Friday 28 April 2017

Sources of Home Education Inspiration: Part 1

All home educators need inspiration. We may be looking
  • for a new curriculum
  • to supplement an existing curriculum
  • for extra practice
  • to make a difficult area clearer
  • to construct a unit study
  • for holiday ideas
  • any number of other reasons

This post is around where I go for ideas. Please remember that
  • each family varies. What might be great for one family may not work for yours.
  • each child varies
  • blog posts, instagram and Pinterest aren't the whole story. Everyone wants to look their best but remember that we all have difficult days which may not be on show!
  • Just because something is listed doesn't mean that I agree with the owner theologically or educationally.
This post is general but I hope to put up another post around specific areas.

Anyway, here is my general list:

Other local home educators. The massive advantage of this source of information is that you can actually see the resources. Again, it is tempting to think that you have to home educate in the same way as your friends: you don't!

Advice and ideas from on line home education email lists: Deut6v7 is the UK Christian home educators yahoo list.

Facebook home education groups. There are loads of these. You are likely to find a local group helpful. The UK Christian group is very active but there is also a UK Charlotte Mason group as well as international groups for most types of homeschooling. Do bear in mind that international groups tend to have a preponderance of Americans. This isn't a problem but be aware that a lovely heavy book will have a nasty, weighty shipping cost from the US to the UK!

Blogs: my favourites include 

Instagram: this can be a great way of finding out about books. My favourite accounts are 

  • Farmhouseschoolhouse
  •  Lifeographer
  •  mrs.shannonkelly
  •  outdoornaturechallenge
  •  hswotrainingwheels
  • spreadingthefeast
  •  leahvboden

Pinterest-I tend to search for topics rather than look at particular accounts.

Brochures. The Veritas and Sonlight brochures have great book ideas even if you don't intend to use their programmes.

Podcasts. There are many relevant podcasts around. Read aloud Revival isn't specifically for home educators but is run by a US homeschooler. Pam Barnhill runs Your Morning Basket, Homeschool Snapshots and Homeschool Solutions Show.  I have found Your Morning Basket a particularly rich source of ideas. Other podcasts to investigate are Wild and Free and a Delectable Education.

Review sites. I look at The Old Schoolhouse Review CrewCurriculum Choice and Cathy Duffy Reviews.

Solomon said Of the making of many books there is no end. The same applies to home education resources. Please link to your favourite sites. 

I hope to post some specific area resources at a later date.

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  1. Thanks for the mention Sarah - what a lovely surprise :)

  2. Thank you for mentioning me, Sarah! That is a lovely thing to wake up to! I had no idea that Instagram could be used for books, so now I need to ask my teens how it works. I've only used Goodreads so far.

    I think my two top homeschooling books are Cathy Duffy's Top Picks books--102 Top Picks came out this year and I will be reviewing it--and How to Read a Book. But I spoke at a conference a few weeks ago and had a massive resource list because there are so many good books, so I love your reminder of Solomon's words. And then his conclusion, that what really matters is to fear the Lord and obey him, gives us the freedom to ignore books, too. Have a blessed week!