When my parents started homeschooling, there weren’t a lot of books on homeschooling available. Most families were still trying to figure it out. But we’re living in a very different time. Homeschooling is growing in popularity. We don’t have to grope around in the dark, wondering if we are doing it right. We have the privilege of learning from veteran homeschoolers who have written excellent books on homeschooling. These authors have shared wisdom about all kinds of issues that homeschoolers face—teaching multiple children, balancing homeschooling and housekeeping, overcoming discouragement, and more. These authors know our struggles. They understand that homeschooling is hard. These authors have also tasted the reward of homeschooling and know it is sweet. They have written books on homeschooling to help and encourage us in our own homeschool journeys.
If you are looking to add some books on homeschooling to your home library or are looking for a gift to encourage a homeschool mom, here are 10 of the best books on homeschooling that I’ve found. I don’t always agree with the author completely, and you may not either. But there are helpful parts to each one of these books that I think make them worth reading.
Author: Jamie Erickson
Homeschool Bravely tackles the insecurities that many homeschooling parents struggle with. So often we’re tempted to listen to the voices that tell us that we’re not good enough, smart enough, or organized enough to homeschool our children. Jamie encourages us to consider our calling—homeschooling is a calling—and trust God to use our homeschool for the good of our children. As she points out, “[faith] acknowledges that you know who God is and that He alone is able to steer your child’s education in the way it should go.”
This book doesn’t assume that homeschooling is going to go perfectly. The second part of the book deals with common struggles that homeschoolers face and is full of practical advice. Jamie writes about how to start the school year gently, how to homeschool with toddlers in your home, how to teach struggling learners, and more. It’s one of my favorite books on homeschooling because it is such an encouraging read and always leaves me excited about my role as a homeschool mom.
Author: Tricia Hodges
Help! I’m Homeschooling! acknowledges the role that habits and routines play in the success of educating children at home. Whether you are a newbie or a veteran homeschooler, Tricia will help you establish healthy life habits that will help your day run more smoothly so you can focus on the really important matters of the heart. Tricia gives practical advice on topics such as basic housekeeping, teaching multiple children, entertaining toddlers during the school day, and more. This is a short read (only 96 pages) and a great resource to find ideas to freshen up your homeschool routine.
Author: Pam Barnhill
Plan Your Year by Pam Barnhill offers a simplified path to homeschool planning. Pam will help you focus on your own needs and the needs of your children and walk you through step-by-step actionable plans to get your homeschool in order. She also gives tips for purchasing a curriculum and scheduling your day and includes ideas from the homeschool community on different scheduling and planning options that might work well for you. Overall, this book will help you perfect a homeschooling plan that fits your family and supports your homeschooling goals.
Author: Julie Bogart
The Brave Learner urges homeschool parents to give children the gift of an educational environment that fosters a love for learning. Julie helps parents make room for adventure, surprise, mystery, and risk in their homeschooling. She encourages homeschool families to take time to build healthy relationships and make lasting memories. Although I don’t agree completely with Julie’s educational philosophy, I do, like her, want my children to love learning. This book offered some good ideas on how to motivate children to learn.
Author: Sarah Mackenzie
Teaching from Rest by Sarah Mackenzie is a fast, inspirational read that helps stressed, hurried homeschool moms slow down and refocus. She reminds readers that the goal of homeschooling is not academic perfection—the goal is nurturing your child’s heart. She urges homeschool moms to trust God for all things and encourages them to simplify their homeschool and be faithful and intentional in their parenting. It’s an encouraging book that is worth reading more than once!
Author: Linda Dobson
If you have 3- to 8-year-olds in your home, you know that they are naturally curious and have a lot of physical energy. A homeschooling environment that includes a lot of learning through play is an ideal learning environment for them. Linda Dobson’s book Homeschooling: The Early Years focuses on these formative years in our children’s education. She offers advice on topics such as determining reading readiness, teaching foundational math skills, dealing with opposition, and more. This book is probably most helpful for parents who are considering homeschooling but are not yet committed, or for those who are diving into homeschooling for the first time. If your children are older, you might want to consider the other books on homeschooling that Linda Dobson has written for teaching middle grades and teens.
Author: Kathy Lee & Lesli Richards
In The Homegrown Preschooler, Kathy Lee and Lesli Richards show parents how they can give preschoolers a great educational start by teaching them at home. They show parents how to create a rich learning environment in their home and how to take full advantage of natural teaching moments throughout your day. The book is full of learning activity ideas and recipes that you can incorporate into your homeschool curriculum.
Author: Laura Berrey
Homeschooling is a big commitment. Teaching our children while running a household can be overwhelming. Laura Berrey’s book Life Management for the Busy Homeschool Mother offers eight practical strategies for calming the chaos so you can enjoy peace amid the busyness of homeschool life. Laura tackles topics such as decluttering, teaching responsibility to your kids, taking care of your physical and spiritual health, creating routines, and more. I’ve found this book to be a powerful tool for helping me get the most out of my day.
Author: Lea Ann Garfias
If you are considering the possibility of homeschooling your children, Lea Ann Garfias’s book, Everything You Need to Know about Homeschooling, is for you. Written after the COVID-19 pandemic, this book covers just about every imaginable aspect of modern homeschooling. Lea Ann addresses topics such as what subjects to teach, how to assess progress, how to get started, how to avoid common pitfalls, and more so that you can know what to expect when you begin homeschooling. Her practical advice will also help you homeschool any grade level successfully. It’s a substantial book; it’s almost 600 pages long. But it is so comprehensive that it is likely a book on homeschooling that you will want to reference often.
Author: Durenda Wilson
The Four-Hour School Day by Durenda Wilson is an especially helpful resource for Christian parents who are considering, are new to, or are feeling burned out by homeschooling. Durenda discusses the many advantages of homeschooling and advocates against trying to re-create a traditional school environment at home. Instead, she encourages parents to focus on long-term goals and presents a path to create a simplified, sustainable approach to homeschooling. I especially appreciate that she shows parents how to teach students to be independent learners and also encourages those that homeschool to find a supportive community. These and some of the other strategies she discusses will help parents successfully homeschool long-term.
All of these books on homeschooling can help you find inspiration, build confidence, and gain encouragement for your homeschool journey. If you are new to homeschooling and are looking for a brief overview of what to expect, try checking out our posts “What Is Homeschooling and How Does It Work?” and “Transitioning from Public School to Homeschool.”