Charlotte Mason Homeschool: Our Plans for Third Grade (Take 2)

Charlotte Mason Third Grade Homeschool Plans -

It is much to be wished that thoughtful mothers would more often keep account of the methods they employ with their children, with some definite note of the success of this or that plan.


This week I’m starting my second round of AmblesideOnline Year 3, and this also will be the last of our Form I years. Sigh. There are so many goodbyes in motherhood. Still, as I mentioned in the planning post for my son last week, I’m thankful for all the days I’ve been able to spend with both of them as we homeschool. I am glad this is the path we took.

As noted below, we’ll be using the curriculum almost entirely as written with just a few changes here and there. C is still not doing any readings on her own other than her phonics time, which I wrote more about below, but I am thankful that she has taken to reading like a fish to water and devours every book she can get her hands on. This bodes well for Form II, as she’ll begin doing some of her readings on her own then.

I’m also adding a few new things and modifying other things we’ve done in the past, so this will be somewhat of an experimental year, at least in the beginning. I’m excited about the changes, though, and I think C will especially like them.

Morning Time

In the Fall of the Year
In the Spring of the Year
Book of Virtues
Morning Time Resources

We’ll continue Morning Time with the schedule we used at the end of last year, but I will probably make changes later. I have added quite a few more things to our rotation overall this year that are for both kids and could conceivably be done during Morning Time, but when I’ve added too much to it in the past, it has given our days a rocky start. Here is the schedule we will begin with this year, and any changes I make will be noted in my year-end recap post.

  • Prayer
  • Doxology
  • Music
    • Monday/Wednesday: hymn
    • Tuesday/Thursday: folksong
  • Reading/Riches
    • Monday: a single reading from The Book of Virtues (we’re still making our way through the section on courage)
    • Tuesday: Picture Study (see below for more details)
    • Wednesday: five minutes from one of the seasonal books listed above
    • Thursday: Composer Study (see below for more details)
  • Lord’s Prayer
  • Benediction


Bible Book List Here and Here
The Student Bible Atlas
Bible Resources

We’ll be reading through Exodus and Luke for our Bible lessons this year, and I plan to use the J. Paterson Smyth commentaries again. I think at this point when I read them with my son, I was underlining the parts I wanted to read to him (as opposed to just underlining things that I liked), so I shouldn’t have to pre-read these if I need to save some time.

No changes.

History & Biography

History Book List Here
Biography Book List Here
History Resources

Our timeframe for history this year is the late 1400s to the 1600s and includes the reign of Queen Elizabeth I as well as the early colonization of North America. I remember that B seemed more engaged with the readings from this year, so I’m looking forward to reading through them again with C.

Changes: We will follow the AO schedule as written with The Bard of Avon as our Term 2 biography (with Good Queen Bess as a free read). From Trial and Triumph, we’ll skip Ann Askew.


Literature Book List Here

We got through the first part of Pilgrim’s Progress last year, so we’ll continue with Christiana’s journey this year which I remember being a little more engaging for my son, so I hope the same is true for C. I also remember Children of the New Forest being challenging to get through because some of the readings are very long, so I’m a little wary of how that will go now that our schedule is much fuller (C was only in kindergarten when I did Year 3 with her brother). She is looking forward to hearing The Princess and the Goblin again, so that’ll be a fun read for us.

Changes: If Children of the New Forest does drag out, I may drop The Jungle Book in Term 3. From American Tall Tales, we’ll be skipping Mike Fink.


Poetry Selections Here

Sara Teasdale is a favorite poet for us, and we’ve memorized a few of her poems over the years, so we’re especially looking forward to our poetry for Term 2.

Language Arts


Getty-Dubay Handwriting Series
Copywork Resources

C started the Getty-Dubay books last year, and I saw good improvement in her handwriting, so we’ll continue them this year with her beginning the cursive books.


Reading-Literature: Third Reader

She is an avid and voracious reader, so I contemplated just dropping this part of our lessons. I decided, though, that it’s probably good to still have her read at least a little out loud to me so I can help her with any pronunciation that she finds challenging. Once we’re through the Third Reader, I’ll pick books from her free reads for her to read during this time.


Ruminating on Recitation Article (read this first!)
Recitation Guidelines and Student Log (updated in 2021)
Recitation Resources

We’ll continue with one repetition daily, rotating through Old Testament on Mondays, New Testament on Tuesdays, Psalms on Wednesdays, and poetry on Thursdays. I’ll pick the Bible selections from the term’s Bible lessons and allow the kids to pick their own poetry or pick it from our poetry readings if they don’t want to choose.

Foreign Language

Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish

Our Spanish lessons are an area where I’m still kind of uncertain. C finished all of the Salsa videos last year, and the book we were using for my son was not working very well for us, so I wanted to find something that both kids could do together.

I have read very positive reviews about Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish on the AO forums, and Year 1 Unit 1 was recently offered as a free download, so we’re going to try doing this all together. If it goes well, I’ll buy the rest of Year 1, and we’ll continue with that. If it doesn’t work for us, I might try Speaking Spanish with Miss. Mason and François again but at a slower pace.


Geography Book List Here and Here
Marco Polo Map
Geography Resources

I printed out a map for Marco Polo’s travels when I read that book with my son, but it wasn’t incredibly helpful as it was missing most of the stopping points. The AO forums came to the rescue this time around, and I found the above map in the Year 1-3 forums. I’ll print that out so we can follow along with his journey. We’ll also read the additional concepts from Charlotte Mason’s Elementary Geography and Long’s Home Geography.

No changes.


Scouting for Wild Ones

This can go under either the Geography or Natural History/Science headings (as referenced in PNEU Programme 94), but I thought it might be suitable under its own heading. I’m very excited about this book as I think it’ll be a good option for us to do on the Fridays that we don’t meet with our nature group. I’m only planning to do one lesson every other week, so we’ll go through the book very slowly, but I think that’ll be a good pace for us anyway. I also hope to find patches on Etsy once we get through each unit (and they pass the tests) so we can have nice mementos of what we learned from this book!

Nature Study & Science

Nature Study & Science Book List Here (Nature Study schedule here)
Term 1: Nature Study Hacking Birds
Term 2: Nature Study Hacking Weather
Term 3: Wildflowers/flowerless plants from the Handbook of Nature Study
Nature Study Collective
Various books from the Sabbath Mood Homeschool living science books lists

My friend Joy recently released a new Nature Study Hacking guide for birds, which AO has scheduled for Term 1 this year for nature study, so we’ll be using that. In Term 2, my son will be learning about weather from the Sabbath Mood Homeschool living science guide, so I’m using the corresponding Nature Study Hacking guide for C that term as well. And in Term 3, we’ll do special studies on flowers and flowerless plants from the Handbook of Nature Study (with ideas from the Nature Study Collective book as well).

Changes: We’re following the AO nature study schedule in Terms 1 and 3, but we’re doing weather instead of mammals (which we did last year) in Term 2. We’ll be reading all of the books on the AO schedule for science, and we’ll do the experiments in One Drop of Water, but we’re skipping Science Lab in a Supermarket.

Charlotte Mason Third Grade Homeschool Plans -


RighStart Level C
RightStart Level D
Math Resources

We worked on RightStart Level C through the summer but didn’t finish, so we’ll continue with that into the first part of this year and then switch to Level D when we’re done.


Picture Study

Term 1: Leonardo da Vinci
Term 2: Art of the Yuan Dynasty
Term 3: John William Waterhouse
Picture Study Resources

C will be reading a biography on Leonardo da Vinci as well as Marco Polo (who visited Kublai Khan’s Yuan court in the 14th century), so I thought it would be fitting if we learned about these people and areas for picture study. John William Waterhouse included Greek and Roman mythology in many of his paintings which I thought would go well with my older son’s readings, so we’ll learn about him in Term 3. Of course, our picture study doesn’t have to match any other topics we’re studying, but I chose to do that this year.

Changes: We are not following the AO Artist study rotation as I wanted to pick my own artists.

Art Creation

Creating a Masterpiece
Art Creation Resources

I have been debating using Creating a Masterpiece for a while. Both kids finished the drawing book last year, and while I did like brushdrawing for my son in the past, I craved something that had more guidance for us. We had used Creating a Masterpiece courses in our co-op in the past with great results, so I began looking into it more this summer. Unfortunately, it’s not a cheap course, and I wasn’t sure it was something we could swing. Then, literally about five minutes after I had been looking at it and pricing it out again one day, one of the other members of our umbrella school asked if anyone was interested in making a group purchase for Creating a Masterpiece that significantly reduced the price. I felt like it was meant to be, so we’re signed up, and we’ll be starting with the northern lights in Term 1! This will most likely be a Friday activity, so we have a reasonable amount of time to spend on it.


Composer Study

Term 1: Richard Wagner
Term 2: Ralph Vaughn Williams
Term 3: Edvard Grieg
Composer Study Resources

I plan to continue using the Tillberry Table composer study guides this year as they worked so well for us last year. She doesn’t offer all of the composers on the AO rotation, so I made changes as outlined below. I’m looking forward to learning more about these composers and their music.

Changes: Bruckner and Mahler are on the AO rotation for Term 1, but Tillberry Table doesn’t offer a guide for either of them, so I’m substituting Richard Wagner. She does offer one for William, so he will be our Term 2 composer, and she announced that she will be releasing a Grieg guide in September, so he will be our Term 3 composer.


Term 1: He Leadeth Me & Dear Lord and Father of Mankind
Term 2: How Sweet the Name of Jesus Sounds & What a Friend We Have in Jesus
Term 3: I’m Not Ashamed to Own My Lord & Rock of Ages

Music Resources

Last year I chose our hymns based on the liturgical year, which was a practice we had in our homeschool co-op that I enjoyed. This year, however, I decided to make it easier on myself and chose songs from the AO schedule. Instead of doing one every month, though, we’ll just be doing two per term as I feel that gives us more opportunity to get to know them. I’m also very thankful for the Hymns and Folksongs channel on YouTube as we’ll be using that and Andrew Remillard as our accompaniment.


Term 1: Did You Go to the Barney & Waltzing Matilda
Term 2: The Mermaid & Poor Wayfaring Stranger
Term 3: Red River Valley & Crawdad Song

Music Resources

I also chose not to pick our folksongs this year, again, just to make things easier, so I’m using the AO selections but only two per term instead of one every month. We’ll also use the Hymns and Folksongs YouTube channel for this.

Physical Education

Swedish Drill Revisited II
Swedish Drill Revisited III

We had a little bit of the last routine in Swedish Drill Revisited II left last year, so we’ll finish that and then start on Swedish Drill Revisited III this year.

I had also planned to enroll our entire family in archery lessons over the summer, but the local archery business that I was going to use went out of business, and our other options are few and far between in this area. There is another business that offers lessons about 45 minutes south of us that looks very good, so that may also be something we do together this year.


Survivor Kid
Sewing School
Handicrafts Resources

Last year was a complete bust for our handicrafts (though we did get a garden planted in Term 3!), so I was thinking of taking a different approach this year. Rather than scheduling a different handicraft each term, as well as different handicrafts for each kid, I decided we would choose just one or two skills for all of us to do together over the course of the whole year.

I landed on these two books because I think they teach a good range of skills, fit in well with some of our other subjects (particularly scouting), and teach skills that the kids have expressed a desire to learn. We’ll alternate these each week and read and narrate the lessons on Fridays. Then the kids can do any projects or activities that go along with the lessons in the afternoons.

Of course, if either kid expresses an interest in learning a handicraft outside of these things, we are quick to encourage them however we can in that regard. But these are the two I have planned to intentionally do during our school year.

Free Reads

Free Reads Book List Here

As I mentioned above, C is a voracious reader, so she has actually already read quite a few of the free reads books. I’ll pick a few more for her to get through this year and post what she ends up reading in my year-end recap.

Of course, I’m always open to suggestions and ideas, so if you have done Year 3 or have planned it this year, feel free to share!

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