Attention all you homeschooling parents and parents interested in enriching your child’s current academic experience:
We, at East Side Books, are dedicated to providing you a wide variety of resources for teaching and learning that won’t break your bank account.
Owner Diane Doonan and East Side Books’ employee and experienced homeschooling parent Kim Busby have been working together to make teaching materials more readily accessible to homeschooling customers. As Kim says, “When I was homeschooling my boys, I would have loved to have had a resource like East Side Books. There is so much here.” Recently, they created a section in the Children’s Room that is dedicated to augmenting homeschooling curriculum and encouraging learning enrichment. Currently featured in this area is a wide selection of learning aids to teach math concepts and time, a collection of A Beka homeschooling texts, manuals on how to teach students to become better test takers, and a wide variety of Language Arts resources.
Kim, who homeschooled her two boys from grades K through 5th, is also available to customers as a “homeschool consultant”. Wonderfully friendly and thoughtful, Kim is an enthusiastic font of information. Lately she has been busy pulling together ideas for homeschooling units. For example, she put together an excellent unit on Ancient Civilizations, a subject that is required by the California Standards to be taught in early Elementary and Junior High. This unit includes several general resource texts such as The Roman Empire by Don Nardo. (It can be challenging to teach multiple grade levels all at once, as many homeschooling parents are, so Kim suggest teaching everyone the same subject by adjusting the material to ability and including texts that accommodate various reading levels.) In her unit, she also included a copy of Hammond’s Atlas of World History, which, according to Kim, is “an invaluable resource that every learning household should have. It has wonderful historical maps and illustrations of language development, and is so helpful when students are trying to envision the world as it once was.” She also included a number of historical fiction novels that are set in ancient times. One such book is The Rotten Romans by Terry Deary from the Horrible Histories Series. Kim says that she is a “firm believer in historical fiction. It really helps the history stick in kids’ heads. Both my boys are really good at history and I read them a ton of historical fiction.” Some of Kim’s favorite historical fiction for kids is By the Great Horned Spoon about the California Gold Rush, Tibaldo and the Hole in the Calendar by Abner Shimony, and anything by Scott O’Dell. Check out our excellent children’s historical fiction section located in the Children’s Room.
This is an example of just one of the units Kim can help put together for interested customers. There is so much to draw from at East Side Books that you could create a whole year of curriculum, or, depending on your needs, just find a book here and there to help augment the program you are already using. We have books on all subject matters from preschool reading level to advanced. Some books are as little as $1.00. Kim recommends the history series The History of US by Joy Hakim. She says this five book series is the very best history text ever. “The standards are listed within the inside flap, which is very helpful. The text is approachable and there is wonderful supporting materials in the back–maps, further reading lists. I used this series with my boys starting in 3rd grade and as a review as they got older.” Kim also recommends The Value Tales series by Ann Donegan Johnson. “These books are back in print after being difficult to find for awhile. I find this series charming and love the mix of historical information with morality lessons.”
We also have excellent resources for students who are looking for extra information on favorite subjects or research projects. Within the Children’s Room alone we have a Newbery Award winners’ section; a whole bookshelf of science books that cover subjects such as weather, experiments, the human body, botany, space and planets, and more; a large biography section; a whole shelf dedicated to California history; wonderful children’s arts and crafts books; and many shelves of Christian fiction for young and advanced readers plus a wide variety of children’s fiction and poetry for all ages. We generally carry books that are required reading for English classes, and have many of the titles on the Battle of the Books list. If you don’t see what you are looking for, please ask for help or add your request to our Wants List and we will keep an eye out for the books you interested in. We can always place a special order as well.
And for you parents and teachers, we have a whole Homeschooling and Education section in the nonfiction room aimed at helping educators. Some popular titles are the classic Christian homeschooling book Seasons of a Mother’s Heart by Sally Clarkson, The Christian Homeschool by Gregg Harris, and Homeschooling for Excellence by David and Micki Colfax. We also carry Deschooling Gently by Tammy Takahashi who is the author of a popular homeschooling blog located at www.justenough.wordpress.com/2006/10/09/deschooling-gently/ .
Remember, our aim this Fall at Eastside Books is to get the word out that we are excited to provide you with a wide variety of learning and teaching resources that fit your bugdet. Please don’t hesitate to ask for help–Kim or Diane are both eager to work with you to enrich your child’s learning experience.