In this post: A review of the beautiful Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish curriculum for ages 0-8 years, including an introduction to the Charlotte Mason Foreign Language Method.

Are you searching for a Charlotte Mason Spanish curriculum for homeschooling?

Or perhaps you are looking for an authentic and traditional curriculum for introducing Spanish to your child?

I had the privilege this month of reviewing the Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish Year 1 program and engaging with its beautiful content with my children.

Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish is a full year, 26-unit program inspired by the pedagogy of Charlotte Mason and founded by Sarah Martin in collaboration with fellow homeschooling moms Carrie Naglak and Megan Fitzpatrick.

Sarah Martin is a Mexican Homeschooler raising her bilingual girls in the US. She is an enthusiastic of the Charlotte Mason method for foreign language, living and classic literature.

In a nutshell, the curriculum incorporates authentic latinx songs, poetry, Gouin series, living literature, Bible verses and psalms with an overall focus on nature.

Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish Curriculum

This is a sponsored post by Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish and contains affiliate links. All reviews and opinions expressed in this post are based on my personal view.

What is the Charlotte Mason Method?

Before we dive into this spectacular curriculum I wanted to share a brief overview of the Charlotte Mason method to put this curriculum in context.

You may well have heard of Charlotte Mason’s famous quote:

Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, and a life

The Charlotte Mason pedagogical approach is firmly established in educating the whole child, cultivating good habits and nurturing the atmosphere at home.

Although I am not well read in the Charlotte Mason foreign language approach, I was familiar with the concept of using living books ~ authentic stories that come alive, as opposed to textbooks.

Another hallmark of her philosophy was her focus on time in nature, exploring God’ creations outdoors.

For further reading on the Charlotte Mason method I recommend this article by Simply Charlotte Mason.

Charlotte Mason QUOTE

Related Post: Best Homeschool Spanish Curricula

Charlotte Mason Foreign Language Approach

Charlotte Mason would teach several foreign languages throughout a student’s education, starting with French because she lived in England. France was right across the Channel.

Having grown up in England myself, I agree that I used more french than Spanish there. Here stateside, Spanish is the most useful language to learn.

She believed that learning a foreign language should be in line with how we learnt our mother tongue: through listening and speaking first, before introducing reading or writing.

The Charlotte Mason method uses a specific technique for teaching vocabulary, called the Gouin series, which is also a component of the Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish curriculum.

In this approach, the child would first learn a series of phrases in their native tongue, let’s say in English:

I take the book.

I open the book.

I close the book.

The child would then repeat the series. Then, the same phrases would be introduced in the target language, in our case Spanish.

Tomo el libro

Abro el libro

Cierro el libro


Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish Curriculum Design

The Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish program is designed for children 0-8 years old, and differentiated thoughtfully, so that each child in this age range is able to access and enjoy the Spanish curriculum accordingly.

From complete beginners to advanced level speakers, it is created to be accessed by all levels with detailed instructions and recommendations for how to approach it. There is a whole page of notes on how to approach the curriculum depending on the age and Spanish level of your child.

Throughout the curriculum, the CM Simple Spanish encourage joy and gratitude, instilling a love for learning languages in our children. An emphasis is put on following the child and their interest level ~ keeping learning enjoyable while never pushing too hard.

Sarah clearly advises on pace, emphasizing that the units should not be rushed, but rather based on the child’s engagement level.

In the very early years, you will of course not complete the formal lessons (more on that later), but rather focus on vocabulary exposure: singing the songs, using music and movement.

Finally, one of the most important features is the QR code setup. There are QR codes throughout the curriculum to audio files with native speaker pronunciation of the key vocabulary in each unit.

Curriculum Focus

The curriculum avoids written Spanish activities, as emphasis is put on speaking and listening, as per Charlotte Mason’s method. This is especially true during the earlier units, as it assumes no prior knowledge of the language or pronunciation.

The audio files are recorded by a native Spanish speaker in clear and slow Spanish. The tone is warm and gentle with just the right amount of emphasis to keep your learners fully engaged.

In fact, the use of QR codes linking to beautifully spoken audio files is perhaps my favorite part of the entire curriculum.

Curriculum Contents

Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish Unit Guide

Each unit includes:

  • A unit overview
  • A vocabulary list
  • A Spanish challenge (speaking)
  • An authentic poem
  • A traditional song
  • A Gouin series
  • A Science Poster
  • A Book study
  • A Bible verse
  • A Psalm
  • Formal Learning activities

The curriculum does provide a sample chart for how to approach daily activities. Again, it is recommended that you do what works best for your child and your rhythm.

For type A people like me, I really appreciate this sample chart.

Each unit also has a guide and summary page of the different components (song, poem, series etc) which I like to print out and keep on our fridge.

Formal vs Informal Lessons

The Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish curriculum provides two types of curriculum material: formal and informal lessons. Sarah beautifully explains the difference between these two types of approaches to the CM Simple Spanish curriculum:

In a few words, when you are going to have a formal lesson, you are going to dedicate a time to purposefully teach something to your child. So, this is not just teaching as life happens (which is what I would define as an informal teaching) but more like when you sit at the table and go through a lesson during a specific time of the day with a specific goal.

Within the program, you can access both options and pick and choose what you will engage with.

Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish Gouin Series

Informal Lessons

Informal lessons focus on living the language day to day. Charlotte Mason actually recommended having a nanny in order to have an OPOL approach (One Parent One Language) to language acquisition in the home. This is not, however, the norm in families today introducing a second language. So you can see this curriculum, and the native speaker audio as your ‘virtual nanny’.

Related Post: How to Raise a Bilingual Child: Four Key Strategies

For example, pulling up the challenges and using the vocabulary between family members, listening to the audios of the songs and pointing out the key vocabulary on the picture cards.

You will find detailed recommendations in the curriculum for a step-by-step approach to introducing each element of the program.

Formal Lessons

Formal lessons provide a more academic study of the language.

Sarah explains:

In addition to living the language informally through the curriculum you can add to your schedule 10 min lessons 3 times a week (I recommend 2 for the book and 1 for the poem) and a 15 min class to learn the songs.

As the units develop you can expect more formal extensive formal lessons packets, especially from Unit 4 onwards.

Living Book Studies

The curriculum includes three book studies from beautiful living books which are authentic and traditional. They are tales that engage the learner and aid in building vocabulary acquisition.

Each book includes activities primarily focused on speaking the core vocabulary as well as a complete native speaker reading of the book in an audio file.

Poetry Recital

The formal studies also include the opportunity to work with 2 poems per term through picture cards and audio files. In formal studies, your child will be working towards full recitation of the entire poem, whereas an informal approach encourages basic exposure and key word recital.

Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish Formal Lessons

Shop the Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish Curriculum

Visit the Charlotte Mason Simple Spanish Storefront Here

Concluding Comments

If you are looking for an affordable and authentic curriculum, guided by a native Spanish speaker, this is a perfect option for you.

Don’t expect all the bells and whistles with this Spanish program. The content is beautifully presented, but in a more traditional fashion without any high tech screen content.

The program is priced well in my opinion, and I believe they are able to keep costs lower than many other foreign language curriculums as they do not have the overhead of a course hosting platform.

After purchasing the program you will receive an email with a link to a Google Drive folder.

Within this folder you will find all the materials to access the curriculum including: audio files, songs, curriculum printables, book lists, formal and informal lesson plans and further reading.

The 26 unit program is still in progress and currently has 8 units available and LIVE on the folder. Each month, two more units are added to your folder, until the program is complete.

Sarah has also advised that they will also be releasing a Year 2 and Year 3 in the future.

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