Narration

Narration is the basic methodology of Charlotte Mason education. Narration is an active retelling of what the student has heard and learned. Such a retelling requires the use of the child’s whole mind as well as their memory, and demands careful attention to a single reading of the source, without review and repetitions. While most frequently oral, narration may also take the form of an essay, dramatization, or drawing.  During narration a child assimilates the knowledge, makes it part of them, so they can then use it to express, analyze, compare, contrast and grow.
 
Ambleside students do the scholar’s work of first hand reading of primary sources of literary merit that present inspiring ideas in all subjects, not dry, predigested facts and texts. Their study also includes direct contact and observation of real objects from nature (plants, minerals, animals, the elements), and art, music, and other human disciplines (maps, instruments, etc).
Course Work

At Ambleside, we spread a rich feast in front of the children with fifteen curriculum areas. Short lessons allow children to remain alert and interested throughout the day. An emphasis on “hands-on” learning and on primary sources allow students to build personal relationships with God’s creation, with great men and women of history, and with the great ideas expressed in history and the arts: not learning a slight or incomplete smattering about this or that subject, “but plunging into vital knowledge, with a great field before him which all his life he will not be able to fully explore.”

In addition, the classroom schedule alternates between inspirational lessons, such as poetry or nature study, and disciplinary work, such as grammar and math. This constant movement between subjects that encourage reflection and those that require focused skill is constantly refreshing for the students’ minds, as is time spent outdoors in physical activity and exploration.

Below is a sampling of two courses of study in the lower and middle schools.


LOWER SCHOOL COURSE OF STUDY

Inspirational Subjects

• Bible
• Composer Study
• History 
• Nature Study
• Picture Study
• Poetry
• Read Aloud
• Tales and Fables
• Myths and Legends

Disciplinary Subjects

• Arithmetic
• Art
• Geography
• Handwork
• Handwriting
• Phonics/Spelling/Reading
• Instruction
• Recitation
• Music
• Physical Education

 

MIDDLE SCHOOL COURSE OF STUDY

Inspirational Subjects

• Bible
• Citizenship
• Composer Study
• Literature
• Nature Study
• Picture Study
• Poetry
• Science
• World History/ US History

Disciplinary Subjects

• Art
• Composition
• Dictation
• Geography
• Grammar
• Handwork
• Mathematics
• Recitation
• Music
• Physical Education