When I began homeschooling my boys, I was too confoundedly independent to join a charter school but too untested to chose my own books.  I began with Sonlight Curriculum, a literature based learning. Boxes and boxes of beautiful books have graced our doorstep at the beginning of every school year.  As a result, I learned volumes about children’s literature (pun intended).  I learned about authors I have loved and those I loved not.  I gained confidence and taste in wonderful kid’s literature.  This year, I am stepping out of my comfort zone and buying my own books for our studies. I am still a huge supporter for Sonlight, they gave me a crash course on great books.  But I know a thing or two now.  And I have my favorite sources.

Favorite source number one: my wise and enchanting friend, Leanna who blogs over at School of Good Books

Her family takes on a Serendipitous style of homeschooling and I adore the artful, magical dynamic that she and her husband have created for her family.  They are both so much more knowledgeable about children’s books than I and their library makes me drool.  Her blog is also a great place to get some Five in a Row inspiration.
Favorite source number two: Sarah Mackenzie’s podcast The Read Aloud Revival.

I know that the best of children’s literature are those which have been crafted by people who respect the minds and hearts of the children who will read their work. David Macaulay is like that.  He writes about things which he previously had little knowledge of.  He finds a topic interesting and immerses himself in it till he crafts a gorgeous, fascinating book.  Cue Pyramid.  We are studying ancient empires right now and his book is way too exhaustive for me to sit and read cover to cover to the kids.  We use it more as a reference book.  The in-depth illustrations of the secret passages, complex architecture and detailed descriptions of tools used to create these massive structures brings the ancients to present day.
Speaking of Sarah Mackenzie, she has a special podcast featuring many of my favorite authors but I really loved hearing from Macaulay, himself.  It’s totally worth a listen.  Click here for a link to the podcast episode.