Charlotte Mason (1842-1923) orphaned and poor at the age of sixteen, nonetheless developed into an inspiring and original educational reformer of the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century, a period of great intellectual vitality and cultural change. Enabled through the help of friends and colleagues she founded the Parents’ National Educational Union (PNEU) in 1887 and established the ‘The House of Education’, the Teacher Training College for women in Ambleside in 1892.
The clarity and coherence of her applied philosophy of education established the foundation for a simple, stimulating and deeply satisfying enjoyment of learning for children of all ages in countless homes and schools in Britain and the world.
In her biography, Essex Cholmondeley draws on her own experiences of Mason’s teaching, as well as her extensive literary output, to unfold her life and work. Whilst she and Elsie Kitching lacked full details of Mason’s family history, a warm and lively personality emerges, able to inspire other people with her own splendid vision.
Preface to the Second Edition
Dedication and Authorship
Note for the years 1890-1923
1. Preparation (1842-79)
2. An Educational Union of Parents
3. Miss Mason at Ambleside
4. Life at Scale How
5. Years of Growth (1897-1912) in the P.U.S. and the P.N.E.U.
6. Thought Unfolding (1908-13)
7. ‘A Liberal Education for All’ (1913-23)
8. Taking the Training in 1918
9. The Last Years
Part Two: An Educational Faith (Writings of Charlotte Mason)
1. Preface to the Third Edition of Parents and Children
2. Three Instruments of Education (An Essay towards a Philosophy of Education)
3. Children as ‘Persons’
4. Books and Things (Home and School Education)
5. The Parents’ Union School, 1912
6. I. A Master-Thought (Home and School Education)
II. The Material of Science (Home and School Education)
7. Simplicity (a meditation) (Parents’ Review)
Appendix I. Some Impressions of the House of Education, by Professor W.G. de Burgh, M.A.
Appendix II. Table of Dates
Appendix III. The Synopsis of 1904
Appendix IV. The Writings of Charlotte Mason