AmblesideOnline Year 2 Booklist

"A child...must have a living relationship with the present, its historic movement, its science, literature, art, social needs and aspirations. In fact, he must have a wide outlook, intimate relations all round; and force, virtue, must pass out of him, whether of hand, will, or sympathy, wherever he touches. This is no impossible programme."
Charlotte Mason, Volume 3, p. 161-2

A Basic Overview of Year 2


  • Stories of Moses
  • Luke and Matthew


  • The Little Duke


  • 1000 A.D. to Middle Ages
  • Medieval England
  • Discoverers
  • Joan of Arc
  • Timeline


  • Compass
  • Earth's orbit
  • Midwest
  • Oceans

Science and Math

  • Nature Study
  • Mammals
  • Math

Language Arts

  • Simple Copywork
  • Oral Narration
  • Recitation
  • Phonics


  • De La Mare, Field, Riley, Rossetti
  • Pilgrim's Progress
  • Robin Hood, Wind in the Willows, and more...

Foreign Language

  • Modern Language

Music and Arts

  • Hymns and Folk Songs
  • Artist/Picture Study
  • Composer
  • Drawing and Handicrafts

Note: 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.

If you're planning to use AmblesideOnline, your first stop should be the the FAQ for some information about the curriculum and basic instructions. Our FAQ answers all the questions that people routinely ask: AO's history scope and sequence, how to schedule your school days, how to do narration, and more.

Key: (What do all those symbols mean?)

Book titles are linked to Project Gutenberg (which offers free etexts in a variety of formats) or other online text when no Project Gutenberg text is available.

Asterisks refer to which term the book is used: * Term 1 ** Term 2 *** Term 3

β -, another free ebook site.
α - free etext at; newer books can be borrowed for one hour at a time.
(ChrBk) - purchase from using AO's affiliate link.
K - free Kindle text from
(£amzn) - Living Books Press purchase using AO's affiliate link.
($amzn) - book purchase using AO's affiliate link.
(K) - Kindle purchase using AO's affiliate link.
(£) - Purchase directly from Living Books Press with an affiliate link; save 10% with discount code: AOBooks
Λ - free audiobook at Lit2Go
Ω - free audiobook at Librivox [2]
- other free audiobook source
[0] - Click the bracketed numeral to view any notes about the book near the bottom of the page.
[0] - red footnotes indicate a heads-up for parents about the title. We cannot foresee every incident that might potentially be an issue to every family, but we have red-flagged those that are commonly a concern.

AO is an affiliate of Living Book Press, which means that when you purchase from our (£) links, we receive a commission which allows us to keep offering AO for free.

AO is an affiliate of, which means that when you purchase from our (ChrBk) links, we receive a commission that helps with our costs.

AmblesideOnline is part of's Affiliate program. If you use the Amazon links, we receive a small commission which enables us to cover the costs of keeping the website and curriculum. Amazon links are identified like this: ($amzn) or (£amzn) or (K).

AmblesideOnline Year 2 Curriculum

Students will be practicing reading, or doing a phonics program. They will do simple daily copywork, no more than ten minutes a day. They may keep a simple timeline. Every scheduled reading will still be narrated orally. They continue a formal history rotation, with medieval-era history. Foreign language study continues through songs and/or stories.

Daily Work

  • Copywork - 5-10 minutes a day
  • Phonics or reading practice
  • Recitation
  • Mathematics
  • Foreign language
  • Physical activity - one option is Swedish Drill Revisited by Dawn Duran purchase
  • Every scheduled reading is narrated orally.

Weekly Work

Bible [6]

Old Testament - Stories of Moses
New Testament - Luke 19-24 and Matthew 1-7

History: 1000 A.D. to Middle Ages

Begin a simple timeline. [4]

An Island Story by H. E. Marshall β α (£) (£amzn) (£amzn) ($amzn) (K) Ω [8]
This Country of Ours by H. E. Marshall β α ($amzn) (K) (£) (£amzn) (£amzn) Ω [10]
A Child's History of the World by Virgil Hillyer ($amzn) [12]


Trial and Triumph by Richard Hannula (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) [18]
* ** The Little Duke by Charlotte Yonge β α (£) (£amzn) ($amzn) Ω K [20]
*** Joan of Arc by Diane Stanley ($amzn)


Tales from Shakespeare by Charles and Mary Lamb (ChrBk) β α (£) (£amzn) ($amzn) (K) K [26]
OR Beautiful Stories from Shakespeare by Edith Nesbit β α (£) (£amzn) (ChrBk) (£amzn) ($amzn) (K) Ω

Parables from Nature by Margaret Gatty. α (£) (£amzn) ($amzn) (K) Ω Ω
A modern English paraphrase is available ($amzn) (K) [27]

Pilgrim's Progress, Book 1 (Christian's Journey) α by John Bunyan ($amzn) Ω [28]
* Understood Betsy by Dorothy Canfield Fisher β α (£) (£amzn) ($amzn) Ω [30]
** The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) Ω K Λ [32]
*** Robin Hood by Howard Pyle β α ($amzn) Ω Ω K [34]

Poetry [25]

* Walter De La Mare (£)
** Eugene Field and James Whitcombe Riley
*** Christina Rossetti

Purchase AO's Volume 2 poetry collection, which includes de la Mare, Field, Riley, and Rossetti in paperback or Kindle ($amzn) (K)


A curriculum or program for handwriting is not necessary, but if you want to use one, these are some we've used and can suggest:
A Reason for Writing Level A: ($amzn) Level B: ($amzn)
Getty Dubay Italic Handwriting Series ($amzn)

AO's Language Arts Scope and Sequence for this level

Phonics/Reading Instruction

Phonics and reading with CM's methods can be taught effectively and simply without a formal program, carefully following Charlotte Mason's sequence explained in Home Education, volume 1 of her book series (start at page 199). Jennifer S. described how to implement CM's method of teaching reading step by step on her Joyful Shepherdess blog.

Discover Reading by Amy Tuttle: guide, lesson plans and activities to teach reading with CM's methods.

Additional (non-CM) programs the AO Advisory has used and can recommend (not an exhaustive list):
Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons by Engelmann, Haddox and Bruner (ChrBk) ($amzn)
Alpha-Phonics: A Primer for Beginning Readers by Samuel L. Blumenfeld (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
Home Start in Reading by Ruth Beechick ($amzn) included in The Three R's (ChrBk)

Beginning readers might gain confidence from classics retold in A Primary Reader by E. Louise Smythe ($amzn)

Recitation [recit]

Term 1
Genesis 1:1; Matthew 4:23; Hebrews 13:8
The Cupboard by Walter de la Mare
Silver by Walter de la Mare
Term 2
Matthew 19:26; Matthew 20:28; Psalm 145:8
The Duel by Eugene Field
The Prayer Perfect by James Whitcomb Riley
Term 3
Matthew 23:11-12; Matthew 28:19-20; Psalm 37:5
What is pink? a rose is pink by Christina Rossetti
Who has seen the wind? by Christina Rossetti

Foreign Language

Choose a foreign language program that focuses on oral learning. Some that are popular among Charlotte Mason parents are The Learnables, Little Pim, Cherrydale Press, Language Learning for Children by Alyssa Johnson and Christine Lewis (K or free for AO Forum members)

Celeste at Joyous Lessons wrote a 3-part blog series on teaching young children a foreign language. There's also a vintage Parents' Review article on teaching foreign languages


* ** Tree in the Trail by Holling C. Holling (ChrBk) ($amzn) map
** *** Seabird by Holling C. Holling (ChrBk) ($amzn)

In addition, these geography concepts should be explained and taught this year: [22]

Term 1:
A compass can show direction when sun and stars are not visible.
Magnetic needle always points north.
Points on the compass (N, S, E, W and points in between: NE)
How sailors use a compass.

Term 2:
Planets orbit around the sun.
Earth orbits around the sun in 365 days, making a year.
The earth's turning makes day and night.

Term 3:
The poles
Earth's spinning on its tilted axis makes the four seasons

Nature Study and Science

The Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock α (ChrBk) ($amzn), as scheduled for Nature Study.

Supplies for Nature Study:
Nature notebook and pencils or paint for each student
Begin to build a library of regional field guides
Plenty of time to allow Nature Study to be a fun learning experience for both parent and child

Nature Study Topics for the 2023-2024 School Year:
summer/fall: Trees/shrubs/vines
winter: Stars/sky
spring: Amphibians
AO's full Nature Study rotation

The Burgess Animal Book for Children by Thornton Burgess - β α (£) (£amzn) ($amzn) Ω K [24]


Select a program that meets your family's needs from our page of Math Options.


Artists (Picture Study) for the 2023-2024 School Year:

2023-2024 TERM 1 Tintoretto (1518-1594; Renaissance)
(This term's music: Renaissance)
Self portrait
1. Crucifixion, 1565, Scuola Grande di San Rocco, Venice; study
2. Christ Before Pilate, 1567, also here Scuola Grande di San Rocco, Venice
3. The Adoration of the Magi, 1582, Scuola Grande di San Rocco, Venice; study
4. Portrait of a Man, 1586-1589, State Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg, Russia
5. Paradise, 1588, Doge's Palace, Venice
6. The Last Supper, 1592-1594, San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice
Download a pdf file of this term's six prints here [NOTE]

2023-2024 TERM 2 Claude Monet (1840-1926; French Impressionist)
(This term's composer: Ravel)
1. Terrace at St. Adresse, 1866, Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY
2. Women in the Garden, 1866, Musee d'Orsay, Paris
3. Jean Monet on His Hobby Horse, 1872, Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY
4. Woman with a Parasol: Madame Monet and Her Son, 1875, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. (see also here)
5. Tulip Fields in Holland, 1886, Musee d'Orsay, Paris
6. The Waterlily Pond, 1899, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey (Similar image here)
Download a pdf file of this term's six prints here [NOTE]

2023-2024 TERM 3 Georges Seurat (1859-1891; French Post-impressionist)
(This term's music: Opera Overtures)
1. Rock-Breakers, Le Raincy, 1882, also here Norton Simon Art Foundation, Pasadena, CA, USA
2. Man Cleaning His Boat, 1883, Courtauld Institute Galleries, London, UK
3. Bathers at Asnieres, 1883-84, National Gallery, London, UK
4. Sunday on La Grande Jatte 1884, Art Institute of Chicago, USA
5. The Eiffel Tower, 1889, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, USA (also here)
6. The Circus, 1891, Musée d'Orsay, Paris
Download a pdf file of this term's six prints here [NOTE]

AO's full Artist rotation

Note: PDF files for AO's picture study are being made available for you to download and print yourself from "A Humble Place"; you can access the PDF files of pictures by clicking the "Individual Artworks Only" link by each artist's name. The "Picture Study aid" link is an additional optional resource and may require you to submit your email address or make a purchase, but the "Artworks Only" link is provided with no strings attached.


Composers for the 2023-2024 School Year:

2023-2024 TERM 1 Renaissance Music (This term's artist: Tintoretto)
1. Songs * * * * *
2. Guillaume Dufay * *   Ave Maris Stella ("Hail, star of the sea") * *
3. Dance Music * * * * *
4. Josquin des Prez * * * *
5. Vocal Music of William Byrd * * * * *
6. Claudio Monteverdi * * * *   Monteverdi wrote the earliest opera still regularly performed: "L'Orfeo" *
     CD and mp3 Options:
     -- The Hillard Ensemble: Music for Tudor Kings seems to offer a nice variety of music from the era. ($amzn) ($mp3); also English and Italian Renaissance Madrigals. ($mp3) The Hilliard Ensemble has multiple CD's featuring Renaissance era composers.
     -- Gloriae Dei Cantores: Masters of the Renaissance (choral sacred music) ($amzn) ($mp3)
     -- Oxford Camerata: Renaissance Masterpieces (vocal) ($amzn) ($mp3)
     -- Dances of the Renaissance ($amzn) ($mp3)
     -- Catherine King: Elizabethan Songs and Consort Music (solo voice, instrumental) ($amzn) ($mp3)

2023-2024 TERM 2 Maurice Ravel (1875-1937; Impressionist) (This term's artist: Claude Monet)
1. Daphne et Chloe - selections * *   complete *
2. Bolero * *
3. Mother Goose Suite * *
4. Pavane pour une infante dufunte (no, there really is no dead princess) * *
5. Piano Concerto in D for the Left Hand (composed for a pianist who lost his right arm in WWI) * *
6. Rhapsody Espagnole * *

2023-2024 TERM 3 Opera Selections (This term's artist: Georges Seurat)
1. Giuseppi Verdi: "Triumphal March" from Aida * * and "Vedi! le fosche" (Anvil Chorus) * * from Il Trovatore
2. Giuseppi Verdi "Libiamo Ne'lieti Calici" (Brindisi; drinking song - parents, preview!) from La Traviata * * and "La Donne Il Mobile," from Rigoletto * *
3. Giacomo Puccini: "O Soave Fancuilla" * * and "Quando M'en Vo" * * from La Boheme, and "E Lucevan Le Stelle" * * from Tosca.
4. Giacamo Puccini: "Un Bel Di Vedremo" * * from Madama Butterfly, and "Nessun Dorma" * * from Turandot.
5. Gioacchino Rossini: overture * * and "Largo al factotum" (Figaro Figaro Figaro. . .) from Il Barbiere Di Siviglia (The Barber of Seville) * *
6. Gioacchino Rossini: William Tell overture * *
We suggest using a selection of Opera favorites that contains most of these, such as Best Opera Album In The World . . . Ever! ($amzn) and filling in any missing pieces with whatever else is on the CD. Puccini's "O mio babbino caro" from Gianni Schicchi, Bizet's "Au fond du temple saint" from The Pearl Fishers, Verdi's "Celeste Aida" from Aida would be worthy substitutes.
One possibility: 25 Opera Favorites CD ($amzn)
1 - track 7. Giuseppi Verdi: "Triumphal March" from Aida; track 17. Gypsies' Chorus from Il Trovatore
2 - track 3. Giuseppi Verdi: "Libiamo Ne'lieti Calici" (Brindisi) from La Traviata; track 9. "La Donne Il Mobile," from Rigoletto
3 - track 21. Giacomo Puccini: "Che Gelida Manina" from La Boheme; track 23. "Quando M'en Vo" from La Boheme; track 18. "Vissi d'Arte" from Tosca
4 - track 6. Giacamo Puccini: "Un Bel Di" from Madama Butterfly, track 5. "Nessun Dorma" from Turandot
5 - track 4. Georges Bizet: "Au Fond du Temple Saint" from the Pearl Fishers; track 2. Gioacchino Rossini: "Largo al factotum" from The Barber of Seville
6 - track 1. Gioacchino Rossini: William Tell overture
     Free Ebook for younger students Verdi: The Little Boy who Loved the Hand Organ by Thomas Tapper
     Classics for Kids Past Shows: Verdi; Puccini; Bizet; Rossini

AO's full Composer rotation

Hymns for the 2023-2024 School Year:

August: The Rock That Is Higher Than I *
September: For All the Saints who from their Labours Rest *
October: For the Beauty of the Earth * * *
November: Anywhere with Jesus * *
December: Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow * *
January: My Song is Love Unknown * *
February: This is My Father's World * *
March: Ah, Holy Jesus * *
April: Count Your Blessings * *
May: All Creatures of Our God and King * * *
June: Lo! He Comes With Clouds Descending *
July: Holy, Holy, Holy * * *

AO's full Hymn rotation

Folksongs for the 2023-2024 School Year:

AO's Intro to 2023-2024's Folksongs
August (Bonus): God Bless America
September: Aiken Drum * *   Scottish version: * *
October: The Ash Grove * * * *
November: The Lion Sleeps Tonight * *
Over Christmas break, try learning a less familiar carol: Sleep, Sleep, Sleep My Little Child and/or O Little Town Of Bethlehem
January: The Water is Wide (Oh Waly, Waly) * * * *
February: Now is the Hour * * *
March: Log Driver's Waltz * * *
April: A Man's A Man for A'That ("Should'a been Scotland's national anthem...") * * *
May: Simple Gifts * * *
June: Click Go the Shears * *

AO's full Folksong rotation

Physical Education

One option is Swedish Drill Revisited by Dawn Duran purchase

Additional Books for Free Reading [36]

Are Free Reads required reading?

Heidi, by Joanna Spyri. β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) Ω [38]
A Wonder Book by Nathaniel Hawthorne β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) K Ω
Tanglewood Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) Ω K [40]
Five Little Peppers and How They Grew by Margaret Sidney β α (£) (£amzn) ($amzn) Ω K
Hans Christian Andersen fairy tales α β ($amzn) (K) K (selections)
The Pied Piper of Hamelin α by Robert Browning (£) ($amzn) Ω K
Abraham Lincoln by Ingri D'Aulaire (ChrBk) ($amzn) ($BFBooks) Borrow Online for 1 Hour: α
Five Children and It by Edith Nesbit β (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) Ω K [42]
Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder (ChrBk) ($amzn) ($amzn) (K) 9-bk series: (ChrBk) ($amzn) (paperback K)
Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder (ChrBk) ($amzn) ($amzn) (K)
The Story of Doctor Dolittle by Hugh Lofting [43]
Mary Poppins by P. L. Travers (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) [44]
Brighty of the Grand Canyon by Marguerite Henry ($amzn)
Mr. Popper's Penguins by Richard Atwater (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
Otto of the Silver Hand by Howard Pyle β α (£) (£amzn) ($amzn) Ω K [46]
Chanticleer and the Fox by Barbara Cooney's is one version (ChrBk) ($amzn)
Along Came A Dog by Meindert De Jong ($amzn)
The Door in the Wall by Marguerite De Angeli (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)

If your Year 1-2 student needs some additional reading practice, we suggest choosing from the following:

The Boxcar Children (just the first one) by Gertrude Chandler Warner ($amzn)
A Lion to Guard Us ($amzn), Shoeshine Girl ($amzn), or others by Clyde Robert Bulla
Henry and Mudge and others in the series by Cynthia Rylant ($amzn)
A Toad for Tuesday by Russell Erickson ($amzn)

Millicent Selsam's easy readers. Particularly good are:
Plenty of Fish
Seeds and More Seeds
Let's Get Turtles

Frog and Toad books (and others) by Arnold Lobel
Frog and Toad Are Friends ($amzn)
Frog and Toad All Year ($amzn)
Frog and Toad Together ($amzn)
Days With Frog and Toad ($amzn)
Owl at Home ($amzn)
Grasshopper on the Road ($amzn)
Mouse Soup ($amzn)
Mouse Tales ($amzn)

Little Bear books by Elsa Holmelund Minarik:
Little Bear ($amzn)
Father Bear Comes Home ($amzn)
Little Bear's Friend ($amzn)
Little Bear's Visit ($amzn)
A Kiss for Little Bear ($amzn)

If your Year 2-3 student needs some additional reading practice, we suggest choosing from the following:

The Bears on Hemlock Mountain by Alice Dalgliesh (ChrBk) ($amzn)
The Hundred Dresses, by Eleanor Estes (ChrBk) ($amzn)
The Enormous Egg by Oliver Butterworth (ChrBk) ($amzn)
Impunity Jane: the Story of a Pocket Doll by Rumer Godden ($amzn)
The Story of Holly and Ivy (a Christmas book) by Rumer Godden ($amzn)

Betsy-Tacy books by Maud Hart Lovelace:
Betsy-Tacy (ChrBk) ($amzn)
Betsy-Tacy and Tib (ChrBk) ($amzn)
Betsy and Tacy Go Over the Big Hill (ChrBk) ($amzn)

Billy and Blaze books by C. W. Anderson:
Purchase the 9-volume set (ChrBk)
Billy and Blaze ($amzn)
Blaze and the Forest Fire ($amzn)
Blaze and Thunderbolt ($amzn)
Blaze and the Mountain Lion ($amzn)
Blaze Finds the Trail ($amzn)
Blaze and the Lost Quarry ($amzn)
Blaze and the Gray Spotted Pony ($amzn)
Blaze Shows the Way ($amzn)

Fairchild Family series by Rebecca Caudill:
Happy Little Family ($amzn)
Schoolhouse in the Woods (ChrBk) ($amzn)
Up and Down the River (ChrBk) ($amzn)
Schoolroom in the Parlor (ChrBk) ($amzn)

(Purchase a Kindle)


2. Note on Audiobooks: While links to audio books are added as a courtesy, Miss Mason's approach to grammar and composition is heavily dependent upon the children receiving an immense amount of visual exposure to the written word over many years, so parents should exercise extreme caution in how many audiobooks they use each year. Our brains just work differently when we see the words.

For children who have difficulty reading, one solution is to have them follow the audio version along in a written text.
Librivox free audio is done by volunteers, and some are better than others. Heidi Nash has a list of some favorite Librivox readers. Be aware that apps, including Librivox, that have clickable ads can open a browser and allow children unfiltered access to the internet, even when browsers have been disabled by the parent. There are options: either download mp3 files from Librivox and listen without the app, or only install the app on a parent-controlled device. Librivox has a pay option to turn off ads.

Cindy Rollins did a Circe Mason Jar podcast that included the role of audiobooks with difficult books. There's an archived copy here.
List of available audio books for Year 2

4. Timeline: Timeline: In the early school years, Charlotte Mason recommended two types of simple and developmentally-appropriate timelines (note: simple. It is easy to overcomplicate this). The first is a timeline of the child's personal/family history: when they were born, when a pet came into the family, a house move, etc. The second is a very general outline of history, which is described in Home Education, p. 292. This can be created as per Miss Mason's instructions, or it can be as simple as a string on the wall with notecards clipped to it. The point of this early timeline exercise is not to memorize dates, but rather to begin to "suggest a graphic panorama to the child's mind" (p. 292).

Resources: Read an Advisory member's blog post about early timelines at Wendi Wanders. Instructions for timelines and charts are included in these Parents' Review articles: Book of the Centuries; Teaching Chronology; The Correlation of Lessons. For more details about the why, when, and how of keeping CM timelines (and other notebooks), we strongly recommend reading The Living Page by Laurie Bestvater ($amzn). We have more links on our history page here. (Back)

6. Bible: Bible Gateway has many versions of the Bible online. It is preferable for a child to become accustomed to the language and flow of the King James Version of the Bible, as a familiarity with King James English will make other literature more accessible. Please read Lynn Bruce's article on the King James Version.
Year 2 students read stories of Moses, and parts of Luke and Matthew. See AO's Bible plan. Charlotte Mason taught both with commentaries, reading the Bible passage first, then narration, then reading the commentary, but Smyth's commentaries may reflect the doctrine of his era and denomination; they are not necessary to follow the Bible schedule.
Optional Bible Resources: Timeline; Calvary Chapel Coloring Sheets; Study questions with maps. (Back)

8. An Island Story, Chapters 22-60 1066-1553, Harold II-Edward VI this year. Term 1: ch 22-32, 1066-1189, Harold II Henry II.
Term 2: Chapters 33-50 1189-1399, Richard I Richard II.
Term 3: ch 51-61 1399-1553, Henry IV-Henry VII.
This book was published in the UK under the title, 'OUR Island Story;' both books are identical except for the title. Be aware that the edition for sale from Wilder Publications has no Table of Contents or chapter numbers. Public domain texts are available for anyone to copy, paste and publish, and many new companies are springing up publishing and selling these texts without editing for typos.
For planning purposes, there is a table of contents with dates for An Island Story. (Back)

10. This Country of Ours is available in an "Annotated, Expanded, and Updated" version that includes correct tribal names, added information, and a pronunciation guide. Vol 1, used this year, contains ch 1-28. Available in Paperback: ($amzn) or Hardcover: ($amzn) as well as Kindle: (K) More details are explained on our blog.
If you prefer, you can still purchase the original version: ($amzn) K The link to Project Gutenberg's etext and Librivox's audiobook have used the original public domain version.
Scheduled this year:
Term 1: ch 1 How the Vikings...
Term 2: not used.
Term 3: ch 2-5 Columbus, 1492-1497, Henry VII.
For planning purposes, there is a table of contents with dates for This Country of Ours.
Optional: Leif the Lucky by D'Aulaire or Part II of Viking Tales, by Jennie Hall can be used in place of This Country of Ours in Term 1.
Optional: Columbus by Ingri D'Aulaire can be used in place of This Country of Ours in Term 3. (Back)

12. A Child's History of the World, ch. 47 on Charlemagne-60; ch. 48 ("Getting a Start," about Alfred) may be skipped, as that is also covered in 'An Island Story.'
Term 1 are ch 47, ch 49-53 (ch 45, 47-51 in 1st edition) 1000 AD Charlemagne, Vikings Peter the Hermit; 800-1100.
Term 2: ch 54-57 (ch 52-54 in 1st edition) Richard I-John I Magna Charta, 1189-1215.
Term 3: ch 58-61 (ch 55-58 in 1st edition) Marco Polo-Joan of Arc; 1275-1456.
For planning purposes, there is a table of contents with dates for A Child's History of the World and M. B. Synge's Story of the World.

Another option if you prefer: The Discovery of New Worlds by MB Synge ($amzn) Ω
Term 1: ch 12-18
Term 2: ch 19-22
Term 3: ch 23-29
For planning purposes, there is a table of contents with dates for A Child's History of the World and M. B. Synge's Story of the World.

Chapters from The Story of Mankind by Hendrick Van Loon Ω α are shown where they overlap with history being studied for those wishing to have an older student (5th grade and up) follow along in the same rotation or for those who are limited to only this text. Story of Mankind is for an older age group and not really recommended for children this young. The text for the Story of Mankind is online here.
Term 1: ch. 29-32 Charlemagne, Norsemen, Feudalism, Chivalry.
Term 2: ch. 33-35, Pope vs. Emperor, Crusades, The Medieval City.
Term 3: ch. 36-38, Medieval Self-Government, The Medieval World, Medieval Trade.
For planning purposes, there is a table of contents with dates for The Story of Mankind. (Back)

18. Trial and Triumph: Descriptions of some trials of the Christians may be intense; parents should preview chapters to determine suitability based on their children's sensitivities. If you prefer, you can skip this book and cover church history in Years 7-9 with a different book, Saints and Heroes, by George Hodges.
This book tells church history from a definite Protestant perspective; some families may wish to skip this book or find an alternative.
Trial and Triumph used to be online, but now only a sample of the book is available online. This is what we used to post about the online posting: Google Books does have permission from Canon Press to have Trial and Triumph in full online. Here is a statement from Canon Press: "I believe we have extended permission to them to display that title. Obviously we would love for folks to purchase hard copies but we understand the limitations of many folks. If they do benefit from the online version though, we would be grateful for some sort of review whether it be on a blog, on Amazon, or on our own website. Thanks for contacting us to check. We really appreciate it." - David Hoos, Canon Press - Customer Service (Back)

20. The Little Duke: Charlotte Yonge is an author CM used in the PNEU curriculum. This is a lively, literary biography of Richard, Duke of Normandy, great-grandfather of William the Conqueror, beginning in 943 AD. Yonge's historical information about events of the Viking era is meticulously researched, although presented in a somewhat Victorian tone. AO Advisory member Anne White has written a study guide for this book. (Back)

Recitation: Charlotte Mason's PNEU schools expected children to be able to recite two Bible verses and a poem for their term exams. We have listed suggestions, but students should be allowed to have some input into what is memorized for recitation. Some students will gravitate towards a specific poem, or want to memorize all of a Psalm, and that should be encouraged. (Back)

22. Geography: The following geography concepts should be explained and taught this year; a book is not necessary as these can be explained informally during walks and outings.
AO's complete list of geography topics

Term 1: A compass can show direction when sun and stars are not visible. Magnetic needle always points north. Points on the compass (N, S, E, W and also halfway in between: NE), how sailors use a compass.
These topics are covered in these chapters:
Long's Home Geography α (£) (£amzn) 4. How the Compass Shows Direction
Charlotte Mason's Elementary Geography (£) (£amzn): The Points of the Compass
Charlotte Mason's Elementary Geography: The Mariner's Compass

Term 2: Planets orbit around the sun. Earth orbits around the sun in 365 days, making a year. The earth's turning makes day and night.
These topics are covered in these chapters:
Charlotte Mason's Elementary Geography: Our World and Other Worlds Part I
Charlotte Mason's Elementary Geography: Our World and Other Worlds Part II
Charlotte Mason's Elementary Geography: Day and Night

Term 3: The poles; earth's spinning on its tilted axis makes the four seasons.
These topics are covered in these chapters:
Charlotte Mason's Elementary Geography: Poles and Axis
Charlotte Mason's Elementary Geography: The Four Seasons Part I
Charlotte Mason's Elementary Geography: The Four Seasons Part II

2 minute explanation on YouTube; also look for Bill Nye The Science Guy episode: "Seasons" (23 minutes) (Back)

24. The Burgess Animal Book: Term 1: ch 1-15; Term 2: ch 16-27; Term 3: ch 28-40
See up-to-date searchable taxonomy and/or Kelly Kenar's taxonomy key to research more about the animals in the book (Back)

25. Poetry: How do you "do" poetry? Simply read it and enjoy it, re-read it, read it again and listen to the sound of the phrases, let them paint a word picture in your mind. Do you feel like you need more direction? How to Read a Poem: Based on the Billy Collins Poem "Introduction to Poetry" by Tania Runyan is "less as an instructional book and more of an invitation." This is a suggested optional parent resource that encourages you read poetry for enjoyment. (Back)

26. Shakespeare: If you are concerned about some of the themes in Shakespeare because of the age or sensitivity of your students, or if you have never done anything like Shakespeare before, you may wish to adjust the line-up AO has scheduled for Years 1-3 (scheduled plays are listed on AO's weekly schedule) and instead do a couple of the comedies first -- Midsummer Night's Dream, Much Ado About Nothing, The Tempest, and maybe a historical Shakespeare play. These are the plays AO schedules to be read in a paraphrase for younger students:
     Year 1
          Midsummer Nights Dream
          The Tempest
          As You Like It
          The Winter's Tale
          King Lear
          Twelfth Night; Or, What You Will
     Year 2
          The Two Gentlemen of Verona
          Romeo and Juliet
          All's Well That Ends Well
          The Comedy of Errors
     Year 3
          The Merchant of Venice
          Pericles, Prince of Tyre
          The Taming of the Shrew
          Measure for Measure
          Much Ado About Nothing
          Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (Back)

27.Parables from Nature is a Christian character book using elements of nature to make its point, and is scheduled for 3 years: Years 1, 2 and 3. It is not a science book. If your child needs something more manageable, a Modern English paraphrase version of this book is available. You can read it for free online here or purchase. ($amzn) (K). Relying on paraphrases will prevent your child from developing the mental muscles needed to comprehend older books. But sometimes a paraphrase is needed. If a child is completely lost, then nothing in their brain is firing up, so there are times (and specific children) where it can make the difference between giving up on a book, or using a paraphrase so the ideas at least get through. Read more about this in Wendi Capehart's blog post Imagination and the Mind's Eye. (Back)

28. Pilgrim's Progress: The original language is recommended; read why and see recommended versions. (Back)

30. Don't let your son be put off by Understood Betsy because it's "about a girl." We've had many, many requests from moms to suggest a Boy Option because their son balked at this book - only to have the same moms later report that Understood Betsy turned out to be a favorite book. "Understood Betsy" was also published as "Betsy" in the UK. (Back)

32. The Wind in the Willows: we recommend the edition illustrated by Ernest H. Shepard (Back)

34. Robin Hood may be continued into the summer if necessary to finish. Don't let the language put you off this book. After getting a feel for the rhythm and phrases, many moms report that this is a favorite with their children, especially boys. It can be the book that helps transition children to some other challenging AO books. You can purchase an unabridged audio of Robin Hood read in a wonderful British accent by David Case from Blackstone Audio. ($amzn) (Back)

36. Free Reading books are books that no child should miss, but rather than overloading school time, these can be read during free time. No narrations need be required from these books. Advisory member Wendi C. suggests, "How you handle these is up to you . . ." (more) Parents should also explain to students that historical fiction, while often well-researched, is still fiction, and contains the author's ideas of how things might have happened. Books with asterisks pertain to that term's historical studies. (Back)

38. Heidi wasn't written in English, and there are various translations out there; some leave things out. Look for one that has all of the chapters and includes the hymns. There is a beautifully illustrated, unabridged 'gift edition' online (it's the one at Project Gutenberg linked to the title 'Heidi'), and one with Jessie Wilcox Smith illustrations, although that one may not be complete. (Back)

40. Tanglewood Tales is similar to Charles Kingsley's book The Heroes, which is read in Year 3 (Back)

42. Five Children and It: In ch 11, near the very end of the book, there's this line: 'Him outside and me in, I was,' said Martha; 'except for fetching up a fresh pail and the leather that that sl-- of a Eliza 'd hidden away behind the mangle.' The word didn't used to mean what it does now; it used to mean a lazy person. (Back)

43. Dr. Dolittle - The original has racist issues and references that are unacceptable today. We strongly recommend finding a version edited for modern readers. These public domain versions link to the original version and will need editing. That includes the audio versions we've linked. Project Gutenberg β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) Ω Λ (Back)

44. Some versions of Mary Poppins say 'revised' because P.L. Travers revised chapter 6 herself in 1981 to get rid of some rather nasty racist things; read more at this archived link. (Back)

46. Otto of the Silver Hand: Be aware that the child loses a hand in this story; if your child is sensitive, you might want to gloss over or edit that part. (Back)

For those on a strict budget, recommended purchases are:

Hillyer's Child's History of the World is used for multiple years; ($amzn) unless you plan to use M.B. Synge's online books instead
Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock is used for 6 years; ($amzn) (Also online, but would be cumbersome to utilize that way.
Joan of Arc by Diane Stanley if your library does not have it ($amzn)
a Math program
a phonics program (although you can make do yourself, as this mom did)
Tree in the Trail ($amzn) and Seabird ($amzn) by Holling C Holling if your library does not have them
Laura Ingalls Wilder books if your library does not have them ($amzn)
D'Aulaire's Abraham Lincoln (free reading), if your library doesn't have it ($amzn) ($BFBooks)
Other books can be read online or borrowed from the library.

Last updated March 31, 2023 (to update Bible)

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