Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Many Types of Books, Many Types of People

I loved last week's home school help topic, daily schedule. This week's, book recommendations for new home schoolers, has been much more of a challenge.

We own a lot of books, but this subject was a doozy

Would now be a good time to state that I haven't ever read a "home school" book as a home school mom?

As a home school teenager, I read a couple of Mary Pride's books. (The Way Home, All the Way Home) She was pretty instrumental in the foundational days of modern Christian home schooling.

But, categorically, I have a thing against reading almost any kind of self-help/how-to books. I'd much rather read a novel. Or the Bible. Or a cook book.

I'm not saying I am right or wrong, I'm just stating my preference, and my experience.

“There are many, many types of books in the world, which makes good sense, because there are many, many types of people, and everybody wants to read something different.”-Lemony Snicket

So, this could be a really short post, or I can give you my top recommendations for books to do with home schooling, life, organization and learning styles.

Before I go much further, I am just going to say that there is an inundation of information out there. And it can be very overwhelming. I think that before you even start to read books as a home schooler or pre-home schooler, you need to know a bit about yourself, and how you enjoy learning. This will help you narrow down what you are going to emphasize in your home schooling, and thus what you want to be reading.

If it is important for you to actually focus on traditional type curriculum, there is plenty of that out there. And books to read for that.

If you like seeing things as a whole, connecting the dots so to speak-there is curriculum and books out there for that.

If you are more artistic and less structured, there is a learning style that is going to work better for you too.

The top teaching methods are (the first four are a link to a book) ClassicalCharlotte MasonMontessoriUnschool, Unit Studies, Traditional and Eclectic. For a good summary of each teaching style and method, you can click over here.

It is important to know yourself and your kids first, and then read up.  For 3 free quiz templates on a child's learning style, adult learning style and teaching style, click here. These quizzes will give you a good idea of what teaching style will best fit you and your family.

The thing about home schooling is that no matter what method you choose, home schooling is a life style choice. It affects your whole life. And that is why some of these books I am recommending are not exactly what you would call home schooling books. They are life books.

Debra Bell wrote The Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling. The reviews are either totally for it, or totally put off by it. The table of contents lists a lot of helpful subjects.

The Way They Learn-Cynthia Tobias. I actually own this book, and have read it. I remember being amazed when my second son was born. Everyone says that each child is different, but how different can 2 boys be? Completely and totally. This book helped me to identify various learning styles and how my kids each fit in. It may be time to haul it out for a refresher.

A Well Trained Mind- Susan Wise Bauer. I have placed a hold on this book at our local library. Several of my favorite book bloggers have had only good things to say about this book (here) and (here) and (here), and I am looking forward to digging in to it.

What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast by Laura Vanderkam. She gets time and how to use it well. I have not yet read this one, but I am planning to once it comes out in paper form. I read 168 Hours last summer and it was revolutionary to some of my thought processes. I loved that book. I am sure this one will be great too.

Tsh Oxenreider wrote the book Organized Simplicity , on how to organize your home one room at a time. I read Tsh's 52 Bites, and I think this one will be just as practical.

Sometimes we are discouraged and wonder if it is at all worth it. I would recommend, Chicken Soup for the Teacher's Soul. Filled with humor and inspirational stories, it may just be the boost to keep you going.

A wonderful home schooled woman, who also home schooled her children was Abigail Adams. The Book of Abigail and John is a compilation of their letters back and forth, including glimpses of their day to day life.

For other (more well read) thoughts on home school book selections,
please visit
 SavannahChareenJulie, and Hwee.

What books have you found helpful on your home schooling journey?