Wednesday 19 April 2017

Charlotte Mason Book of Centuries Time Time Lines Resources

Welcome to day three of this weeks blog hop.  In my first two posts I shared some of my all time favourite resources on begining with Charlotte Mason in your Homeschool.  There were: Understanding a Charlotte Mason Education and Charlotte Mason Method Book Recommendations. One of the central themes spoken about outside of living books in this educational method is more often than not Notebooking, Book of Centuries and Time Lines.

There are a number of things to consider when thinking about books of time, notebooking in a Charlotte Mason education. Firstly you need to decide how much of a purist you are.  The only true way of knowing for yourself how to notebook or use a book of centuries or century chart is to read the words of Charlotte Mason and then decide for yourself how you feel it needs to be and how you can be implement it in your homeschool.

Charlotte Mason addresses history in Volume 6 Chapter 10 The Curriculum, Section II The Knowledge of Man - History page 170.

The heart of the matter is showing our students the flow of time in history in 100 year increments to a page.

Century Chart

Century Chart*

In order to give definiteness to what may soon become a pretty wide knowledge of history - mount a sheet of cartridge-paper and divide it into twenty columns, letting the first century of the Christian era come in the middle, and let each remaining column represent a century BC or AD, as the case may be. Then let the child himself write, or print, as he is able, the names of the people he comes upon in due order, in their proper century.We need not trouble ourselves at present with more exact dates, but this simple table of the centuries will suggest a graphic panorama to the child's mind, and he will see events in their time-order.  Charlotte Mason, Home Education (1886) p292
I first heard about a Century Chart from Jeanne at A Peaceful Day at a local homeschool Charlotte Mason support group. It was from her blog post on the subject and Charlotte Mason day that I first became interested in making a Century Chart.

The purpose behind a century chart is to represent how long 100 years is on one page.  We use 100 years for a few reasons such as this is generally the limit of a man's life span and we generally refer to time in centuries of history.

The idea is basically a square containing 100 squares.  Square one is the year zero (or 1900 or 1800 etc) which ever century you have chosen to study and add to a century chart.  The last square is the year 99 (1999 or 1899). You can view a sample of this at Ambleside Online here. Explain that each square represents one year of time.

For very young students to grow in understanding of the progress of time it would be good to do the current century and add in the year they were born and members of the family and special family events such as other births, deaths, marriages etc.  This will help the child understand that this is the progress of time.

Once the child has grasped this concept it is time to create a century chart which covers the time period you are studying in history.  The use of symbols is recommended to help fill in the chart.  You can view a sample of this at Ambleside Online here. You can view a beautiful sample of a century chart for the year 1500 to 1599 on Ambleside Online here.

A local homeschool friend has used a 12" scrap booking journal and made a whole time line of century charts. Each square is one inch by one inch.  As they learn history they fill in the square for that year with the most important event.

This is not the most important event to you it is the most important / noteworthy event for the student.

*To understand the dynamics, reasons and a detailed step by step how to teach and use century charts please read The Parents Review (a monthly magazine of Home-Training and Culture edited by Charlotte Mason) Published in the year 1891 in Volume 2, page 81-90 - The Teaching of Chronology an article by Dorothea Beale, Principal of the Cheltenham Ladies' College. 

About Century Charts On the WWW

the teacher 'shall by the help of histories inform himself of the worthiest minds that were in the best ages.' To us in particular who are living in one of the great epochs of history it is necessary to know something of what has gone before in order to think justly of what is occurring to-day. - Charlotte Mason Vol6 page 170

Original Book of Centuries**

 A Book of Centuries is a Charlotte Mason version of a time line.  The purpose of a Book of Centuries is so a person can see a visual of a full century at one glance. On a double page spread the one side has a hundred years and the opposite side is blank. A short title or description is added in the appropriate rectangle, but the main idea is to have the owner of the book make up their own symbols to represent things that they find interesting. The opposite page is for sketches and little notes to elaborate on what the owner of the book finds interesting.

In it's original form it was a Museum Note Book.  The first published Book of Centuries (1915) contained 48 blank leaves (96 pages).  The last 10 pages were kept aside for maps.

In the article you will read a step by step guide in how a Book of Centuries was put together and used.

**You can read more about the original version in The Parents Review (a monthly magazine of Home-Training and Culture edited by Charlotte Mason) Published in the year 1923 in Volume 34, page 720 - 724 - The Book of Centuries an article by G.M. Bernau.
***Shared with permission

Recreation Sample of an ORIGINAL book of Centuries by Janis Scott ***

More about Book of Centuries on WWW

Books to read

"[W]e have learned to feel that the chief work of the educator is not to give facts, but to order them so that they can fit into the "forms of thought." Dorothea Beale
If you like podcasts you can find one on the topic of history at A Delectable Education: Episode 15: History Things 

Do you use either a century chart or a Book of Centuries? Did you make your own or purchase one ? Tell me more I'm keen to know.


{All links to the Book Depository are Affiliate Links in this post. This does not change the cost of books should you choose to click on my links. The cost to you remains the same. I only recommend/link to books I have actually used or personally own.}

5 Days of Homeschool Annual Blog Hop - 2017
This post is a part of the Homeschool Review Crew Blog Hop. Grab a cup of your favourite beveridge and be encouraged by this group of homeschool Mom's sharing their hearts and homes with you

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