HS 175: Charlotte Mason Homeschooling Explained with Brandy Vencel


The final interview in the Ultimate Guide to Homeschool Methods is with a super-special friend of mine, Brandy Vencel. I am not (currently) a Charlotte Mason homeschooler, but sitting at the feet of Brandy keeps inching me more and more in that direction I think. I just love chatting with her about Charlotte Mason.

Brandy, who has used Ambleside Online since her oldest was in first grade, is on the Ambleside Online Auxiliary Board. She also provides excellent Charlotte Mason support on her blog Afterthoughts.

HSP 33 Lesli Richards: Things I Wish I Had Known

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The Ultimate Guide to Homeschool Methods Printable ResourceIs Charlotte Mason right for you? As a gift to you, I am offering this free downloadable resource sheet on homeschooling methods. Find out which method might appeal to you, and the number one resource I recommend for beginning to explore each method.

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Audio Notes

The minute and second mark to find the following topics.

  • [2:34] What influenced Brandy’s decision to use the Charlotte Mason method of education.
  • [3:52] Why Brandy thinks it’s okay to start with Charlotte Mason practices before you completely understand Charlotte Mason principles.
  • [7:04] Why Charlotte Mason principles are great for meeting the child where he or she is.
  • [8:54] Charlotte Mason’s 20 principles and why they are the heart of a Charlotte Mason education.
  • [14:30] Brandy’s typical day – goats and all.
  • [16:10] All about Brandy’s Morning Time (She calls it Circle Time.)
  • [23:49] Can you still use some favorite mainstream curriculum with a Charlotte Mason education?
  • [28:38] Brandy’s “one thing” that she feels is the heart of a Charlotte Mason education.
  • [29:21] Why Brandy feels the Charlotte Mason method is the best way to educate a child.

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  • Sarah M says:

    Hi Pam, it seems this podcast isn’t working for me. Speakers and volume are working great but I can’t hear anything. Has anyone else had this problem?

    • Pam Barnhill says:

      I just tried it Sarah and it worked just fine. Is it your internet connection being spotty maybe?

    • Pam Barnhill says:

      There is also a mute button on the player — make sure that is not clicked.

      • Sarah M says:

        Yeah, I checked all of that as well, and tried to refresh the page multiple times…even tried to open it in a new window and it said fatal error? I’m not sure, but it is working now for me. Must have been an operator error (mine). Ha!

  • Stephanie says:

    Thank you for this podcast! I am just looking into Charlotte Mason and this was a very beneficial place to further my understanding. Also, thank you for the list of helpful resources!

  • Celeste says:

    Wonderful talk, Pam and Brandy! I really enjoyed it.

  • Cassie says:

    I really enjoyed the podcast!

  • Loved this podcast! Brandy, I really appreciated how you pointed out the importance of the principles and that there’s flexibility in the application of those principles. I think, Pam, that you are not the only one who has had the sense that if you don’t do it exactly how CM did or what CM did, then you’re not giving a CM education. Brandy, you helped show that it’s the principles that are the foundation, the cornerstone; and if there’s a practice/method that CM may not have mentioned but totally helps you implement a CM principle, then you are still giving a CM education. I think this is huge and so very important! As I was sifting through educational philosophies and methods, something that I kept thinking was while Charlotte Mason had the foundational principles, the very first principle was that children are born persons and don’t you think that that principle sort of guided everything, including the application of the principles?

    • Pam Barnhill says:

      I think it is certainly true that the first principle guided all the others. It all comes back to that one thing doesn’t it?

  • LeAnn Taylor says:

    I’m just now finding these interviews, and this one is my favorite so far… Maybe because I already lean heavily towards Charlotte Mason method! But I so appreciate your questions, Pam, and your insight, Brandy. As one commenter already said, it is comforting to know that things to have to be exact, and you can still have a CM flavor in your home 🙂 I will be listening to the rest of the interviews, and I will absolutely remember these articles and interviews for my friends that ask me questions about homeschooling in the future! Thanks so much for taking the time to do all this.

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