This section offers general guides for finding quality literature and managing your personal library.
The following are literature recommends grouped by grade level:
The following are online literature summaries, reviews, recommends, and tools that I use frequently:
- http://wiki.librivox.org/index.php/Recordings_of_Books_on_the_Ambleside_List – List of audio recordings of books on the Ambleside List
- http://www.classical-homeschooling.org/celoop/1000.html – Best 1000 books
- http://www.cliffsnotes.com/CliffsNotes-Films.htm – book summaries
- http://www.sparknotes.com/sparknotes – book summaries
- quizlet.com – Sometimes I use a flashcard site to help me select what curriculum to buy. It is worth it to me to have FREE ready-made vocabulary flashcards.
- https://www.facebook.com/groups/142043582669258 – Homeschooling with Amazon Prime
The following are additional online literature summaries, reviews, and/or recommends:
- http://www.amblesideonline.org/Booklist.shtml – 12-year book list in grade order
- http://www.amblesideonline.org/07pre.shtml – “For those planning to enter House of Education’s Year 7 without first covering Ambleside Online Years 1-6, we have compiled a list of Ambleside Online books that we consider prerequisite preparatory reading for House of Education. Because of the individualized nature of a plan like this (some may have already read many of these books, and some may have started homeschooling in the middle of a year and only have a term or a summer to work with this), it isn’t possible to formulate it into a 36-week schedule. However, Carol H has posted a suggested reading guide for Pre-7 on her own website as a pdf file.”
- http://www.bjupress.com/resources/products/trade.php#bestbooks – Best Books for Kindergarten Through High School by Donna L. Hess. Published in 1994. This and other great books are available for FREE download at BJU.
- http://www.carnegielibrary.org/kids/books/bibtherapy.cfm – Experienced therapists use children’s books to solve emotional problems in a technique known as “Bibliotherapy.” Here books are listed by issues that need addressing.
- http://www.adherents.com/people/100_literary.html – The Literary 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Novelists, Playwrights, and Poets of All Time
- http://www.bolchazy.com/ancient/index.htm – Index of Ancient Authors
- http://www.classical-homeschooling.org – Classical Christian book list
- http://edsitement.neh.gov – This site full of great literature recommends.
- http://www.educationoasis.com/ch_book_reviews/childrens_book_reviews.htm – Children’s book reviews
- http://www.free-guided-reading.com – “Free Guided Reading is a site where schools can find age appropriate books for their students for free.”
- http://www.gbt.org – Great books reading list under “TUTORIALS.”
- http://www.guesthollow.com/history_shelf/history_shelf.html – A Visual Timeline of Historical Fiction, Books and Movies for all ages
- http://www.guyscanread.com – book review by guys for guys
- http://jimhodgesaudiobooks.com/scope_and_sequence-JHAB.pdf – historical fictions scope and sequence
- http://justonemorebook.com – Just One More book – book review podcast
- http://www.thegreatcourses.com/tgc/courses/course_detail.aspx?cid=4600 – Books That Have Made History: Books That Can Change Your Life
- http://www.thegreatcourses.com/tgc/courses/course_detail.aspx?cid=2180 – Life Lessons from the Great Books
- http://www.thegreatcourses.com/tgc/Courses/course_detail.aspx?cid=2112 – The Skeptic’s Guide to the Great Books
- http://www.thegreatcourses.com/tgc/courses/course_detail.aspx?cid=2527 – Great American Bestsellers: The Books That Shaped America
- http://www.sparknotes.com/sparknotes – book summaries
- http://www.squeakycleanreviews.com – book reviews from Christian worldview
- https://app.e2ma.net/app/view:CampaignPublic/id:1354369.6394644068/rid:b6a60da9fc90b3ed69e763bdf2ed2c3c – Reading ideas from Sylvan Learning
- http://www.teachingbooks.net/pronunciations.cgi – “Personalize reading with these one-minute audio recordings of authors and illustrators pronouncing and telling stories about their names.”
- http://thinkingkids.wordpress.com/2011/03/28/reading-for-sport – great idea!
- http://wethepeople.gov/bookshelf – The We the People Bookshelf is a set of classic books for young readers from Kindergarten through high school.
- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Big_Read – Top 200 novels in the United Kingdom
The following are reading guides are available at our local library:
- The Well-Educated Mind: a guide to the classical education you never had by Susan Wise Bauer. Published in 2003.
- Invitation to the Classics by Louise Cowan and Os Guinness. Published 1998.
- Essaying The Past: how to read, write, and think about history by Jim Cullen. Published 2013.
- Honey for a Child’s Heart by Gladys Hunt. Published 2002. Organized by age level and time period covered.
- Great books for girls: more than 600 books for boys 2 to 14 by Kathleen Odean. Published 2002.
- Great books about things kids love: more than 750 recommended books for children 3 to 14 by Kathleen Odean. Published 2001.
- Great books for boys: more than 600 books for boys 2 to 14 by Kathleen Odean. Published 1998.
- The Joy of Reading: A Passionate Guide to 189 of The World’s Best Authors and Their Works by Charles Lincoln Van Doren.
- How To Read A Book: The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading by Mortimer Jerome Adler and Charles Van Doren. This book shows concretely how the serious work of proper reading for instruction and delight. Published in 1940.
- How to think about the great ideas: from the great books of western civilization by Mortimer Jerome Adler
The following books are not available at our local library. I found them worth keeping in my personal library.
- All Through the Ages: History through Literature Guide by Christine Miller – This is a massive list of books ordered by era. I highly recommend this book.
- Turning Back the Pages of Time by Kathy Keller – American history
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FREE BOOKS AND AUDIO BOOKS
The following are resources for FREE literature in text and audiobook formats that I use frequently:
- http://www.freehomeschooldeals.com/category/amazon-kindle-free-books – Visit daily for FREE downloads. These are FREE for a limited time only.
- http://www.blueletterbible.org – Bible and commentary in text and audio
- http://www.gutenberg.org/catalog – ebooks – Gutenberg Project
- http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Gutenberg:The_Audio_Books_Project – Gutenberg Audio Books Project
- http://www.hemetpubliclibrary.org – Hemet Public Library
- http://iedigital.lib.overdrive.com/BE7E24A5-6ADB-4EF2-BADB-BDE68D1A4C51/10/798/en/Default.htm – audio and ebooks – Riverside County library.
- http://librivox.org – audio – public domain books
- http://riversideca.oneclickdigital.com/Home/Newly%20Added.aspx – audio – Riverside County library
- http://rivlib.info/riverside-county-library-system – Riverside County library
The following are additional resources for FREE literature in text and audiobook formats arranged in alphabetical order:
- http://www.aesopfables.com – Fables and Fairytales
- http://www.audiobooksforfree.com/home – audio – public domain books
- http://www.booksshouldbefree.com –
- http://kids.britannica.com – Encyclopaedia Britannica
- http://www.classicreader.com/browse/3/title – FREE ebooks
- http://users.gobigwest.com/rosegate/FreeBooks.html – ebooks
- http://legamus.eu/blog – Legamus! – Books in public domain in Europe
- http://www.literaturepage.com – Literature Page is your place to read classic books, plays, stories, poems, essays, and speeches online.
- http://www.mainlesson.com – ebooks – Yesterday’s Classics to Today’s Children
- http://www.myaudioschool.com – Not free, but worth mentioning
- http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/okbooks.html – Most books copyrighted prior to 1923 are in the public domain. Learn about public domain here.
- http://www.onread.com – free book downloads
- http://www.openculture.com/free_ebooks – high school and college
- http://www.read.gov/books – ebooks – Library of Congress
- http://www.readingwell.com – Click on RECORDINGS tab.
- http://storynory.com/archives/educational-stories – Story Nory
- http://www.yourwebsite.com/tag/free+audio+books – List of audio sites
- http://www.wegivebooks.org/books – ebooks
- http://www.worldcat.org – find resources in other libraries
REAL AND VIRTUAL LIBRARIES
If your head is not spinning due to overwhelm, I commend you. I, on the other hand, had a melt down until I created “virtual bookshelves” to manage our reading lists by grade level and by priority. We aim for completing a classic per week. The following FREE resources are intended to make managing massive reading lists less overwhelming:
- https://docs.google.com – You can also design your virtual library on a FREE Google spreadsheet. This is where I keep my child’s reading list.
- http://www.collectorz.com/book – Can list up 100 books for FREE.
- http://pinterest.com – Pinterest is a fun place to organize favorite literature, if you prefer picture galleries. Here you can easily find more resources similar to your favorites.
- http://www.librarything.com/buzz – LibraryThing is an online service for people who like books. You can share your library with others, and meet people with similar tastes. Can list up 200 books for FREE.
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“Be as careful of the books you read, as the company you keep; for your habits and character will be as much influenced by the former as by the latter.” ~ Paxton Hood