A Closer Look at 3rd Grade Charlotte Mason Curriculum
Do you have a 3rd grader you’d like to homeschool using a Charlotte Mason-inspired curriculum? Well, Bigger Hearts for His Glory is a Charlotte Mason-inspired, complete, literature-based, Christ-centered curriculum written specifically for 7 to 9 year-olds. It works well for 3rd grade and includes all your student needs for a complete year of Charlotte Mason-style curriculum! Let’s take a look at this inspirational 3rd grade Charlotte Mason curriculum!
A Charlotte Mason Approach to American History
Told in story form, Heart of Dakota’s Bigger Hearts for His Glory introduces 3rd grade students to the courageous men and women who built America. With a unique blend of living books, engaging activities, and a biblical perspective, Bigger Hearts for His Glory tells American history from the 1500’s to the 1970’s through the stories of those who lived it. As students ‘travel’ chronologically through American history, they chronicle their journey by keeping their own timeline. They also complete a beautiful full-color, preprinted, 3-hole-punched Student Notebook. This lovely keepsake includes colorful pictures, engaging maps, a timeline chart, and places for sketches, facts, and written narrations. At this age, notebook entries are mainly limited to copying, listing, and drawing from a model, with an emphasis on accuracy and attention to detail. Very Charlotte Mason-inspired!
Full of ‘can’t put them down’ books, Bigger Hearts for His Glory’s American history weaves an exciting coherent and memorable timeline. Parents enjoy reading aloud Charlotte Mason-inspired living books that provide the ‘spine’ for history. Read about famous American heroes and the history of our nation in Stories of Great Americans and A First Book in American History. Discover the heritage of the United States and learn from the lives of historic figures – from their faults as well as their virtues. Hear how two brothers unlocked the secrets of flight in The Story of the Wright Brothers and Their Sister, and feel the thrill of overcoming trials through faith and determination. See history come to life in Journeys in Time! Through detailed maps and colorful illustrations, this book showcases twenty harrowing journeys that have shaped our national past.
A Charlotte Mason Approach to Geography
Just as Charlotte Mason matched geography lessons to the historical time period, Bigger Hearts for His Glory does as well. Parents lead weekly hands-on activities that explore geography concepts stemming from the history stories. As students use a globe or world map and a map of the United States to find and recognize historic places, they learn how geography has impacted American history.
In these 3rd grade Charlotte Mason-inspired geography lessons, students discover locations from long ago, trace the routes of famous explorers, and examine the geographical backdrop behind America’s history. Additionally, they complete short activities to build basic geography skills, become familiar with geographical terms, and learn how to read maps and follow directions. Furthermore, they learn about continents, oceans, mountains, valleys, glaciers, rivers, plains, peninsulas, bays, sounds, inlets, isthmuses, cardinal directions, hemispheres, and geographical zones (tropical, temperate, and polar). Finally, they learn about transportation, rural and urban areas, state abbreviations and boundaries, coastal and interior state locations, the Continental Divide, map coordinates, map scale, calculating mileage, wind directions, air pressure and more!
A Charlotte Mason Approach to Science
Bigger Hearts for His Glory features a unique, Charlotte Mason approach to science. This creative, hands-on approach integrates a Bible-based science text with topics from the history stories. As students delve into life science, physical science, and earth science, they discover how what they learn matches up with the Bible. Narrative science readings coordinate with weekly history themes. Students draw connections between science and history as topics overlap between the two subjects. As students read about seafaring explorers, they will study the seashore habitat in science. When reading about colonial history, students will study science topics from the colonial era. As students read about John Audubon and Thomas Edison in history, they will also study their contributions in science.
Use the visually stunning One Small Square books to explore the diverse ecosystems of the woods and the seashore up close. These books provide an unforgettable look at the rich variety of plant and animal life in each habitat, while also illustrating the impact of changing seasons and tides. Explore the practical innovations of early American scientists with Science in Colonial America, and open a window into science at work within daily life in A Pioneer Sampler. Discover the childhood of one of the most famous inventors of all time in Thomas A. Edison – Young Inventor, and read about the artist who created the greatest wildlife drawings in the world in John Audubon – Young Naturalist. Integrating science and history in this way provides a very Charlotte Mason-like approach to science for 3rd grade!
Oral Narrations Linked to Storytime Read-Alouds, History, and Science
Oral narrations provide important Charlotte Mason assessments! Just as Charlotte Mason recommended, only narrative, living books provide the basis for narrating. In response to their Bigger Hearts for His Glory’s Storytime readings, students rotate through the following reading activities:
- Day 1: introduce and study different types of literature
- Day 2: model narration to foster comprehension
- Day 3: identify and analyze a different story element for each genre
- Day 4: relate personally to one Godly character trait, compare Biblical and book characters, and make a bookmark as a reminder of the trait
- Day 5: practice narration by retelling the story
Parents choose one of three Storytime living books’ sets: Classic, Boy Interest, or Girl Interest. Though only one set is needed, many parents choose several sets just because the books are that good!
Students also orally narrate in response to their Science and History living books read-alouds. Daily oral narrations rotate, so students narrate upon different subjects each day. This keeps narrating fresh and interesting for young students. This 3rd grade Charlotte Mason curriculum helps students learn to successfully orally narrate in response to varied readings right from the start!
Charlotte Mason’s Studied Spelling/Dictation and Copywork/Handwriting
Bigger Hearts for His Glory teaches foundational language arts skills through a unique combination of Charlotte Mason style spelling and dictation exercises, a choice of grammar options, and a variety of handwriting approaches. Practice spelling with Charlotte Mason’s methods by using either the provided spelling lists or studied dictation passages. The spelling list option uses a multisensory approach that emphasizes picturing words mentally. Through weekly word lists grouped according to spelling patterns, students will learn high-frequency words necessary for writing and daily use. In the studied dictation option, your child studies a passage and then reproduces it as you dictate the passage aloud. This process builds writing skills while teaching spelling, capitalization, and punctuation.
Rounding out modern-day language arts, students enjoy thorough grammar and writing lessons with a choice of either Preparing to Build: English 2 or Beginning Wisely: English 3. These comprehensive, God-honoring texts are easy-to-use and teach key concepts of grammar, mechanics, and writing. They also learn creative writing skills and become familiar with sentence and paragraph structure, describing sights and sounds, conveying thoughts and emotions, using sentence variety, writing poetry, and more! Finally, they learn to write in cursive using either Cheerful Cursive, Getty & Dubay Italic: Book ‘D,’ or your own handwriting program. Short daily practice sessions guide students to form letters correctly as they copy from a model. Children who are not ready for cursive can complete copywork of classic poetry within Bigger Hearts for His Glory for handwriting instead.
Charlotte Mason’s Encouragement of Repetition, Memorization, and Recitation
Charlotte Mason encouraged recitation of beautiful poems, scripture, and Christian music throughout a child’s learning. For twenty minutes each day, Charlotte’s schools planned for ‘Repetition.’ During ‘Repetition’ time, children would alternate between poetry, Bible, and Christian music. Younger children recited a poem of their choice, a hymn, a Psalm, and several passages each six verses in length per term. Older children recited several longer Bible passages each about 20 verses in length, as well as three poems each term. Children also practiced Christian music in the form of hymns that included Scripture. As children matured, they memorized lengthier Bible passages and poems, and they added more hymns to their repertoire. Well, Charlotte Mason would certainly enjoy Bigger Hearts for His Glory because it includes Poetry Study, Bible Study, and Hymn Study!
A Charlotte Mason Inspired Poetry Study
A Charlotte Mason educational approach recognizes the importance of choosing good authors! Bigger Hearts for His Glory introduces students to a new classic poem each week, representing a host of famous poets. Through shared poetry readings, thoughtful discussions, rotating activities, and copywork, students discover the enduring qualities that make each poem timeless. By using Charlotte Mason’s methods, Bigger Hearts for His Glory helps students love and appreciate poetry in a whole new way.
Students read classic poems that reinforce the history theme. They learn about poetic devices, gain exposure to unfamiliar vocabulary, and discover the meaning beneath the text as you discuss questions related to each poem. Additionally, they learn about rhyming patterns, stanzas, verses, couplets, similes, metaphors, imagery, personification, alliteration, rhythm, mood, repetition, meter, onomatopoeia, sensory words, free verse and more! Furthermore, students practice choral reading skills by reading the poem aloud, hone memorization skills by reciting as much of the poem as possible from memory, and build handwriting skills by copying excerpts from each poem. Finally, students learn to appreciate poetry by choosing favorite poems from past lessons to read again for enjoyment. This 3rd grade Charlotte Mason curriculum takes a beautiful living books’ approach virtually every subject it can!
A Charlotte Mason Bible Study and Hymn Study
The Bible study in Bigger Hearts for His Glory takes a biblical look at the people studied in history, encouraging students to recognize Godly character qualities highlighted in Proverbs. As students study valuable traits, they reflect on key verses from Proverbs, complete fun memorization exercises, read heartfelt devotionals, sing classic hymns, and take Scripture to heart.
Students identify a new Godly character quality from Proverbs each week. They study qualities such as diligence, patience, honesty, responsibility, courage, humility, self-control, leadership, and more! Students connect these traits with biblical passages, look for the traits in historical figures, and learn how to apply the traits in daily life.
They also memorize a verse from Proverbs each week by using a variety of enjoyable techniques and activities. Each memory verse has a practical meaning for young students and also matches the Godly character quality being studied. The gentle, time-honored devotions from Little Pillows by Frances Ridley Havergal add a special connection. Each devotion links to the history theme and emphasizes biblical lessons in a conversational way. A related narrative, corresponding Scripture verse, and a quote from a poem or hymn are part of every devotion.
Finally, students learn 12 of the greatest hymns ever composed with Hymns for a Kid’s Heart: Volume One. This beautiful full-color book and fully orchestrated CD set includes richly orchestrated music, hymn writers’ stories, heartfelt prayers, Scripture verses, and printed sheet music. This 3rd grade Charlotte Mason curriculum’s Bible Study and Hymn Study make this such a special year!
Three Charlotte Mason Options for Reading Instruction
Bigger Hearts for His Glory offers a choice of three options for reading, based on the ability and reading level of your child. You can choose the Emerging Reader’s Set 1, Emerging Reader’s Set 2, or Drawn into the Heart of Reading. Each option includes narrative readings that encourage a passion for reading from the very start!
The Emerging Reader’s Set 1 provides a carefully chosen collection of interesting, well-loved books that gradually increase in difficulty throughout the year. In addition to these books, this set includes a daily reading schedule with engaging questions and narration prompts, and a helpful “Progress Chart” with stickers for students to keep track of their journey. Choose this option if your child is an emerging reader.
If your child is a newly independent reader, you would want to choose the Emerging Reader’s Set 2 for them. This carefully chosen collection of well-loved, beginning chapter books gradually increases in difficulty throughout the year. This set includes a daily reading schedule with engaging questions and narration prompts. Additionally, it includes a helpful “Progress Chart” with stickers for students to keep track of their journey.
With Drawn into the Heart of Reading, students read captivating books, explore nine different genres, learn common story elements, discover Godly character traits, and complete fun activities. This flexible literature program will help your 3rd grader become passionate about books, while still teaching necessary reading skills. Based on clear instructions and engaging activities, this innovative program will work with any literature. You can choose your own books, or use our engaging Level 3/4 Book Packs instead!
Completing Your Charlotte Mason-Inspired 3rd Grade Curriculum
In addition to all of the Charlotte Mason-inspired skills already mentioned, Bigger Hearts for His Glory includes all other necessary subjects for 3rd graders today! Math, vocabulary, science experiments, art projects, etc. round out your 3rd grade student’s curriculum. Rest assured, as you enjoy all the Charlotte Mason-inspired components, your student will also be learning all that is necessary for 3rd grade requirements today!
For more details about Bigger Hearts for His Glory, click on these links…
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If you still have questions about this 3rd Grade Charlotte Mason-inspired curriculum, reach out to Heart of Dakota! We love to help!
P.S. Do you have an advanced 2nd grader? Bigger Hearts for His Glory can work well for your child too! Simply customize it accordingly!
P.S.S. Do you have a 4th or 5th grader you’d like to combine with your 3rd grader? Bigger Hearts for His Glory can work well for that child too! Simply add the Extension Package to extend the history and science. Then, choose higher level language arts and math to customize!