Just starting and need some advice

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  • Julesthemum

    Hi, I have a few questions. My daughter, six, started reading at three. She begged to go to kindergarten last fall, and even though we have always wanted to homeschool, we felt it would not hurt to allow her a year in the private christian school where my mum teaches. She complained of boredom the first week, because she did not like the kindergarten “readers” (the phoniocs books with which they teach school children to read.) SO I spent quite a lot of time taking her to the library and choosing interesting and fun books for her to read at home. By the end of the school year she was reading the fourth grade “readers” at school, and chapter books from the library (for example: Alice in Wonderland, the Chronicles of Narnia) at home. I know that if I were to return her to the school for first grade she would be deathly bored as she would have to read all the first grade “readers” and rework her way back up to her actual reading level.

    SO! On to my problems and questions. I would like to begin using the Charlotte Mason method for our home school. I know she will blossom and bloom under it. I am not certain how to begin. She has never done narration. She is already proficient at writing. However, she is still very much a six year old child. She loves picture books, and has never done any memory work. I have read many articles, etcetera on how to begin the Charlotte Mason Method, but it all seems to be about how to teach small children to read. Do I start her narrating the chapter books she already reads? Or do I start her on something easier to do? I find she is daunted when I ask her to tell me what she has been reading. I don’t think the school she attended ever had her talk about the “books” she read there. And she usually loses interest if I say, “Ok, I’ll read to you and you tell me what I read.”  I know the oral narration is important, but can I start her on written as she seems much more interested in that? Help!


    It might be that while her reading skills are far above a typical 6yo, her oral communication skills are more on target.  There are many ideas for other types of narration that might hit home for her more.  You can work on oral narration at very small intervals but have her draw what she read in her chapter book.  Dover publications has paper dolls from many classic books, maybe she would like to act out the story in that way instead.  There are tons of ideas on this site under “narration ideas” in the “Time Savers” section.  And remember this is a transition to a new type of learning, a new school environment, a new job for you too.  Take it easy and add things as you master other things.  Just start science and add narration once you get in the groove of doing science.  Start small, she sounds like she will be just fine!  Best of luck to you!


    I agree.  Narration is a learned skill, and although your daughter can read and write well, she is with most 6yo’s at needing to learn to narrate.  That isn’t a bad thing!  You have been given some good advice.  One thing you need to do is learn different ways to ask for the narration.  Oh, and give it a try yourself sometime… it isn’t easy!

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