We would like to emphasize that the goal, the purpose, the reason for including hymns in the AO schedule (besides the fact that Mason included them) is to sing hymns -- to be comfortable singing the hymns, to enjoy singing the hymns, to be able to sing the hymns anywhere, anytime.

Hymns are participatory, not spectator oriented. They are portable. Paul and Silas sang hymns in chains in prison at midnight. Hymns can be sung to infants, on long car trips, beside a hospital bed, with other Christians when visiting other places, near or remote. In places where churches must be underground, worshippers silently mouth hymns together so that their secret worship services are not discovered. They know them by heart. For us, it is a privilege and blessing to be able to make a joyful noise, and we hope you are all sharing that blessing with your children.

Please, please be sure you are singing with your family, not just listening. Singing is the number one priority, and every other thing you could do with the hymns (studies of the hymn backgrounds, biographies of the lyric writers, the composers, etc,) is just not as important. It is not that other things are wrong, but they should not become a distraction or a burden.

AmblesideOnline Hymn Rotation Schedule

This is an 11-year rotation of suggested hymns. Charlotte Mason's students learned three folk songs and three hymns each term.

AO's Terms:
* Term 1: Sep-Nov
** Term 2: Jan-Mar
*** Term 3: Apr-Jun

We encourage AmblesideOnline members to follow the schedule as a group for Artists, Composers, Plutarch, Shakespeare, Folk Songs, Hymns, and Nature Study. Staying on schedule together for these subjects enriches our studies as we share resources and experiences.

Tips for Using the Hymns Rotation:

Click song title for lyrics. Click asterisks for video of song.

To encourage hymn-singing as a participatory activity rather than as entertainment, we've selected YouTube links that are designed to teach you how the hymn without being so flashy or captivating that you or your students will be tempted to listen rather than sing.

Over your Christmas break, you may wish to print out AO's collection of 40 Classic Christmas carols, or learn about Christmas carols around the world.

Hannah Fridenmaker at FolksAndHymns has been recording folk songs and hymns -- they are beautiful, simple, and joyful. You can view them for free on her YouTube channel, and purchase downloadable mp3s from her Patreon. This dot ∘ in place of an asterisk will take you to a YouTube link to her channel. Hannah has received specific and seldom-granted permission from the AmblesideOnline Advisory to use our name, and we appreciate her consistent dedication to the vision of AO per our license statement.

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 * * *

2024-2025 School Year

August: Sun of My Soul, Thou Saviour Dear * * *
September: Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken *
October: There Is a Happy Land * *
November: Come, Ye Thankful People, Come *
December: How Great Thou Art * * * *
January: Trust and Obey * *
February: Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah * *
March: Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing * *
April: Beneath the Cross of Jesus * *
May: Rejoice, the Lord is King * *
June: Fairest Lord Jesus/Beautiful Saviour * * *
July: I Love To Tell the Story * * *

2025-2026 School Year

August: Awake My Soul and With the Sun * *
September: Abide With Me *
October: Lift High the Cross * *
November: O Worship the King * *
December: I Am Thine, O Lord (Draw Me Nearer) * *
January: Come Down, O Love Divine * *
February: Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence * *
March: Jesus Paid it All * *
April: Man of Sorrows, What a Name (Hallelujah What a Savior) * *
May: All Praise to Thee, My God, This Night (Tallis's Canon) * *
June: Let Us With a Gladsome Mind * *
July: Just As I Am, Without One Plea * *

2026-2027 School Year (Wendi C's Playlist)

August: How Firm a Foundation * *
September: I Bind Unto Myself Today (St. Patrick's Breastplate) * *
October: O Thou In Whose Presence *
November: When Morning Gilds the Skies * *
December: My Faith Has Found a Resting Place * * *
January: He Who Would Valiant Be * * *
February: A Charge to Keep I Have * *
March: Praise, My Soul, The King of Heaven *
April: Jesus, The Very Thought of Thee *
May: Come Ye Sinners, Poor and Needy * * * *
June: Purer In Heart, O God *
July: Take My Life and Let It Be * *

2027-2028 School Year

August: The King of Love My Shepherd Is * *

September: Lord, I Believe Thy Power I Own * *
October: Jesus, Lover of My Soul *
November: Be Still My Soul * * * * *
December: Holy Ghost, With Light Divine *
January: Be Thou My Vision * * * * *
February: The Solid Rock (My Hope is Built on Nothing Less) * *
March: Praise to the Lord, the Almighty * *
April: Spirit of God, Descend Upon My Heart * *
May: An Evening Prayer (If I have wounded any soul today) *
June: O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing * *
July: Grace, 'Tis a Charming Sound * *

2028-2029 School Year YouTube Playlist of this year's hymns: Michelle's *   Wendi's *

August: Nothing But The Blood * *
September: Marching To Zion * *
October: My Jesus I Love Thee *
November: O Love That Will Not Let Me Go * *
December: Star in the East (Brightest and Best) * *
January: Thus Far The Lord Has Led Me On
February: Blest Be the Tie That Binds * *
March: When I Survey the Wondrous Cross * *
April: On Jordan's Stormy Banks I Stand * *
May: Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee * *
June: It Is Well With My Soul * * *
July: Great is Thy Faithfulness * *

2029-2030 School Year Wendi's YouTube Playlist

August: My Faith Looks Up To Thee *
September: Children of the Heavenly Father * *
October: Like A River Glorious *
November: All Hail the Power *
December: Amazing Grace * *
January: All My Hope on God is Founded *
February: Crown Him with Many Crowns * * *
March: What Wondrous Love *
April: Saviour Like Shepherd Lead Us *
May: A Child of the King *
June: I Need Thee Every Hour * *
July: In the Sweet By and By * * *

2030-2031 School Year

August: Love Divine All Loves Excelling *
September: All the Way My Savior Leads Me * * * *
October: Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring *
November: Jesus Shall Reign *
December: Day by Day (and with each passing moment) *
January: Come, Ye Disconsolate *
February: When We All Get to Heaven *
March: A Mighty Fortress is our God * *
April: O Thou Who Camest From Above * * starts 1:50  
May: Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise * *
June: And Can It Be That I Should Gain (Amazing Love, How Can It Be) * *
July: Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus * *

2031-2032 School Year

August: He is Able to Deliver Thee *
September: Blessed Assurance * *
October: Break Thou The Bread of Life * *
November: I Sing the Mighty Power of God * *
December: Jesus, What a Friend For Sinners * *
January: Revive Us Again *
February: I Know Whom I Have Believed * *
March: Alas, And Did My Savior Bleed? (At the Cross) * *
April: I Will Sing Of My Redeemer * * *
May: There Is A Fountain * *
June: God of Our Fathers *
July: Come Thou Almighty King *

2032-2033 School Year

August: Pass Me Not, O Gentle Savior * * *
September: I Am Resolved * *
October: To God Be The Glory * *
November: The Love of God * *
December: Tell Me The Story Of Jesus * * * *
January: O God, Our Help In Ages Past *
February: Leaning on the Everlasting Arms * *
March: At Calvary * * *
April: Am I A Soldier Of The Cross? *
May: Now Thank We All Our God * *
June: 'Tis So Sweet To Trust in Jesus * *
July: Nearer, My God, To Thee * * * * *

2033-2034 School Year

August: More Love To Thee, O Christ *
September: He Leadeth Me * * * *
October: Dear Lord and Father of Mankind *
November: He Hideth My Soul * * * *
December: How Sweet The Name of Jesus Sounds * * *
January: What A Friend We Have In Jesus * *
February: I'll Praise My Maker While I've Breath * *
March: Redeemed, How I Love To Proclaim It *
April: I'm Not Ashamed to Own My Lord *
May: Sweet Hour of Prayer * * *
June: Rock of Ages * *
July: I Stand Amazed in the Presence *

Hymn Resources

We encourage AO members to get a hymnal of their own. There are so many, it would be hard to suggest one - but even from used book sources, etc. - it makes so much more sense to sing while looking at the notes - and they would be wonderful for copywork.

AO mom Megan Hoyt wrote A Touch of the Infinite: Studies in Music Appreciation with Charlotte Mason combining her own personal music background, CM's methodology from the Home Education volumes, and books CM used for music teaching in her own schools. Megan Hoyt explains musical terms, ear training and listening skills, reading musical notation, distinguishing musical instruments, hymns and folk songs are all parts of CM music study. ($) Listen to her talk about her book with Cindy Rollins on the Mason Jar podcast here. (If you benefit from this book, Megan would love for you to leave a positive review at amazon.com!)

Recommended websites for hymn midis and lyrics

Hymntime - search by first line from the letters on the left.
Christian Classics Ethereal Hymnary
Lassen Technologies MIDI hymns
Let God Be True offers Free Acapella MP3 Hymns
Reformed University Fellowship
Center for Church Music has vocals with MP3's, RealPlayer, sheet music, devotionals, and histories of hymns.
Psalms in Metre for Christian Worship offers different versions of the Psalms and different tunes (they show you the tunes that line up with the particular psalm paraphrase you want to sing, and you pick the tune) In the old days some hymnals simply had the words to the songs, and the leader decided on a tune based on the code in the title (such as S.M. for Short Meter). Old tunes such as Boylston, Aberdeen, Ballerma, etc., which are very familiar, are still written into hymnals today. You can take any one of these three tunes and apply it to any hymn lyrics with "S.M." in the title--and you get three different settings for the same words. Songleaders did that all the time, especially when songbooks were scarce. I have even heard stories of churches where they only knew five or six tunes and sang those tunes over and over for different songs. We have a songbook at our house called "The Good Old Songs" in which the first hymn in a group will have music/notes, and then three or four other songs follow with just lyrics that can be sung to that same tune. Learning the different terms for the tunes and seeing which songs fit with which tunes would be a nice study for an older child with an interest in music. (Thanks to Katie Barr and Lorraine Nessman for this link!)

The Hymntime website regularly plays musical chairs with their links, so these links are constantly changing. If they do not work, go to their home page, click on CyberHymnal, and search their alphabetical Titles listing.

Hymns make wonderful copywork selections. You may also wish to ask your students to recite the words to the hymns (as they do their poetry recitations) at the end of the month in which they are learned -- an excellent mental exercise, and one which Charlotte Mason suggested herself!

Thanksgiving Hymns

Fetch your Old School Hymnals! If you use a different hymnal that lacks the hymns below, these verses are still worth reading just for the poetry.

O God, Beneath Thy Guiding Hand (OSH #418)

O God, beneath Thy guiding hand
Our exiled fathers crossed the sea;
And when they trod the wintry strand,
With prayer and psalm they worshiped Thee.

Thou heard'st, well pleased, the song, the prayer:
Thy blessing came and still it's power
Shall onward, thro' all ages, bear
The memory of that holy hour.

Laws, freedom, truth, and faith in God
Came with those exiles o'er the waves;
And where their pilgrim feet have trod,
The God they trusted guards their graves.

And here my name, O God of love,
Their children's children shall adore,
Till these eternal hills remove,
And spring adorns the earth no more.

Come, Ye Thankful People, OSH #156

Come, ye thankful people, come
Raise the song of harvest-home:
All is safely gathered in,
Ere the winter storms begin;
God, our Maker, doth provide
For our wants to be supplied:
Come to God's own temple, come,
Raise the song of harvest-home.

All the world is God's own field,
Fruit unto His praise to yield;
Wheat and tares together sown,
Unto joy or sorrow grown;
First the blade and then the ear,
Then the full corn shall appear:
Lord of harvest, grant that we
Wholesome grain and pure may be.

For the Lord our God shall come,
And shall take His harvest home,
From His field shall in that day
All offenses purge away;
Give His angels charge at last
In the fire the tares to cast;
But the fruitful ears to store
In His garner evermore.

Even so, Lord quickly come
To Thy final harvest-home;
Gather Thou Thy people in,
Free from sorrow, free from sin;
There, forever purified,
In Thy presence to abide:
Come, with all Thine angels, come,
Raise the glorious harvest-home!

More Thanksgiving Hymns

For The Beauty of the Earth
We Gather Together
Guide Me O Thou Great Jehovah
Now Thank We All Our God
Faith of Our Fathers
Count Your Blessings
O God, Beneath Thy Guiding Hand
Come, Ye Thankful People, Come
Praise To The Lord, The Almighty - Look for Fernando Ortega's recording of this one!

Hymnsite.com/Cyber Hymnal lists these as great Thanksgiving Hymns:
Maker in Whom We Live
For the Beauty of the Earth
Now Thank We All Our God
Sing Praise to God Who Reigns Above
We Gather Together
Praise to the Lord, the Almighty
This Is My Father's World
Rejoice, Ye Pure in Heart
Ye Servants of God
When Morning Gilds the Skies
O Food to Pilgrims Given
Lord, Dismiss Us with Thy Blessing
As the Sun Doth Daily Rise
Come, Ye Thankful People, Come
Rejoice, the Lord Is King
Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken

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