A Customized Reading Map for New Homeschool Parents
Very often, the very first thing a new homeschool parent will do is look for a curriculum to purchase. What if I were to tell you that that’s one of the last things that should be done? The fact is, homeschooling is about so much more than that.
The key to being fully prepared for this way of life is to read up on a few things:
- The history of compulsory education
- How children learn
- Different homeschooling philosophies and methods
- Homeschool advice and encouragement
Do you see the order that I put them in? Reading up on homeschooling in that order is the most effective way to prepare yourself. Let’s get started.
The History of Compulsory Education
If there is one thing that will strengthen your resolve to homeschool and to make it work no matter the cost, it’s discovering the true history of public education. Suffice it to say, it’s not what we are led to believe it is. Here is a list of books to get you started:
Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling
Weapons of Mass Instruction: A Schoolteacher’s Journey Through the Dark World of Compulsory Schooling
The Underground History of American Education: An Intimate Investigation into the Prison of Modern Schooling
How Children Learn
Once you are fully aware of the deception and dangers of compulsory schooling, the next step is finding out how children do learn. This is often the most difficult part for parents to get through because of the conditioning we all faced during our own experience in traditional schools.
We’re all led to believe that learning only looks one way – the school way. In reality, the school method is the least effective for true learning. This is why it’s so important to learn about the history of compulsory education before you get to this point – so that you are more readily able to accept that there is another way.
Here are my favorite books on this subject:
Teach Your Own: The John Holt Book of Homeschooling
Instead of Education: Ways to Help People Do Things Better
Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life
Homeschooling Philosophies and Methods
After becoming well-versed in the way children actually learn, it’s time to start researching homeschooling philosophies and styles. Spend some time researching several methods, and then choose one that fits your child’s learning style, your teaching style, and your overall educational philosophy.
Always remember that homeschooling isn’t a one-size-fits-all concept. Everyone does it differently, and that’s okay.
For the Children’s Sake: Foundations of Education for Home and School
Educating the Wholehearted Child
Homeschool Advice and Encouragement
Once you’ve begun homeschooling for a while, insecurity and doubt may begin to creep in. This is a crucial time to fill yourself up with words of encouragement from other homeschool parents who have been in your shoes.
These books are so inspiring and down-to-earth:
Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler’s Guide to Unshakable Peace
The Homeschool Highway: How to Navigate Your Way Without Getting Carsick
Different (This isn’t necessarily a homeschooling book, but the author did homeschool her children and the lessons in this book are indispensable.)
As homeschool parents, it can be all too easy for us to focus so much on making sure our children are learning that we forget that we ourselves have much to learn.
Here’s to hoping this reading plan will help you get well on your way!
Article first published on Socal Christian Voice