and visually cheerful post, Early Spring Flowers – Nature Study and Art Project. After Barb’s post, head over to Hodgepodge where Trish offers us 10 Easter and Spring Arts and Crafts activities to enjoy.   Jimmie at Jimmies Collage then features her Georgia O’Keeffe  Artist Study (along with the display of her daughter’s beautiful work!) Thanks to all three ladies for the lesson plans and photos of gorgeous art work to inspire us.

Even if you are not quite ready for the art studies, Melissa’s post Snippets from Charlotte on Being Outdoors will encourage you to carve out the time to regularly leave your four walls and go outside (with your children!) on her blog, Bugs, Knights, and Turkeys in the Yard.

Living Math

In her post at Jimmie’s Collage, Jimmie describes how she incorporates principles of “living” math along with a textbook curriculum in Using Teaching Textbooks in a Living Math Approach.

Scripture Prayer Calendar

Charlotte Mason Education is a Discipline

And, finally, a lovely gift to us of a downloadable Scripture Prayer Calendar from Nadene of Practical Pages. Thank you, Nadene, for the helpful photos and clear directions for creating our own calendars, as well as for the reminder of the need to be lifting up our children in prayer.


Thank you to all of the authors for their useful entries and to our readers for taking the time to read and comment on our posts!




The next Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival on April 3rd will be hosted by Jimmie at Jimmie’s Collage. The theme will be Living Books –  (definition of, why we use them, our favorites, choosing books, etc.)
* PR article to read for background: Schoolbooks and How They Make for Education.

Editor’s Note: if you would like to have one of your posts included in the next edition of the Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival, please send the following to instead of using the blog carnival form:

  • the name of and link to your blog
  • the title of and link to your post
  • any remarks you would like to make about your post


Christian literature based homeschool curriclum


P.S. Reminder to those interested in entering a no-strings-attached give-away of a year of Charlotte Mason curricula : click here to see how to enter. The random drawing will tomorrow, March 21st.







Daily Lesson Plans – Give-away and Free Shipping!

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

free shipping on Daily Lesson plan CDs, Daily Lesson Plan give-aways, free daily lesson plans

So Much News!

First of all, you know how you hate to order a CD and pay a small fortune for shipping?  Well, we do, too.

And that is why we are now offering FREE SHIPPING on all of our curriculum CDs!  Yep! (To United States’ destinations.)

Free Shipping AND Give-away

This give-away is ‘in honor’ of the completion of our Second Grade Daily Lesson Plans – (which actually happened a while back, but  if you read my last newsletter you understand what happened to delay this announcement).

Next Wednesday, March 21st, we will randomly select ONE WINNER TO RECEIVE A YEAR OF our Christian, literature-based DAILY LESSON PLANS ON CD!!  Worth $200, this is all the homeschooling curricula you need to teach history, science, language arts and fine arts – for one entire school year for one of your students!

In addition to our Teacher’s Guide that instructs how the plans are to be used, you will receive:

  • Set I (Ancients, Middle Ages and Renaissance & Reformation) AND
  • Set II (Colonial Life, Revolution and Western Expansion), AND
  • Set III (Civil War, Immigration and Modern)

You choose the grade level!  Currently available: First Grade, Second Grade, Third Grade, Fourth Grade, or Middle School (best for 7th or 8th graders).

All you will need to get to go with the lesson plans are the books we use and the supplies for projects and activities. The books are available at your local library, used bookstore or on! (See our book pages to see which books we suggest for each grade level. You may even have some of them already.)

You have several chances to enter! Do one or more of the following:

  1. Tweet this offer. (You may use the button below this post on our blog.) Make sure you leave another comment with your twitter name letting us know about it.
  2. Read and comment on one of our last three blog posts  before this one and comment on this post to let us know.
  3. Leave a comment on this post and tell us why you would like to win!
  4. Post this offer on your Facebook page and comment to let us know. (Below this post on our blog .)
  5. Post this offer on your Google+ page and comment to let us know.
  6. If you haven’t already, go to our home page and join our mailing list. Then leave a comment on our blog and tell us you did!

If You Don’t Win, Don’t Worry

Of course, we can only have one winner – but for everyone else, after our random drawing we are going to be offering VERY special pricing on all of our Daily Lesson Plan CDs for one week only.  Along with the free shipping – this will be a fabulous offer!

If you have been looking longingly at our daily lesson plans, this will be your chance to take care of all of your history, science, language arts and fine arts curriculum for one of your students for next year, at a price you can afford!

Look for the details of this sale when we announce the winner of our Daily Lesson Plan Give-away.

Christian literature based homeschool curriclum



P.S. Don’t forget – our free shipping on Daily Lesson Plans CDs will be in effect as well as the very reduced prices for one week AFTER our give-away!


Poetry Study: Anne Bradstreet, Puritan Poet

Monday, March 5th, 2012

Literature is hardly a distinct subject, so closely is it associated with history, whether general or English…and it is astonishing how much sound learning children acquire when the thought of an age is made to synchronise with its political and social developments.

 A point which I should like to bring before the reader is the peculiar part which poetry plays in making us aware of this thought of the ages, including our own.

—Charlotte Mason, Vol. 6


Our history and literature study, including poetry, is intertwined. As Charlotte Mason suggests, poetry helps illuminate history for us by letting us peek over the shoulder at the thoughts of those who came before us.

Please take advantage of this rich primary source material by including poetry — the very words of those living in the particular time period you are studying  in history — into your homeschooling.

 Anne Bradstreet, America’s First Poet

The first woman to be published in the U.S. and considered by many to be America’s first poet, Anne Bradstreet was actually born in high school poetry lesson: Anne Bradstreet, Puritan PoetEngland. Two years married, Anne braved the Atlantic and moved with her young Puritan family to Massachusetts Bay, where her husband and father were eventually each governors of this new United States colony.

Anne’s vivid, beautiful poetry is a window into the intentional strength and faith of the Puritan soul in response to the hardship of life in Colonial America.

Below is one of Anne’s poignant poems followed by lesson plan ideas to use for your elementary to high school-aged students.

Here followes some verses upon the burning of our house, July 10th, 1666.

by Anne Bradstreet

In silent night when rest I took,
For sorrow neer I did not look,
I waken’d was with thundring nois
And Piteous shreiks of dreadfull voice.
That fearfull sound of fire and fire,
Let no man know is my Desire.
I, starting up, the light did spye,
And to my God my heart did cry
To strengthen me in my Distresse
And not to leave me succourlesse.
Then coming out beheld a space,
The flame consume my dwelling place.

And, when I could no longer look,
I blest his Name that gave and took,
That layd my goods now in the dust:
Yea so it was, and so ’twas just.
It was his own: it was not mine;
Far be it that I should repine.

He might of All justly bereft,
But yet sufficient for us left.
When by the Ruines oft I past,
My sorrowing eyes aside did cast,
And here and there the places spye
Where oft I sate, and long did lye.

Here stood that Trunk, and there that chest;
There lay that store I counted best:
My pleasant things in ashes lye,
And them behold no more shall I.
Under thy roof no guest shall sitt,
Nor at thy Table eat a bitt.

No pleasant tale shall ‘ere be told,
Nor things recounted done of old.
No Candle ‘ere shall shine in Thee,
Nor bridegroom’s voice ere heard shall bee.
In silence ever shalt thou lye;
Adieu, Adeiu; All’s vanity.

Then streight I gin my heart to chide,
And didst thy wealth on earth abide?
Didst fix thy hope on mouldring dust,
The arm of flesh didst make thy trust?
Raise up thy thoughts above the skye
That dunghill mists away may flie.

Thou hast an house on high erect
Fram’d by that mighty Architect,
With glory richly furnished,
Stands permanent tho’ this bee fled.
It’s purchased, and paid for too
By him who hath enough to doe.

A Prise so vast as is unknown,
Yet, by his Gift, is made thine own.
Ther’s wealth enough, I need no more;
Farewell my Pelf, farewell my Store.
The world no longer let me Love,
My hope and Treasure lyes Above.

How to Read Poetry

No matter the age of your students, there are crucial steps to reading poetry, as presented in How to Read a Book: The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading. (This is a classic that should be read by all homeschooled high school students, in my opinion!) :-)

First, read the poem through the first time without stopping. Even though there are unfamiliar words and phrases, you will glean much more by first reading the poem through without stopping to figure out  the vocabulary.

Then, read the poem through a second time, but this time read it aloud.

Poetry’s inherent rhythm brings the words and phrases to life.  Now, you may start asking what the poem is saying.

The more you read it, the more the poem can speak to you.

For Younger Students

In true Charlotte Mason fashion, resist the urge to “teach” this poem. Instead, allow the poem to speak directly to your student. And this particular  poem will be more suitable for older elementary children than younger.

For elementary students, just focus on reading the poem. If you anticipate your student becoming frightened about your house burning down, remind him that during colonial times candles were used for light and most household items were of wood, so house fires were much more common than today. (Although we ALWAYS have to be careful of fire, etc…)

For an older elementary or middle school-aged student, read a stanza aloud, one at a time, and have your student narrate (tell back) what s/he has heard.  Record your student’s thoughts for each stanza.

After the narration is complete, you may ask your student to describe how the author feels about what happened, especially if this was not included in the original narration.  Your student  may also ask you questions about the poem, which is fine, but try to be brief in your answers. If your student shows particular interest in any poem, encourage questions, re-reading and further observation.

Of course, younger students will  miss the biblical allusions and will focus on the more ‘concrete’ aspects of this poem, as is normal for their stage of development.

You may choose to read other poems by Anne Bradstreet while studying the American Colonial period, as Charlotte Mason advocated reading one poet at a time, for six weeks or more.  For the younger set, focus mainly on reading and enjoying the poems.

For High School Students

High school students should initially approach the poem in the same way recommended earlier: first by reading the poem  in its entirety, without stopping; then reading the poem a second time, aloud, again without stopping.

Most high school students would benefit by reading this poem through every day for a week or more. As it is rich in biblical allusions and principles and Puritan theology, there is much here to be gleaned by the discerning student.

Assignment Possibilities (High School)

These are written to the student.

  • As you read through the poem, note at least eight examples of the dialect of the time period. Draw a line down the center of a piece of notebook paper and write the phrase or word on the left, as gleaned by your examination of the poem, and the meaning or spelling of the sample on the right, as it might be expressed in today’s language.
  • Read through each stanza of the poem, then write a summary of each in your own words.
  • As you read through each stanza, note any biblical allusions/principles. (There are several.) Make sure to identify and explain the allusion and for extra or Honors credit – add a Scripture reference.

Additional Assignment Ideas from our American Literature course:

  • Read an additional book of poetry by Anne Bradstreet, such as To My Husband and Other Poems.
  • Read at least one poem from each of the sections of the book and be prepared to discuss with your teacher what you learn about Anne from the sample of poems that you read.
  • After reading at least five of her poems, write two to three paragraphs about what you learn about Anne as a person. What is important to her? What did she believe? What did she love? What kind of person do you think she was?
  • Research Anne Bradstreet’s life and compare what you learn to what you discovered from her poetry. Were your observations accurate? How did they differ, if at all, from what you learned through research? Write two to three paragraphs discussing how your research compares to your observations from reading her poetry.
For additional reading on Anne Bradstreet:
For excellent reading concerning the Puritans, consider reading:


Is poetry something you enjoy reading at your house, or do you struggle to include it?

Christian literature based homeschool curriclum