ADVICE & ANSWERS: Homeschool Book Recommendations?

About 2 months ago, I received a request for recommendations about homeschool books from a reader. Doug was out of town for over 2 weeks, and so I saved the message with the intention to respond when things settled back down, but did not respond until last night (shame on me for a VERY tardy response). Well, the e-mail just returned to me. I occasionally get asked about this anyway, so I thought I'd start an open thread asking you for YOUR homeschool book recommendations. Specifically, Hedi was looking for recommendations about:
  1. books that give an overview of the basics of homeschooling
  2. books that would give more insight into what homeschooling is and why one would do it (for example, if a relative is wary of your decision to homeschool and you want to give them an overview of what it is, and why it's a good choice... a good book that you could put in their hands to give them more "answers")
So, for those of you readers who homeschool, want to homeschool, or have homeschooled, what say you? What books have been powerful in your journey towards homeschooling? What books have encouraged you as a homeschooling parent? What books have you recommended to others as must-reads for the homeschooler? (I'll share my recommendations in the comments as well.) Can't wait to hear from you!


Jess said...

Here's the best overall book about homeschooling-- how to get started, curriculum options, how to make it work, why to homeschool, etc. It's by Mary Pride- it's called "Mary Pride's Complete Guide to Getting Started in Homeschooling"-- that's a link to the Amazon reference, so you can read customer reviews, etc. It runs about $20, but it is HUGE and FULL of good information- it is very worth the price, in my mind.

As for a book about why to homeschool, there are many, many excellent books
... I'll recommend these two (with links) and you can check them out and see what appeals to you.

One of the best books I've read and most often recommended is this one:
The Successful Homeschool Family Handbook by Raymond & Dorothy Moore.

Another favorite for many, that I've only read a portion of so far (it was in China for the last year, and I've just now gotten it back) is this:

For the Children's Sake by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay (the daughter of Francis Schaeffer)

(Hedi: please forgive my absolutely late response. I hope this post will be helpful to you. ~Jess)

Laurie said...

When we first decided to homeschool, I read "So You're Thinking About Homeschooling" by Lisa Whelchel. It really helped us determine what our approach to homeschooling would be - since there are so many different ways to do it.

Once we had decided on the classical approach, we have found Jessie Wise and Susan Wise Bauer's "The Well-Trained Mind" to be invaluable. It outlines both how to homeschool classically but also gives many many different curriculum recommendations for each topic (I've never found a packaged curriculum where every subject is sold together that I liked).

~*~ Jennifer ~*~ said...

At the VERY beginning -- this book was helpful for me.

Things We Wish We'd Known: A Guide to Abundant-Life Homeschooling

50 Veterans give their opinion. It includes different "methods" of home educating your children. It was a good place to start, learn the vocabulary of home educating, and jump off from there... dig deeper.

Valerie said...

The Christian Home School by Gregg Harris is excellent. (He is the father of Josh Harris--Boy Meets Girl author-- and Alex and Brett Harris of the Rebelution site).

Also--by Chris Klicka--The Heart of Homeschooling---REALLY a great book!! And Homeschooling-the Right Choice also by Klicka.

I also love the books by Ruth Beechick--they are inspirational (engouraging) and practical (how-to).

As far as explaining to relatives the first two books on my list will expain the philosophy behind homeschooling and the reasons that parents CAN do it successfully and completely. (Both my parents were public/Christian school educators who are now BIG proponents of homeschooling after watching us for 12 years!) Some of the "proof in the pudding" are the following: my teen sons' call their dad their best friend; they will hug me in public; they score very high on tests--standardized and PSATs; they love God and they use their free time to grow in their talents.

Homeschooling has so may fruits!! If people knew (and could catch the vision for all they would enjoy), many more would sacrifice for and choose this route, (in my opinion, that is!)

Mrs. June Fuentes said...

The most thorough and convincing book for the new beginner and veteran is Homeschooling-The Right Choice by Chris Klicka of HSLDA. It is a must read for any homeschooling mom!

Many blessings...

Jess said...

I'm so glad you mentioned the Harris and Klicka books-- I just KNEW there were more that I've read, but my brain wasn't working, and searching on Amazon didn't yield all of the titles that I've read.

Anyway, my books have been spread among boxes on various continents, ;) so I'm glad for your input- those were some of the VERY ones I was trying to think of!

thecurryseven said...

The two books that leap to mind are, Why Homeschooling Makes Sense by David Guterson. (He's the Snow Falling on Cedars guy.) It's not written from a Christian perspective, but his arguements for homeschooling had an impact on my husband. The other is Family Driven Faith by Voddie Baucham. I know you've mentioned him and his book before, but, while not his main focus, he makes an excellent case for why Christians should homeschool.

Anonymous said...

The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home by Susan Wise Bauer and Jessie Wise. So full of useful information, resources, curriculum ideas, etc.

I also think For the Children's Sake is a must read.

Amy said...

I definitely second your book ideas, Jess! "The Successful Family Homeschool Handbook" and "For the Children's Sake" were excellent and eye-opening books.

Another book that I have read is called "Christian Unschooling: Growing Your Children in the Freedom of Christ" by Teri Brown and Elisa Wahl. I am not sure if I will completely jump into unschooling, but having absolutely no desire to do "school at home", I thought this would be a great book to read. It was, and I was glad that it included many stories (the whole second half of the book!) written by families who unschool at least to some degree. It was very encouraging.

Another helpful "how-to" book is called "A Charlotte Mason Education" by Cathrerine Levison. It explains in detail how to follow the Charolotee Mason philosophy of education, with very practical ideas. It would be a good read for someone considering this way of education.

I will have to look into "The Christian Family Home School" by Greg Harris, it sounds like a wonderful book.


Andrea said...

I always recommend "For the Children's Sake" to start with. It's inspires you as you start to begin homeschooling...and the years ahead.

Charley said...

There are several that I consider mandatory for people contemplating home educating their children. They don't necessarily tell you "how" to do it as much as "why" as well as establishing a framework in which you can develop your what is appropriate for your family. The first is When You Rise Up by R.C. Sproul, Jr. The second is Upgrade by Kevin Swanson,. The third is Family Driven Faith by Voddie Baucham, Jr.

I consider all of these to be a foundational part of a family's library as they begin the home-discipling journey.

HomeDiscipling Dad Blog

CB said...

By far, the most influential homeschooling book I read was "For the Children's Sake," by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay. It was the first book that showed me that education should be more than facts.

Keri said...

I liked Educating the WholeHearted Child for good pondering and encouragement:

and I also like Things We Wish We'd Known:


Let Us Highly Resolve is great also:

As far as the basics of homeschooling and why one would do it, Deut 6:4-7 is a great place to start.


Hedi said...

Thanks Jess! :) and the readers!

Sanders said...

Thanks Jess and everybody else!! This is so great!