The Parents' Review

A Monthly Magazine of Home-Training and Culture

Edited by Charlotte Mason.

"Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life."
Notes of Lessons

by Josephine M. Wilkinson
Volume 17, no. 6, June 1906, pg. 467

[We have thought that it might be of use to our readers (in families and schools) to publish occasionally Notes of Lessons prepared by students of the House of Education for the pupils of the Practising School. We should like to say, however, that such a Lesson is never given as a tour de force, but is always an illustration or an expansion of some part of the children's regular studies (in the Parents' Review School), of some passage in one or other of their school books.ED.]

Subject: Dictation

Group: English. Class II (grades 4-6) Time: 20 minutes.


To increase the girls' vocabulary.
To help them to visualise words and so write them correctly at their first attempt.
To improve their handwriting and composition.
To help to form habits of neatness and accuracy.


Step I. Let the children look over two pages of Parables from Nature, by Mrs. Gatty (for seven or eight minutes), which is new to them, but in which they are already interested.

Step II. Ask the children for any words they have not met with before, and write them upon the blackboard, giving other words like them, if possible, e.g., narrow, harrow, marrow; to make a stronger impression.

Step III. Choose a short passage from the two pages, and dictate once distinctly and clearly, not word by word, but in phrases. Look at the books as the children write, and if any mistakes do occur, cover them over with strips of stamp paper as soon as they are made and let them be rewritten correctly, so that the children may not get a wrong impression of a word fixed in their minds.

Step IV. Correct, noticing the neatness, accuracy and improvement in handwriting, and give encouragement accordingly.

Proofread by Leslie Noelani Laurio, July 2008