all homeschoolers wish they could just take a peek into other
homeschooling families' days. How do they do things? How do they move
through the day? How do they organize themselves? (Or, is anyone else
disorganized like me sometimes?) We meet one another at homeschool
support group meetings, we visit one another at our homes, and we
talk and talk and it's a wonderful support. But that chance to really
see what happens on a real day at someone else's home--that's
something we all can only long for. Nancy Lande's wonderful
collection of real days from homeschooling families of all stripes
can give us that opportunity. And the title is really apt, as this
spectrum of days is almost a crazy quilt of different homeschooling
styles and strategies."
Richman, from the Foreword,
"Nancy Lande's book gathers together the experiences of so many individual ways of homeschooling that it manages to capture the essence of the unique and flexible nature of homeschooling. This is the book I would have wanted to read so many years ago to explore the possibilities of how different families go about homeschooling. I know that those reading this book will be inspired to make family the core of education."
"Nancy Lande's 'Patchwork' is even more than the title suggests. To be sure, it sews together the differing colors and textures of a host of homeschooling philosophies and schedules. But this Patchwork is not meant only to be a quilt to decorate a private room. Rather, she has fashioned the Patchwork into a coat of many colors, tailored to fit the active and energetic lives of the visionary families who take up the homeschooling challenge. Just as Joseph's coat from his father Jacob was a prophecy, so this 'Patchwork' predicts success for those who take the challenge of homeschooling. May our Lord bless this book to help those who follow the homeschooling path. This Patchwork will be a quilt to comfort them as they teach their children when 'they lie down and when they get up.' This Patchwork will also be a coat of many colors as they teach their children as they 'walk along the road.' " (Deuteronomy 6:7, NIV)
A. Lillback, Ph. D., Pastor
Adjunct Professor, Westminster Theological Seminary
Professor, Philadelphia Theological Seminary
recently finished reading an interesting new book about
homeschooling. The book is Homeschooling: A Patchwork of Days, edited
by Nancy Lande (Wynnewood, PA: WindyCreek Press, 1996) (ISBN
0-9651303). Homeschooling: A Patchwork of Days is a collection of
writings from thirty homeschooling families in which the families
describe, in their
own words, a typical day of homeschooling.
I showed Homeschooling: A Patchwork of Days to librarian David Brostrom when we were both members of a panel about homeschooling at the Minnesota Library Association annual meeting in October. Brostrom, a nonhomeschooling father who researches how libraries interact with homeschoolers, agreed with me that the book fills an important gap in the literature on homeschooling. I have since heard about Homeschooling: A Patchwork of Days from several online friends, all of whom agree with me and with David Brostrom that this is a book that we have long been waiting for, one well worth reading. The detailed minute-by-minute descriptions of a homeschooler's day capture the reader's attention and provoke a lot of thinking about new ways to homeschool.
sheer variety of personal accounts in Homeschooling: A Patchwork of
Days illuminates the diversity of the homeschooling movement around
the world. The book includes accounts of homeschooling from
Australia, Scotland, and from many parts of the United States, by
parents of young children, grown-up children, "gifted" children and
many other kinds of children. The families are Jewish or Christian
(of various denominations) or secular, rural or urban, with a great
variety of reasons for homeschooling. I especially liked a chapter by
a stay-at-home dad, with whom I can empathize a great deal.
Homeschoolers who are active participants in online networks should
recognize a few of the chapter authors, and one of the chapters is
written by a family that
has turned out interesting books of its own about homeschooling.
I requested that my local public library purchase Homeschooling: A Patchwork of Days so that other people can read the book, and it has done so. (My wife and I both love our copy of the book.) I strongly encourage you to do the same and to tell your homeschooling friendsabout this thought-provoking, fun-to-read book.--
Are you a home educatior beset by doubts? Do you wonder how other homeschooling families spend their days? Are you thinking of home educating your child/children and not sure what is "normal"? If so, this could be the book for you.
Thirty families from around the world share a typical home school day in this "patchwork" of days. People who range from a "take each day as it comes attitude" to strict timetabling arein here, each giving us a fly-on-the wall glimpse into their lives-warts and all.
There are samples of children's work, ideas for projects, home organisation, resources and mostimportant of all, reassurance that no matter how you educate, your children, you are not alone. Each family was given an opportunity to update and reflect on their sample day and this gives an insight into how each family develops and progresses.
Nancy Lande compiled this book because when she started home schooling (or educating otherwise) she wished for such a book and none was available. After going through the almost inevitable process of settling down and trying various strategies in her family's home schooling,she proposed the book I am now reading. I wish we'd had this at the time we started, too. It would have given us so much more confidence in what we were doing and trying to achieve; at the time we only had the conviction that school was not the place for our daughter. Gradually we built up contacts and friends and formulated our now rather "laid back"attitude to homeeducation.
Some stories will strike an instant rapport with you; with others you will say "I couldn't possiblydo that!". Yet others will give you fresh ideas to try in your quest to educate; or still yet, save your sanity when you realise that you're not the only one still in nightclothes halfway through the morning! Buy this book, and dip into in a spare moment (ha!) - it will keep you interested for along time.