Here are the books I have read that have helped shaped my outlook on how we plan to homeschool our children. 10 great books for preparing to homeschool! - IntentionalByGrace.com
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10 Books to Read When Getting Started Homeschooling

Are you preparing to homeschool your children? Have you been homeschooling for a while, but need some extra encouragement? Then, this post is for you! In this post, I’m sharing ten of the best homeschooling books to add to your homeschool reading stack!

When getting started homeschooling, it can feel really overwhelming. There is so much information out there, and weeding through it all can feel impossible! 

I know when we preparing to homeschool our oldest, I went into full on research mode before he was even two years old! 

I read all the homeschool books… 

I read all the homeschool blogs… 

I talked to all the homeschool moms… 

If Instagram had existed when I started homeschooling, then I would have no doubt stalked all the homeschool accounts and homeschool hashtags to boot!

And Lord help me if Pinterest had been around then… 

If you’ve landed on this post, then I’m betting you are in full on research mode for how to start homeschooling your child. 

I’m also betting by now you’ve come across a whole slew of homeschool jargon that has you scratching your head and fretting about whether or not you’re going to choose the wrong way to homeschool

I get it. I’ve been there. We all have! 

At the time of this post, I am the homeschool mom of a fifth grader, third grader, kindergartener, and toddler. I have nearly a decade of homeschooling under my belt (with many more years to go!). I’m not an expert in the homeschool world, but I’m not necessarily a beginner anymore either. I’ve homeschooled long enough to make plenty of mistakes (and learn from a few of them).

In this post, I am going to share the homeschool books I have personally read and found most helpful in my homeschool journey, especially when it comes to preparing to homeschool my kids. In a sea of never-ending information, I hope this post will aid you in your research, encourage your heart, and give you the confidence you need to homeschool your children. 

Homeschooling is one of the greatest privileges we have as moms (and dads)!

I pray you don’t lose sight of that as you walk out your homeschool journey. Keep what matters most in front of you, and you’ll have a great homeschool year.

Your Intentional Family Homeschool Planning Guide

If you’re not sure what’s most important, then check out my homeschool planning guide. I will walk you through establishing your priorities for this season, and help you choose curriculum to reflect those priorities. Click here to check it out and learn more.

Now, I have to say, I’ve geared this homeschool book list to those preparing to homeschool their children, but to be honest, I found the vast majority of these titles later in my homeschool journey. So really, these are homeschool books that are great for anyone at any point in their homeschool journey who needs some extra encouragement or information. 

Take a look at the list below, and then let me know in the comments which homeschool books you are adding to your TBR list. I’d love to hear!

How to prepare to homeschool

10 Books to Read When Preparing to Homeschool Your Children

This post contains my affiliate links. See my full disclosure policy here.

8 Great Smarts: Discover and Nurture Your Child’s Intelligences by Kathy Koch

I listened to Dr. Kathy Koch at a homeschool convention, and I couldn’t get enough of her teaching. Her study of children and how they learn is refreshing for a parent. Of course, her books aren’t just for homeschoolers, but as a homeschool mom, I found this book especially helpful in learning how to meet my kids where they are, as well as help guiding my thoughts in how to gear our curriculum choices to each of my children’s unique needs.

Teaching from Rest by Sarah Mackenzie

Sarah Mackenzie is popular in the homeschool world for good reason. She’s the creator of Read Aloud Revival which has changed family cultures around the world for the better. Her book Teaching From Rest is a practical and encouraging look at how you can homeschool without getting caught up in the stress of doing it all. I re-read this book each summer. It’s like a good friend reminding me of what matters most.

Educating the Wholehearted Child by Clay and Sally Clarkson

This one is more textbook than a book you curl up and read. However, in this book the Clarksons have distilled for us the recipe for creating a whole-hearted learning environment for our children. I don’t suggest trying to do all the things in this book right off the bat. Personally, I have used this in helping me create a framework of philosophy for how we learn in our home, as well as followed their roadmap for setting up learning corners in my home (with my own spin, of course). Each year I go back to this book to see what. new thing I can learn and implement in my home, tweak some areas I wish were different, or just gain fresh inspiration for keeping the whole-heart of my child in front of me (not just curriculum choices).

Awaking Wonder: Opening Your Child’s Heart to the Beauty of Learning by Sally Clarkson

This book partners beautifully with Educating the Wholehearted Child. What the first book lacked was real-life HEART behind the philosophy. Educating the Wholehearted Child is more prescriptive, while Awaking Wonder is more descriptive. Sally Clarkson puts wheels on the philosophy with stories and inspiration for how they practically applied their whole-hearted, wonder-filled philosophy in everyday life.

The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home (Third Edition) by Susan Wise Bauer, Jessie Wise

Even if you aren’t interested in the classical education model, I think this book is helpful anyway. We lean more Charlotte Mason in our homeschool philosophy, but this book helped me to understand the subjects we are teaching, the developmental abilities of my children, as well as how much time I should be spending (expecting from) my children for each subject at each age. This book has helped me establish framework and expectations that I wouldn’t have otherwise had the confidence to do. Plus they offer great curriculum suggestions, and that’s always good, right?

Charlotte Mason’s Home Education, Volume 1 by Charlotte Mason

As I said above, this is the philosophy of education I adhere most to, and if you’re interested in learning more about the Charlotte Mason Method of teaching, then I recommend reading her actual books. There are a lot of really great websites teaching her methods, and curriculum built on her methods, but you shouldn’t skip reading her actual words. Start with this volume and see what you think of her method for yourself. Personally, I think she was onto something for the elementary years especially!

Know & Tell: The Art of Narration by Karen Glass

I wish I had this book when I started homeschooling my boys. If you hang around the homeschool world for very long, you’ll hear the word, narrate, pretty often. You might even become convinced of its usefulness. However, it wasn’t until I read this book that I understood the POWER of narration and how to use it in my homeschool more effectively.

Caught Up in a Story by Sarah Clarkson

Clearly I’m a Clarkson fan! Sarah Clarkson is the eldest of the Clarkson children. She wrote this marvelous book while living at home being homeschooled by her mom and dad (I believe). This book gives a personal testimony of the power of story and the use of good books in our homeschools. I think the love of books and the sheer volume of books we can incorporate into our homeschools is one of the unique gifts of home education.

The Call of the Wild & Free by Ainsley Arment

This is a newer book on the scene of homeschooling, but I think it’s a good one for seeing how you can shake the modern cultures view on education and develop a homeschool journey unique to you and your family. It will also help you navigate some of the antiquated opinions on homeschooling and give you some fresh inspiration for your homeschool journey.

Balanced & Barefoot by Angela J. Hanscom

This book isn’t necessarily a homeschool book. However, I would argue that’s it is an important read for all parents, but especially homeschool parents. One of the unique opportunities we have as homeschoolers is to allow our children plenty of free play outdoors. Our children aren’t restricted to indoor learning, and I think it’s important to understand the power of being outdoors as children. This book gives practical advice on how to get your kids moving outdoors.

How to prepare yourself to homeschool. Books to read to prepare to homeschool

Bonus Books

If you need even more reading because you’re a total book nerd like me, then the following are some more homeschool-related books you might find interesting. I have read all of them, and some of them I refer to yearly.

Honey for a Child’s Heart by Gladys Hunt

Pocketful of Pinecones by Karen Andreola

For the Children’s Sake by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay

Different by Sally & Nathan Clarkson

Adventuring Together by Greta Eskridge

Stepping Heavenward by Elizabeth Prentiss

Your turn! I want to know what books you’ve read that have helped shape your homeschooling methods! What books should I add to my list?

Homeschool Planner

Homeschool Planning Doesn’t Have to Be Overwhelming

This last year of homeschooling was the best yet for my family, and it was the best yet for me as the primary education director of our home.

I actually had clear goals for my homeschool!

Head on over here to read more about the Your Intentional Family Homeschool Planning Guide and see how you can make plans and set goals based on God’s priorities for your children – right now in this season, right where you are.

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7 Comments

  1. These are great recommendations. Brings back memories when I first started Homeschooling. I still to this day go back to The Well Trained Mind for advice. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Have you read much from Sally Clarkson? Her book Seasons of a Mother’s Heart is not so much a method book, but is “encouragement for homeschool moms”.

    Also, Laying Down the Rails is another Charlotte Mason method book that I have used as we are starting out.

    1. I’ve never heard of Laying Down the Rails. I will look that up for sure! I have read a lot of Sally Clarkson’s stuff, but never Seasons of a Mother’s Heart. Will look that up too. Thanks!