No matter how long you have been homeschooling (or teaching your kids at home), a homeschool mom can always use some encouragement. This list of books every homeschool mom should read is my list of top books that have encouraged and refreshed me on this long journey of teaching my children at home. These books are my top homeschool picks that I recommend (and sometimes even give away) to moms that need help!
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So you are thinking about homeschooling? Congratulations. Whether or not you actually undertake the task of teaching your children to love learning, you are considering what I consider the best decision our family ever made! I have said it for years, and I will continue to tell people that even though homeschooling is one of the most challenging endeavors you will face, it can also be the most uplifting, positive challenges you encounter.
Books Other Moms Thought I Should Read When I Started Homeschooling
When I started homeschooling 27 years ago, I was sure I was not capable of teaching my own children. But I had some people come alongside me and encourage me. This is what I heard. “You have taught your son how to tie his shoes, walk, talk, and write his name. Every day, every year is just an extension of that.”
But what-ifs always creep in. And when I started homeschooling, the culture was different. Few people homeschooled. We stayed in during school hours and were extremely careful to not rock the boat for fear of someone turning us in.
However, the occasional question creeps into my mind today, I really look at where we are versus where we could be, and homeschooling always wins out. But I have the benefit of having 3 adult children who were homeschooled. I see their success and it encourages me even more.
So I have selected a few of my favorite resources to share with you. These have proven invaluable to me over the years. In fact, most of these I actually own, have purchased multiple copies because I have given them away, and I have reread several of them repeatedly.
EDUCATING THE WHOLEHEARTED CHILD
by Clay and Sally Clarkson
My number one book that every homeschool mom should read is Educating the Wholehearted Child by Clay and Sally Clarkson. This book changed so much for me. I didn’t read it until I had been homeschooling 3-4 years, but I have read it (or parts of it) every year since I first purchased it. I also required my daughter to read it. I didn’t think to have my sons read it, but my 4th child will definitely be reading this book in a couple of years.
This is an excellent resource for any parent whether they homeschool or not. This book spoke to my soul and helped me to understand just what I was doing, who I was responsible for, and how to go about really educating my children. I wanted more than anything to have children who loved to learn. If you want to figure out how to homeschool, what methods to use, and how your child learns best, this is the book for you.
THE SUCCESSFUL HOMESCHOOL FAMILY HANDBOOK
by Dr. Raymond and Dorothy Moore
The one regret I have is that I never got to meet Dr. Moore, or at least email him and let him know how powerfully impacted I was by his book. This book gave me the courage to do what was in my heart. I first read it after I have been homeschooling for 2 years. If I had read it the first year, I feel that I wouldn’t have made so many mistakes that year. It opened my eyes to just how damaging pushing children to learn really is. Backed by research, Dr. Raymond Moore gave me the fortitude to chart a different path for my children.
A MOM JUST LIKE YOU
by Vickie Farris
This book was written in 2002 by a mom (just like you). This is her story. It is not a how-to book, but a book of understanding. Imagine sitting down for coffee with a mom who is homeschooling. She shares the ups and downs of her life candidly. Vickie Farris has 10 children. Her life looks different than mine just because of the number of children she has, but she offers encouragement and suggestions for those overwhelming days. If she can homeschool, you can too!
THE WELL-TRAINED MIND
by Susan Wise Bauer
This book will instruct you on how to give your child an academically rigorous, comprehensive education from preschool through high school. I do not believe in the philosophy of some of this book because I don’t think your 5-year-old benefits from reading Beowulf, but I do think many of the suggestions are beneficial especially for older children.
I had one child who I used portions of this book with. He is now an attorney, but I could tell at about the age of 10 that he would benefit from a classical approach to education. I started using some of their book lists because he was a voracious reader. At about age 12, I began to use recommendations from this book for the curriculum suggestions.
I love the book lists in this book, but I would not recommend starting with a very young child. The book lists and stages of child development make this an excellent resource for all parents.
BETTER LATE THAN EARLY
by Dr. Raymond Moore
Another one of my favorite books I think every homeschool mom should read is Better Late Than Early by Dr. Raymond Moore. Dr. Moore uses trusted sources to promote his philosophy – early reading, writing, and education do not correlate to later success.
I love Dr. Moore’s approach and fully embraced it in my own home. This book gives you the ammunition needed to adopt this approach in your life. Learning to love learning is more important then force-fed facts. It is a warning against early education.
Better Late Than Early empowers you to let your child explore their environment without the standardized testing, the forced reading, and the soul-crushing academics that are totally unnecessary for children to grow into productive adults.
This is another book that is useful for all parents, and I have had several teacher friends borrow it to read. One teacher still comments about how it was such a life changer for her.
HONEY FOR A CHILD’S HEART
by Gladys Hunt
This book is a great resource for families looking for books to read. It has the best books for ages 0-12. This book is not just a booklist though. It also discusses how reading affects children’s views of the world around them, and how to ignite your child’s imagination. Glady’s “tastes are broad, her advice is rooted in experience, and her suggestions will enrich the cultural and spiritual life of any home.” This is a must-buy book for every household with children.
Dear Mom, I hope I have helped you find some books to help get you started on your journey! Drop me a line and let me know. For more information about Homeschooling, Read Secrets of a Homeschooling Mom.
Homeschooling mom – 26 years and counting
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