Topic | Charlotte Mason approval?

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  • Would charlotte mason approve of reading a book such as “Blueberries for Sal” and the doing crafts/worksheets/math to go along with it? example:  I want to do “school” as much as Charlotte Mason would and dont want to be doing frivolous things that she would not recommend. 


    Well, hereis my opinion on it.  

    I believe that CM didn’t want forced connections… so things like the math sheet with blueberries wouldn’t be something that I think she would agree with.  (ie, she doesn’t go for unit studies.).

    Honestly, I think that goes with the rest of it…. except the narrations.  I think most of us consider drawing a picture along with a narration as ok, and even a good way to do narrations, although I don’t know that CM did that.

    I haven’t read the actual book, so I can’t comment on whether she would consider it Twaddle ore not….


    Agree with the above. Blueberries for Sal (and other Robert McCloskey) books are precious. We enjoyed reading them immensely when my children were preschool age. I would not consider this book twaddle for a child under the age of six, but that’s my opinion. What you’re describing sounds a lot like a small version of a unit study. Charlotte did not want to force connections, and I believe that when we put all our focus in other subjects on the same book, we’re limiting our children. So reading Blueberries for Sal, doing math with blueberries, going on a nature walk to pick blueberries, making a blueberry dessert, etc., does seem like a lot of focus on blueberries. It might be fun for one day, but I definitely don’t think Charlotte meant for us to spend copious amounts of time with one item (blueberries in this case) as the focus.



    I know Simply Charlotte Mason recommened this for Children of age 4 for their literature. 

    Thank you so much for your opinions, I was starting to think while I was getting my class studies for the week and I was thinking that doing a whole study on blueberries was frivolous and that Charlotte Mason would not have recommened it. 

    Do you think making Blueberry Jam on the day we read the book would be ok? 


    I’m an adult and I don’t consider Blueberries for Sal twaddle for myself. It’s a favorite of everyone here. That’s the thing with great picture books, all ages love them. 

    I love Bluberries for sal as well!  Im so excited to read it to my daughter. 


    Personally, I think making blueberry jam would be a great hook–I’d love to do it!  I wouldn’t do the things that stretch the connection in a forced way like worksheets with blueberries for the sake of making it connect, but something that is intimately related like that sounds fun.  And do you think your child would enjoy it?  Would it be a fun activity and also a great practical life skill?  While I try to follow CM methods, I am not Charlotte Mason.  I am my child’s mom as well as teacher.  Does that make sense?


    I love Blueberries for Sal, too.

    With my 5YO this year, we read lots of books about apples and did a few apple-related activities (making applesauce, making apple prints as a craft). It didn’t feel forced because it was the beginning of apple harvest season around here, so it felt natural to do these things.

    I think when activities naturally flow from the book you are reading, that’s a great thing!! Making blueberry jam after you read the book just seems like a natural next step. Counting with blueberry pom-poms, though, seems forced and more like a unit study.

    I guess that’s all up to you, though, and what works for your relationship with your child. I love Charlotte Mason, but there are many, many other ways to approach homeschooling. Follow your child’s lead.


    Just to clarify, I also LOVE Blueberries for Sal. Sorry if my post made it seem like I didn’t. It’s a great bedtime or quiet time book; I personally wouldn’t use it as a “school book” for my children, who are 7.5 and 6, but it was often read when they were 3, 4, and 5. Making blueberry jam is a wonderful idea! 



    We made blueberry cobbler after reading it last year….yum! 🙂

    Thank you ladies for all your opinions.  I do not want to do Unit Studies as Miss Mason did not recommend them.  I want to read my children great literature, we are going through Winnie the Pooh and Aesop’s Fables for Children daily and I also read one other book a day such as “Blueberries for sal” or any other that SimplyCharlotteMason recommends for the age group of 4-5.  


    I LOVE Blueberries for Sal and it’s my dd’s favorite author! Your children may naturally want to make something with or eat blueberries anyway! I’d say go for it! If I read a book about ice cream, I’d be out buying me some to eat! lol


    Can i just add one thought here?  I did come from a unit study background, as we did FIAR and KONOS before CM.  But what I have noticed with my kids, over and over, is that DOING something in connection with what we’re reading really really reinforces a connection between books/literature and real life.  If art and writing and literature is a reflection of when it was created, how wonderful to allow some activities to flow out of what you’re reading?!  For example, when we studied the american revolution, we dramatized (and videoed) my kids and some neighbors dramatizing Revere’s midnight ride.   it was hysterical.  my daughter braided her hair, put on her tricourne, rode a stick horse, and ran up and down the street, yelling, “the regulars are out! the regulars are out!”  then my my son, and a few friends came running out of their houses,  waving their “muskets”, and stepping into their boots, pretending to be minutemen.  it was a trip!  this was several years ago and no one’s forgotten it!  we learned about what the continential soldiers ate and made cormeal mush two ways – with salt and molasses and without, as they had to – and then tasted each.  it just helped to make it real, to help give their brains something to hook that new information on and make it personal.  while doing 5 different blueberry activities might be a bit forced, a bit much, doing a few activities might be a ton of fun, and again, help make the literature come alive.  Say – blueberry picking, like mom and sal.  or getting some fresh ones to eat or make jam with.  by allowing for such activities, especially when our children are young we are accomplishing several things at once:  we are builing memories, strengthening relationships, and blurring the line between school and life – which is what  real learning is all about!


    in Him,




    So, what would be the difference in doing activites with Blueberries for Sal and doing activites about Ancient Egypt when studying module 1?

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