I have been homeschooling my kids now for five years. Throughout that time, there are days that I wonder if I'm doing the right thing. I am constantly bombarding myself with questions about their education. Are they learning enough? Am I doing enough? What level should they be working at? There are days as a homeschooling parent that I can really use some encouragement, a voice that has been there, done that. So I was really excited when I was asked to review God Schooling: How God Intended Children to Learn by Julie Polanco.
About the Author
About The Book
God Schooling: How God Intended Children to Learn (ISBN 978-1-68350-863-2) is a 163 page trade paperback with a matte laminate cover.
The book is divided into two parts.
Part 1: Dispelling Myths
Chapter 1: Biblical Support for Natural Learning
Chapter 2: Motivation & Excellence
Part 2: Practice
Chapter 3: Thoughts on Teaching Children Under Age Eight
Chapter 4: Thoughts on Teaching Children Aged Eight to Twelve
Chapter 5: Giving Teens the Wings to Fly
Chapter 6: Spreading the Banquet
Chapter 7: Getting Started
Chapter 8: Some Q & A
Chapter 9: Record-Keeping and Structure
Part one of the book focuses on the Christian reasoning for homeschooling children and the myths that surround them. Secondly, the book argues against using a strict schedule or timeline for teaching children but instead allowing learning to come naturally, the way that the Lord designed them to learn.
Part two of the book focuses on the best ways to each students at each age of development, starting with students under the age of eight years of age, from eight to twelve years of age, and during the teenage years. The author gives suggestions for each of these groups while backing up her suggestions using research from various sources from experts in child development and homeschooling education, as well as giving personal examples from her own experiences with her children.
At 163 pages, I expected that I would zip though this book within a matter of a few hours. Instead, I found that this is not a book that you will read quickly but instead will want to take your time and really absorb what is being said. I often brought this book with me for a long soak in a hot bubble bath while I enjoyed some relaxing time by myself.
Another place I enjoyed taking this book was to the gym, where I could read it while doing a mindless activity like the elliptical. It gave me something else to focus on beside the time readout and I could work on enriching myself mentally as well as physically.
Like any book of this particular genre, I don't necessarily agree with everything that the author says, and that's okay. With any book that I read, there will be information that I can relate to or can learn from and there will be things I don't. However, there's enough in this of the positive in this book to far outweigh those things that I disagreed with. I often found myself shaking my head in agreement, recognizing my son or my daughter in many of the examples given. While I'm not a proponent of Unschooling, which the author supports as God's intended method of teaching our children, I did find lots of helpful information that helped me understand the psychology behind how my children learn and how to approach and tailor their education better for them. The chapter in regards to teenager has even been very helpful in regards of my oldest daughter and has led to discussions in regards to certification programs and trade school as opposed to traditional college.
Overall, this has been a nice book full of great moments of encouragement. Those who are new to homeschooling, those struggling in their homeschool journey, and those considering switching to an unschooling style educational setting will find this book to be most helpful.
For more information about God Schooling as well as other books by Julie Polanco, be sure to visit the author's website. You can also find more information from the following social media sites;