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  1. #1

    Default Pick your top three homeschool help books!

    As usual this time of year, we have a lot of newcomers. WELCOME!!!!

    I thought it might be helpful to start a thread where veteran hsers give a list of their favorite books, or authors, that helped the most when starting out. Informational, inspirational, reference for your particular "style" of hsing, or just plain talk-me-down-when-I-feel-like-a-failure type books.

    Pick three (I know it's hard, but starting out is sooo overwhelming...remember?) that you find yourself going back to, several times over, throughout the years. Give a description if you'd like, or just the title.

    Here's mine:

    Family Matters: Why Homeschooling Makes Sense; David Guterson *This is the book I'd pull out when friends or family questioned whether or not hsing was a wise choice. He argues far more eloquently than I do. Hand it to them.

    The Homeschooling Handbook; Mary Griffith *This is my early start-out favorite. Talked me down a few times in the early years.

    The HomeScholar Guide to College Admission and Scholarships; Lee Binz *My recent (two years now) Love it, Love it, Love it! There are religious references to wade through, be advised, but worth it in my mind.
    Last edited by muddylilly; 06-11-2015 at 01:36 PM. Reason: clarity
    Homeschooling two sons (14 and 16) from day one. Atheist.
    Eclectic, Slackschooler covering 8th and 10th grades this year.

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  3. #2


    The Unschooling Handbook by Mary Griffith
    Whether or not you are unschooling, this book is very helpful. It provides lots of ideas and resources on how to integrate learning into life. The book is great for when you want to provide opportunities outside of a traditional curriculum.

    Project-Based Homeschooling: Mentoring Self-Directed Learners by Lori Pickert
    We are now just starting projects for learning. I like Pickert's suggestions and even if you are not starting with project-based learning, it gives some good ideas on how to create even small projects for learning.

  4. #3


    Teach Your Own - John Holt
    Creative Homeschooling: A Resource Guide for Smart Families (it is out of print, but I found it at the library)

    I really liked reading the Project-Based book by Lori Pickert, but have found it hard to implement.
    DS16 with ASD, DD12 and DS10

  5. #4


    Pick your top three homeschool help books!
    My favorite welcome to homeshool books would be the sort of philosophical ones. Rarara you can do it!

    Linda Dobson was great for the warm fuzzies, imo. Her book on the First Year of Homeschooling helps with styles, pesky well-meaning relatives, and sanity.
    The First Year of Homeschooling Your Child: Your Complete Guide to Getting Off to the Right Start: Linda Dobson: 9780761527886: Books
    Heres the table of contents page. Rarara you can do it!
    I also liked John Holt's Teach Your Own, even though in the end, Im a lot less unschooly than he is. Im not *pro-institution jail school*, which is where we have common ground.
    At the risk of seeming to be mathematically impaired, Id also recommend a current book that describes whats in the trendy homeschooling styles.
    Homeschooling DS13, DS6.


    My spelling was fine, then my brain left me.

  6. #5


    Rebecca Rupp - Home Learning Year by Year. Loved the variety of ideas.

    Lee Binz - Setting the Records Straight: How to Craft Homeschool Transcripts and Course Descriptions for College Admission. Very helpful for the high school years. Just zoom past any religious references which aren't all that prevalent.

    Linda Dobson - The Ultimate Book of Homeschooling Ideas. Again, lots and lots of ideas if one doesn't know where to start.

    Homeschooled two kids for 11 years, now trying to pay it forward

    Daughter -- a University of Iowa graduate: BA in English with Creative Writing, BA in Journalism, and a minor in Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies

    Son -- a Purdue University graduate: BS in Computer Science, minor in math, geology, anthropology, and history

  7. #6
    Senior Member Arrived RTB's Avatar
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    Feb 2012


    I also liked Home Learning Year by Year by Rebecca Rupp

    Homeschooling for the Rest of Us by Sonya Haskins *

    Planning your Charlotte Mason Education by Sonya Shafer *

    * Buyer beware both of these authors are religious, so you will have to decide if you can glaze over for that, or if that is just in no way for you. That said, I liked these because they offered ideas for the nuts and bolts of scheduling your days, months, years.
    Last edited by RTB; 06-11-2015 at 02:53 PM.
    DS 15, DD 13
    Year 9

  8. #7


    The secular version of Penny Gardner's Charlotte Mason Study Guide was helpful to learn about this style of homeschooling.

    Free Range Learning by Laura Grace Weldon helped me realize the wealth of resources available within the community so homeschooling doesn't mean replicating public school at home.

    I liked The Well Trained Mind for laying out a plan for homeschooling, including specific resources for every grade and every subject. I still refer to it once in awhile even though we don't homeschool classically.
    ​​~ DD-13 homeschooled
    ~ DS-17 formerly homeschooled, now attending private school

  9. #8


    Seconding The Well-Trained Mind and Free Range Learning.

  10. #9
    Senior Member Evolved
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    Sep 2013


    You guys have picked all the good ones already!

    I laughed out loud at The Year of Learning Dangerously - a friend passed it on - it was a quick read. Will bring you up to speed on the major (weird, I guess we're all a bit weird?) homeschool communities.

    Peter Gray, Free to Learn, I haven't seen mentioned. He has a website, too.

    Anything by John Taylor Gatto, especially for "accidental" homeschoolers. He's good for building that, "yeah, we didn't want to do that anyways" attitude that's helpful if your kiddos have....issues...

    Astra Taylor has a cheap mini-book on Kindle for like $2 or Unschooling (Kindle Single) eBook: Astra Taylor: Booksshe was "unschooled" as a kid and then wanted to go to High School and has an interesting perspective.

    Is that three? I don't think I followed instructions...sorry Muddylilly...great thread idea, though!

  11. #10
    Senior Member Evolved
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    Sep 2013


    Windsong - that CM site is cool! I love booklists and they have an awesome page of books and links!

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Pick your top three homeschool help books!