Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Love in a Time of Homeschooling

When we received the email pitching this book to 5 Minutes for Books, almost all of us were interested in it! I don't think that we've ever had four of us vying for the same title. Dawn, Carrie, Lauren, and I each thought it was a book that would appeal to us, for different reasons.

Lauren reviewed Love in Time of Homeschooling on 5 Minutes for Books (linked to her review), and Carrie ended up reviewing it on Reading to Know (linked to her review), and then Carrie was nice enough to bring her copy to me when she came here for BEA in May.

What appealed to me about this book was the fact that a mother was doing what was in the best interest of her daughter in her 5th grade year. She thought that setting aside a year for her eldest daughter would be in her best interest: socially, emotionally and academically. Isn't that the definition of motherhood? For her, homeschooling was a sacrifice of love to her daughter. I have a friend who actually made a very similar choice last year for similar reasons with her tween daughter, and so I was very interested in seeing how it played out for the author Laura Brodie.

As the mother of a tween daughter, I'm aware of time passing so very quickly. I'm aware that I'm not meeting all her needs, and that I could sacrifice a bit more (and probably should).

I have never been interested in homeschooling, but what I do envy about all of my homeschooling friends is the sheer amount of time and influence that they have with their children.

In the end, Laura Brodie's experience was much like my own would be (and parenting is every day anyway): there were struggles, she lost her cool, and her daughter forgave her. I think the experience of almost complete togetherness throughout the day, tackling a difficult project (including things such as violin practice and math, which her daughter needed much prompting to do) caused her to examine herself as a mother.

In the end, I'm not sure she would have given herself an "A" in motherhood, and hindsight gave her some other ideas that might have better suited their academic plans, but I think that the overall experience was something that was a success in both her mind and her daughter's. They both ended up learning (academically and emotionally) -- about the world and themselves.

If you are considering homeschooling for any reason (aside from religious -- because though she discussed that this is why many parents homeschool, she didn't investigate nor relate to that), Love in a Time of Homeschooling might be a good book to help you understand the benefits, the sacrifices, and the struggles -- at least of one family who chose one year of homeschooling.

This review is linked up to the I Read It carnival that happens the first Tuesday of each month at 5 Minutes for Books. Link up your reviews that you read at the suggestion of someone else.


morninglight mama said...

I have a friend who did this for her son's 1st grade year, and it was really neat to read her blog entries chronicling their efforts. I KNOW that my oldest and I would never have a successful homeschooling experience, but the idea is still intriguing.

Brooke from The Bluestocking Guide said...

Interesting. I know I don't have the patient for homeschooling.

Jane Austen Addict

Carrie said...

If I didn't have Jonathan I don't know that I would make it home schooling. But I think we can. We'll see how it goes. I think we'll make use of our local co-op and will definitely try things outside of the home frequently. But having been raised home schooled, it just seems like the natural choice. It's normal for us and I think that makes a different.

Sounds like you enjoyed the read!

Nancy said...

Homeschooling is much more common in Colorado than it was in New Jersey, probably for religious reasons. I also have no interest in it myself but the book does sound like a good way to take a peek into that world.

Upstatemomof3 said...

Wow that sounds like a great book. We do homeschool and I sometimes feel like I have TOO MUCH influence on my kids. Like they could use a little break from me.

Stephanie's Mommy Brain said...

The influence over my children is our primary reason for home schooling. I do not have a lot of patience and am certainly no saint. There are a lot of days I wish I could send my kids off and have a little peace and quiet (not to mention a clean house) but mostly I can't imagine not having them with me. There's definitely a learning curve with home schooling. The longer I do it (starting year 3 in a couple of week) the better I get at it. At least I think I'm improving. :)

Lisa notes... said...

I should read this one. I like your honest review. I do homeschool, and I do have days where it definitely challenges my abilities to be a mom.