Please be advised that these booklists and curriculum suggestions are incomplete without a thorough understanding of Charlotte Mason's ideas and methods. We cannot emphasize enough that you take time to familiarize yourself with her philosophy by reading her books.
History studied in Year 8: 1400's-1688 (Renaissance to Reformation) Term 1: 1400's-1605; Term 2: 1605-1649; Term 3: 1649-1688
Note: One asterisk * means a book will be used in Term One. Two asterisks ** means Term Two, and three *** means Term Three. No asterisks mean the book will be used for all three terms.
This is a collection of some of the best resources for this time period. Even Advisory members aren't able to cover all of these with their own students and have to be selective. Feel free to pick and choose from among these suggestions. (If this looks overwhelming for your student, you might consider plan B - a lightened load for year 8. See it here).
Formatted etexts for year 8 can be accessed by joining the etext email list.
GOVERNMENT AND ECONOMICS
GRAMMAR AND COMPOSITION
LIFE AND WORK SKILLS
The Bible - Continue AO's plan (6 years through the Bible in Years 6-11, leaving out Song of Solomon and Revelation for Year 12), or follow a plan of your own preference. AO's plan schedules the following for this year:
* Judges, Ruth, 1 Samuel 1-14, and Matthew 1-11
** 1 Samuel 15-31, 2 Samuel 1-24, and Matthew 12-21
*** 1 Kings, Ecclesiastes, and Matthew 22-28
Resources: Online Bibles; Study questions with nice maps; Bible Maps; Bible timeline.
Charlotte Mason had her students reading a commentary. We suggest you use what fits best with your family's belief system, keeping in mind that this year should be a bit meatier than previous years.
Suggested Devotional Reading
Saints and Heroes Vol 2 by George Hodges for church history if you didn't use Trial and Triumph in Years 1-6 (purchase/purchase for Kindle)
* A Ready Defense: The Best of Josh McDowell (purchase), OR The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel (purchase; purchase for Kindle) OR Evidence That Demands a Verdict by Josh McDowell (purchase)
** The Mind of the Maker by Dorothy Sayers (purchase) examines such ideas as the image of God, the Trinity, free will, and evil
*** Desiring God by John Piper (purchase; purchase for Kindle) - 2003, making obedience a joy instead of an obligation
Keep a century book and century chart
The New World by Winston Churchill (purchase/purchase for Kindle) , which is Volume 2 of his 4 volume set, A History of the English Speaking Peoples. [A schedule here] The next two volumes will be used in the next two years of HEO. This has recently gone out of print, but is widely available through used book sites such as AddAll.com, and often available at auction on eBay. (Note: PLEASE contact Barnes & Noble Publishing and strongly suggest (beg, plead, cry) that they republish their lovely slipcased edition of this set!) Separate volumes may be available from Barnes and Noble (don't get the one edited by Henry Steele Commager, it's abridged) If you can figure out how to use this, this book is online in audio
* A slightly abridged version of Martin Luther's defense before the Diet of Worms
** Queen Elizabeth's speech to the Spanish Armada, July 29, 1588 (this is included in the text of Churchill's book)
*** John Donne's funeral address, from the full sermon titled Death's Duel
* Thomas More: Choose, preferably, the written play A Man For All Seasons by Robert Bolt (purchase book; purchase movie) OR, as a second option, William Roper's (Thomas More's son-in-law) biography
* Life of Sir Francis Bacon by William Rawley (very short!)
* ** The Voyage of the Armada The Spanish Story by David Howarth (purchase) (17 weeks, 1 ch per week)
** A History of Plymouth Plantation by William Bradford (purchase modern language version); weeks 18-21. Caleb Johnson had posted Ch 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 36 with modern spelling on his webpage, but it's gone; these have been re-posted at a Plymouth site: 1, 2, 4, 9. Suggested schedule (and these are linked to Project Gutenburg's full text; you may want to use Caleb Johnson's when possible) - Wk 18: ch. 1-2; Wk 19: ch 3-4; Wk 20: ch 7-8; Wk 21: ch 9 and 36.
** Johannes Kepler chapter from The Great Astronomers by R.S. Ball (very short) OR Johannes Kepler: Giant of Faith and Science by John Hudson Tiner (purchase)
** The Life of Dr. [John] Donne by Izaak Walton - about 20 pages in Word - not long at all. Also online at archive.org.
** *** A Coffin for King Charles by C. V. Wedgwood (purchase; This book was also published under the title The Trial of Charles I in England) weeks 21-36
Galileo's Daughter by Dava Sobel (purchase; purchase for Kindle) OR, as a last resort, Galileo chapter from Great Astronomers by R.S. Ball
** *** Oliver Cromwell and the Rule of the Puritans in England by Sir Charles Firth (purchase) - If necessary, just the epilogue/ch 23 can be read to lessen the reading load)
* Christopher Columbus, Mariner by Samuel Eliot Morison (purchase) (This book, especially ch 11, will require parental screening) OR The Life of Christopher Columbus by Edward Everett Hale (purchase for Kindle; Advisory hasn't reviewed this Kindle copy yet)
** *** Kon Tiki by Thor Heyerdahl (purchase) OR ** The Discovery of Muscovy etc. by Richard Hakluyt (purchase; purchase for Kindle) and *** The Discovery of Guiana by Sir Walter Raleigh
Alternative suggestions are listed on page of geography options.
Ten minutes of map drills each week - websites available
Locate places from the day's reading on a map
Ourselves by Charlotte Mason (purchase/purchase Leslie Laurio's paraphrase for Kindle), approximately 22 pages per term. This book will continue through all the remaining years of HEO curriculum. This is the 4th volume of Mason's 6 Volume Series, currently in print. This year: pages 66-135 of Book 1. If you don't own CM's Series but prefer a 'hard copy' to an online text, used copies of Volume 4 can be found online, or you can purchase Book I, Self-Knowledge, the first half of Volume 4, as a separate paperback book. Also available in a modern English paraphrase that can be read online or purchased.
Utopia by Sir Thomas More (purchase), Term 1 and half of Term 2 (read for 20 weeks) also available by book/chapter
Francis Bacon essays (purchase): Of Truth, Of Revenge, Of Innovations, Of Friendship, Of Regiment of Health, Of Suspicion, Of Discourse, Of Riches, Of Youth and Age, Of Studies (paraphrase), Of Praise, Of Honor and Reputation, Of Anger.
Charlotte Mason had students at this level read the daily news and keep a calendar of events. We suggest students choose the most important 2 or 3 stories of the week and re-write them in their own words as a chronicle of the year, making the heading of each page something like "This Week in History, September 1st, 2003." Parents: pre-read and filter current events materials (on the web, or in print) as necessary, due to the potential for coverage and topics of an explicit nature, even from conservative sources. We've listed some possible options here.
Web blogs are an important new media form. News is being reported there, in some cases, faster and more accurately than other, older media forms. Students should learn about them, find one they trust, and check it regularly. However, we recommend that parents first become familiar with blogs and visit the one(s) their children will frequent. We suggest several poliblogs here, but parents should know that not every message on these blogs will be 'child-friendly' and often have ads that include scantily clad women. Also, most blogs link to a multitude of other blogs and sites that may not be child-friendly.
Comments posted on blogs can be considered a new media equivalent of a letter to the editor, and students should learn how to communicate well on blogs.
Shakespeare - Continue with Ambleside Online Rotation.
The History of English Literature for Girls and Boys by H. E. Marshall ch 32-59. Purchase from Kelly Kenar, who typed this e-text for the use of HEO. Postage at lulu.com is automatically set to UPS ground which is expensive, but you can choose media mail which is substantially cheaper. (Note - if you purchase this book, we request that you purchase from the link provided, as other publishers' reprints of this book have used Kelly's hand-typed etext for their own profit.)
*** Simond's American Literature, ch1 with exceptions (used towards the end of the year). Read all of chapter 1 with the exception of, the third section, including all of the material on Increase and Cotton Mather who wrote largely AFTER 1688). To download click here: On the left sidebar choose >> Reference in the top box, >> Simond's American Literature as it appears in the main text box. That should take you to the Table of Contents. Each chapter has several sections, and each section has several pages, so be sure to page forward for the entire text. Alternately, download text document of ch 1 (minus Increase and Cotton Mather) >> right click, choose Save Target as (or 'save file as'). Then open and paste into your Word processor.
* Everyman, a Morality Play (purchase; purchase for Kindle) (a slightly less archaic version is here)
* ** Westward Ho! by Charles Kingsley (purchase) weeks 1-18
** The Diary of Samuel Pepys (purchase) - Charlotte Mason used this book. Pepys gives a great first-hand account of the Great Fire. However, this needs editing both for length but also because Pepys was wretchedly honest about his sordid behavior, details of which really aren't appropriate for young people to read. List member Sarah Bruce has kindly compiled an excerpted copy with his account of the Great Fire.
** *** I Promessi Sposi (The Betrothed) by Alessandro Manzoni weeks 19-36 (There's a newer version called Promise of Fidelity, translated by Omero Sabatini (purchase), and also a Penguin Classics version translated by Bruce Penman and called The Betrothed (purchase; purchase for Kindle)
*** The Holy War by John Bunyan (purchase); Mount Calvary Baptist has a helpful study guide, links to summaries, audio files and links to online texts.
Check online sites such as Librivox for free audio readings of poems; this is a growing project and more poems are online every month.
* Fierce Wars and Faithful Loves, which is Spenser's Fairie Queene Book I updated and annotated by Roy Maynard; (read online) (purchase book/we don't recommend the Kindle version, which is here)
* Shakespeare's Sonnets, Selections: XVIII (18), XXIX (29), XXX (30), LIII (53), LIV (54), LVII (57), LXXIII (73), XCIV (94), CIV (104), CVI (106) CXVI (116), CXXIX (129) (read one per week) Download these 12 sonnets in one collection. SparkNotes has helps for some of the sonnets. Modern side-by-side translations are available from No Fear Shakespeare, CliffsNotes, and Shakespeare Online
** John Donne and George Herbert - 13 Donne poems here (Free online, or purchase for Kindle) (notes here) and 10 Herbert poems here
*** John Milton, selected poems, to include Paradise Lost Book I (14 poems here.)
The Roar on the Other Side: A Guide for Student Poets by Suzanne Clark (purchase)
Our Mother Tongue: An Introductory Guide to English Grammar by Nancy Wilson (purchase) This book has 49 chapters. One suggestion is to spread the book over two years, doing about 9 chapters per term.
OR, if you have Jensen's Grammar (purchase), work through that in Year 7 or 8.
Begin written narrations, 3 per week, varying among subjects. Include one written narration from a reading earlier in the week.
Karen Glass: Paradigm Online Writing Assistant is a whole online free course about writing four kinds of essays. I haven't explored the whole thing, but I like what I've seen so far. This is the link to the section on writing a support essay. At the top of the page, you can see the progression of the whole course.
Purchase a good English handbook. An Advisory favorite is The Little, Brown Handbook by H. Ramsey Fowler and Jane E. Aaron (purchase). Some may find Writer's Inc. more user friendly (purchase).
AO's Language Arts Scope and Sequence for this level is here.
Scripture suggestions: * Romans 6; ** 1 Cor. 13; *** Psalms 139
Shakespeare - selected passages, all terms. Bartlett's Familiar Quotations is a helpful tool for looking for quotable sections from various plays of Shakespeare, especially quotes from the various plays which appear in various other literature. Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th edition, is online (in html and text here.) Note: To get the list of plays from the Bartlett's Familiar Quotations page, try selecting 1) the Author index, then select 2) the Shakespeare entry, which should provide a list of quotations from the first play in the list; and then try selecting 3) Shakespeare's name above the quotations. This last step should bring you to an index of the plays, not just the list of quotations. Or, you may go directly to the play needed from the Shakespeare play index.
Poetry - a poem by that term's poet, all terms.
Include selections from Shakespeare, the Bible, poetry and other sources. These selections may be the same ones used for recitation.
Continue your math program; for some options, see this page.
The Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock (purchase) Continue to use as in previous years with the Ambleside Online curriculum.
Apologia science materials by Dr. Jay Wile. Read the suggested course sequencing at http://www.apologia.com/store/ to determine what will work best for the needs of your student, based on interest and math level. If a student missed out on the Ambleside science selections and nature study rotation, General Science (purchase) should be considered as a starting point with Apologia materials; otherwise start with Physical Science (purchase). Read through Jay Wile's website, especially "course sequencing" to see what will work best for the needs of your student based on interest and math level. If financial resources are a concern, any of their science courses may easily be stretched to two years.
Another possible option: Rainbow Science, (purchase) a two-year program, can be used in years 7 and 8. "The Rainbow," their junior high program, is appropriate for this age. (Read Susan Wise Bauer's review here.) The Advisory has not used this yet.
Keep flower and bird lists of species seen, select a special study for outdoor work, and continue to maintain nature notebooks.
Rural Hours by Susan Fenimore Cooper (purchase) (Note: Alternatively, you may choose the nature writings of Edwin Way Teale if you have them on your shelf. (search amazon.com) Unfortunately, these are not online, and go in and out of print. A particular favorite is The Circle of Seasons (purchase) but other titles are also commendable.)
*** William Harvey and the Discovery of the Circulation of the Blood by Thomas Henry Huxley
How To Read a Book by Mortimer Adler (purchase; purchase for Kindle) (may be saved for a later year) - Please be sure to get the revised edition, and read only Part 2 this year (this book continues into Year 10). This breaks down to five chapters for the year, seven weeks to get through each chapter. This is slow, but this material is weighty and should give much material for reflection and discussion. The revised version was written by both Mortimer J. Ader And Chares Van Doren. If Van Doren is not a co-writer, it's the older book. It was revised in 1972, but later books may not be called "revised." The version to use has five chapters in part 1; 7 chapters in part 2; 7 chapters in part 3; and two chapters in part 4. The unrevised edition may have fewer parts.
The Story of Painting by H. W. Janson (purchase) chapters 4-5 this year. (some nudity; parents should preview first.)
Continue the artist rotation posted at Ambleside Online.
Work on drawing skills. Illustrate a scene from reading of your choice once a week, more as desired.
Foreign language - 3 songs each term (Charlotte Mason did 3 in French and 3 in German).
Three Folk Songs in English - you may choose to continue the Folk Song rotation at Ambleside Online; as well as the Ambleside rotation for Hymns each term. Carols would do for the Winter term. Work on each song about 4 weeks. Folksongs which are particularly appropriate selections for the Year 8 time frame include:
* Barbara Allen, Star of the County Down, Andrew Barton
** The Death of Queen Jane, The Miller of Dee, Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes
*** Three Mariners, The Oak and the Ash, My Lodging is on the Cold Ground [tune], English folksongs and other folksongs.
Begin Latin if you've not started already.
Continue with any previous foreign language studies. (Charlotte Mason's students were learning three languages at this level.) A good English/appropriate foreign language dictionary is also recommended.
You might find that your foreign language studies cover enough grammar to be counted as English Grammar as well.
Learn and play a game (kick ball, tennis, croquet, ping-pong, softball, etc.) or folk-dance, or pursue other physical activity of your choice.
Charlotte Mason had them do house or garden work, make Christmas presents, other crafts, sew, cook, learn first aid . . .
Kenilworth by Sir Walter Scott (purchase) (or other Scott novel)
Don Quixote by Miguel Cervantes (purchase), find an edited version (term 1) Unedited version here; a very edited but fun retelling for youths by James Baldwin is here (purchase/purchase for Kindle)
Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens (purchase/purchase for Kindle)
The Innocence of Father Brown by G. K. Chesterton, also here(purchase)
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen or by chapter (purchase)
Freckles by Gene Stratton Porter (purchase)
** The House of Arden by E. Nesbit (purchase)
** Harding's Luck by E. Nesbit (purchase)
** Lorna Doone by R. D. Blackmore (purchase)
The Wonderful O (purchase) and/or The Thurber Carnival by James Thurber (purchase)
The Space Trilogy by C.S. Lewis (Out of the Silent Planet, Perelandra, That Hideous Strength purchase)
To Have and to Hold by Mary Johnston (purchase)
All for Love or Discourses on Satire and Epic Poetry by John Dryden
The Prydain Chronicles by Lloyd Alexander: The Book of Three, The Black Cauldron, The Castle of Llyr, Taran Wanderer, The High King (purchase boxed set; read a fan's blog post about these books here.)
The Compleat Angler by Izaak Walton (purchase) (might be more appreciated for older folks who enjoy short contemplative readings, rather than Year 8 students)
The Memoirs of Gluckel of Hameln (purchase/purchase for Kindle)
Pioneers of the Old South: A Chronicle of English Colonial Beginnings by Mary Johnston
The History of King Charles II of England by Jacob Abbott (edition/publisher under review)
Useful for future reference: A Guide to the Best Historical Novels and Tales by Jonathan Nield
Many thanks to David Hicks, author of Norms and Nobility, for his kind permission to draw from his work and ideas. For more information please see the amazon.com link to the 1999 edition of his book.
Last update Mar. 16, 2007
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