Monday, January 02, 2012

tutor your own child, who would've thought?

One of the books I recently checked out from the library is titled How to Tutor Your Own Child, by Marina Ruben, a tutor at Sidwell Friends School in Washington, DC. I guess I shouldn't have been surprised at how homeschool-friendly the author seems to be, after all, homeschooling is simply tutoring in a classic sense. The authors covers organization of materials and time, effective methods of instruction, what parents can learn from homeschooling methods such as lapbooking and Susan Wise Bauer's cycle of instruction, mnemonics, putting information in front of children via Frank Gilbreth's painting Morse code on the ceiling a la Cheaper By the Dozen, using new technology, and the ethics of helping vs doing the child's work for them. Despite the liberal slant (promoting NPR as "high quality news"), this book gives many ideas to both public school, private school, and homeschooling parents. 

I was tickled to find so many of the things we do as part of our daily lives, such as reading aloud, making time lines, going on field trips, having multiple library cards (we have cards to 5 libraries in Maine) mentioned as ways to boost grades and inspire learning. That said, I was instantly inspired to pick up some new laminated placemats for the kids featuring maps, money, and a diagram of the solar system (actually I have been meaning to get new ones to replace our damaged ones, but serendipitously happened to find some at Goodwill on Saturday). In addition, we have spent this past week of vacation reading aloud several big kid books (the little ones are already read to every night), including Julie and the Wolves, The Incredible Journey, and by Maggie's insistence, The BFG

Most homeschoolers are familiar with many of the methods and ideas presented in this book, but if you happen to see it on the library shelves, pick it up for a little boost of inspiration for yourself.    

1 comment:

Marina said...

Thanks, Katherine! So nice to run across your review. I've just shared it on my book's Facebook page.