When I saw that this week The Homeschool Village was asking “What book has encouraged/supported you in your homeschooling adventure??”, the book that immediately came to mind was The Well-Trained Mind.(Yes, I see the pun and decided to keep it.)
When I first started researching homeschooling, I found a curriculum that I fell in love with. It focused on reading wonderful books, and that greatly appealed to me. I joined a Yahoo group for preschoolers and started using the preschool curriculum. But it was on that group that I first heard of The Well Trained Mind. Intrigued by the title, I started reading reviews. Pretty soon I realized that I was going to have to read the book, so I bought it. (You really don’t have to twist my arm too much to buy a book.) I read the book from cover to cover. My husband read the book from cover to cover. After reading it, we both knew that this was the kind of education we had missed. It was the kind of education we would like for our children.
So our long-term plans shifted. We began to think in terms of the stages of learning. We started researching Latin curricula. We decided to study history chronologically.
This all happened over 7 years ago. Have we followed The Well-Trained Mind completely? No. If Susan Wise Bauer were to visit my home, would she recognize any of her ideas here? Probably not. (Though she would find all 4 volumes of Story of the World and First Language Lessons!) I’ve done more research. I’ve branched out and found some different ways of doing some things. I haven’t emphasized some of the things that I should have to be truly “classical”. Even so, the single most influential homeschooling book for our home has been The Well-Trained Mind. As a matter of fact, I want to purchase the 3rd edition and reread it now that I have a children in the logic stage. I could use the inspiration!
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something, it will bring me closer to purchasing a new copy of The Well-Trained Mind.