How to Choose {Excellent} Living Picture Books

As a Charlotte Mason-inspired homeschooler, I do a LOT of reading with our kids.  The spine of everything we do is literature.  Well-written, Living Books are the name of the game in our home.   And this includes everything from picture books to poetry to fables, fairy tales, famous stories retold, Shakespeare, non-fiction, novels… with one thing in common – I’m seeking LIVING BOOKS.

I often talk to moms who are new to homeschooling and new to Charlotte Mason homeschooling.  There are two things I usually encourage them to do.
First, I have some favorite Charlotte Mason books I recommend reading to gain at least a good foundational understanding of Charlotte’s philosophies.  Second, I encourage them to just start by focusing on reading lots of wonderful living books with their children.  And when they are toddlers, preschoolers, and early- to mid-elementary aged, Living Picture Books are wonderful.  Start there.
But the more I talk to new homeschoolers, the more I’ve realized that so many have the same question I had when I started with Charlotte Mason – How do you choose a great ‘Living Picture Book’?  I mean, what is a LIVING BOOK, anyway?

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