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5 Books I Re-Read Every Year – motherhood, homeschooling and learning differences

This year is very different for my family.

My sons’ close group of friends, the ones who have homeschooled alongside us for five years, are all making the transition to public and private schools.

I am happy for them and thankfully, they are all doing very well in their new schools. I love these kids fiercely. It’s exciting to see them growing up so well.

And, I can’t help but feel a little bit undone.

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Every year, as we transition into our back to school season, I find myself returning to the same books for encouragement, support. and just plain practical advice and wisdom.

I need them, even more, this year.

I need the reminders – why we are doing this and how it works best.

I need the solidarity – I am not homeschooling my children in a vacuum.

I need the gentle encouragement – I can do this.


Motherhood, Homeschooling, and Learning Differences

While you may not have lost your entire homeschooling community in the course of one week, my guess is you too, may need the same fortification.

I highly recommend these books I return to, over and over, every year.


5 Books I Re-Read Every Year

The Spark


The Spark is a remarkable memoir of mother and son. Surrounded by “experts” at home and in special ed who tried to focus on Jake’s most basic skills and curtail his distracting interests—moving shadows on the wall, stars, plaid patterns on sofa fabric—Jake made no progress, withdrew more and more into his own world, and eventually stopped talking completely. Kristine knew that she had to make a change.”

I have lost track of how many times I have read The Spark.

It’s seriously one of the best books I have ever read about motherhood, knowing your child, and doing things differently if necessary in order to help him succeed.

Different The Story of an Out-of-the-Box Kid and the Mom Who Loved Him

Nathan was different and Sally knew it.
From his early childhood, Nathan was bursting with creativity and uncontainable energy, struggling not only with learning issues but also with anxiety and OCD. He saw the world through his own unique lens―one that often caused him to be labeled as “bad,” “troubled,” or someone in need of “fixing.”

Not only does Sally Clarkson candidly describe her experience as a momma, navigating life with a child who struggles with ODD, OCD and ADHD, but her son Nathan co-authors the book and shares his experiences as well.

This book is moving and it’s powerful. It’s familiar and it’s revealing.

Different is practical and it’s filled with hope.

It’s only been out for a year now, but I have read it three times already and found myself picking it up again last week.

Teaching From Rest

“In this practical, faith-based, and inspirational book, Sarah Mackenzie addresses these questions directly, appealing to her own study of restful learning (scholé) and her struggle to bring restful learning to her (six) children.”

This book is like a warm hug, every single time. Sarah Mackenzie addresses the stress and anxiety we all feel when it comes to our children and does it in a way that feels accessible, calming and sure.

The Unhurried Homeschooler

“Drawing on twenty years of homeschooling her eight children, Durenda Wilson gently reminds parents about the things that really matter, as she offers a clear portrait of what a life-giving home life can be during the homeschooling years. Reading “The Unhurried Homeschooler” is like having coffee with a trusted friend.”

The Unhurried Homeschooler is like a breath of fresh air, every time I read it. There is something about the peace that comes from hearing another mom, who has grown children and has been homeschooling for 20+ years telling you it’s all going to be OK.

Steady Days

“If you’ve ever felt overwhelmed by a lack of direction in your parenting, this book can help. You already have the skills you need to be an incredible mother. Empower yourself by reading Steady Days and implementing the ideas to benefit those important little people who call you “Mom.”

Long before I had the honor of working with Jamie at Simple Homeschool, I was reading her words In Steady Days. I bought this book six years ago, and have re-read it every year since. It’s so practical and encouraging. I cannot recommend it enough.


These are my all-time favorites. What are yours? Please share – we need all the help we can get!

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  1. Thank you for this list. Some of these I have not heard of before. I am adding all of these to my list to read ASAP. We homeschool on a year round schedule, so we are in school now. It has been a challenging and difficult day. A day in which I have questioned my ability to be the best teacher for her. A day with lots of tears. This list and post was quite timely, thank you. As always you have spoken to my heart in a way few can.

    1. I really hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

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