Read for the Heart

Do you have children that love to read?  We do.  We are a family of readers. When my children were younger I was very specific about what they read.  In fact, unless their father or I had read the book ourselves we did not let them read it.  The reason is simple.  For a Christian, the battle field is often fought in the mind.  Therefore, what we put into our mind has a tremendous influence on our lives and effects our spiritual growth.  (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)

However, we ran into a challenge when our children started out reading us.  Aaron would pick up a book at the library and ask if he could read it.  I would tell him to get the book and his father or I would read it first.  But we got to the point where we couldn’t keep up with him.  So, what is a parent to do? 

We solved the problem for a little while by finding authors we trusted.  We would then let them read anything they had written.  Again, we ran into problems there.  For example, my children love C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia series but there we just some of his books we did not wanting the children to read until they were older.

If a parent wants to guard their children’s hearts they must sort through thousands of books to find those that are worthwhile.   There is, however, another option.  You can find a trusted source that has already done the work for you.

Apologia offers the solution.  Read for the Heart by Sarah Clarkson is a trusted guide in children’s literature.  In her book she recommends over 1,000 stories for young people from the classics to modern favorites, picture books to adventure novels, and read aloud favorites.  She shares her heart on reading and informs us of the literacy crisis here in America.

Read for the Heart is a wealth of knowledge.  If you would like more information about the book, visit Apologia to read a sample chapter.  The book cost $17.00.

To see what others are saying about this book, click here.

Disclaimer:  As a member of The Old Schoolhouse 2010-2011 Crew, I received Read for the Heart in exchange for an honest product review.   I do not receive any other form of compensation for the reviews posted on this blog.

Teaching your Child to Read

The other day, my husband and I were talking with a man who was considering homeschooling.  I shared with him that teaching my children to read was one of the greatest blessings I have had as a mother. (That is aside from leading them to a relationship with the Lord.)  Reading is such a foundational part of life.  It has been said that great men are great readers.  I believe that statement.  Reading allows you to go places you’ve never been.  It opens up the world before you.  It inspires, teaches, and motives people to do great things.  Reading allows you to learn from the past and plan for the future.  These are the reasons I teach my children to read. 

However, the most preeminent reason I teach my children how to read is so they can read the Bible.  Can you imagine not being able to read God’s Word?   Did you know that there are people here in American like that?  A few weeks ago we had a lady in our church get saved.  I asked her if she had a Bible.  She said she did but that she could not read it.  My heart broke for her.  How many people can read God’s Word but choose not to?  That was not the case here.  Listen, it’s not that she didn’t want to read her Bible, she couldn’t.  A person cannot spiritually grow without reading the Bible.  So last night our family went to the local bookstore and bought this new believer an MP3 player with the entire Bible loaded on it.

Reading is so important!  

Because we have placed such an emphasis on reading, my older children are excellent readers.  And Andrew is following up behind them nicely.  Recently, we had the opportunity to review Scott Foresman Reading Street for 2nd grade.  Most of you are probably familiar with Scott Foresman.  When the books arrived I was very impressed with the quality of them.  They are sturdy, hardbacks of just under 500 pages.  The books are brightly colored and beautifully illustrated.  Andrew has really enjoyed reading them.  The books have activities, vocabulary words, and thought provoking questions for the student.  For those teaching enthusiasts, there are even websites available (like this one) with additional Reading Street teacher resources like power points, downloads, and links.

Reading Street is offered for pre-K to 6th grade. The 2nd grade books we reviewed (student edition, volume 2.1 and 2.2) cost $86.97.  Or, you can purchase them individually for $43.47 each.  The cost was a little too steep for our family but this was the only downside of these books.

To see for yourself visit their site.

To see what others are saying about Pearson Education click here.

Disclaimer:  As a member of The Old Schoolhouse 2010-2011 Crew, I received these books  in exchange for an honest product review.   I do not receive any other form of compensation for the reviews posted on this blog.