Robert Kunzman is associate professor at the Indiana University School of Education and the author of Grappling with the Good- Talking about Religion and Morality in Public Schools.
Kunzman, a professor at the Indiana University School of Education, goes behind the scenes with six conservative Christian families who have decided to homeschool. The book has a remarkably balanced tone, with Kunzman heralding homeschooling's inherent flexibility-in a ranching family, children have anatomy lessons by butchering livestock, and in another, one of seven children has followed her own drummer by enrolling in public high school with her parents' blessing. Conversely, the lack of governmental oversight can be detrimental, as when Kunzman meets a 12-year-old who doesn't know what three times three is or documents a mother ignorantly berating a child who obviously has a learning disability. Between family portraits, Kunzman offers short expositions about various aspects of the growing homeschooling movement, drawing upon his attendance at conventions and political action meetings, but also-in an intriguing section that could have used more development-analyzing race among homeschooling families. This engrossing ethnography puts a human face on Christian homeschooling. (Aug.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
"This beautiful little book looks into the daily routines of six
conservative Christian families who homeschool their children.
Employing the analytical eye of a former teacher and the balanced,
thoughtful wisdom of a seasoned academic, Kunzman not only paints
portraits fairly, but gently questions what he sees (much of which
is deeply troubling) .... [It] may well become a classic in its
Not only a contribution to education policy debates, it's a model of thoughtful dialogue and generous insight on a topic on which debate often yields simply visceral left-right division."--Edward Gresser Director, Progressive Economy Project
"I am keeping Kunzman's . . . fine book on a nearby shelf where
I can refer to it regularly."--Jay Matthews, The Washington
"This is the best observation of instructional processes in homeschool families that we have available, and is an essential reference for those interested in the homeschool population."--Kurt J. Bauman, Teachers College Record
"One of the most important books on homeschooling ever written."--Milton Gaither, author of Homeschool: An American History
"Illuminating . . . A sound piece of scholarship and one to be praised for its accessibility and the windows into the families' worlds it provides."--J. Gary Knowles, ENCOUNTER: Education for Meaning and Social Justice