We like books in this family. We really want to like books, and we want our children to love them.
I usually don’t like making a reading list for the year. Makes me feel too boxed in, and a failure if I don’t read those books. I tell myself I’ve seen better success by just going with what I feel like at the moment. In fact, I didn’t read many of my books off of last year’s list.
As a homeschooling mom however, I’m realizing my inadequacies and have proceeded on a random course of self-education. I’m also realizing my time limitations! Nudged by the example of our teammates—who are reading hounds: making yearly lists, reading them, exceeding them, and writing reviews of ALL of them—I made a list of books I’d like to read this year.
If I’m going to understand some of the subjects and philosophies I feel I need to understand in order to classically educate my children in a Christian manner, I knew I’d better get going now on some of this reading. I didn’t include much Christian fiction, because I’m sure I’ll read that and don’t want to make a science out of it. That’s my leisure reading. But this is my homework:
For spiritual development:
The Quest for Meekness and Quietness of Spirit by Matthew Henry. Meekness is my “word” for the year.
To prepare for logic and rhetoric:
How to Read a Book
AND How to Speak, How to Listen by Mortimer Adler
Homeschooling in general:
The Three R’s by Ruth Beechick
You Can Teach Your Child Successfully by Ruth Beechick
A Charlotte Mason Companion by Karen Andreola
For the Children’s Sake by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay
These latter two are on Charlotte Mason’s philosophy of education.
History of the Ancient World by Susan Wise Bauer
I love Bauer’s writing style in The Well-Trained Mind, my favorite tome ever for homeschooling, as well as her children’s history curriculum Story of the World; so I’d like to read her adult history series. This volume ends after the fall of Rome, just like the children’s first volume. I meant to read this last year but did not finish. This is on the end of my list for this year, so I’m okay with it if I don’t finish again.
Betrayal by Douglas Bond, a novel on John Calvin (church history).
I also read World magazine to keep up with current events.
The Well-Educated Mind. This is another goodie by Susan Wise Bauer to help adults educate themselves, specifically in literature. I read the first three chapters on an Amazon sample a few years ago, so it shouldn’t take long to re-read the first four chapters. The rest of the book helps you educate yourself in different genres of literature. So after reading those chapters, I will make an accompanying literature list (of classics). Here are some tentative ideas from the middle ages era that I happen to have on my shelves. The Black Arrow, Robin Hood, Arabian Nights, Milton
I don’t have a list right now, but we are currently reading through The Lord of the Rings for our fifth time together. Love it!
Wordsmithy by Douglas Wilson
Why Johnny Can’t Write
The Elements of Style by Strunk and White
Some Christian fiction goals:
Some of my selections are on my Goodreads shelf.
This is not a chore. I love children’s lit! It was my favorite class in college, and I wasn’t even an education major. I need to listen carefully and take notes on a lecture by Susan Wise Bauer (seeing a trend here?) 🙂 on how to teach literature to children. Then I need to begin reading some children’s classics that I will assign to my children in the future, making notes in relation to the suggestions from the lecture. So I foresee another list coming in the future of children’s classics to read, whenever I finish that lecture. 😉
If I have extra time, which I highly doubt, I’d like to start Logic by Watts or Culture Counts by Scruton.
Now just to get the time to read them all! What are you reading this year? Are you on Goodreads?