Family Matters: Why Homeschooling Makes Sense

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9780151930975: Family Matters: Why Homeschooling Makes Sense

Examines the pros and cons of educating children at home, and makes concrete suggestions for cooperation between families and schools.

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Review:

The chilly, wet air of Bainbridge Island, Washington, practically gusts out of this book, written with such descriptive flair that it effortlessly whisks readers into the life of David Guterson, a homeschooler who despises the word and who fell into the practice by accident after he and his wife suffered anxiety attacks over sending their oldest son to school. Guterson is best known for Snow Falling on Cedars, the fictional bestseller he wrote three years after this honest examination of the ultimate in school alternatives. Before he became a prizewinning author, Guterson was a high school English teacher. It is this contradiction--schooling his own children at home, while teaching his neighbors' children in school--that Guterson tries to dissect and defend. He does so with the same fresh, poetic prose that distinguishes his fiction. Some of the characters may sound vaguely familiar. In one chapter, Guterson is forced to defend homeschooling when he moonlights with a gillnetter who believes the practice threatens democracy. Guterson's detailed account of that night--the fisherman's cadence of speech and body language, the misty isolation of the Pacific after dark--seems like a practice run for Snow Falling on Cedars. Still other chapters get downright erudite, with references to contemporary education books by such authors as Tracy Kidder, E.D. Hirsch Jr., and Jonathan Kozol, as well as citations of important research in the field. Guterson weaves these theories and facts into his own life to support his contention that all parents should have a wealth of choices when it comes to educating their children, and that school districts should foster and assist in these choices.

As for Guterson's three sons, their days are described as rich, active, and simply fun, with trips to theaters, a sheep farm, a medieval fair, art galleries, science centers, and other hands-on experiences that ignite their passion for learning. Guterson claims he's not stumping for homeschooling and, true to his word, he devotes a chapter to his lawyer father's stance on the issue (he opposes keeping his grandsons out of school, but defends the rights of parents to do so). Still, the author makes a well-reasoned case for accepting parents as their children's chief educators. Even if you don't agree, you will enjoy getting to know Guterson and his clear-headed, lyrical look at life. --Jodi Mailander Farrell

About the Author:

David Guterson is a reader's writer, welcoming his audience into a story from the first sentence. The rich landscapes of the Pacific Northwest are home to many of Guterson's works of fiction, serving as emotional backdrops for deeply felt stories about the ways we deal with the most universal of questions.

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Guterson, David
Published by Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, New York, NY (1992)
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Published by Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, New York, NY (1992)
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Book Description Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, New York, NY, 1992. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. First Edition. (full book description) Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, New York, NY, 1992. 1st Edition 1st Printing, NEW, Hard Cover, w/Dust Jacket. Size=6"x9", 241pgs(notes). It's NEW!! NO ink names, DJ tears etc. This is a NEW book. ISBN 015193097X SELLING WORLDWIDE SINCE 1987. WE PACK WITH GREAT CARE, 99% OF OUR BOOKS ARE SHIPPED IN CUSTOM BOXES!. Book. Bookseller Inventory # CONROY161897I

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Guterson, David
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Book Description Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, New York, NY, 1992. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. First Edition. (full book description) Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, New York, NY, 1992. 1st Edition 1st Printing, NEW, Hard Cover, w/Dust Jacket. Size=6"x9", 241pgs(notes). Brand New Copy. Clean, bright and very tight. No ink names, tears, chips, foxing, etc. ISBN 015193097X SELLING WORLDWIDE SINCE 1987. WE PACK WITH GREAT CARE, 99% OF OUR BOOKS ARE SHIPPED IN CUSTOM BOXES!. Book. Bookseller Inventory # CONROY196862I

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Book Description Harcourt Brace, 1992. hardcover. Book Condition: New. Author Signed Hardcover Book. 1992 NY: Harcourt Brace First edition, first printing, mint, new/unread in a flawless dust jacket, signed by the author.  Each dust jacket is protected in an acid-free archival quality acetate cover. signed by author. Bookseller Inventory # GUTFAMI01

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