The Homeschooling Handbook

Revised 2nd Edition, Three Rivers Press, 1999
ISBN 9780761517276 trade paper
ISBN 9780307477699 ebook


Homeschooling has changed from an eccentric educational alternative to a mainstream family choice. The Homeschooling Handbook provides a survey of this rapidly growing movement for anyone interested in understanding the variety of opportunities homeschooling offers.

Author Mary Griffith sought to provide answers to all the questions she had about homeschooling when she was first starting out, and called on several dozen homeschooling families to help her describe the full range in styles of homeschooling and , along with the most useful resources, the most helpful support groups, the most daunting challenges, and most gratifying successes.

Practical, down-to-earth, and to-the-point, The Homeschooling Handbook is essential reading both for families already homeschooling and for those just beginning to consider the idea.


  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1:  Does Homeschooling Really Work, or What Do  We Tell the Grandparents?
  • Chapter 2: Legal Stuff, or Can We Really Do This?
  • Chapter 3: Structure, or Can We Wear Our Pajamas to School?
  • Chapter 4: Assisted Homeschooling, or Do We Really Need Any Help?
  • Chapter 5: Money and Other Practical Matters
  • Chapter 6: The Primary Years: Reading, ‘Riting, and ‘Rithmetic
  • Chapter 7: The Middle Years: Exploring the World
  • Chapter 8: The Teen Years: Finding a Direction
  • Chapter 9: Evaluation and Record Keeping, or How Do We Know They’re Learning?
  • Chapter 10: Finding Learning Resources
  • Chapter 11: The Homeschooling Community
  • Chapter 12: Coping with the Rough Spots
  • Chapter 13: Special Circumstances
  • Chapter 14: Beyond Homeschooling
  • Afterword
  • Appendix A: Homeschooling Resources
  • Appendix B: Homeschooling Organizations
  • Appendix C: Selected Learning Resources
  • Appendix D: Colleges That Have Accepted Homeschoolers
  • Works Cited
  • Index

The Homeschooling Handbook is a valuable resource for anyone interested in nurturing their child. Whether you homeschool or not, you will find many fresh ideas for working with children in these pages.”–Pat Farenga, former publisher, Growing Without Schooling

“If you’re looking for practical, commonsense advice about homeschooling, if you’re looking for answers to the really tough questions from someone with real insights to the movement, if you’re looking for sensible commmentary backed up by experience and savvy, Mary Griffith’s The Homeschooling Handbook is just what you’re looking for.”–Helen Hegener, editor, Home Education Magazine

” . . . the first ‘how to homeschool’ book in which the example families bear any resemblance to my own–no perfect system of home maintenance, proper nutrition, and college-level studies for 10-year-olds.”

On the 1st Edition of The Homeschooling Handbook:

“After reading this book, I feel like I’m on the right track toward educating myself about homeschooling and making the right decision for my sons.”

The Homeschooling Handbook left me feeling like I’d visited the homes of many homeschoolers who generously shared their secrets, time, and wisdom. It would be a great addition to any homeschooler’s library.”

“When I first heard of The Homeschooling Handbook, written by a well-respected and experienced homeschooler, I thought, ‘that’s nice, but is there really a need for another homeschooling book?’ So, I sat down to read Mary’s book with a bit of skepticism. Well, what a nice surprise! I found Mary’s writing style to be very readable and her thoughts well-organized. She covers all the bases. . . Both useful and enjoyable are the opinions of a variety of homeschoolers who are quoted throughout. . . I would highly recommend Mary’s book to new homeschoolers and as a good introduction to homeschooling for relatives and friends. If a new homeschooler could pick only one book on the ‘nuts and bolts’ of homeschooling, this is the one I would suggest they read.”–Nancy Greer, in the Family Unschoolers Network News