An Air of Book Learning

I found myself talking to a few different people lately about what we do for homeschooling here in the NerdFamily house. They often are trying to figure out what the perfect curriculum is or frankly, how to make their kids just love to learn. As I recount the few things we do, I often start to feel like a slacker. We only really do school a few days a week and not that many subjects. We always do math (Singapore) but then only focus on things like Bible, music, and handwriting. I do a little history now and then but nothing real firm.  But then I look at my kids and they are pretty bright. They seem to have a decent grasp of logic and a knowledge of quite a few things. Then it always hits me. That the key to my “curriculum” is the fact  we don’t do a lot of “school” but we do a lot of reading! Now this isn’t assigned reading that has assignments with it but just kicking back in bed reading. We often ask them what they read and if they learned anything but rarely does it go much beyond that.

NerdDad and I have always been considered repositories of crazy trivia, history, science and math (him more than me;). We both have realized that a lot of what we learned we didn’t learn in school as part of the homework but as part of our free reading. We would wonder about something and get a book. That is how we have chosen to enrich our children. We love books and value knowledge, that has been passed on to our kids.

There is a study out that says that kids who have home libraries do much better in school and that also means that they are more likely to complete college. Kids whose homes have 500  books in China will have 6.6 years of education and in the US they will have 2.4 years more. As the article pointed out, that is difference between an Associates degree and a Bachelors. Remember this wasn’t aimed at homeschoolers but kids in traditional school. That is just based on parents having the books. As homeschoolers, we get to make sure they actually read them. So just imagine how much greater the impact is!

The key to remember in this is that it isn’t knowledge you need but a love and respect of books and knowledge. That is how you get a child to love it too. Too many times I have had people say that my kids love to read only because they were born that way to nerdy parents. Well, over at Why Homeschool they have disproved that it is all about birth. They have created a little reader in Baby Bop, who had no interest in it when he first came to live with them.

Remember, it isn’t about the parents having all the knowledge but of respecting books and learning. So I think that is something we all can do, regardless of our own education.

Are books the center of your curriculum? Do you foster a love for reading just to learn and enjoy?

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