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  • HSMom03

    Hi!  I am trying to wrap up planning for this upcoming school year.  I need to figure out Language Arts for my 5th grader.  I am following SCM guidelines for the most part but I wondered if I should add Heart of Dakota’s DITHOR program for my 5th graders reading instruction.  Is that not CM?  Is that overkill?  Is it enough if he just reads the books?  Thanks to all who answer!


    Here is the link if you aren’t sure what it is.

    Tamara Bell

    Good morning!

    Charlotte Mason was opposed to literature analysis the way we think know it to be.  Reading the books alone isn’t enough.  Couple it with narrations and it is enough.  Proper narration takes more work than worksheets.  We don’t want our students to speak with the authors voice, to just regurgitate what the author said.  We want them to read intently, take it in, process it, and then tell us with their own voice what happened, describe a process, compare two characters, etc.

    Sonya has talked about literature analysis and narration on the blog a bit over the years.  Here is a brief article on literature analysis, vocabulary, and comprehension.  

    Here is another where she likens analysis to a middle man.  We don’t want to crush our child’s enjoyment of reading by getting in the way of reading for pleasure.

    It truly will be enough to give him great living books.  Books that grab hold of him, spark his imagination, and brings him into contact with a person, event, or time period.


    I have used HOD DITHOR in the past and it is definitely not CM!  I found the workbooks to be just generic graphic organizers that you could easily put together yourself.  Now, the book packs are fantastic and I still use them for my son’s independent reading assignments.  I do exactly as Tamara suggested, couple reading good literature with written and oral narrations and it is wonderful!


    I am interested hearing the responses to this as well.  I have the situation where my children seem to feel it spoils the book if I would require narrations  😮  !  They don’t want to read if they know they’ll have to narrate.  I have a friend in another state who had that exact thing happen to her. Maybe it’s how we’re approaching it??        I read the highlighted articles….. I don’t trust myself to know what kind of questions to give to them. I honestly don’t have a clue!

    I have one child who had told me a couple years ago, that he  thought having questions from a study guide actually helped him think differently about the book.  It gave him things to think about that he wouldn’t have thought of on his own.  So, I have been round and round  about how to do literature, mainly for high school.  I hope it’s okay to jump in here. I don’t want to take over the original posters question.

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