AmblesideOnline Year 9 Booklist
As students mature, their reading material will present more challenging content, and may include strong language and more mature themes. We have placed footnotes linked in red beside those books that most parents will consider an issue. However, we cannot anticipate which content might be an issue for every family. We encourage parents to pre-screen material to determine its appropriateness for their child and family.
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 - manybooks.net, another free ebook site.
α - free etext at archive.org; newer books can be borrowed for one hour at a time.
(ChrBk) - purchase from Christianbook.com using AO's affiliate link.
K - free Kindle text from amazon.com.
(£amzn) - Living Books Press purchase using AO's amazon.com affiliate link.
($amzn) - book purchase using AO's amazon.com affiliate link.
(K) - Kindle purchase using AO's amazon.com affiliate link.
(£) - Purchase directly from Living Books Press with an affiliate link; save 10% with discount code: AOBooks
Λ - free audiobook at Lit2Go
Ω - free audiobook at Librivox 
∩ - other free audiobook source
 - Click the bracketed numeral to view any notes about the book near the bottom of the page.
 - red footnotes indicate a heads-up for parents about the title. We cannot foresee every incident that might potentially be an issue to every family, but we have red-flagged those that are commonly a concern.
AO is an affiliate of Living Book Press, which means that when you purchase from our (£) links, we receive a commission which allows us to keep offering AO for free.
AO is an affiliate of Christianbook.com, which means that when you purchase from our (ChrBk) links, we receive a commission that helps with our costs.
AmblesideOnline is part of Amazon.com's Affiliate program. If you use the Amazon links, we receive a small commission which enables us to cover the costs of keeping the website and curriculum. Amazon links are identified like this: ($amzn) or (£amzn) or (K).
AmblesideOnline Year 9 Curriculum
The previous version of this page can be accessed until June 2024 here.
For some thoughts behind the planning of this Year, some encouragement, and an explanation of AO/HEO upper years' "Salad Bar" approach, click here. Take the time to read the footnoted notes and comments; you will not be able to make good decisions about what to include or not without doing so. If this looks overwhelming for your student, you might consider plan B - a lightened load for Year 9.
- Current Events (Keep up with your choice of periodicals or blogs)
- Dictation and additional writing assignments
- Foreign language
- Music Appreciation, including composers, folksongs and hymns
- Outdoor Nature Study
- Artist/Picture Study
- One of Plutarch's Lives spread over each term
- A Shakespeare play spread over each term
The following weekly readings should be broken up into daily readings in whatever way works best for your family.
Judges 1-21, Ruth, 1 Samuel 1-28, 2 Samuel 1-24, 1 Kings 1-22, Ecclesiastes 1-12
Mark 1-16, Acts 1-28, James 1-5, Galatians 1-6
Psalms 106-150, Proverbs 1-16
Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis α α α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
Through Gates of Splendor by Elisabeth Elliot α (ChrBk) ($amzn) optional follow-up: End of the Spear by Steve Saint α α ($amzn) (K)
or The Legacy of William Carey: a Model for the Transformation of a Culture by Vishal and Ruth Mangalwadi α ($amzn) 
Some students might benefit from a daily devotional. These are time-tested classics:
Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
Daily Light: Morning and Evening, scriptures compiled by Samuel Bagster α ($amzn) (K)
Streams in the Desert by Lettie Burd (Mrs. Charles) Cowman α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
History: 1688-1815 including French and American revolutions 
Term 1: 1688-1730; Term 2: 1730-1786; Term 3: 1786-1815
Keep a century chart and Century Book of the period studied. 
Optional: Cambridge History of English and American Literature Vol. XI: French Revolution. 
You may wish to select Churchill's Age of Revolution plus one of the American history books, OR simply choose one of the following options. Choosing two American History books would probably be overkill. (Term 1: 1688-1730; Term 2: 1730-1786; Term 3: 1786-1815)
Choose 2-5 from among these suggestions: 
* A biography of George Washington 
* A biography of Ponce de Leon or Peter the Great; perhaps one by Jacob Abbott ($amzn) K Ω
* ** Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) K Ω ∫
** *** John Adams by David McCullough (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) 
OR John Adams and the American Revolution by Catherine Drinker Bowen ($amzn) 
*** Marie Antoinette and Her Son by Louise Muhlback β α 
*** Napoleon Bonaparte by John S. C. Abbott α 
*** The Life of Horatio Lord Nelson by Robert Southey β α ($amzn) (K) 
*** Life of Johnson by James Boswell β α (ChrBk) 
History Supplements and Speeches
* Select documents from EuroDocs: Online Sources for European History.
* Transcriptions of Salem Witch Trial Court Records 1692; also here; name search here. ∫ 
** Declaration of Rights (1765) Ω 
** The Declaration of Independence (1776) (ChrBk) Ω Λ
** The Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence (1775) ∫
** Articles of Confederation (1777) ∫
** Articles of Capitulation, Yorktown (1781) ∫
** Treaty with Great Britain (1783) ∫
** Constitution of the United States (1787) (current copy here) (ChrBk) ∫
** The Federalist Papers: No. 10, No. 39, No. 51, No. 68 (1787) Ω ∫ 
** Letters to His Son by Lord Chesterfield β α ($elections) Ω ∫ 
** Optional: Michael Medved audio of accounts of Revolutionary War battles 
** Optional: "Liberty! The American Revolution" DVD series ($amzn) 
** "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death!" Patrick Henry's famous speech Ω Ω ∫ Λ 
** Edmund Burke's Plea for Conciliation with the American Colonies, March 22,1775 Ω
** Jonathan Edwards' "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" Sermon (1741) (ChrBk) ∩ Ω ∫ YouTube
** Free Grace: John Wesley Denounces the Doctrine of Predestination (1740) 
*** Washington's First Inaugural Address (1789) ∫
*** Treaty with the Six Nations (1794) Ω ∫
*** Washington's Farewell Address also here. Ω (1796) ∫ 
*** Treaty with France (Louisiana Purchase) (1803) ∫
*** Treaty with Great Britain (End of War of 1812) (1814) ∫
*** Miracle at Philadelphia by Catherine Drinker Bowen ($amzn)  ∫
*** The Invasion of Canada by Pierre Berton ($amzn) 
*** Speech by William Wilberforce concerning the slave trade.  ∫
*** Optional: Amazing Grace, the movie about Wilberforce. ($amzn)
*** Founding Brothers: The Revolutionary Generation by Joseph J. Ellis ($amzn) (K) ∫ 
Shakespeare for the 2023-2024 School Year:
* Twelfth Night
** King Lear
*** Measure for Measure
The History of English Literature for Girls and Boys by H.E. Marshall ch 60-73 β α ($amzn) (K) 
* Isaac Bickerstaff β α and Days with Sir Roger De Coverley β α by Richard Steele. (Very fun.) ($amzn)
OR The Coverley Papers from the 'Spectator' by Joseph Addison, Richard Steele, and Eustace Budgell, ed. by O. M. Myers β
* Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift. β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) ($amzn) (K) Ω Λ ∫ 
* A Tale of a Tub β α and Battle of the Books β α by Jonathan Swift (ChrBk) ($amzn) 
** Rasselas, Prince of Abyssinia by Samuel Johnson β α ($amzn) (K) Ω ∫
** She Stoops to Conquer by Oliver Goldsmith β α ($amzn) Ω  and/or The Vicar of Wakefield by Oliver Goldsmith β α ($amzn) (K) Ω * *
** The School for Scandal by Richard Sheridan β α ($amzn) (K) Ω
*** The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas; also here β α Unabridged translation by R. Buss: ($amzn) (K) (ChrBk) Λ Ω ∫ 
*** Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) ($amzn) (K) DVD: ($amzn) Ω ∫ 
*** Faust, Book I by Johann Wolfgang Goethe β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) Ω 
* Alexander Pope (1688-1744) or, 24 notated poems
** William Cowper (1731-1800), and Phillis Wheatley (1753-1784) (ChrBk) 
*** George Gordon, Lord Byron (1788-1824) 23 Poems here; Annotated version of Don Juan
Include selections from Shakespeare, the Bible, poetry and other sources. These selections may be the same ones used for recitation.
This is a good year to begin a personal quote book.
2 or 3 pages of studied dictation per week. 
Grammar and Composition
Written narrations: 3-5 per week, varying among subjects. Include one written narration from a reading earlier in the week. 
Purchase a good English handbook. 
2 Hymns, 2 Bible passages of about 20 verses each and 2 entire Psalms per term. Suggestions: Psalm 23; Isaiah 40; Romans 8 (or Rom 8: 1-17); Matthew 5; James 1; 1 John 1; or choose your own.
Shakespeare - 1 passage from the term's Shakespeare play. 
2 Poems (or 50 lines) from each term's poets
Begin or continue Latin.
Continue with any previous foreign language studies. 
Choose one to three of the following: 
* Longitude by Dava Sobel ($amzn) (K)
* London to Land's End by Daniel Defoe β
** Lewis and Clark, perhaps Undaunted Courage by Stephen E. Ambrose (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
or Lewis and Clark by Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns ($amzn) 
*** A Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland α by Samuel Johnson ($amzn) (K) 
In the 36-week schedule, Longitude or London to Land's End is scheduled in Term 1, and Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland is scheduled over Terms 2 and 3. Feel free to choose differently.
Plutarch for the 2023-2024 School Year:
Term 1: Alcibiades (Study Guide with text; Text Only)
Term 2: Coriolanus (Study Guide with text; Text Only)
Term 3: Cato the Younger (Study Guide with text; Text Only)
(Purchase this year's study guides, Vol 9, in one book: ($amzn) (K)
AO's full Plutarch rotation
Ourselves by Charlotte Mason (£) (£amzn) ($amzn) 
The Universe Next Door by James Sire α α α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
Yuval Levin interview on The Great Debate: Edmund Burke, Thomas Paine, and the Birth of the Left and Right YouTube, 1 hour
Government and Economics
* Are You Liberal, Conservative, Confused? by Richard Maybury (ChrBk) ($amzn) ∫ 
** Essays (from John Hopkins's Notions on Political Economy) by Jane Haldimand Marcet α ∫ 
** Common Sense by Thomas Paine β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) ) Ω Λ ∫
A basic government book or course 
Additional Options (for more advanced students particularly interested in political history)
Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith β α Pt 1 ($amzn) Pt 2 ($amzn) Pts 1-3 (ChrBk) Ω
The Rights of Man by Thomas Paine β α ($amzn) (K) 
The Great Debate: Edmund Burke, Thomas Paine, and the Birth of Right and Left by Yuval Levin α ($amzn) (K)
A Letter to a Noble Lord by Edmund Burke, 1796 (also here) β α
The Federalist Papers by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay (also here) β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) ($amzn) (K) Ω
and Anti-Federalist Papers (also here, though arranged differently) α α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) 
Students should have a plan for keeping up with current events. 
Apologia science materials or other science program 
Signs and Seasons: Understanding the Elements of Classical Astronomy by Jay Ryan (ChrBk) ($amzn) 
The Sea Around Us by Rachel Carson, first half ($amzn) (K) α 
Great Astronomers by Robert S. Ball β α (£) (£amzn) 
The Microbe Hunters by Paul de Kruif α ($amzn) (K) ∫ 
Keep flower and bird lists of species seen, select a special study for outdoor work, and continue to maintain nature notebooks.
Nature Study Topics for the 2023-2024 School Year:
AO's full Nature Study rotation
Continue your math program; for some options, see this page.
Artists (Picture Study) for the 2023-2024 School Year:
2023-2024 TERM 1 Tintoretto (1518-1594; Renaissance)
(This term's music: Renaissance)
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]
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.
Work on drawing skills. Illustrate a scene from this week's reading.
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
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 * * *
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 * *
Health and Physical Education
Life and Work Skills
House or garden work, useful crafts, or skill. 
The History of Henry Esmond, Esq., A Colonel in the Service of Her Majesty Queen Anne by William Makepeace Thackeray β α ($amzn) (K) Ω
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) Ω Λ ∫
The Scarlet Pimpernel by Emmuska Orczy β (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) Ω ∫
The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck ($amzn) ∫
The Great Divorce by C. S. Lewis (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
The Screwtape Letters (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) by C.S. Lewis ∫
Manalive by G. K. Chesterton β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) Ω
The Man Who Was Thursday β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) Ω by G.K. Chesterton.
Sir Gibbie by George MacDonald β α ($earch) or other book from this website. Ω
Two Years Before the Mast by Richard Henry Dana β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) Ω ∫
Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog) by Jerome K. Jerome β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) Ω
Scaramouche: A Romance of the French Revolution by Rafael Sabatini β α ($amzn) Ω, French Revolution #2 in series
*** Reflections on the Revolution in France α (in vol 3 of his Reflections) by Edmund Burke (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) Ω ∫ (Burke wrote this cautious take on France's political situation before it turned violent; "The Rights of Man" is Thomas Paine's rebuttal. The debate continued with Burke's "Appeal from the New to the Old Whigs," prompting Paine to add a second part to his Rights of Man.)
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen β α (ChrBk) ($amzn) Ω Λ [Note: Gothic novels such as Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole β α ($amzn) (K) Ω and Mysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe, referred to in Northanger Abbey β α ($amzn) (K) Ω were quite popular in this time period, and Northanger Abbey is a delicious spoof of the genre. Exposure to these works forms a good backdrop for the works of Scott, Byron, and Poe.]
The Little Nugget Ω
Uneasy Money Ω
or others by P. G. Wodehouse β α (These are only two of what's available online; freely choose any other Wodehouse titles of your choice. ($earch) Ω Some readers may be uncomfortable with the alcohol consumption in his books, a reflection of differing standards of culture and time. Read these for the superb humor and Wodehouse's remarkable knack for simile.)
*** An Inquiry Into the Obligations of Christians to Use Means for the Conversion of the Heathens α by William Carey (1792) ($amzn) since he was known as the 'Father of Modern Missions.'
Horatio Hornblower books by C. S. Forester ($earch) Particularly suited for male readers (although we know several women who enjoy them as well). The character Hornblower was inspired by Horatio Lord Nelson, and is noted for his personification of honor, duty and personal integrity. These books are historical fiction accounts of actual battles and incidents in the wars between England, France and Spain during this era. Titles are, in chronological order:
Mr. Midshipman Hornblower
Hornblower and The Hotspur
Hornblower and the Atropos
Beat To Quarters
Ship of the Line
Admiral Hornblower in the West Indies
Hornblower During the Crisis.
Choose one title for literature and one for free reading from these books by Sir Walter Scott ($earch). If your student has not yet read Rob Roy (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K) Ω, we suggest that you begin with it.
* The Bride of Lammermoor - East Lothian, 1695 β α
* The Pirate - Shetland and Orkney Islands, 1700 α
* The Black Dwarf - The Lowlands of Scotland, 1706 (Jacobites) β α
** Rob Roy - The Jacobites β α
** Heart of Mid-Lothian - Time of George II. (Porteous Riots) β α
** Waverley - The Jacobites β α (ChrBk) Ω
** Redgauntlet - Time of George III. β α
** Guy Mannering - Time of George III β α
** The Surgeon's Daughter - Fifeshire, Isle of Wight, and India (1780) β α
*** The Antiquary - Scotch Manners, last decade of the 18th Century β α Ω
*** St. Ronan's Well - Near Firth of Forth, 1812 β α
Useful for future reference: A Guide to the Best Historical Novels and Tales by Jonathan Nield
The Year 9 "Salad Bar"
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 every single one of their own students and have to be selective. Feel free to pick and choose from among these suggestions. The best choice may just be the book you already own, and the one from which your student can narrate.
Year 9 marks a transition for both parent and child in terms of effort, involvement, content and goals. High school is hard work. Students should be encouraged to approach it as though it's their first full-time job, and parents must remain involved -- even as the child is maturing toward independence and becoming capable of taking over some of the decision making and record keeping. Some students already have specific career goals in mind that can be integrated into their school work, while college bound students will need to tailor their studies to meet university admissions requirements. In short, Year 9 ushers in a new phase of life and school for everyone involved. It's an exciting time that can and should be enjoyed! (Read about high school credits)
Now for a word about books, and the design of Year 9...
Selecting the best books is a challenge that increases with each successive school year. High school students are journeying across the bridge into adulthood, and the books they should read at this level reflect the adult world. While previewing the content of mountains of books for the AO/HEO high school years, we've been constantly aware that we cannot predict how far across that bridge other people's children may be. Families vary greatly in their views on sheltering, protecting and preparing for adulthood, so it would be futile for us to attempt to be the censor or guardian (the bridge troll?) for all AmblesideOnline scholars. We set a very high standard for AO/HEO materials, and we've gone the extra mile and beyond to create and provide a Year 9 prototype that reflects excellence. However by no means do we claim to have done all the work for you! It remains the homeschool parent's job, most particularly on the high school level, to assume full responsibility for matching your child's sensitivities and sensibilities and your family's standards with the books you select for study.
In the booklist shown here, we've offered a few notes on potential concerns in certain books, but it goes without saying that we have not noted every potential concern in every book. Please understand that the absence of a comment does not mean the absence of anything your particular family might find offensive or inappropriate.
For these and other reasons, the AO/HEO high school Years are designed not as a single curriculum list (like the preceding Years), but rather as what we fondly call the HEO "Salad Bar" approach. In many subject areas, we offer a variety of options for you to choose among (or you may substitute your own). The final product will be your design. Those who still prefer the comfort of a single booklist may simply select "Option One" where options are presented.
We feel that this Year 9 book list is in keeping with Charlotte Mason's principles, but it isn't the only possible way to "do" CM in high school. You are free to use it en toto, piecemeal, or simply as an example to consider.
To arrive at the best high school plan for your child, expect to burn some midnight oil, dig a little more than you did to prepare for the younger grades, and make more personal choices. You should budget time over a few weeks to focus on previewing and selecting books. Look on the bright side: you'll emerge from this process more conversant and familiar with the era and books your student is about to cover -- and discussion is so vital for students in the upper grades. You'll also be more sympathetic to your hardworking young scholar!
As you devise your own Year 9 curriculum, whether using our book suggestions or your own substitute titles, it's useful to keep a page count in mind. Charlotte Mason's students covered approximately 1600-2000 pages in a term by Year 9, using about 40 different books. This loose guideline will help you gauge whether your own academic load is in keeping with Miss Mason's.
Before beginning these upper years, please do yourself one very smart favor: zealously pursue some teacher preparation time for yourself. It's a little investment that will pay you back double every single school day. We suggest you read (or reread) volume 6 of Charlotte Mason's six volume set. Volume 5 may also be helpful to you. Both are available online, as free e-texts. You'll also find it useful to scan the sample Programmes from Miss Mason's own PNEU school, which are linked from the AmblesideOnline homepage. Forms III and IV are the ones relevant to Year 9. You'll find a wealth of helpful articles at AmblesideOnline, so plan to spend a few evenings exploring the site. It's also helpful to have on hand a good current book on homeschooling through high school. And you'll find terrific support on the AO Forum -- please join and participate!
Blessings to you, and happy high schooling!
The Advisory (Back to top of page)
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.
4. Continue AO's plan (6 years through the Bible in Years 7-12), or follow a plan of your own preference. AO's plan schedules the following for this year:
Judges 1-21, Ruth, 1 Samuel 1-28, 2 Samuel 1-24, 1 Kings 1-22, Ecclesiastes 1-12
Mark 1-16, Acts 1-28, James 1-5, Galatians 1-6
Psalms 106-150, Proverbs 1-16
Resources: Study questions with 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. One option is Matthew Henry's commentary. ($amzn). Encyclopedia of Bible Truths, 4 Volumes by Ruth C. Haycock (CBD)
Other commentaries are available at Christian Classics Ethereal Library. (Back)
6. The Legacy of William Carey: Note This book describes some of the wretchedness Carey encountered in India in the 1800's (widow-burning, infanticide, child brides), especially in chapter 2.
The book was previously published twice before with different titles, but all three are the same book:
William Carey and the Regeneration of India by Vishal and Ruth Mangalwadi, 1977 α
The Legacy of William Carey: a Model for the Transformation of a Culture by Vishal and Ruth Mangalwadi, 1993, 1999 α ($amzn)
Carey, Christ, and Cultural Transformation: the Life and Influence of William Carey by Vishal and Ruth Mangalwadi, 1997 α ($amzn) (Back)
8. Saints and Heroes is an option for church history if you didn't use Trial and Triumph in Years 1-6
Term 1: (Vol 2) ch 13 Fox-ch 14 Wesley
Term 2: none
Term 3: none (Back)
10. History: We do not wish to appear to imply that a full and complete study of American History is mandatory for non-Americans. Because of the influence the US has had on world events, we do believe that some understanding of the histories of England and the US is necessary for everybody; however, the depth of that coverage is an individual choice. Students from other countries should have a more thorough exposure to their own national history than our suggested options offer, and we encourage all AO/HEO users to seek excellent books on their own history and heritage. However, as we lack the resources and time to choose histories for other countries, we leave this responsibility to our foreign users. Please be bold in making the curriculum fit your own needs. (Back)
12. Timeline: At this age, students should be keeping a Century Chart and Book of Centuries. Students at this level in the PNEU schools made summaries of dates and events, referred to maps as they read their history, and made century charts. Instructions for making your own timelines and charts are included in these Parents' Review articles: Book of the Centuries; Teaching Chronology; The Correlation of Lessons. For more details about the why, when, how of keeping CM timelines (and other notebooks), we recommend Laurie Bestvater's book, The Living Page ($amzn). Two Book of Centuries options: (£) (£) (Back)
14. Cambridge History of English and American Literature: A book you might find helpful for reference while studying this era (both for yourself as a teacher, and for your student to use): The Cambridge History of English and American Literature (An Encyclopedia in Eighteen Volumes), Volume XI: English, The Period of the French Revolution. α (Back)
16. Truthquest: Many AO/HEO parents find Truthquest to be a tremendous help for enriching discussion of the big picture of history with their children. Somewhat reminiscent of the kinds of lesson preparation materials Charlotte Mason provided her PNEU teachers, they may be used to supplement whichever history books you choose. Truthquest Ages of Revolution Guides I ($amzn) and II ($amzn) fit the time period of Year 9. For more information see their website. (Back)
18. The Age of Revolution is Volume 3 of Winston Churchill's 4 volume set, "A History of the English Speaking Peoples." These volumes are used across Years 7-10. Americans and those who desire a more accurate picture of the American Revolution (which is covered in Term 2) may prefer another option, or at least an additional option. One option would be to use the Churchill book alone for terms 1 and 3, and substitute an American history book, such as Land of Hope, to be used alone for term 2.
Term 1: ch 1 William of Orange - ch 6 Treaty of Utrechte
Term 2: ch 7 The House of Hanover - ch 15 The Indian Empire
Term 3: ch 16 The Younger Pitt - ch 25 Elba and Waterloo
Don't get the one edited by Henry Steele Commager, as it's abridged. For planning purposes, there is a Table of Contents with dates for all 4 volumes of A History of the English Speaking Peoples, and a schedule to break down the week's chapter into 4 short daily readings. (Back)
19. Land of Hope: An Invitation to the Great American Story by Wilfred M. McClay is an option for American history. ($amzn) (K) Year 9 corresponds with ch 3-6 (to pg 106). There's a schedule that fits the book into Years 8-11. This is a lighter option than most of our other history spines. (Back)
20. Oxford Book of American History by Samuel Eliot Morison: Factual, detailed, scholarly. Year 9 students would read roughly pages 140-400, a total of 260 pages (86 pages per term, about 7.2 pages per week). (Back)
22. A History of the American People by Paul Johnson: An easier read than Morison (more engaging), perhaps more editorial in places. Juicier than either Churchill or Morison. Very enthusiastically pro-American. Year 9 students would read approximately pages 79-269/279.
Term 1: pg 79-117
Term 2: pg 121-184
Term 3: 184-279
A weekly schedule. (Back)
24. A Basic History of the United States by Clarence B. Carson. Carson, a history professor, has a scholarly tone, and approaches his topic from a libertarian, probably Christian, point of view.
This is a six volume series, available through used booksellers; try Amazon.com or Rainbow Resources. Also available on audio from Downpour. Year 9 students would roughly use volume 1, pages 79-165; and volume 2, pages 1-201, which leaves only about 4 pages more of the book. (In Volume 1, Carson forays into some topics that range from Year 8's time period to the middle of Year 9's, such as general overviews of the development of culture and thinking, and tracing the development of ideas and events. This makes it a bit harder to assign pages in these chapters that fit precisely in the Year 9 time period. However, the material is still valuable.) There is an appendix including such historical documents as The Declaration of Independence, The Constitution of the United States, Washington's Farewell Address, Jefferson's Inaugural Address, and The Monroe Doctrine. (Back)
26. The Story of America by Hendrik Van Loon: Contains some of Van Loon's usual anti-Christian sentiments and snide asides that readers have noted in his Story of Mankind, but also offers his usual engaging writing style. Year 9 students would read approximately pages 86-224, more or less. (Back)
28. Salem witch trial transcript: These links are suggested; feel free to choose more (or to choose differently):
Letter From Rev. John Higginson to His Son Nathaniel Higginson
Letter of Deodat Lawson
Court testimony of Sarah Bibber
Court testimony of Mary Osgood
Letter To John Foster
Notable people: Tituba, Increase Mather, Cotton Mather
Optional: these links from the same website might be added:
Trial transcripts: John Alden
Letters of Governor William Phips
Petitions from Relatives of Prisoners
Reversal of Attainder and Rest
There's a brief article with linked names here.
The Salem Witch Trials were a blight on our history, but the fact remains that they stand out because of the rarity of witchcraft executions in the Colonies, and their comparatively late date (although Switzerland executed a witch in 1892). In the Colonies, 40 people were executed for witchcraft, half of them in the Salem Trials, and one of the key judges later repented and expressed his deep sorrow for his role in the executions. In England, there were nearly a thousand witchcraft trials from 1552 to 1722, and roughly a quarter of those ended in executions. Scotland tried nearly 2,000 in the same period, and even Switzerland had nearly 400 witchcraft trials in this period with nearly a quarter of the accused executed. Southwestern Germany executed some 3,000 during the same time period. (Back)
31. The Federalist Papers: These are a series of articles written over a nine-month period explaining what the authors of the U.S. Constitution intended in an attempt to win over Americans so they'd pressure their state representatives to ratify the U.S. Constitution. These four are scheduled:
No. 10 - Divisive Party Factions
No. 39 - Republican Principles
No. 51 - Proper Checks and Balances
No. 68 - Electing the President; The Electoral College
Mary E Webster has very lightly paraphrased all of the Federalist Papers. ($amzn) (K) Joshua Charles paraphrased most of them into very readable modern English and published them with Glenn Beck as The Original Argument ($amzn) (K) (Back)
32. Chesterfield's "Letters to His Son" offer an interesting window into the culture, customs, and thoughts of the time. Full book is 488 pages; you can use AO's selections, about 88 pgs, or choose your own selections. (Back)
34. Michael Medved has done some absolutely riveting radio programs where he shares spellbinding accounts of Revolutionary War battles. Well worth hearing, but pricey. Single programs are about $35 each (or $24 for mp3 download). You can order the entire set of 25 CD's for $425. (Back)
36. "Liberty! The American Revolution" is a painstakingly accurate and gripping 6 hour documentary produced by PBS, which covers events from 1763-1788. Includes commentary from scholars and historians, and draws heavily from period journals, letters and source documents. Battle scenes recreated on location with Revolutionary War re-enactors. Excellent acting and period music -- clearly conveys a sense of the times, the force of personalities, the ideas that drove events, and the progression of the battles. Descriptions of each episode can be found here. Check libraries. (A video series is something of a departure for Ambleside/HEO, and not a recommendation we would ordinarily make, but this one is unusually well done.) (Back)
38. Patrick Henry's famous 'Give me liberty or give me death' speech prepared Virginia for war against the Mother Country. (Back)
40. "John Wesley Denounces the Doctrine of Predestination," also known as "Free Grace," provides a theological contrast to Edwards' "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God." (Back)
41. George Washington's Farewell Address was a final opportunity to express some guiding principles for the young nation, to promote union and warn against party factions, and encourage neutrality with other nations. The U.S. Senate still has a tradition of reading this every year on Washington's birthday; if you'd like to listen along as you read, look on YouTube for videos of Senators reading this. The speech is about 40 minutes long. (Back)
42. Miracle at Philadelphia: Very readable, fascinating account of the Constitutional Convention. A classic. (Back)
44. "The Invasion of Canada" provides an interesting concurrent study of the War of 1812. (Back)
46. Speech by William Wilberforce In the book "A Treasury of the World's Great Speeches," (online ($amzn) you can find "William Pitt the Younger Indicts the Slave Trade and Foresees a Liberated Africa" April 2, 1792. We suggest that a book of famous speeches such as the above treasury ought to be in every homeschool library. [An AO user found a book of Pitt's speeches here. Scroll down to the African Slave Trade speech (p363), and click on it. Pitt's speech starts half way down page 363 and is listed as April 2nd 1792, not April 3rd. Or, you can download a Word/.odt document of this speech.] Ω (Back)
48. Founding Brothers: The Revolutionary Generation is a small paperback (248 pages) that won the Pulitzer in 2002, and thus should be in every public library. From the back of the book: "Through an analysis of six fascinating episodes -- Hamilton and Burr's deadly duel, Washington's precedent-setting Farewell Address [does not contain the text of it, but rather puts it in context], Adams' administration and political partnership with his wife, the debate about where to place the capitol, Franklin's attempt to force Congress to confront the issue of slavery, and Madison's attempts to block him, and Jefferson and Adams famous correspondence -- Founding Brothers brings to life the vital issues and personalities from the most important decade in our nation's history."(Back)
50. Biographies: Choose from the listed options or topics, or substitute your own. We suggest no more than 3-5 biographies over the year, depending on the length of your selections.
Whether you assign only one biography of an American this year, or multiple biographies (see recommendations below) we strongly recommend that you include a very good biography of George Washington. Here are some to consider:
Founding Father -- Rediscovering George Washington by Richard Brookhiser (ChrBk) ($amzn). Written as a moral biography after the tradition of Plutarch. Many modern biographies of Washington are plagued with revisionism, while some earlier biographies treat him with such iconic, reverent distance that he remains out of reach and never comes to life for the reader. This book avoids both flaws. 200 pages, in print.
The Student's Life of Washington by Washington Irving β α ($amzn). (Irving, who met Washington as a small boy, wrote a 740 page four volume biography which is available in condensed form -- perhaps the condensed version is the Student's Life linked? A very literary read. One note: Irving was aging toward the end of the work and as such the coverage of Washington's life from the presidency through his death is a bit thinner than the earlier chapters of the work. Regardless, a good choice.)
Washington: The Indispensable Man by James Thomas Flexner, winner of a Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. ($amzn) (K) A favorite among Washington biography enthusiasts, and considered by many to be the best work on his life. For an above average student, or one with a keen interest in Washington or the Revolutionary era. One note: according to one reviewer, Flexner makes the odd (and arguably insupportable) suggestion that Washington was a deist. 402 pages, in print.
The Life of George Washington by David Ramsay, 1807. α ($amzn) Written eight years after Washington's death, this is one of the few online biographies of GW. Approximately 368 pages. Drier and more archaic in style than other titles here.
[Note: Albert Marrin's bio of Washington is not included here because of its darker tone and possible inaccuracies.]
110 Rules of Civility ($amzn) (K) ∫ Not a biography, rather an interesting and instructive supplement to a study of Washington. Great source for copywork. Multiple websites; search for a version that best suits your purposes. (Back)
54. John Adams and the American Revolution by Catherine Drinker Bowen: also excellent, slightly less detailed. 698 pages. (Back)
56. Marie Antoinette and Her Son: Creates a mood of sympathy for Marie Antoinette and her family. 544 pages (Back)
58. Napoleon Bonaparte by John S. C. Abbott: this is a single-volume book (not to be confused with the much longer multi-volume The Life of Napoleon Bonaparte, or The History of Napoleon Bonaparte by the same author) which has portions missing in all its online texts (paperback reprints may have used the same Project Gutenberg text and be missing the same pages).
Another option: The Story of Napoleon by H.E. Marshall α ($amzn) (K) is a possibility, although written for younger children.
Consider having your student write a narration comparing Napoleon to George Washington. (Back)
60. The Life of Horatio Lord Nelson: Nine chapters. Lord Nelson appears in Churchill's Trafalgar chapter (week 30). 179 pages. (Back)
62. Life of Johnson: The famous, classic biography of the English author Samuel Johnson by James Boswell. Ω Included in Encyclopedia Brittanica's Great Books of the Western World, Volume 44. The online version says "abridged and edited" but you may want to edit further for length. Also here. OR choose the Penguin Classics edition of this book, edited by Christopher Hibbard, the shortest edition in print at 300 pages ($amzn). Available at www.bn.com or from used booksellers. The Introduction to this edition may warrant parental preview. (Back)
66. Maps: Many countries have a tourism department, and writing to their embassies for free brochures, maps, and other travel information might be an inexpensive way to supplement geography studies. Also, see our notes about The World and I under current events. This is a rich resource for this purpose also. (Back)
68. The suggestions are matched to the time period for Year 9. If you wish your geography to be more current, select from our page of geography options. (The 36-week schedule uses London to Land's End and Journey to Western Islands of Scotland; you can view a schedule of those books. If you prefer to use The Royal Road to Romance by Richard Halliburton ($amzn) (K), and Walking the Bible by Bruce Feiler ($amzn) (K), a schedule is here). (Back)
70. A book about the Lewis & Clark Expedition - Two suggestions are Undaunted Courage by Stephen E. Ambrose ($amzn) (K), and Lewis and Clark by Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns ($amzn). ** Preview any other titles, as many books about Lewis and Clark's journey contain graphic material. (Back)
72. A Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland is currently in print, approximately 133 pages (will vary by edition). This book also goes under the title "A Journey to the Western Isles of Scotland." (Back)
74. Are You Liberal, Conservative, Confused? - Richard Maybury refers to the PBS series "Free to Choose"; you can view these videos online or purchase ($amzn). They're also on YouTube, starting here.) (Back)
76. Five entertaining illustrations of how legislated financial equality, wage fixing, supply and demand and welfare play out, using chapters titled A Fairy Tale, Patty's Marriage, The Treacherous Friend and The Wedding Gown. (Back)
78. The Kindle link includes both The Rights of Man and Common Sense in a single volume. (Back)
80. Government: High School students will need to earn credit for basic government. This material can be done in Year 9, 10, 11 or 12. Some options:
Foundation for Freedom: A Study of the United States Constitution Workbook by Lars Johnson - This "workbook" is the text with review exercises after each chapter, which can be skipped. (ChrBk) ($amzn) Foundation for Freedom is an updated, full-color version of The Story of the Constitution, Second Edition by Sol Bloom and Lars Johnson ($amzn). Both appear to be the same book/workbook, but the newer one is in color. There is a teacher's edition/answer key available. (Sol Bloom's original 1937 Story of the Constitution, which Lars Johnson used as a foundation for his own book, is online at Hathi Trust. Because it was written in 1937, it stops at the 21st Amendment. Lars Johnson did an excellent job expanding and updating the Bloom book by adding concerns that weren't on the radar in 1937. He also wrote a chapter on limited government, checks and balances, and Biblical morality as well as a full-page explanation of each Amendment; Sol Bloom's book just explains each Amendment with a sentence or two. If you are in a situation where you need an online resource, the Sol Bloom text could work, but you should also seek out a source that explains why each Amendment was added and what it does.) This book covers material that is similar to the more narrative Miracle at Philadelphia, but with a mix of both the historical background and analysis of the content.
Constitution 101: The Meaning and History of the Constitution is a twelve-week online course offered by Hillsdale College with 40-minute streaming video lectures (or you can download the audios). You have to register with a login and password, but the course is free. After you register, "you can find out how to get a copy of Hillsdale's U.S. Constitution Reader, the essential companion to the course, which contains over a hundred primary source documents edited by Hillsdale's Politics faculty." The website says the course begins on Feb 24, but their FAQ says their courses are archived so you can start them at any time, and you can go at your pace.
Exploring Government Curriculum Package by Ray Notgrass (CBD)
The Everything American Government Book by Nick Ragone is an easy to read explanation of political terms (such as caucus, filibuster, bureaucracy, regulatory commission, judicial review, pork barrel spending, gerrymandering) with a minimum of bias. The author glosses over the Constitution, giving his interpretation of the key points, so this is not a substitute for learning what's in the U.S. Constitution. If you decide to use this book, a schedule that divides it over either 36 weeks or 18 weeks. ($amzn) (K).
This 10-minute YouTube video presents a clear explanation of the difference between a republic based on law, and a democracy based on majority rule. (Back)
84. Ourselves, the 4th volume of Mason's 6 Volume Series: approximately 22 pages per term. This book will continue through all the remaining years of AO's high school curriculum. If your student is graduating before Year 12, you may wish to speed up in order to complete the book before graduation. This year: pages 131-210 of Book 1.
Also available in a modern English paraphrase that can be read online or purchased. (K) The paraphrase of Book I, Self-Knowledge, the first half of Volume 4, can be purchased as a separate paperback book.
Term 1: Book 1 pg 131-155
Term 2: Book 1 pg 156-178
Term 3: Book 1 pg 179-210 (Back)
Plutarch: Charlotte Mason recommended Thomas North's "inimitable translation." (Back)
87. Federalist and Anti-Federalist Papers: We suggest starting with these, which are considered some of the most important of the Federalist Papers, perhaps read alongside these Anti-Federalist Papers. These are suggested pairings, there are other ways to pair them:
Federalist No. 68 - The Mode of Electing the President/Electoral College
Anti-Federalist: 68 On the Mode of Electing The President, William Grayson; also here
90. 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.
Blogs as a media form have rapidly overtaken hard-copy publications. 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, 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. (Back)
92. Miss Mason directed students at this level to keep a commonplace book for passages that strike them particularly; to learn a hundred lines of poetry; and to be able to give some account of what they have read in each book, with sketches of the chief characters. (Back)
94. The History of English Literature for Girls and Boys: This year: Chapters 60-73, on Dryden, Defoe, Swift, Addison, Steele, Pope, Johnson, Goldsmith, Burns, and Cowper.
Term 1: ch 60 (Dryden) - ch 66 (Dick Steele)
Term 2: ch 67 (Pope) - ch 72 (Burns)
Term 3: ch 73 (Cowper)
AO schedules this book in conjunction with Invitation to the Classics; more material is covered in Marshall's History of English Literature from Year 7 to the middle of Year 10, and more is covered in Invitation to the Classics from the middle of Year 10, and through Year 11. If you prefer to use only Invitation to the Classics by Louise Cowan and Os Guinness ($amzn), Year 9 students would read pg 177-202 Jonathan Swift - Gulliver's Travels to Hamilton, Madison, andJay - The Federalist. A Table of Contents to help with planning is here. (Back)
96. Gulliver's Travels: Skip chapter 5 in Part II, on Gulliver's visit to Brobdinnag as it has some inappropriate or unpleasant incidents with the Giants in two different places as well as a gruesome execution. Also be aware that towards the end of the first chapter, the minuscule Gulliver is repulsed by the sight of a giantess nursing her child. (Back)
98. She Stoops to Conquer: there's a fun 5-part 2008 TV production of this starring Polly Hemingway, Ian Redford, and Miles Jupp. You might find it on YouTube. (Back)
99. The Count of Monte Cristo: A must-read but very long -- plan accordingly. Possibly carry through summer break. Count of Monte Cristo overlaps the time periods of Years 9 and 10, so reading it through the summer will have the benefit of sustaining the flavor of the appropriate time period until the beginning of Year 10. This book really, really needs to be finished to see its message of repentance, regret, sorrow, forgiveness, redemption. (Back)
100. Pride and Prejudice: Please do not assume this to be a "girl book" -- essential, thought-provoking reading for everybody, and widely enjoyed by many males in our acquaintance. (Back)
101. Faust: If you use the online etext at Project Gutenberg, choose the version without images, as some may be imappropriate. (Back)
102. The Roar on the Other Side: If your student has not already read this in Year 8, schedule it now. You can get a suggested idea of how to schedule it by looking at Year 8's 36-week schedule. (Back)
103. William Cowper is important as the voice of the Evangelical revival; Phillis Wheatley, the slave poet. "Phillis Wheatley was kidnapped and sold at a slave auction at age seven to a prosperous Boston family who educated her and treated her as a family member. Rescued from an otherwise hopeless situation by the sympathies of the Wheatley family, Phillis learned English with remarkable speed. . ." Check online sites such as Librivox for free audio readings of poems. (Back)
104. Oxford Book of English Verse: (Project Gutenberg's copy has a slightly different title β ($amzn) This is a poetry anthology Charlotte Mason used; excellent (a classic!), and online in a searchable format at Bartleby.com, though we suggest using an ad-blocker if you use that website.
We recommend the online e-text version edited by Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch. This is the one Miss Mason used, but there are even better reasons why this one works as well as it does: It is arranged chronologically. We will only be using the poems that fit chronologically with the corresponding AO year. We don't even recommend every one of those poems, so you have the luxury of skimming through it yourself, picking out those poems within the timeframe you need that you consider suitable for your readers, and printing out a few pages to keep in a folder for that year's work.
Since you won't be using the entire book, even if you decide you want it, you can print out a few pages at a time while you wait for one that meets your budget to come up.
* Begin with the poet Thomas D'Urfey and read through to Thomas Parnell. This is approximately 40 poems, or about 3 to 4 per week.
** Begin with Allan Ramsay and read through to the poet William Cowper. This is approximately 37 poems, or about 3 per week.
*** Begin with James Beattie and read through to the poet Henry Rowe This is approximately 3 poems per week.
[Of course, this option means there will be no poets outside the UK for Year 9, so you may wish to supplement with poets of your own country.] Check online sites such as Librivox for free audio readings of poems; this is a growing project and more poems are online every month. (Back)
106. Representative Poetry Online: Follow this time-line of English Poetry and do an anthology of sorts this term. This option is a little more complicated to adjust for your personal use, but it does include British, Canadian and American poets. Select "timeline." The poets for year 9 are the Augustans (scroll down to the year 1688 for the Augustans) and the Romantics. (Note: Some firewalls may block access to this link - just a technical glitch. In that case, go here then click on "e-Books" to access the search field. Type in "Representative Poetry". From that page, choose "timeline" and you'll be in the right place.) Check online sites such as Librivox for free audio readings of poems; this is a growing project and more poems are online every month. (Back)
108. Grammar: In terms of difficulty (easiest to most challenging), Easy Grammar Plus is probably the easiest, followed by Jensen's, and then Our Mother Tongue.
Jensen's Grammar goes slowly and step-by-step; their answer key is thorough (Our Mother Tongue doesn't always have answers). There are 75 lessons, so plan to take two years, or else do two lessons per week. Expect to pay about $30 for the Jensen's text and answer key. The DVD's are not necessary. You will probably find it cheaper at New Leaf Publishing, or other homeschool sellers such as Lamppost Homeschool.
If you are not confident about teaching grammar, you might prefer Easy Grammar Plus by Wanda Phillips. It's less intense than Jensen's, but still doesn't assume a lot of previous knowledge from the teacher. It's easier than Jensen with just a couple suggested alterations (for example, don't insist on memorizing the prepositions at the start, just write a list of them and explain an easy way to remember most of them: any way a worm can go in relation to two apples, or ways a bird can fly in relation to two mountains). A parent using this with one child could get by with only the Teacher's Edition (ChrBk) since the student workbook is included in it, but multiple students would need their own workbooks (ChrBk). You can also purchase from their website. Easy Grammar Grade 8 Student 180 Daily Teaching Lessons by Wanda Phillips is just as good; it also has the student workbook included in the teacher's edition.
Those who are more familiar with grammar may prefer Our Mother Tongue. It's more interesting as it uses classic literature for exercises and includes snippets of history about language. The Answer Key ($amzn) is sold separately. Our Mother Tongue has 49 chapters. One suggestion is to spread the book over two years, doing about 9 chapters per term. (Back)
110. Dr. Robert Einarrson's Grammar Handouts that Karen Glass so highly recommended have been replaced with a free downloadable textbook and workbook called Traditional English Sentence Style and teaches grammar through literature. This is an excellent book and should be used for students who have already completed Our Mother Tongue or Jensen's (or perhaps an acceptable replacement for those). It "promises not only to teach you about grammar, but also to show you the 'grammar secrets' of some of the great writers of English." Details are at the link. (Back)
112. The Elements of Style by Strunk and White: the print version is preferred over online etext. (Back)
114. AO's Language Arts Scope and Sequence for this level. Assign 3 to 5 written narrations each week, varying the assignments among subjects, and assigning some narrations to be written from readings done earlier in the week. For example: On Tuesdays, the student would read the scheduled Literature, news of the week, historical or allegorical subjects, etc. Then on Thursdays, the student would write a narration of one of those readings. Narration can be done in many ways: poetic, in answer to an essay-style question, straight narration, narration in letter-writing form, and many other creative ways. Write verses (perhaps using metre of poems set for this term) on current events and characters in the term's reading, upon heroic deeds, or on seasonal scenes. Write Narrative poems on striking events. (Back)
118. Paradigm Online Writing Assistant: 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. (Back)
120. Recitation: 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. (Back)
122. Dictation: The student studies two or three pages of dictation material per week, from which the teacher dictates several paragraphs or sections. Students should have the opportunity to study the passage carefully for spelling, punctuation and form before they are required to write it from dictation. At this level, you may wish for your student to alternate between taking dictation in the traditional way by hand, and with a word processor (an added benefit here is the spellchecker function, which can be a useful teaching tool and actually functions in a manner complementary to CM's spelling methods.)
Dictation selections may be drawn from sources such as the term's prose, poetry and Bible readings. You may also occasionally choose to assign selections from well-written journalism sources to exemplify a more technical and factual style of writing. However, choose carefully as newspapers and magazines are often poorly written. Examples of worthy sources might include World Magazine, and columnists such as Peggy Noonan, William F. Buckley, William Raspberry, Charles Krauthammer, Cal Thomas, George Will, and Thomas Sowell, most of whom are accessible from www.drudgereport.com (site will need screening by parent; daily entries are increasingly and disturbingly non-family-friendly). Another good resource for exemplary journalism is http://www.opinionjournal.com from the Wall Street Journal. Writers from these sources are prolific and skilled at the craft of writing. The New Yorker magazine is known for being expertly written and edited, but may require parental previewing.
You may also select among these essays for dictation work. These provide a good starting point for the essay form of writing. After two or three terms of studying Lamb's essays, students should be prepared to tackle writing essays on subjects they choose. One possible usage is to have students read an essay on Monday, outline it on Tuesday, rewrite it from their outline on Wednesday, and polish up that rough draft on Thursday.
Note: In PNEU's Form III (about grades 7-8), a paragraph was dictated; in Form IV (about grades 9-10), selections were occasionally written from memory. You might occasionally assign the student's mastered recitation work for the dictation lesson. (Back)
124. Apologia science materials ($earch). If a student missed out on the AmblesideOnline science selections and nature study rotation, General Science should be considered as a starting point with Apologia materials; otherwise start with Physical Science. If financial resources are a concern, any of their science courses may easily be stretched to two years.
Another possible option: BJU Press Science, which schedules Physical (basic) science in 9th grade, Biology in 10th grade, Chemistry in 11th grade, and Physics in 12th grade. The Advisory has not used this yet. Some have recommended BJU Biology, Apologia Chemistry and Apologia Physics. (Back)
125. Signs and Seasons - continues this year. Field work is an integral part of this book. Field activities are included in the back of the book, so the field guide is not necessary. For Year 9, chapters 6, 7, and the epilogue are scheduled.
If you prefer, A Walk through the Heavens: A Guide to Stars and Constellations by Milton Heifetz may be used. ($amzn) (K) (Back)
126. Microbe Hunters is a collection of science biographies. Chapters 1 and 2 (Leeuwenhook, Spallanzani) are scheduled in Year 9. The remaining chapters will be scheduled Years 10 and 11. (Back)
127. The Sea Around Us - chapters 1-8 are scheduled in Year 9; chapters 9-14 in Year 10. The Young Readers Edition adapted by Anne Terry White may be helpful if you can find it (it's out of print). ($earch) It's about a third shorter and has illustrations. It can follow the same schedule, but two of the chapters have different titles: ch 2, The Pattern of the Surface, is called The Surface of the Sea; ch 10, Wind, Sun, and the Spinning of the Earth, is called Rivers in the Sea. AO links to a special edition that's in print, but it's not the Young Readers edition and it has no illustrations. If you're curious why The Sea Around Us is scheduled, The Guardian has an article that describes The Sea Around Us as "the first, and still perhaps the best science bestseller. . . The reader is immersed in a new and wonderful world, one where everything really is connected to everything else. This sense of the sea and all its constituents as part of an interrelated system infuses the entire book." The special edition we've linked "features a new chapter written by Jeffrey Levinton, a leading expert in marine ecology, that brings the scientific side of The Sea Around Us completely up to date. Levinton incorporates the most recent thinking on continental drift, coral reefs, the spread of the ocean floor, the deterioration of the oceans, mass extinction of sea life, and many other topics." ($amzn) There is some evolutionary content in the book, especially the first chapter. If your student already read The Sea Around Us in Year 6, a good alternate (but not replacement) is Carson's Under the Sea Wind, which follows the lives of fish, birds, and animals that live in or near the sea. α ($amzn) (K) (Back)
128. The Land of Little Rain or The Natural History of Selborne: Spread either book over all three terms. If your student reads Gilbert White's book, it might be followed with the Parents' Review article from 1894, when Charlotte Mason wrote about her trip to Selborne. (Back)
130. Henri Fabre: choose any one of these; many of these are online at Project Gutenberg; Fabre texts with photos. Some browsers have trouble with this link. Try going to http://www.efabre.net/ and clicking the tab at the top that says "Electronic texts" and scroll down for the title of the book you want to view.
Select one of the following Fabre works from the above link:
Bramble-Bees and Others α
The Life of the Caterpillar α
The Life of the Fly, With Which Are Interspersed Some Chapters of Autobiography α
The Mason-Bees α
More Hunting Wasps α
The Wonders of Instinct: Chapters in the Psychology of Insects α
The Glow-Worm and Other Beetles α
Social Life in the Insect World α (Back)
132. Great Astronomers is spread across Years 7-10. This year: Term 1: Halley and Bradley. Term 2: William Herschel. Term 3: Laplace and Brinkley. (Back)
134. How to Read a Book: be sure to get the revised edition. Read only Part 1 the first year, Part 2 the second year, Part 3 the third 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. Note: The revised version was written by both Mortimer J. Adler And Charles 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. (Back)
136. Love is a Fallacy - An amusing short story which manages to entertain while instructing in some of the basic rhetorical fallacies. There's an alternate link here, and a pdf file here. We continue to update links, but this one has been a moving target. The story begins, "Cool was I and logical. Keen, calculating, perspicacious, acute and astute." If our link doesn't work, you might try googling with those exact words and the author's name (Shulman) to find it elsewhere on the internet. (Back)
138. Art options: Parents may wish to screen all options for nudity. (Back)
140. Jansen's Story of Painting: The Chapter titled "Towards Revolution," terms 1 and 2; and the first few pages of the section titled The Age of Machines. Stop at the paragraph ending "Here, then, you see the beginning of the split between artist and public that still persists today." If you already have Janson's Picture History of Painting, Janson's History of Art for Young People or Janson's History of Art, those books are broken down into their appropriate terms for Years 7-11 here. (Back)
142. Jansen's History of Art: Begin around The Rococo, and include portions of the chapter "Neoclassicism and Romanticism." If you already have Janson's Picture History of Painting, Janson's History of Art for Young People or Janson's History of Art, those books are broken down into their appropriate terms for Years 7-11 here. (Back)
144. The Arts by Hendrik Van Loon: this book is OOP (out of print), but worthy of an exception to our usual exclusion of OOP books from the curriculum. Begin with either chapter 40 (which overlaps year 8 and 9) or chapter 41 and read through to chapter 48. (Back)
146. Foreign Folk Songs: Charlotte Mason did 3 in French and 3 in German. (Back)
148. English Folk Songs: you may choose to continue the Folk Song rotation at AmblesideOnline; as well as the AmblesideOnline 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 9 time frame include:
The Skye Boat Song arrangement 2 (also on YouTube
The Ballad of the Green Mountaineers According to one book, it's actually a poem written in his youth by John Greenleaf Whittier, so it postdates the Revolutionary War. YouTube. An alternative would be The Yankee Privateer YouTube
Yankee Doodle historical - More info here in a popup link
The Water is Wide
Johnny Has Gone For a Soldier YouTube
Robert Burns' poetry and music fit this era; one of his many songs is A Man's a Man For a' That (You'll have to click to the alternate lyrics linked on that page to hear the midi.)
Other Scottish folks songs arranged chronologically, including a large collection of Burns' songs. (Back)
150. Charlotte Mason's students were learning three languages at this level. A good English/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. (Back)
152. Regular Exercise: One Advisory suggestion: For routine fitness, Living Arts' Pilates videos/DVD's offer a challenging but enjoyable 30 minute mat workout that will benefit the entire family. Instructor Ana Caban gives clear and concise verbal cues that even young children can follow with a little guidance (even a 3 yob! ;-) and the background music is neither loud nor distracting. Start with the Beginning Mat Workout video/DVD ($amzn), which explains the basics, before advancing to the Intermediate Mat Workout ($amzn). Another suggestion: Leslie Sansone's Walking DVD's: Start! Walking ($amzn), Walk Away the Pounds ($amzn).
Learn and play a game (kick ball, tennis, croquet, ping-pong, bocce ball, softball, racquetball, volleyball, soccer, etc.) or take up hiking, swimming, folk-dancing, hula dancing, clogging, Scottish dancing, Irish dancing -- purchase Celtic Feet DVD ($amzn) -- or pursue other physical activity of your choice.
Another option is Swedish Drill Revisited by AO mom Dawn Duran purchase
The Inner Game of Tennis, by Timothy Gallwey (PE) (Back)
154. Nutrition: some suggestions:
Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, by Weston A. Price (2003; 2009) ($amzn)
The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals, by Michael Pollan (2007) (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
Folks, This Ain't Normal: A Farmer's Advice for Happier Hens, Healthier People, and a Better World, by Joel Salatin (2012) (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, by Barbara Kingsolver (2007; revised 2017) ($amzn) (K) (duplicates Pollan's Omnivore's Dilemma)
The Locavore's Dilemma, by Pierre Desrochers (2012) ($amzn) (K)
Nourishing Traditions, by Sally Fallon (2001) ($amzn) (K)
Harvest For Hope, by Jane Goodall (2006) ($amzn) (K)
Naturally Healthy Woman, by Shonda Parker (2003) ($amzn)
Mommy Diagnostics, by Shonda Parker (2003) ($amzn) or others by Shonda Parker ($earch), a Christian homeschooling mother and certified herbalist.
Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It by Gary Taubes (2011; there are a few scientific images parents should preview) ($amzn) (K)
The Case Against Sugar by Gary Taubes (2017) ($amzn) (K)
In Defense of Food, by Michael Pollan (2009) (ChrBk) ($amzn) (K)
What the Bible Says About Healthy Living, by Rex Russell (2006) ($amzn) (K)
Taking Charge of Your Fertility, by Toni Weschler (2015) ($amzn) (K) (Back)
158. Work and Life Skills: Charlotte Mason had students do house or garden work, make Christmas presents, pursue useful crafts, sew, cook, and learn first aid. She also suggested that the student help darn and mend garments from the wash each week and sew for charity (serving at a soup kitchen would also work). We suggest that over the course of high school, your student might do the following (a rough guideline would be to choose about three of these per year for the next four years):
Learn to cook using a basic cookery book such as Joy of Cooking ($amzn), Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook ($amzn), The Cook's Illustrated How-to Cook Library (K), Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything ($amzn), one of Sue Gregg's cookbooks ($earch), or whatever you have on hand.
Learn CPR and first aid (This can also be counted for Health.)
Learn to balance a checking account
Learn to read a map
Read a book about Small Engine Repair
Take a course in Driver's Ed
Work with an Election Campaign
Learn to garden and/or yard care
Change a flat tire
Use jumper cables
Pump gas, change the oil and plugs on a car
Make some simple furniture
Lay a tile floor
Paint a room
Some basic home repair and maintenance
The Walls Around Us, by David Owen ($amzn) is a well-written book about how our houses are built, but it needs some previewing or parental editing.
Miss Mason frequently recommended Scouting tests (Parents' Review, May 1920) and said that all girls should take the First Aid and Housecraft Tests. We suggest that all students learn CPR and First Aid. Scouting or 4-H are other options to consider.
DOMESTIC SCIENCE OPTIONS:
Back to Basics: A Complete Guide to Traditional Skills by Abigail Gehring (teaches step by step how to "dye your own wool with plant pigments, graft trees, raise chickens, craft a hutch table with hand tools, and make treats such as blueberry peach jam and cheddar cheese . . .") ($amzn) (K)
Home Comforts: The Art and Science of Keeping House, by Cheryl Mendelson (excellent resource for all homes) ($amzn) (K)
The Hidden Art of Homemaking, by Edith Schaeffer ($amzn) ∫
Do I Dust or Vacuum First?, by Don Aslett ($amzn)
books by Emilie Barnes ($earch)
Get More Done in Less Time, by Donna Otto ($amzn)
Speed Cleaning, by Jeff Campbell ($amzn)
Who Says it's a Woman's Job to Clean?, by Don Aslett ($amzn)
(These last two may be particularly useful with boys.)
Books by Larry Burkett ($earch; K) or Dave Ramsey ($earch)
The Tightwad Gazette books by Amy Dacyczyn ($earch) (Back)
Last updated March 31, 2023 (to update Bible)