Laying Down the Rails for Children Charlotte Mason habit training
Laying Down the Rails for Children: A Habit Training Companion


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Laying Down the Rails for Children: A Habit Training Companion

(7 customer reviews)


A habit-training companion for the whole family filled with more than 400 pages of stories, Bible passages, poems, activities, quotations—living ideas that will nestle into your children’s minds and motivate them toward the habits of good character. Corresponds to the award-winning book, Laying Down the Rails.

New single-volume edition contains the same material in one book for easier handling! See full description

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Product Description

Good habits shape good character!

“ ‘Sow a habit, reap a character.’ But we must go a step further back, we must sow the idea or notion which makes the act worth while.” — Charlotte Mason

We all know that changing thoughts and actions can be hard work. But forming a good habit is easier when we are motivated and connected to the result. And that’s where Laying Down the Rails for Children comes in.

This companion to the award-winning book, Laying Down the Rails, expands on the principles of good habits with a practical how-to guide and action plan to use with your children. It is filled with more than 400 pages of classic stories and Bible passages, beautiful poems, life activities, inspiring quotations—living ideas that will nestle into your children’s minds and motivate them toward the habits of good character.

With Laying Down the Rails for Children, you will

  • Feed minds—Enjoy classic stories, poems, Bible passages, and powerful quotations that feed the mind with wonderful ideas centered around each habit. All of the 60+ habits explained in Laying Down the Rails are covered.
  • Inspire hearts—Discuss and practice practical ways to apply those motivating ideas in everyday life. The gentle lessons include ideas for all ages.
  • Encourage action—Outline a personal plan for your family in the Parent Prep section of each habit. Cross references, guiding thoughts, and helpful reminders are provided along with lots of room to jot notes.
  • Build habits—Give focus and motivation to the whole family as you work on your selected habit. Laying Down the Rails for Children offers enough companion material for many years of habit training!

Start laying down the rails of good habits in your home today and see what a difference it can make!

Also available: The Laying Down the Rails good habits reference book, the Laying Down the Rails Workshop, and Laying Down the Rails for Yourself.

What’s the difference between the Laying Down the Rails resources?

We have a page explaining what each Rails resource is, plus details on using all of the resources together for maximum effectiveness in habit training.

Additional Information

Weight2.66 lbs
Dimensions11 × 8.5 × 1.17 in




E-book, Trade Paper


Parent Resource


7 reviews for Laying Down the Rails for Children: A Habit Training Companion

  1. Linsey

    My 7 and 9 year old children and I have been working our way through these, about one once a week. We are thoroughly enjoying this product.

  2. Sarah

    A most needed book, thank you!

  3. Kimberlee

    I have four children 7, 5, 3 and 2. We are going through this as a family and each child has their own habit chart they are working on, we really are enjoying learning our habits even as the parents we are mastering habits with the kids and teaching by example even we have weak habits and the kids are watching them be modeled by us. I wish laying down the rails and children companion books were more open and go, possibly even scripted, I feel like I have to switch between the three books and my journal and my bible when we’re doing our lessons and write everything down. I made my own family chart and one for each of the kids. I love all of the stories and quotes in the side bar.

    • Sonya Shafer

      Hi, Kimberlee –

      I’m so glad Laying Down the Rails for Children has been helpful for you. As you have probably discovered, habit-training can be a very individual process for each child (and each adult). That’s the main reason we didn’t try to script the resources. Each family can use the aspects of the resources that will work best for them, and each parent can determine how best to present the ideas included in the collection in a way that will help most for each child. It sounds like you’re doing a great job of both teaching and modeling those good habits!

  4. Ashley

    I love these books! We are using them with 6 kids at home, and the quality of choices of activities and literature selections, really draw us all in. I am a frugal type so it was difficult to pull the trigger, but I’m so glad I did! We have read our share of “formulaic” and dry “character building books.” I can’t tell you how refreshing and needful these books are! They are a wonderful inspiration and “spring board” to learning about growing more into the people we would like to become in Christ. Thank you for a truly lovely resource!

  5. sudi gliebe

    Looking forward to using this resource.
    Is this a stand alone book—or is it necessary to purchase the Laying Down the Rails reference?

    • Jordan Smith

      You can use Laying Down the Rails for Children as a standalone book. It refers you back to Laying Down the Rails to read Charlotte Mason’s complete thoughts on each habit, but you don’t need that reference book to complete the Laying Down the Rails for Children lessons.

  6. Brittany Pitzer

    Hi, Can I easily replace this one for Emily Posts Book of Etiquette for Young People? Or is it more in-depth than even that? I have the original Emily Posts Etiquette book from when I was homeschooled as a child but I wasn’t sure if this one goes along with lessons in your main books? Thank you!

    • Tamara Bell

      We are not familiar with the book you mention however Laying Down the Rails for Children is much more than an etiquette book. This particular resource focuses on more than 50 types of habits that Charlotte discussed in her writings. These include habits that fall under various categories such as decency and propriety, mental, moral, physical, and religious habits. If you have not yet downloaded the free sample, I encourage you to do so. It will give you the best feel and comparison of the book you have mentioned. If you would prefer to utilize the resources you currently have on hand, you can absolutely (and easily) swap it out for Laying Down the Rails with Children in our lesson plans.

  7. Amanda

    I use this book during our breakfast time. So far we’ve been mostly working on moral habits. I really enjoy the different stories, poems, and ideas under each habit. They’re simple and easy to remember. I write the definition, memory verse, and each point down as we cover it to review on the days we don’t have it scheduled. It’s really delightful.

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