Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling
Any book that claims to be the “ultimate” had better deliver, and this one does! Not just an update of an out of print classic, this is THE book to read if you’re planning to homeschool or considering homeschooling. Answering the real questions (i.e. What if I don’t want to homeschool?) as well as the expected (i.e. How do I get it all done?) – and with a candid honesty you will appreciate – it also addresses concerns of seasoned homeschoolers (i.e. preventing burnout). Several themes run throughout the book – organization and planning are good things, creating and maintaining a love-of-learning environment is important, raising independent learners and responsible kids is desirable, and staying connected with other homeschoolers is necessary. The new to homeschooling couple will find a realistic discussion of all the questions rumbling around in your brains/hearts – Can we do this? What will it cost us? How do we choose curriculum? What type of learner is our child? Will this be the best decision for us? A family worksheet is included to help you sort through all the issues and make a wise decision about homeschooling. There is also a lot of help for making curriculum decisions. Subjects are each covered by examining where you want to go and how to get there. Strategies for each grade level along with guidelines and recommended resources are included. In fact, lots and lots of resources are provided – for books, curriculum, publishers and suppliers, programs, organizations, and technology. Though all grades are covered thoroughly, the discussion on homeschooling high schoolers is excellent and extremely comprehensive including discussions that I’ve not seen elsewhere (i.e. What about organized sports?). Any homeschooler – just getting started or seasoned – will appreciate the thoughtful discussions, multitudinous resources, and reality-based encouragement found in these pages. Janice
I have read a lot of homeschooling books, and if I had to recommend just one to someone starting out, it would be this one. In fact, I have already loaned it out multiple times to friends who are interested in but uncertain about homeschooling. Debra Bell addresses the opportunities and the challenges of homeschooling with the experience and perspective of a veteran home teacher. What really stood out about this book was its practical how-to-make-this-work advice. Debra discusses the importance of evaluating learning (and teaching) styles, the varying needs of learners from primary through secondary grades, and how to juggle teaching older children with babies and toddlers in tow. I particularly appreciated the chapter on raising children to be independent and self-motivated learners, as this has been one of my goals from the beginning in educating my own children. This book is jam-packed with great resources, encouragement, and advice. I know I will be returning to it over and over through the years--that is, if I can keep it on my shelf! Maybe I'd better buy a second copy so I have one to lend out and one to keep...