...passes THE OFFICIAL MIKE FARRIS NUMBER ONE RULE..: If it ain't easy for Mom to use, throw it out...incredibly easy to use and immensely practical. -- From the foreword by Mike Farris, president HSLDA
Great for those investigating homeschooling as well as veterans...Overall, this is one of the most useful and readable books on homeschooling. --Cathy Duffy, author of the Christian Home Educators' Curriculum Manuals
Debra Bell has done it again! Her recently revised resource tool is now available and is well worth owning. It is a compact how-to-homeschool-successfully guide and a reference tool all in one. It includes personal stories, practical tips, websites worth investigating, concrete strategies, and additional suggested reading. There is also a great online tool available when you purchase the book (the book contains the web address and password). That tool provides quick access to all the links mentioned in the book, including links to academic and athletic competitions, curriculum suppliers, worldview resources, periodicals, state organizations, and more. Even the introduction is worth reading -- a rare treat!
As I began poring over this book, I actually burned through three brand-new highlighters reading from cover to cover! This book is well designed for both new homeschoolers and veterans alike. New homeschoolers will appreciate Debra's in-depth discussion about why homeschooling is a worthwhile option, six ingredients for a successful homeschool, and challenges you're likely to encounter while homeschooling. There is also an indispensable discussion of how to incorporate preschoolers and toddlers into your busy school day. Veteran homeschoolers will enjoy utilizing Debra's sage advice about organization, transitioning responsibility to older students, and utilizing simple forms for planning advanced courses of study.
Since most of us change our minds so often, everyone can use a refresher on choosing curriculum. Debra makes a strong case for really understanding not only your children's learning styles but also your teaching style, so that your curriculum is fun to use for the entire family. She includes a wonderful section about learning styles that enabled me to understand some things about our son that otherwise may have taken me years of careful observation to discover on my own. What a blessing! . . .
Many parents often wonder if they are hitting the mark and properly educating their children at home. Debra spends time discussing methods of assessing progress and whether standardized testing is helpful or not. If you choose to assign grades to your children's schoolwork, there is practical help about keeping yourself organized; if not, there are great ideas about how to assess progress without using letter grades. For example, our kids are younger, so we used Debra's advice and her simple evaluation form to ask for written evaluations at the end of our school year from our kids' co-op leader, piano teacher, dance instructor, and Bible study leader. The comments on these evaluation forms were so encouraging for our kids to read, and we've included them in their permanent school record as proof of their progress. This turned out to be a simple, wonderful idea worth implementing!
This book should be kept handy in the reference section of your home library, as you'll utilize it often. I loved this book, and you will too! --The Old Schoolhouse Magazine