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This Is My Home, This Is My School Hardcover – October 27, 2015
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From School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1—In his second semi-autobiographical picture book, Bean introduces young audiences to one family's homeschooling experience. The well-paced narrative draws clear connections between the details of a traditional school environment—with a teacher, a cafeteria, and classrooms—and a homeschool setting—Mom and Dad are the teachers, the kitchen becomes the lunch room, and the house, the yard, the nearby pond, and the garage are all used as classrooms. In Bean's depiction of homeschooling, every moment of the day becomes a chance to learn, from outdoor art classes to evening star-gazing to the "homework" of helping out with farm chores. Watercolor illustrations with loosely defined borders perfectly capture the jumbled chaos of a dual-purpose household, while pen-and-ink lines and plenty of white space provide definition and space for viewers to take in the many details. In this home, towering piles of books, scattered papers, and canning jars share space with butterfly nets, chemistry beakers, and art supplies, reinforcing the family's philosophy that every experience has educational possibilities. The simple sentence structure and vocabulary make this a great choice for emerging readers, and the strong sense of place, anchoring the school experience to a family's beloved home while also opening it up to embrace the wider world, will resonate with young children just beginning to navigate the home/school divide. VERDICT Bean's introduction to a free-spirited yet structured homeschool lifestyle offers a warm and accessible perspective on an increasingly common educational choice rarely seen in children's books. A first purchase.—Chelsea Couillard-Smith, Hennepin County Library, MN
“This is no ordinary back-to-school tale.” ―USA Today
“A great choice for emerging readers, and the strong sense of place, anchoring the school experience to a family's beloved home while also opening it up to embrace the wider world, will resonate with young children just beginning to navigate the home/school divide.” ―School Library Journal, starred review
“Homeschooling families rejoice! This warm, uplifting, and hilarious book will delight kids who wonder if other families live just like they do. My family laughed, nodded, and smiled all the way through―from the first illustration to the last. Sure to become a classic on homeschoolers' bookshelves all over the world.” ―Sarah Mackenzie, Creator, Read-Aloud Revival and author of Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler's Guide to Unshakable Peace
“Warmhearted . . . Capture[s] the coziness as well as the frenetic pace of the homeschooling day.” ―The Horn Book
“The family from Building Our House returns, but this time their son tells readers all about life as a home-schooled kid . . . Home sweet school.” ―Kirkus Reviews
“Humorous and informative . . . Bean's scribbly pen-and-ink style is perfectly suited for the liveliness of a home in which the living room is both a place to relax and a classroom, the kitchen is the cafeteria, and the family car is also the school bus.” ―Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
The author is a homeschool graduate who beautifully recalls the joy of homeschooling while making sure to include some of the hardships (a tired (and sometimes grumpy) Mama for instance!). The story explains how homeschooling is not so much about staying in our homes, but using the world as our classroom (and every room in our homes!). Instead of justifying homeschooling by portraying the negatives of public/private school, he effortlessly shows so many of the reasons so many of us homeschool.
The illustrations are a little busy for my preference, but I think my kids will enjoy discovering "hidden" items in each page.
I think this is an excellent addition to any homeschool family's library, as well as a potential great gift for grandparents and doubting relatives or friends.
Thank you to this author...it is perfect!!
This book does an amazing job of normalizing and explaining homeschooling to children and adults alike.
It shows that learning can take place in spaces outside of a traditional classroom setting. It also explains through clever and humorous narrative how parents are involved in the learning process. And it captures the fun, messiness and joy of learning through homeschooling.
The fact that the author and illustrator was homeschooled a huge bonus! The last page shows pictures of the author's family homeschooling and reminds children that home education isn't as strange as some people think it is.