I like to say I’m an accidental Charlotte Mason educator. I can’t claim to have chosen this type of learning because I was two years into our curriculum before I’d ever heard of Charlotte Mason, let alone realized our curriculum was modeled after her style! The heart of Charlotte Mason is good habits, first-hand experience, and living books. A living book is defined as a book which is written as an exciting narrative which draws the reader in. It may be on any subject and engages the reader and entices them to learn more. I can attest that this style of learning fits our family well. I believe in it and my girls love the books we have used so far.
The Mary Frances Cook Book by Jane Eayre Fryer is a wonderful example of a living book originally published in 1912. While a cook book may not be something you automatically think of engaging your children, I can assure you this is something altogether different! This is a storybook about a young girl whose mother is not feeling well, so she decides to help her out in the kitchen. Much to her surprise all of the pots, pans, and utensils in the kitchen come to life and help her learn all she needs to know. Through the course of the 26 chapters, each a little story of its own, Mary Frances learns to make 40 recipes! Each of the recipes is included in the book along with detailed instructions on how to prepare them in a kid-friendly words.
I’ve been reading this to the girls during lunch. I’ve been letting them help me prepare meals for a while and lunch is one of the easiest. They were really excited when I told them I’d read to them during their meal which surprised me since they knew they’d need to be quiet during the meal.
They have enjoyed every chapter and I can never get away with reading just one! Since it was published in 1912 some of the wording and phrases feel old fashioned, but not as much as I expected at first. I do tend to reword as I read at times for simplicity, but I rarely had to do this. We are still reading the book, but it won’t be long before we finish at the rate we are moving.
a Rafflecopter giveawayDisclaimer: I received The Mary Frances Cook Book from Applewood Books in return for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. This is my own opinion.