Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Organized Home Schooler (Review)

Do you ever wish your home school was more organized? I think we all do! I am actually a pretty organized person and enjoy cleaning closets, organizing school supplies, and making plans. (I know that sounds crazy to some people!) However, we all have room for improvement. Personally, I tend to start the year out with a bang, and by mid-year, we’re getting more distracted, I’m getting behind on lesson plans, and our school supplies are getting scattered.

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Enter The Organized Home Schooler, by Vicki Caruana…  This book provides both inspiration and practical ideas for organizing your home school. The author doesn’t focus solely on lesson plans and supplies, either. The chapters include:

1. The Heart of the Matter

2. Why Organize?

3. Organize Your Thoughts

4. Organize Your Time

5. Organize your Space

6. Organize Your Supplies and Materials

7. Organize Your Paperwork

8. Organize Your Family

9. The Task of Reorganizing

10. Habit Forming

11. The Nuts and Bolts of an Organized Homeschool

12. A Homeschool File System

13. The List of Lists for Homeschooling

You can see from this list, that the scope of  The Organized Home Schooler is quite wide. I enjoyed reading it, and picked up some good ideas for storing finished schoolwork, organizing my family, and storing (or eliminating) “stuff.”  The book is effective at motivating the reader to organize in addition to providing practical ideas.

  The topic that was most convicting to me was the one on time management, so that is what I am focusing on first.   As the author says, “I have yet to meet a person who was content with how he or she spent his or her time.”  I have gone back to my off and on practice of list making, which eliminates the need for me to carry around mental lists all the time, allows me to better prioritize my responsibilities, and gives me a feeling of accomplishing something when I am able to cross tasks off my list.

My only concern with the book is that, although the author acknowledges that her methods may not be the right ones for everyone, I thought she came a across as a bit judgmental at times of those who may not hold the same priorities about schooling styles or use of time or as she does. I don’t think this detracted from the overall value of the book, though.

I think that The Organized Home Schooler would be useful to both new and veteran homeschoolers.

Thank you to Crossway  for providing me with a free review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

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