We frequently hear the question, “What kinds of Charlotte Mason things can I do with my children in the early years — before we start formal schooling?”

First, give them plenty of free-play time outdoors. Let them run, yell, climb, get dirty, and become friends with the various aspects of nature in their community. If they’re curious about the name of a certain flower, tree, or bug, give them that information; otherwise, just let them play.

Second, if you’re already educating older children using Charlotte Mason’s methods, the younger ones can easily join in when you do Picture Study, Music Study, and Nature Study. Invite their participation, but don’t compel them. Simply spread the feast before them and let them partake as desired.

Third, read lots of good books together, avoiding twaddle. Many moms have asked for a list of titles, so we’ve added a page of more than seventy Early Years Books. These books were introduced to our children in their early years (ages 2-5) and have become well-loved friends.


  1. I love the way you are developing this website!!

    I briefly went through your list for earlier years and I did not see some classics like

    Beatrix Potter: The Complete Tales
    The Complete Tales of Winnie the Pooh.

    If you need some more additions let me know and I would be glad to contribute.


    • Thanks for the encouragement, Leslie. I believe the Beatrix Potter tales are included in “Peter Rabbit’s Giant Storybook”; it’s just a different title. We love those stories too!

      We hadn’t added Winnie the Pooh because we plan to recommend that book for a literature choice in first grade; but hey, why postpone such a great book? We’ll add it to the page with pleasure!

      Thanks for your comment. We welcome any other suggestions you have.

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