Saturday, May 21, 2011

Culling Homeschool Books and Blogging Book Reviews

I've started the process of letting go of books about how to homeschool. As I look them over I'm refreshing my memory of having read them and am writing book reviews. The first was published yesterday.

These books were all purchased by me. I started reading about homeschooling when my firstborn was just a baby. Back then the primary way to get information was from books. The second best was to subscribe to magazines such as Growing Without Schooling (unschooling) and Home Education Magazine (secular). There were a number of Christian magazines available also (Practical Homeschooling was one).

Now there is a ton of free homeschooling information on the Internet. There are many Yahoo Groups and blogs. Homeschool curriculum providers have chat boards. The only problem with these is it takes more work to wade through posts to find your answer and sometimes the information is inaccurate or vague. There are also unprofessional or rude posts that you have to suffer through. At least with books the information has been fact checked and edited by a professional editor. You also may struggle to find the answer to your question on the Internet. Sometimes you can purchase a book knowing it will address a certain topic so it saves time to read the book compared to Internet surfing.

I find books, (not always self-published books) to be more professional in tone than the Internet. I hesitate to trust an information source on an Internet board whose reply regarding how to teach children is full of very basic English grammar errors and advice on teaching writing from someone who can barely spell. But that's just me.

Anyhow, I need to lighten my book load before we move half way across the country, so I must cull.

I can't believe that my oldest is now entering homeschool high school. The truth is, I don't need much of this information anymore. My kids have already outgrown the ages and stages that some of these books cover.

Over time the method I use to homeschool my kids has changed but one thing remains constant: I am still customizing their education to meet their unique needs. To that end I have left behind some homeschool methods that we have tried.

I'll also try to review some of my favorite homeschool books that are keepers. I hope the information I share is of use to some of my blog readers.

1 comment:

Elisheva Hannah Levin said...

Christine,

I am moving, too, and have also culled books--and particularly magazines. Of course, we are in different places as my homeschool closed a few years ago when the (then) Boychick decided to go to high school. However, I culled almost none of my homeschooling books except the ones of poor quality--in terms of either the writing/editing or the production (poorly put together paperbacks that had been read to death). I am not sure why I am keeping them, only that I do not yet want to get rid of them. They may be useful for my dissertation, but that is only part of the issue.

Anyway, good luck with the move. Ours has been a monumental undertaking this time around, because it is accompanied by a life change of great proportion. I hope yours is a little easier. Ours has taken five months, and we are now almost done.