Hispanic CM Education2024-03-02T23:36:08+00:00


Identity & Culture

Charlotte Mason believes that education is enriched by learning about neighboring countries–their languages, their heros, their customs. There is no doubt that she would encourage parents to teach their children about their heritage and their mother tongue. She would certainly support an educational outlook providing a feast made up of rich literature read in their original language (when possible), traditional art, folklore and folk music.

“We introduce children as early as possible to the contemporary history of other countries as the study of English history alone is apt to lead to a certain insular and arrogant habit of mind.”

“Perhaps the gravest defect in school curricula is that they fail to give a comprehensive, intelligent and interesting introduction to history. To leave off or even to begin with the history of our own country is fatal. We cannot live sanely unless we know that other peoples are as we are with a difference, that their history is as ours, with a difference, that they too have been represented by their poets and their artists, that they too have their literature and their national life.”

An Essay Towards a Philosophy of Education, Charlotte Mason

It is the duty of the nation to maintain relations of brotherly kindness with other nations; therefore it is the duty of every family, as an integral part of the nation, to be able to hold brotherly speech with the families of other nations as opportunities arise; therefore to acquire the speech of neighbouring nations is not only to secure an inlet of knowledge and a means of culture, but is a duty of that higher morality (the morality of the family) which aims at universal brotherhood; therefore every family would do well to cultivate two languages besides the mother tongue, even in the nursery.”

Parents and Children, Charlotte Mason

“Once Intellect admits us into the realms of History, we live in a great and stirring world, full of entertainment and sometimes of regret; and at last we begin to understand that we, too, are making History, and that we are all part of the whole; that the people who went before us were all very like ourselves, or else we should not be able to understand them. If some of them were worse than we, and in some things their times were worse than ours, yet we make acquaintance with many who were noble and great, and our hearts beat with a desire to be like them. That helps us to understand our own times. We see that we, too, live in a great age and a great country, in which there is plenty of room for heroes; and if these should be heroes in a quiet way, whom the world never hears of, that does not make much real difference. No one was ever the least heroic or good but an immense number of people were the better for it; indeed, it has been said that the whole world is the better for every dutiful life, and will be so until the end of time.”

Ourselves, Charlotte Mason

Starting an Education with Hispanic Identity

Regarding Spanish:

  • If you don’t speak Spanish, consider learning it–it is, after all, key to our Hispanic identity.
  • If you already speak Spanish:
    • Speak to your children in Spanish as much as you can, whether both parents speak of Spanish or (especially) only one parent speaks Spanish
    • Teach your children to read in Spanish:
    • Make it a goal of yours to find (or create) a Spanish-speaking local community by making friends with Hispanic families
    • Help your children respond to you in Spanish by repeating their answers in Spanish and by giving them more and more exposure to Spanish through books, music, videos, Spanish-speaking friends and/or community
    • Start brainstorming about key elements of Hispanic identity for you and your students.
    • Identify the wants and the needs for your school program
    • Drop us a note if you need help!

Regarding the Spanish history of the United States, start digging in!

If you are new to a Charlotte Mason Education

We suggest:

Keep in mind that the philosophical and the practical are inseparable–just as we allow no separation between the “secular” and the “sacred” in education.

Main Aspects

  • Children have power to learn; the learning effort lies on the child, not the teacher
  • The educator is a facilitator or an instrument in God’s hands in the educational process
  • Knowledge of God, human beings and the universe are the core objects of learning, e.g. Bible studies, the humanities and the sciences
  • Children should be exposed to creative endeavors (art, music, etc) as well as spend time oudoors every day
  • Lessons are short and varied. They increase in length as the children grow and their attention habits develop
  • Most lessons are based on rich literature and real life application of knowledge
  • All lessons involve reading a piece of literature and narrating it to the teacher after only 1 reading (attention habit)
  • Books are read along terms or years. There’s no need to rush readings!
  • The three tools of a CM education are the living atmosphere, the discipline of habits and life-giving books and things

Reach Our Community

Comunidad Educadores Charlotte Mason Iberoamérica

Educators’ Resources

About a Charlotte Mason Education in a Hispanic/non-English Culture

About Books by Hispanic Writers & Poets

This is a non-exhaustive list–of course!

  • Ada Limón, 24th Poet Laureate
  • Alma Flor Ada
  • Esmeralda Santiago (When I was Puerto Rican; Cuando era puertoriqueña)
  • Isabel Allende (her works are for adults)
  • Juan Felipe Herrera, 21st Poet Laurate
  • Julia Alvarez (Before We Were Free; Antes de ser libres; Finding Miracles; En busca de milagros)
  • Oscar Hijuelos — first Hispanic to win a Pulitzer Prize for Fiction (Our House in the Last World; The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love)
  • Pam Muñoz Ryan (Esperanza Raising; Esperanza renace)
  • Rudolfo Anaya (Bless Me, Ultima; Heart of Aztlán; Tortuga)
  • Sandra Cisneros (The house on Mango Street; La casa en Mango Street)

Here’s an additional list of more Latino/Hispanic poet laurates.

Check Stories of Color Data Base of Hispanic Authors and Books

Educational Resources About Hispanism

Our Blog

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