What We’ve Been Reading — August 2015

What we're reading in August

Originally, I had planned to share both the assigned and read-aloud books we’re planning to read for our entire school year. However, since we school year-round and I tend to be overzealous when it comes to list-making — see last year’s list here — I decided to only post what we are reading on a month-by-month basis. So my plan is to share the books our family is reading individually and aloud during read-aloud time each month.

Here’s what we’ve been reading this month:

Read-Aloud — For everyone

We’re reading two books right now:

Little Pilgrim’s Progress: From John Bunyan’s Classic by Helen L. Taylor — One day we’ll read the original Pilgrim’s Progress, but for now, this version uses simpler language and still retains the storyline. My girls are eager to find out what happens to Little Christian as he journeys from the City of Destruction to the Celestial City. It has been so neat to watch my children figure out who all the characters represent and to talk about the plan of salvation with them.

We’re also reading Irene Howat’s Ten Girls Who Didn’t Give In: Inspiring Stories of Martyrs. My oldest daughter read a few chapters of this book last year for her independent reading time, but it was a little advanced for her. So we’re going through the book together. The stories are based on historical young women who endured persecution, even death, for their faith. Although the stories are sad, they’re also very challenging and provide a great opportunity to talk about our faith and standing up to persecution.

Kate {6-1/2 years old}

This year I decided to assign a chapter book each month for my 2nd grader to read. This month Kate is reading:

Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers — This book is on our Ambleside free reading list, and so far we are all slightly annoyed by the title character. But the magic and make-believe of sliding up banisters and jumping into chalk drawings has really captured our imaginations.

During her quiet time, Kate is also reading a lot of The Boxcar Children books by Gertrude Chandler Warner.

Cora {4-1/2 years old}

My little kindergartener is learning to read. We are really enjoying All About Reading, and Cora has started reading stories by herself. So I’m trying to find books she can read and build fluency. For now, she’s reading Set 1 of Bobby Lynn Maslen’s Bob Books and Jan Berenstain’s The Berenstain Bears Phonics Fun.

In addition to books Cora is reading aloud to me, I also have a basket of books that I’m reading to her and her little sister Annabeth. I’m rotating these books out on a weekly basis. Here’s what’s in their basket this week:


My friend Sarah and I are reading Sally Clarkson’s Seasons of a Mother’s Heart for our book club. Yes, we are a two-woman book club 🙂 If you’re a homeschooling Mom with a heart for discipling your children and leading them to Christ, then I HIGHLY recommend this book. There are questions and practical application ideas that make it a great book to read with a friend.

Another book I’m loving right now is Sarah Mackenzie’s Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler’s Guide to Unshakeable Peace, which is now in its 2nd edition. I read the original text last year as I was desperate to find some peace in my own homeschool, and let me just say, this book delivers. The 2nd edition has 35% new content and even if you have the first edition, I would recommend buying the 2nd — it’s that good. I’m reading and taking notes so it’ll be a while before I finish, but it’s so encouraging. I love this: “Teaching from rest . . . means that we are doing one thing at a time, and we do that [one] thing with all our heart.”

As we transition into a new school year, we’re getting back into our daily reading and read-aloud times, and I can’t think of anything else I’d rather be doing 🙂

Do you have a special time or times during the day when you read with your kids?  What are you reading together?


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  1. Great books! Blueberries for Sal is one of my favorite books from when I was a girl. I’m going to have to add Ten Girls Who Didn’t Give In to our book list; it sounds incredible.

    Right now, the older girls (8 & 9) are reading Moccasin Trail, By the Great Horn Spoon!, and a biography of William Wilberforce for school reading, and then for free reading time they are both reading Beverly Cleary books.

    The little one (4) is being read to – The Boxcar Children, The Llama Who Had No Pajama, and a couple of the Usborne Level 1 Science titles.

    Will is doing all of the schooling with the girls this year, since I’m working and he’s not – so I am missing read-aloud time for sure!

    I’m reading through Meet Your King by Warren Wiersbe and rereading A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (one of my favorites!).
    Lisha recently posted…Homeschooling + Working Outside the HomeMy Profile

  2. We love Blueberries for Sam. It’s so good to see other kids reading it!



  1. […] Last month Kate read Mary Poppins, which she really enjoyed, although Mary P. isn’t so sweet and lovely as she is on the movie. In September, she’s been reading all The Boxcar Children books she can find at the library. I’m secretly hoping she finishes them soon so she can move on to another author. […]