As for Me and My House

As For Me and My House by Paula Penn-Nabrit

Admittedly, homeschooling is not for everyone. Having stipulated to that, this volume illustrates why many families would do well to consider homeschooling as an educational option. Author, Paula Penn-Nabrit, reveals her family’s surprising rationale for choosing home-schooling. She and husband, Charles Nabrit, have merged spirit with intellect while homeschooling three sons. Their intense academic study approach is holistic, emphasizes both depth and breadth of knowledge, and values critical thinking. It is framed around the premise that achieving equilibrium in mind, body and spirit is the ultimate educational accomplishment.

More significantly, this work removes some of the outlander stigma so often associated with homeschoolers. This is the account of an African-American family functioning holistically. The kids, judging by well-publicized statistics regarding adolescent males, are not normal. Yet, they are spiritually, intellectually, and physically strong. They are healthy and self-confident young men. Granted, this family is different, but in ways that are wonderful. The motivation for this difference stems from a desire to ensure this family’s members’ success, individually and collectively.

Although not intended as a how to guide, Paula clearly chronicles the action plan they used to develop curricula, find and hire teachers, and stay on track of specific educational objectives. Their methods richly apply situational creativity and demonstrate numerous ways to have fun and grow together as a family.

Also of note are her comparative insights about public versus private educational institutions. Paula cleverly weaves a Reality 101 lecture into this discussion by anecdotally addressing issues of classism, racism, and sexism. The wisdom from the periphery is reason enough to read this work, even if homeschooling is not on your horizon.

Originally published in 1995, this second printing comes on the heels of tangible evidence of an unqualified pedagogic success. After six years of homeschooling, their older sons, twins, Charles and Damon, both were admitted to Princeton University, Dartmouth College, Morehouse College, and The Ohio State University’s Honors College. They chose to enter Princeton.