This year I'm going to start teaching history the Charlotte Mason way! I didn't realize how much I was leaving out before when all I required was a verbal narration. After reading more about it here (scroll down to page 292, "Dates"), I found out I need a century timeline.
"In order to give definiteness to what may soon become
a pretty wide knowledge of history––mount a sheet of cartridge-paper
and divide it into twenty columns, letting the first century of the
Christian era come in the middle, and let each remaining column
represent a century B.C. or A.D., as the case may be. Then let the child himself write, or print, as he is able, the names
of the people he comes upon in due order, in their proper century. We need not trouble ourselves at present with more exact dates, but
this simple table of the centuries will suggest a graphic panorama to
the child's mind, and he will see events in their time-order." ~Charlotte Mason (emphasis mine)
Ding Ding Ding Ding! We have a winner! This is exactly the kind of timeline I need.
Here's how I'm accomplishing this:
1. Purchase Ghostline Poster Kit at my local AC Moore (where it is half the price of Amazon!)
2. Attach 3 pieces together to form a long line
3. Mark off century lines every 3 squares, to create a very long table running from 21st century BC to 21st century AD (did you know there is no year 0?!) - that's 42 centuries in all.
4. Write titles across the top
5. Repeat so each child has his/her own chart.
That's it! Now, I'm going to have my two sons (one in AmbleSide Online Year 1, the other in Year 3) write the names of key people & events in the appropriate column with each narration.
I LOVE this approach to a timeline! No pictures to find & cut out, no coloring. Nothing to purchase except some poster board. My kids despise all of that busywork (and those of you who have kids who love that, count yourself lucky!) But the main benefit remains - getting the big picture of history over time as the child learns, automatic mental review of who & what we have already covered, & kinesthetic/visual reinforcement of important names & dates by the child writing down just that much limited information (not his whole narration).
I'm excited about implementing this in a few weeks!