Must Have Books That Have Inspired My Homeschool Journey

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Wow, when I think back to when I first began homeschooling, I was just a scared mom without a clue about what I was getting myself into.

The first book that inspired me on my journey was the Bible. I sought the Word in my decision and it was my lifeline. It will always be the first book I turn to for advice.

Yet over the years, I have had some truly wonderful books come my way that have taught me, inspired me, and guided me. I’ve been encouraged through the pages of those books, learned along the way, and gained godly advice from them.

Here are my favorites:
Educating the WholeHearted Child — by Clay and Sally Clarkson

Oh, I am so thankful this gem came into my life. I had never even heard of it as a new homeschooling mom, but there it was on sale at, so on a whim, I bought it. Best.purchase.ever. I have read that book practically once a year, marked it up, and recommended it to so many friends. It is a must have.

For the Children’s Sake: Foundations of Education for Home and School by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay



A Charlotte Mason Companion: Personal Reflections on the Gentle Art of Learning

A Biblical Home Education: Building Your Homeschool on the Foundation of God’s Word


This book gave me the confidence to use the Bible as our main textbook last year. I am so grateful for the inspiration in this book, the wisdom, and the truth that pointed me to the most important things I wanted to teach in my homeschool.


What books have shaped your journey or guided you? Comment below! I’d love to hear!















Skills for Rhetoric on Sale from New Leaf Publishing


Skills for Rhetoric is on sale for $5.99 (reg. $9.99) from New Leaf Publishing

Rhetoric is the ancient skill of persuasive speech used by teachers, preachers, politicians, and others to influence, incite, and instruct. This course includes basic grammar and writing composition, and mastering this time-honored skill will set your students apart with distinguished written and oral abilities.


A Glimpse Into Our Week- The Garden Is Our Classroom!

Gardening and Homeschool. A perfect combination.

GardenasOur Classroom

This week we have begun the homestretch of our year! We are planning to take a summer break starting next month, even though we all know the learning never stops 😉

We are spending the rest of the year using our garden as our classroom! We have a vegetable garden that is planted mostly and ready to go. Here is how we are using the Bible as our text, and the garden as our classroom:

Each child has a garden journal.


Each day we observe the garden, note changes in the plants, and make some sketches. I have also had the children measure the perimeter and area of the garden and record that as well.  As we go through our lessons, they note anything in their journals that is important- words we go over, new ideas, etc.

We begin the morning reading a passage that I choose relating to seeds, flowers, growing, etc. So far we have read the fruits of the Spirit and copied it into our garden journals. We also talked about weeds and how the Garden of Eden was perfect before the fall. We discussed all the changes after the fall, and how man has to toil for his food.

Each child is responsible for watering the garden two days per week, and once the weeds start popping up they will do this as well.

We have had the blessing of having a bird’s nest in a low bush to observe each day


as well as already seeing some fruit from our labors! This red strawberry was a delight this week:


We talked about how God made the fruits for us and we also talked a great deal about nutrition from various fruits/vegetables.

We are also reading from Apologia’s Exploring Creation with Botany each day. It is a great supplement to our studies and Bible based. We just love it.

The kids are still doing their Math U See lessons and the younger ones do their Explode the Code workbooks each day as well.

Next week I am planning on assigning my daughter (6th grade) a report. The younger ones will also have a modified assignment. 

I love how our classroom has been brought right outdoors in His Creation. We listen to the birds, feel the warm sun on our faces, and have the beauty of His Creation all around us while we read- there is no better classroom!

IMG_2853 IMG_2852





Q&A: What about SENSITIVE Topics in the Bible?


One of the questions I have been asked most from my readers is, “What about sensitive topics?” How do I handle Bible reading with my children when there are some areas of the Bible that may be too sensitive for young ones? For example sexual topics, violence, or things that just may not be age appropriate.

My answer is two-fold. First and foremost, I completely trust the Lord. I trust that if they are in their Bible reading (alone time) He will bring them to the appropriate passages. If they come to an area that is sensitive, I leave it in His hands that they will come to me with their questions and we will discuss it. Now if they are old enough to be reading through their Bibles on their own (in my case it is my 10 year old and 12 year old that are reading on their own) then they are old enough to handle what will come. I truly have left the discretion to the Lord as to where He draws them. So far, there have been no issues.

Second, when I choose passages that we read as a family, we have come across several topics that were sensitive. Depending on the nature of the topic we either a) discuss it or b) skip it. If we discuss it, then I can trust that I am explaining things how I deem appropriate for my children and what they are ready for. If I skip it, then I have decided they are not ready for it yet. Now most times they follow along with me as I am reading, and if so, I will just say we are going to skip over to the next section, etc. No questions yet. 😉

The bottom line is I trust God’s Word. Evry singly word was written for a purpose. I trust it. I also trust that His Word is powerful, active, alive and will work as He intends it on each child. I trust also that we can skip over certain things if need be, and the beautuy of homeschooling is when the times comes to discuss those topics, they are hearing it from me and not someone else. I would much rather be the one that discusses things of sensitve nature with my children.

You can decide for yourself what is appropriate and not for you children and take it to prayer. This is truly a family decision and something that must be decided by you, for your family. Pray that God will show your children the verses they need and if they come across something that is sensitive, then you can address it. If you need to skip over certain sections at that time, that is OK too. Most of all, as with anything else, let God lead this area. He will truly work!



Bible Based Homeschooling:
Our Experiment with Using the Bible as Our Main Textbook.


This summer, I am hosting a women’s retreat in Gettysburg, PA. In a world of excess, we are going to focus on that fact that Jesus is enough. The world will tell you YOU are enough. But truly, HE is enough. He is all we need. We don’t rely on ourselves, or earthly comforts, but on Him alone.  I have lived with it all stripped away, and I have seen that yes, Jesus is enough. In fact, Jesus is MORE than enough.

Early Bird Registration is Open! Join us for this life-changing and life-giving event. You will spend two days with other sisters in Christ, tired of what the world offers, and ready to live the life that HE offers.


Check out where I am speaking in 2018—-> SPEAKING (UPDATED)

Listen to the Podcast—-> PODCAST

Watch my YouTube Channel–->YouTube

Visit my homeschooling site–>Bible Based Homeschooling

Shop Simply Living for Him——>SHOP (new items added!)




A “Typical” Day in Our Bible Based Homeschool

A Glimpse Into Our Day

So many people write me and ask me to share my schedule. I hesitate to do so for a few reason:

  • 1. It is never “typical.” So many days are unpredictable or days that we are out of the house, I am not sure what our typical “schedule” even looks like these days 😉
  • 2. I don’t want anyone to follow what we are doing, but to choose for themselves what is best for each family.

That being said, I will share what a day at home if-we-have-nothing-else-on-our plate-looks-like-day, with the caveat that you please use it as a guide, but do not think by any means, it is the “right” way to schedule a day 🙂

This year has been full of ups and downs and in the beginning of the school year we did have a typical schedule that worked well. Then in October things changed a bit when my husband lost his job and our life was unsettled for awhile. After the new year we found ourselves busy, but burnt out. In February I was already hoping for June. Yet, I was reevaluating why things got hard, and much of it was out of my control. After all, isn’t that what homeschool’s job is – to prepare for life? So what better way to prepare my children for life, then being being immersed in it, seeing how Mommy and Daddy handle life’s challenges, and learning to keep your heads above water during a busy time.

Now that Spring has sprung we are getting outdoors more, will be gardening very soon, and our schedule will surely change. Yet, I am trying to keep a few days a week consistent where we are at home without any other commitments on our plate.

On those days here is what a typical day looks like:

We all wake around 7 am. The alarm goes off about 6 am,and I read God’s Word first before I do anything else. I must have Him be the first thought of my day. Then I pray, lay in bed awhile, and think. Everyone uses this early morning time to do the following:

  • Read Bible/pray
  • Make beds
  • Get dressed
  • Do assigned chores
  • Eat breakfast

At 9 am we gather at the dining room table and begin our Bile study. We are currently in Exodus. It has been an amazing year to study the Bile in depth and use it as our main text. Each week it was incredible to me how the lessons learned completely paralleled what was going on in our life. I know God had us study these lessons at this exact time in our life for a purpose.

We read the passage for the week together, and each child follows along in their Bible. Each child has a list of Spelling words that I enter into SpellingCity each week. When they come across one of their words, they are to spell it. My oldest also has to define hers. We take turns reading some days for read aloud practice as well. I usually gather several resources based on the Bible passage we are studying. We discuss the passage, use the resources and dig in deep. Sometimes we watch videos, read articles, listen to sermons, etc. as well. We also may work on maps based on the passage, look at a history resource, or a science resource. During Creation and The Flood we used many science resources. During the end of Genesis and Exodus we are now using lots of Ancient Egypt resources. For instance, today we watched a movie about the Search for Mt. Sinai. What I find is we no longer separate times of learning “science,” “history,” “geography,” etc. but we just naturally learn these things as we dig into our passages. One week may be heavy in science and one week may be heavy in history.


This Bible time usually takes us about two hours. Then we take a break and the children have their individual work. (Math, Reading, Language Arts. etc) to do. They work on these things independently and I am available for help. We also may read aloud some literature or a missionary biography. 

In the afternoon after all the individual work is done, the kids are free to explore their interests. My son loves taking broken electronics apart and figuring out what is wrong, then putting them back together. Legos are always a hit, as is computer art. Many of the “extras’ take place in the afternoon. Of course on nice days, we are outside exploring nature and when the neighborhood children get home from school, there are always backyard play dates.


So there is a typical day in our homeschool! I’d love to hear what your day is like in the comments below!


Called Home: Finding Joy in Letting God Lead Your Homeschool  Available for PDF download or Kindle at Amazon. com just $0.99!

{FREE} Printable- 31 Days of Praying for Your Homeschool


Have you visited my other site Simply Living…for Him yet? I share my heart to simplify over there as well as many other things…I have a free resource section where you can download a copy of 31 Days of Prayer for Your Homeschool. I think it is essential to pray over your homeschool daily. These are some verses I selected that can help you in doing just that each day. We must be on guard to keep our homeschools covered in prayer and to keep God at the center!

You can find the {FREE} printable here:

31 Days of Praying for Your Homeschool