Friday, May 27, 2011

Read for the Heart ** TOS Review**

We were so very blessed to be able to review the book Read For the Heart from Apologia.
This book is a guide to the best in children's literature and so much more.
From the Website:
A great book spurs the imagination in childhood, inspires our dreams in adulthood, and nourishes the soul with depictions of life fully and courageously lived. Among the greatest gifts you can bequeath to a child are a love for reading and a passion for books. But how do you sort through the many thousands of books available to your children to find those that are worthwhile? Apologia has the answer. Keeping Read for the Heart close at hand is like having a children's librarian for a best friend! Let Sarah Clarkson be your guide to the best in children's literature for your family. From timeless classics to modern favorites, from picture books to adventure novels to read-aloud favorites, more than 1,000 wonderful stories for young people are recommended within these pages. Now you can make great literature a lasting part of your child's life and education.

My Experience:
First of all let me say if there is only one thing you purchase because of my review please let it be this.
No other book has changed my views on schooling as much or been as helpful of a guide as this one book has been to me. This book goes so far beyond a simple guide to which books to read it's unbelievable.
Sarah Clarkson shares not only her knowledge and wisdom as an adult but also her very compelling experiences as a child growing up in a home filled with good books.
She not only tells you which books she recommends but tells you WHY. She tells you exactly what to look for in books in every genre. She gave me the tools to go through and look at the books we own and make an educated decision about which books are good for not only my child's education but their heart and soul as well.
I have read many a book-list and purchased countless fabulous books off of those lists but I myself felt helpless when it came to picking a book not on a list somewhere. This book empowered me to know what it is I'm looking for and how to find it. I have a whole new feeling of empowerment now as an educator and a mother to be able to find the books that will be best for my children.
After reading this book I went through the many, many books in our home and put each and every one to the test according to the knowledge I gained from this book. Let me tell you I thinned out our books by at least a third BUT I am so happy with what we now have. There is not a single book in our picture books that I wouldn't be happy to read to my children over and over again. There aren't any chapter books that will make me inwardly cringe when I see my 14 year old reading it anymore. I once thought that since family and friends had been so very generous with books for my children that I was required to keep each and every book.
After reading Sarah's book I knew that it was my job to weed out what I do and do not want my children to be exposed to.
Let me tell you what has happened since I took out the books that did not fit the criteria I decided upon. My children are reading more than ever. Every time I turn around someone has a book in their hand. A good book at that. A book that is filling their mind with good things, filling their heart with virtue and uplifting their spirit all at once.
Another thing Sarah has inspired me to do is to drastically cut out the electronics in order to allow more time for reading and imagination. I am still working on getting where we need to be on this one but let me tell you, soon I know I will see the tremendous fruits of this effort.
As for the actual books that she recommended, first we have loved every one we have read on her lists. Second unlike most book lists she doesn't simply give you the names of books to read, for each book she gives you the author, date of original publication, awards received if any, illustrator when applicable,  the general age category, a short review of the book(my favorite part) and cautions regarding mature or questionable content when needed.
There are so many parts of this book that I would love to quote for you but let me just say, there are too many to include in this post so please if you are a homeschooling parent, not a homeschooling parent, a grandparent, or in any way involved in the educating or raising of a child I urge you to read this book and I promise you won't regret it.

Read For The Heart is available here for just $17.00
You can see the table of contents or a sample chapter there as well.

I received a free copy of Read For The Heart in exchange for my honest review. No other compensation was received.

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