5 Thanksgiving Stories to Enjoy this Holiday Season

Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and founder of Steady Mom

Thanksgiving books will be flying off the shelves shortly, which is why I’m publishing this post on the first of the month. Add these titles to your wish list so you can beat the Thanksgiving library rush!

I always appreciate personal book lists and recommendations because in today’s market the amount of choices can leave me feeling overwhelmed. Having a trusted source share ideas helps me narrow down my options and make new book discoveries.

I’ve read many Thanksgiving stories over the years to my three little people; the following five have been my favorites thus far.
[Read more...]

How to Use the Library in Your Homeschool

Written by Simple Homeschool contributor Renee Tougas of FIMBY.

At the start of our family’s homeschool experience I felt uncertain about this journey. I questioned my skills as a mother and teacher, wondered how my children could learn “all they needed to know” at home and how we could possibly afford to give them an excellent education. (I still feel this way somedays).

Around this time I read a strategy for home education that seemed doable for me. I wish I could remember where I read it or who wrote it, but it went something like this:

All you really need to homeschool is love and a library card.

I’ve hung my educational hat on these principles during my kids’ early years.

Love will lead you to seek what’s best for your child and motivate you to find the resources you need. And with a library card and good library system you can provide the books to form the foundation of an excellent education.

Our family uses library resources as the core of our children’s elementary aged curriculum. As such, we have been making weekly treks to our local library for years.

Here are the reasons we’ve done that and how we’ve made it work.

[Read more...]

Sharing a Love of Reading: Book Clubs for Young People

Written by Simple Homeschool contributor Heidi Scovel of Mt. Hope Chronicles.

Have you ever finished reading a book and craved to share the experience with someone? Maybe you wanted to find out if they loved the same characters, if they identified with the emotional theme, if they were frustrated by certain events, or if they understood why the author chose to weave the story in a certain way.

My most favorite way to treat myself socially, emotionally, and intellectually is to attend a monthly book club. I’ve been involved with the same wonderful group of ladies for over six years. We each anticipate the evenings of sharing our love of reading. Through this connection, we deepen our understanding not only of the books we read, but also ourselves.

Our children can benefit in the same ways when they are regularly involved with friends, family members, or mentors who encourage their appetite for books and the ideas within.

For homeschooling families, book clubs may also be a valuable way for children to gain experience and confidence sharing their thoughts and ideas within a group atmosphere.

The possibilities for book clubs are as endless as one’s imagination, but I’d like to share a few spring-board ideas for organizing groups for young people.

[Read more...]

A Lighthearted Summer Reading List for Kids (& Moms, Too!)

Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and founder of Steady Mom

During the traditional school year, you’re probably a bit more stringent when it comes to allocating your time. After all, there’s so much to squeeze in: the lessons, the chores, the laundry, the meals, the extracurriculars–not to mention still having a teeny bit of free time left for yourself and the kids.

But when summer hits, everyone is ready for a little down time–nothing too strenuous or thought-consuming for a while. It’s the perfect time to fit in those books that you just never get around to during the rest of the year.

With those sentiments in mind, check out this lighthearted summer reading list. Read through the titles, print out this post, and take it with you the next time you head to the library. [Read more...]

10 Picture Books that Teach Important Life Lessons

Today I’m guest posting at Simple Mom on one of my favorite topics–books.

From my post:

“Often as parents we get consumed by the details of our days–life speeds past while we try to catch up and just keep everyone fed, clothed, and healthy. Sometimes the rush of our busy routines leaves little time leftover to contemplate and discuss life’s important issues with our children.

When, exactly, are we supposed to find the time or the words to talk about meaningful topics like injustice, simplicity, death, or faithfulness?

Thankfully we can walk into any library and have abundant assistance to tackle life lessons with our little ones. All we have to do is open a book, enjoy it together, and let a natural discussion unfold.”

Read the rest over at Simple Mom!