About Me

I'm a working mom who - with my husband - tag-team homeschools my first grade daughter.

I blog to document our homeschooling experience, to explore Charlotte Mason's educational philosophies, and to adapt Mason's ideas from a country home in Victorian England to an urban beach apartment in 21st century California.

I also, occasionally, blog about my job teaching 4th grade full-time at a public school. (Miss Mason influences me here, too.)

Originally, homeschooling was not common where we live. I say this because when I mentioned homeschooling to people when Gemma was a "preschooler," I didn't come across anyone who knew another homeschooler. In just the past couple of years, homeschooling has increased in our area, and people's awareness of homeschooling has increased, too.

My husband is the stay-at-home parent, which means he is the one who takes our daughter to the state park, the beach, bike riding, and Classical Conversations every week, (and he was the one who took Gemma to Mommy & Me ballet).

Because homeschooling is not common around here, my husband - who, like me, is a credentialed elementary school teacher - wanted a way to explain to people why we chose homeschooling, and what it looks like.  I hope this blog does that.

To read about one of the (many) factors that led to us choosing homeschool, check out my post about preschool in Santa Monica.

I also blog to celebrate the little victories that I have as a public school teacher, to discuss reasons I'm choosing homeschooling over public school for my own child, to reflect on the lessons I've learned from over a decade teaching public school, and to explore why I think the way I think about education.


  1. So happy to find your blog!
    I have 4.5 year olds and want to home school them - at least for this year, as I am meeting more and more people who do it and it sounds wonderful. And this is even more useful, as it's in the same area. Just a big THANK YOU! :)

    1. :) Thanks so much for the sweet words, Veronika!

  2. Thank you for sharing. Do you know of any CM groups in LA? I live near griffith park and not on the west side. Thanks:)

    1. I heard there were a couple of CM moms on your side. On the Charlotte Mason in Community site, there is this:
      Charlotte Mason Homeschooling Los Angeles
      Meeting Location: Griffith Park- playground by the Merry-Go-Round
      Community Description: CM homeschoolers who want to adventure in the nature of the Los Angeles area together.
      Contact: Christine Lewis
      Email: christineavalewis AT yahoo DOT com

      That's right near you! :)
      I hope the site is up to date.

  3. I can not thank you enough for your thoughtful reply... and so quickly too! Some months ago, I tried to connect with the group but dicovered that it no longer exsists. The leader moved to Texas and sadly the website is out of date. Thank you, though! We are a lovely little family, we really enjoy homeschooling, but I must admit I feel terribly alone in my venture. Finding community for CM philosophy is just so hard to find anywhere near the Hollywood area. I keep praying. I will probably try to start a yahoo group to meet at Griffith once a week for play and nature study. Really hoping I will find some others out there! Thank you, Elisha

    1. Elisha, if you want to exchange email addresses, reply with your email address and when it asks me to approve the post, I won't, so it won't be made public.

      If you do start a group, let me know. We might be able to come out sometimes in the summer. :) Also, I'd love to know if there are other CMers in the area!

  4. Hi, Mariel.
    My name is Heber. I'm from Brazil.
    A little about me before I ask you for some things: I'm married to a beautiful woman (her name is Amábile) and we have a wonderful little baby.
    My wife and I decided to educate our daughter at home and we are determined to apply the classic method and use some educational techniques of the Charlotte Mason method.
    I'm also a lawyer and a writer. Here in our country we are still going through the same steps you have already gone 40 or 50 years ago. Our Supreme Court will decide whether our Constitution allows home education.
    So to help clarify some things, I'm creating a series of articles (which I want to turn into a book in the future) to encourage new followers in my country.
    For this I would like your help if possible. I'll ask you some questions. If you authorize me I will publish your name and webpage. However, if you do not want to, I will not publish your name. I just want your help.
    There are few simple questions:

    1) Since when do you and your family practice homeschooling?
    2) How many children do you have?
    3) Do you know other people who practice in your city? How many?
    4) What educational method do you apply?
    5) How is the receptivity of your family, acquaintances and society in general?

    If you prefer, reply to me in my e-mail: heberpazdelima@hotmail.com
    I count on your cooperation and thank you in advance.
    Greetings from Brazil,
    Héber Paz de Lima.