Teaching children at home is not just a commitment.
Teaching children at home is not just an alternative educational option.
Teaching children at home is a lifestyle.
Clay and Sally Clarkson have captured the essence of the homeschooling lifestyle that many of us desire- one of discipleship as well as academics.
This is not a quick read. It's a big book, 376 pages; but, that's not why it's not a quick read. Educating the WholeHearted Child is a read a little, selah, think about it, read a little more book. It is so comprehensive. I've been homeschooling for 15 years. You would think I'd know most of this; but, the Clarksons approach educating in a completely different way. The WholeHearted method is strongly based on discipleship, using whole books, and making a home that invites learning.
I found myself reading this book slowly, taking time to look up scripture as I went, underlining, and writing in the margins. I soon realized that this book is too packed with information to read from cover to cover quickly. I found myself skipping around a bit. It's like a textbook and reference book and a patient teacher all wrapped up in one.
Things I like about it:
I remember in high school that my honors English teacher drilled into us the phrase, "Show don't tell." The Clarksons do not merely tell us to shepherd our child's spirit or to create a home we can learn within, they show us how to do it. They give examples and suggestions. My favorite feature is In Our Home. It gives a peek into how a particular concept played out in their home. Bold print, excellent structure and organization, plentiful scriptures, and lots of quotes in the margins make this a very easy book to pick up and read for a few minutes at a time. Perfect for a mom with lots of little ones. It's also a book that you can truly study and implement the ideas that the Lord puts on your heart for your family. I say for your family because it is so full, it would be unlikely that one family could implement every single idea. Pick and choose as the Lord leads you. Don't miss all the great forms at the back to help you in organizing your home and teaching.
Things I don't like about it:
Hmmm... I cannot really think of anything. The only way I can think to improve it would be to put an index in the back. That way, if you had a specific question in mind, you might be able to find the answer more quickly.
Whether you're just investigating the option of homeschooling, you've been doing it a few years, or like me, you're considered a veteran, this book has valuable information and wisdom for you and your family. At $22, it is far less expensive than a homeschool conference with the added benefit that it can be at your fingertips for years. I highly highly recommend this book. This is the best book on homeschooling that I've read for years.
It's the Clarksons' magnum opus that will not only give you biblical reasons for homeschooling; but, it will disciple you in discipling your children.