It matters not so much whether a book is fiction or nonfiction, old
or new, “classical” or not, so much as it matters whether or not the
literature is pointing us to the eternal.
ask Jesus into my heart, like that little
girl in the picture was doing.
As parents, it isn’t our job to save
our kids, but the faithful parent’s job
description includes pointing his or
her children to the Savior. Choosing to
read good books to our kids—
especially The Good Book—is necessary as we
fulfill this calling.
• Choosing quality books provides an
active antidote to an electronic lifestyle
and modern cultural tastes.
Are you one of those parents who
are wringing their hands over our TV-saturated culture, plummeting U.S. test
scores in certain educational fields, and
the electronic overload you see around
you? Stop wringing and start reading.
You have an opportunity to shape your
home’s culture, and a good place to start
is to encourage reading and outdoor activity time.
C. S. Lewis famously depicts a child
who reads “none of the right books” in
the character of Eustace Clarence Scrubb.
Eustace is ill prepared for the adventure
of real life because his reading consists of
“exports and imports and governments
and drains.” His lack of imagination and
taste for modern, socialistic imagery humorously provides Lewis’s readers with a
model to . . . avoid.
• Choosing quality books opens the
door to self-teaching.
If your homeschooling family is like
mine was when I was growing up, you
have ten children of all different grade
levels and learning styles and two parents trying to manage crowd control and
promote actual education. As a parent, I
can now discern one of my parents’ wise
tactics: hand a child a book like A Tale of
Two Cities and discuss it with him or her
after the child reads it.
Reading the assigned book would get
me thinking and . . . it would also give
my parents time to give attention to
the other children’s needs. Voilà. Easier
What Kinds of Books?
“But,” you say, “what kinds of books fall
into the category of ‘quality books’?” The
criteria with which to respond to that
question are endless. For the purposes of
this article, I’ll briefly mention just two.
• The Eternal in Books
Amy Carmichael, the well-known
nineteenth-century missionary to India,
had this to say: “It is the eternal in books
that makes them our friends and teachers—the paragraphs, the verses, that grip
memory and ring down the years like
bells, or call like bugles or sound like
trumpets; words of vision that open to us
undying things and fix our eyes on them.
Walk a Different Path
Not ready to commit to a major? Looking
for an alternative to a traditional freshman
year? Don’t sit this one out. Join us and
Walk a Different Path.
Israel & Archaeology
Arts & Culture
Great is Thy
Learn more at
www.cairn.edu Established 1913 • Langhorne, Pennsylvania
www.TheHomeschoolMagazine.com Half pg hor 1/ 13.indd 1