FREE Simplified Lesson Sheet for McGuffey’s Readers

This post will explore a FREE simplified lesson sheet for McGuffey’s Readers.

Do you have a child who can read better than they can write? We do.

This little girl not only reads at a college level, but considers talking her favorite form of expression. In fact, she was caught in the womb (on the ultra sound) exercising her jaw in preparation for a life of oral alacrity.

So, when I sit her down to a long writing lesson, she slumps. Instead of being able to rattle off her thoughts at the speed of a thousand words per minute, she is hampered by her not-so-coordinated hands.

This has been disappointing because I have developed an entire system of McGuffey “lesson books” to make it easier. While the first two levels of these were essential and she thrived on them, the next few levels have made her feel stultified.

I have tried just about everything. Encouragement, negative reinforcement, etc., all to no avail. While she really does try to comply, she becomes derailed by her own discouragement.

Do I believe this will last forever–of course not. At some point, her hands will catch up to her mouth. Until then, there must be a way I can turn her McGuffey’s lessons into ice cream instead of liver.

And there is!

“Why so much fuss over the McGuffey readers?” you may be asking.

I love the McGuffey readers! I had been homeschooling a number of years when I discovered them, and when I did they answered so many questions and alleviated so many problems for me.

First of all, they gave form and substance to our homeschooling without putting us into a boxed-curriculum strangle hold. In just a few moments a day I could cover many areas of instruction.

At the beginning I was lost. How could I possibly take advantage of all the proven richness of the McGuffey readers in this modern age? However, after some research, and my familiarity with Charlotte Mason’s methods (who was McGuffey’s British contemporary), I was able to put together a system that would make it easy for any mom to use these books with their children.

I called the results The Lesson Book series and you can learn all about them in this post:

The Lesson Books

Now back to the solution for the struggling child…

What I did was to create a brand new lesson sheet. This one is simplified down to its basic elements of copywork and narration, with a place for vocabulary and a drawing (or two).

Also, I numbered each portion of the page so she would know what to do first, second, third, and so on.

And…I used color! Shocking, I know.

The result: She loves it! Here was something she could tackle and vanquish in a single day. No more dread of multiple pages that loomed over her like a threatening avalanche.

Dictations will be done in a separate, dedicated notebook. This way, we can dictate all sorts of things, not just the McG’s.

Here is a sample:

Since I was creating these for her, I thought I’d offer these to you, too. I have put together a PDF package that includes an inside cover page and a smattering of different types of pages that you can choose from and print yourself. Here is the link:

FREE McGuffey’s Readers Lesson Page

Here is also a video that you may enjoy:

Here is a play list of videos on the McGuffey readers:


6 thoughts on “FREE Simplified Lesson Sheet for McGuffey’s Readers”

  1. Thank you! For a few of my kiddos this template will be a game changer. For the past year you have inspired our homeschool and given me hope that it will all be okay.

  2. All I can say is PRAISE THE LORD! I have had a struggling reader who is 9 and has a lisp so I am working with his speech also. For the first time he said THINK yesterday instead of STINK. Sherry, this is an answer to prayer! God bless you for taking your own experience… lemons in homeschooling and making homeschooling lemonade for us to drink!
    Lord, you did it again!
    Thank you for Sherry Hayes.

  3. Hi there! Thank you very much for putting this together as well as everything else! The top of this sample sheet says Fifth reader. Is this the older fifth reader or the more updated version? Also i see the title ofr each one on the top. Is that the title of each story in the mcguffy reader? Thank you!

    • You are so welcome 🙂 Yes, our daughter is currently in the fifth reader of the revised McG’s. I put the title of each lesson of the reader at the top of the page, so you could write the title on whichever of the pages you choose to print.


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