Reading is a luxury when you’re a busy mom. But it’s also a necessity.
Without quality books, we’d lack refreshment, inspiration, and growth. As I gear up to start our first official year of homeschooling, I knew I needed to arm myself with the wisdom of others who have gone on before. So despite the odds stacked against me, I made it a priority to read the best books for homeschool moms I could find.
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These books have me all revved up to get this homeschooling show on the road. They’ve helped me pick our family’s unique homeschool philosophy as well as given me the courage to start tackling the tasks ahead. I’m sure I’ll turn to them again and again as the years go by.
Best Books for Homeschool Moms’ Inspiration:
Educating the WholeHearted Child This book feels like you’re sitting in the living room drinking coffee with the most seasoned homeschooling family on the planet. The Clarksons help you step back and focus on what really matters, your child’s heart. Like Charlotte Mason and Classical Education, the emphasis in on wonderful literature. This book is quite the resource and covers much more than academics, as you might suspect. Who the child is as a person is of the utmost importance and lines between school life and “real” life are purposefully blurred.
This book reminded me of Jesus’ words, “What good is it to gain the world but lose your soul?” In the pressure to do more, be more and learn more, this book will help you step back and remember the real reason why you’re parenting and educating at home in the first place.
I’ve heard this book described as a glitter hug of encouragement! If you’ve ever said you just want to raise kids that love learning, Julie Bogart shows you the practical “how-to’s” of achieving that seemingly out reach ideal. Homeschoolers of all varieties will find inspiration to spark magic in their everyday life.
For the Children’s Sake: Foundations of Education for Home and School I find this book so lofty and beautiful. Based on Charlotte Mason’s philosophy, this book will inspire you to greatness. When you need to pull yourself out of the trenches of worksheets and research papers, Macaulay will raise your eyes to your God-given calling of educating and loving a human soul. It’s humbling, but doable. If you want to get pumped up about the glorious task of educating your children, this is it!
I’ve been told over and over that if you want to really understand the beauty of Charlotte Mason’s philosophy, go to the source! This is the first volume of 6 books Charlotte Mason wrote. They are meaty and they are worth it. The woman was inspired! 😉
A Charlotte Mason Education: A Home Schooling How-To Manual AND More Charlotte Mason Education: A Home Schooling How-To Manual These books cast a great vision of what your homeschool can be. Get the gist of what a Charlotte Mason Education could look like in your home in every subject. Charlotte Mason is heavy on literature (or living books) and the big emphasis is on instilling a love of learning. It’s about as close to “unschooling” as I’m comfortable getting. (Their approach to math and science is lacking in my opinion.) But it seems like a great, low stress way to approach educating children while turning students into life long learners!
These two books are a super quick read. Like, I was able to finish one in a single day! They’re practical and motivational. Definitely worth the read!
The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home The trivium of classical education has always fascinated me. The idea is that styles of learning should match a child’s brain development. So when a child is young, they’re great a memorizing and absorbing facts, this is labeled the “grammar” stage. Next comes Logic when a child is in middle school and wants to know the “why?” behind everything. It’s analytical and meant to build a framework to hang the facts learned in the grammar stage. Next comes the Rhetoric stage which focuses on communicating with the rest of the world all the facts and logic they’ve gleaned. Instead of spewing facts, they practice using language to reach others and change minds.
This book definitely will push you to excellence. I fear it may only work for certain types of learners. I plan to couple Charlotte Mason’s ideas with the Classical Education approach and see where that hybrid leads us.
Consider This: Charlotte Mason and the Classical Tradition This book really helped me understand the motivation behind ancient classical educators and how Charlotte Mason embodied that for a more modern generation. It might sound dry, but it had my heart pumping and my motivation soaring! I’ve put up quotes from it all over my house! This is a glories picture of what education should be. Not a how-to book, but a why-to book. Honestly, I think this is the book to start with if you’re still deciding on your foundational philosophy of education.
One thing ALL homeschoolers agree on is the vital nature of reading good books. Sarah Mackenzie is a trailblazer, leading the revival of family read-aloud time as a way not to just grow in intellect but forge meaningful relationships and lasting character. The book lists in the back are GOLD!
This book is all about homemaking, but not in the stereotypical “cooking and cleaning” way. It’s about creating a haven of love and wonder. Organized by month and season, some of the topics covered include celebrations, rhythms and routines, play, heritage, and service.
It’s not making your home life beautiful for the sake of Instagram. No, the purpose is far greater! “I am keenly aware that my love of beauty is equaled by my total inability to force my life to be beautiful. The world and I myself are profoundly broken. My natural impulse in the midst of this is a quick discouragement… To cultivate beauty is to act in keeping with my faith in God’s goodness rather than my doubt.” Profound, right???
Not necessarily directed at homeschoolers, this book is a pronouncement to restore the glories of childhood. It’s written from the facetious perspective of a governing body set on erasing childhood in favor of producing robotic people who produce and are predictable. Think of it like the “Screwtape Letters” for modern parents.
Some of the fascinating chapters cover heroes, the outdoors, distraction, fairy tales, risks, alone time, differences between men and women, and transcendence. It’s fascinating and will shape your parenting for the better. A MUST READ for boy moms!
This book is a wonderful practical handbook on the practice of narration. As an essential part of Charlotte Mason’s philosophy, narration gives the child the opportunity to share what they learned, instead of testing to discover what they don’t know. It’s also essential in developing critical thinking skills, logic, and communication. Every question you could possibly think of to ask about narration from kindergarten stories to high school written narrations is covered in this book. She even discusses how to do narrations with special needs students.
Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler’s Guide to Unshakable Peace I have a homeschooler crush on Sarah Mackenzie. As the host of the Read-Aloud Revival podcast, she encourages parents to create a cultural of literary greatness in their families. But this small book of hers is all about resting in God’s grace. It’s about the balance we all seek and can actually have when our faith is grounded in Christ’s finished work. It’s about ordering your life to fit your priorities; being faithful to what God is calling you to, while trusting him with the results. I’ll definitely read this one on a yearly basis.
P.S. Wondering how to find the time to read so many books? Behold, the wonder of the audiobook, my friends. I can’t believe how many books I can get through while in the car, making dinner or folding laundry because of my Audible subscription. ( Try Audible for FREE and Get Two Free Audiobooks) It’s been a game changer for me!
Are you a homeschooling mom? What are the best books for homeschool moms that would you recommend to a newbie like me??? Tell me in the comments below!