Start Here: A Journey Through Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles

 Introducing a new way to study Charlotte Mason:

So you’ve decided you want to know more about this philosophy called Charlotte Mason. Good for you! There’s a lot of ways to do that. The typical way is to either read a secondary source — where someone else has summarized Charlotte Mason for you — or to choose one of Charlotte Mason’s many volumes and read straight through it.

What I’m offering here is a third way.

When Charlotte Mason was trying to distill her educational philosophy into its simplest form: 20 core principles. These are the 20 most important aspects of her philosophy. Using Susan Schaeffer Macauley’s wonderful book (For the Children’s Sake), Miss Mason’s volumes, articles from Miss Mason’s magazine (The Parents’ Review), the best blog posts on these subjects, and discussion questions meant to help you dig deeply, Start Here is a comprehensive guide to the big ideas governing Charlotte Mason’s philosophy.

Start Here is appropriate for both group and individual study. For groups that meet once per month, this is 15 months of curriculum. Individuals may be able to complete it in less time. But keep in mind that speed is not the goal. The goal is understanding and embodiment. Discussion questions are included to help tie philosophy to practice, whether you’re discussing them in a group or journaling your answers.

This study is a simple way to familiarize yourself with Charlotte Mason’s philosophy if you are new to it, or refresh yourself with the principles if you’ve already made your way through her volumes. Studying the 20 Principles will remind you of what is true — and what is most important — when it comes to the education of the children you love.

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26 Comments

  • Reply The Discipline of Habit - Part 2 July 23, 2019 at 3:01 am

    […] you’d like to join me in studying Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles, get your copy of Start Here and see this post for […]

  • Reply Atmosphere: An Instrument of Education May 5, 2019 at 6:01 pm

    […] becomes more apparent to me how interconnected these principles are. Brandy, in her study guide “Start Here,” has helpfully paired the principles to discuss only one at a time, but it must be […]

  • Reply SS #27: Education is a Discipline | Scholé Sisters December 14, 2018 at 10:09 am

    […] episode is sponsored by Start Here. When Charlotte Mason was trying to distill her educational philosophy into its simplest form, she […]

  • Reply SS 45: Need Scholé? Just Add Joy! | Scholé Sisters November 16, 2018 at 12:30 am

    […] episode is sponsored by Start Here, the definitive starting place for studying Charlotte Mason. When Charlotte Mason was trying to […]

  • Reply We Are Made To Know November 7, 2018 at 4:29 am

    […] you’d like to join me in studying Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles, get your copy of Start Here and see this post for […]

  • Reply Don’t Abdicate Your Parental Authority October 28, 2018 at 7:18 pm

    […] you’d like to join me in studying Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles, get your copy of Start Here and see this post for […]

  • Reply A Living Reproduction of the Past | Afterthoughts September 6, 2018 at 9:31 am

    […] I’m sure there are some caveats we ought to throw in, but let’s just go with it for now, because the real point is that when we’re guided by principles, we make possible a living reproduction of the past. (This is why I am oh so passionate about a thorough study of the 20 principles.) […]

  • Reply Children Are Born Persons August 21, 2018 at 2:29 am

    […] too late to start studying Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles along with me! Get your copy of Start Here and see this post for […]

  • Reply Charlotte Mason 20 Principles Study August 3, 2018 at 11:24 am

    […] Mason’s 20 principles of education. To do this I will be using Brandy Vencel’s Start Here study guide. I invite you to study along with me. Here are the details for the […]

  • Reply Bits and Pieces: Cake Recipes, Book Recommendations, and more… July 25, 2018 at 7:23 am

    […] my study of Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles next month. I will use Brandy Vencel’s Start Here Study Guide. The study guide contains links to all of the sections in Charlotte Mason’s volumes (free […]

  • Reply Three Summer Curriculum Ideas for Mother's Groups | Afterthoughts July 24, 2018 at 7:26 am

    […] curriculum — basically, what to study together. Now, most of you know that my study guide Start Here: A Journey Through Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles was the result of leading a couple groups though {surprise!} a study of Charlotte Mason’s […]

  • Reply SS #23: The Nitty-Gritty Guide to Homeschooling High School Boys (with Cindy Rollins) | Scholé Sisters May 19, 2017 at 2:01 am

    […] Start Here: A Journey Through Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles […]

  • Reply SS #20: Mothers, Don't Let Your Methods Grow up to Be Systems (with Karen Glass) | Scholé Sisters March 17, 2017 at 2:01 am

    […] episode is sponsored by Start Here. When Charlotte Mason was trying to distill her educational philosophy into its simplest form, she […]

  • Reply The Spirit and the Letter of a Charlotte Mason Education | Karen Glass March 13, 2017 at 1:42 am

    […] Start Here: A Journey Through Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles […]

  • Reply 3 Keys to Organizing Your Attitude | Simplified Organization January 19, 2017 at 6:05 am

    […] Charlotte Mason said that fully 1/3 of our children’s curriculum is atmosphere, and though candles and art on the wall are nice touches, I believe that it is our own attitudes as we go about our business that creates the atmosphere our kids grow up in. Mom sets the tone, whether we like it or not. […]

  • Reply SS #14: Reading Pagan Literature with Highly Resistant Children | Scholé Sisters November 4, 2016 at 2:01 am

    […] episode is sponsored by Start Here, the definitive starting place for studying Charlotte Mason. When Charlotte Mason was trying to […]

  • Reply Why Are Classical Education Principles Important? » Simply Convivial August 25, 2016 at 5:34 pm

    […] Charlotte Mason had twenty principles she wrote as statements about the nature of children, about the nature of the world, and about the nature of learning. They are worth studying. […]

  • Reply Wisdom leading to virtue is the only liberal art » Simply Convivial August 3, 2016 at 6:18 am

    […] Great Tradition by Richard Gamble + Start Here: A Journey Through Charolotte Mason’s 20 Principles by Brandy Vencel with an online book […]

  • Reply Taking pains to educate » Simply Convivial July 20, 2016 at 9:22 am

    […] Great Tradition by Richard Gamble + Start Here: A Journey Through Charolotte Mason’s 20 Principles by Brandy Vencel with an online book […]

  • Reply Balance | Embracing the Fullness of Life July 5, 2016 at 7:07 pm

    […] I have been thinking lately about balance. Those beautiful women, who went through Brandy’s Start Here discussing Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles, have heard me mention balance over and over again. […]

  • Reply Spring Reading Update - Ed Snapshots May 4, 2016 at 3:01 am

    […] Mason Education — I don’t recommend this one for Charlotte’s principles (I recommend you go to Brandy for that!) but for a quick look at her practices it was fine. Not my favorite CM […]

  • Reply 3 Keys to Organizing Your Attitude » Simply Convivial January 18, 2016 at 6:07 am

    […] Charlotte Mason said that fully 1/3 of our children’s curriculum is atmosphere, and though candles and art on the wall are nice touches, I believe that it is our own attitudes as we go about our business that creates the atmosphere our kids grow up in. Mom sets the tone, whether we like it or not. […]

  • Reply Charlotte Mason for Children with Special Needs, Part 1 | Northwest by North November 6, 2015 at 8:38 pm

    […] Charlotte Mason’s method by studying her 20 principles first (Brandy’s study guide is here. Soon her conference presentation will be available). When looking at the application of her […]

  • Reply YMB #3 Reading in Morning Time September 14, 2015 at 11:01 pm

    […] Start Here: A Journey through Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles by Brandy Vencel […]

  • Reply The 10 Best Things You're Not Doing for Your Homeschool September 12, 2015 at 9:01 pm

    […] Start Here: A Journey Through Charlotte Mason’s 20 Principles […]

  • Reply Safeguard For the Preservation of Character | Embracing the Fullness of Life June 9, 2015 at 8:49 am

    […] of Education, chapter five, the Sacredness of Personality in preparation for our next local Start Here, 20 Principle discussion.  These are some of my […]

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