Saturday, March 27, 2010

Book Review: Homeschooling for the Rest of Us by Sonya Haskins

My 3 year old Eóin LOVES to learn! Because he has such an interest in learning, especially reading, I have been thinking a lot about schooling for him - it's really not that far away. I was excited when I saw the title of this book because I really don't see myself as a "homeschool mom." I am not super organized and scheduled and always have my ducks in a row which seems to me you would need to homeschool your child. This book seemed to be about how to make homeschooling work in real life - you know for us not so perfect parents :-)

I would have to say that although the book was somewhat helpful, I found some of her ideas to be a bit weird. She devoted a good chunk of the book to answering skeptics and questions about homeschooling. She made some good points about how to kindly deal with family, and honestly evaluate criticism. I really liked her checklists for comparing different types of education and seeing which really is suited best to your family's needs.

There are a lot of examples or different schedules and ways to make learning fit into your life. I thought some of her ideas on what qualified as education were a bit far fetched. I don't really think that mowing the lawn should count at physical education, and cleaning your room as "life skills." Unless you purposefully set out to have a lesson about cleaning/hygiene, I think you need to be honest about how your time is spent.

I am not sure I would class this as a necessary book for a homeschool family, but it would certainly be worth a skim.

I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers for the purpose of reviewing.


The Litwillers said...

Well, isn't cleaning your room life skills? And don't you get active while mowing the lawn? I'm guessing part of her point is that learning takes place all around us and we need to see how almost everything our kids do has educational value. I would recommend reading a host of other books on homeschooling that may better explain this idea. I'm guessing she leans toward unschooling. Man, I talked for awhile on this topic, didn't I? Sorry...I'm just passionate about homeschooling :)

The Harrisons said...

LOL Penni. I totally agree with learning is all around us and it wouldn't bother me if you counted teaching your child how to clean his room for your state requirements but sometimes chores are just chores too. Or if you spent a day outside learning about taking care of a garden - totally fine - but I wouldn't count every time your kid mows as physical education either. She had some other great ideas too - I just thought she pushed it a little too far. I can see unschooling works really well for you guys though.