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Susan Wise Bauer Interview on Read Aloud Revival

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Just listened to it. I swear that hearing SWB speak lowers my blood pressure and puts me in a very pleasant, can-do frame of mind.

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Thank yo so much for posting this!  I just listened to it (even though I'm long retired from homeschooling). It just reminded me of the reason(s) we love SWB and WTM at our house!

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Love her honesty. Seriously. Although that also has me re-thinking some things (like whether one or both of my kids might do better in a school setting).

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I really wasn't planning to listen, but I caved. SWB was mostly fine, but I didn't find anything especially revelatory. But come on, Sarah Mackenzie has never heard of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle by Betty MacDonald, the Dark Is Rising series by Susan Cooper, and Centerburg Tales by Robert McCloskey - and that's just in this one episode! I can understand not having read all of them, but it's like she is hearing these titles mentioned for the first time in her life! I still can't understand why someone with such a lack of expertise is assuming the role of some kind of guru.

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I enjoyed this. SWB always encourages me to think carefully about what we do and why and how.

 

We too enjoy John McDonough as an audiobook reader. He narrates many of the Freddy the Pig stories.

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I enjoyed this. SWB always encourages me to think carefully about what we do and why and how.

 

We too enjoy John McDonough as an audiobook reader. He narrates many of the Freddy the Pig stories.

My guys enjoyed John McDonough's readings of the Poppy series by Avi.  Good memories. :)

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I really wasn't planning to listen, but I caved. SWB was mostly fine, but I didn't find anything especially revelatory. But come on, Sarah Mackenzie has never heard of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle by Betty MacDonald, the Dark Is Rising series by Susan Cooper, and Centerburg Tales by Robert McCloskey - and that's just in this one episode! I can understand not having read all of them, but it's like she is hearing these titles mentioned for the first time in her life! I still can't understand why someone with such a lack of expertise is assuming the role of some kind of guru.

 

This bugged me too. I liked the SWB podcast though so I ended up paying for the "Master Class" last night and I feel ripped off after that one. I didn't hear anything I wasn't already putting into practice. They both seem like very nice people and they do have pleasant voices to listen to, but the content was just not there.

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I really wasn't planning to listen, but I caved. SWB was mostly fine, but I didn't find anything especially revelatory. But come on, Sarah Mackenzie has never heard of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle by Betty MacDonald, the Dark Is Rising series by Susan Cooper, and Centerburg Tales by Robert McCloskey - and that's just in this one episode! I can understand not having read all of them, but it's like she is hearing these titles mentioned for the first time in her life! I still can't understand why someone with such a lack of expertise is assuming the role of some kind of guru.

 

A group of friends I was speaking with yesterday had never heard of Robert Herrick or Matthew Arnold.

 

Why should they? Why should Sarah Mackenzie know about The Egg and I, not to mention Mrs. Piggle Wiggle, or Lentil?

 

Are we not educating our children at home because our public education system, and our pop culture scene, have stopped passing along the good stuff? Nobody under the age of 40 knows anything.

 

They will all learn as they go. They are coming from behind, this new crop of homeschooling moms, but they are learning along with their children and committed to that pursuit.

 

The guru angle -- I definitely don't understand that, either. I've decided that Sarah probably appeals to her peers. She is going at this homeschooling task with gumption and love, and courage to make up the deficit and learn, which is probably quite inspirational to those who face the identical challenge. They can all grow together, which is a nice thing. (I don't know why everyone thinks that forty to fifty-year-old homeschool veterans need to listen to her talks, but I'm not sure she meant to teach us anything.)

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FairProspects, make sure you toss us an email at support@readaloudrevival.com and we'll get you a refund. We don't ever want you to feel ripped off, and if you didn't get anything from the training, you should get your money back. :)

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It is interesting that we are discussing "guru-ism" and a podcast where SWB herself mentions writing WTM before ever educating a high school age student herself.  It just shows that one doesn't necessarily have to live something to contribute to the discussion.  

 

I have not ever gotten the impression from Sarah's podcasts that she presents herself as a guru.  The tagline to the podcast is something like "encouraging you to build your family's culture around books."  She brings on guests with vastly greater experience than her own, asks them the same questions that all of us newbies wish we could ask them, then makes the interviews public.  That's pretty cool, IMO.  

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A group of friends I was speaking with yesterday had never heard of Robert Herrick or Matthew Arnold.

 

Why should they? Why should Sarah Mackenzie know about The Egg and I, not to mention Mrs. Piggle Wiggle, or Lentil?

 

Are we not educating our children at home because our public education system, and our pop culture scene, have stopped passing along the good stuff? Nobody under the age of 40 knows anything.

 

They will all learn as they go. They are coming from behind, this new crop of homeschooling moms, but they are learning along with their children and committed to that pursuit.

 

The guru angle -- I definitely don't understand that, either. I've decided that Sarah probably appeals to her peers. She is going at this homeschooling task with gumption and love, and courage to make up the deficit and learn, which is probably quite inspirational to those who face the identical challenge. They can all grow together, which is a nice thing. (I don't know why everyone thinks that forty to fifty-year-old homeschool veterans need to listen to her talks, but I'm not sure she meant to teach us anything.)

 

I agree with this.  Sarah Mackenzie said herself that she wrote Teaching from Rest because she needed to read it.  She is learning right along side us as she interviews people for her podcast.  I think that's great, I think it shows humility.  She's nice to listen to and I like her energy.

 

I don't believe she views herself as a guru and I wouldn't call her a guru either, but I do appreciate what she is doing and I find it helpful for my family's home educating journey.  I am her peer though, so I think you are on to something.  When a bunch of us homeschooling moms sit around a table at the park while our kids play, we talk homeschooling stuff, parenting stuff, life stuff.  I think this current culture of online homeschooling moms doing podcasts and writing blogs just broaden that same experience.  I'm grateful for that.  

 

I do value the veteran homeschooling moms just as much.  I value it all.  Do I embrace it all.  Nope.  But I'm glad it's available to me. 

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I enjoyed the podcast, being in the trenches hearing those that have passed before successfully is inspiring. I love the down to earth attitude of SWB, I love that she doesn't push hs moms to martyrdom but does gently suggest if hs'ing is being perpetually put off then it is time to re-evaluate. I love hearing someone who has gone before saying there is a lot to this job I thought Sarah did a good job with the interview and I enjoyed the format.

 

 

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I listened the other morning while I ran.  Some things I've heard Susan talk about before (I love hearing her speak in Cincy every couple years!!), but it was certainly beneficial to hear her say them again.  Additionally, some things were new to me.  I loved hearing her mention specific books as well, and how they shared them as a family.  That's the first RAR podcast I've listened to and I really enjoyed it. 

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FairProspects, make sure you toss us an email at [email protected]<script cf-hash='f9e31' type="text/javascript"> /* */</script> and we'll get you a refund. We don't ever want you to feel ripped off, and if you didn't get anything from the training, you should get your money back. :)

 

I do very much appreciate good customer service and this offer speaks highly of your integrity. :)

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It is interesting that we are discussing "guru-ism" and a podcast where SWB herself mentions writing WTM before ever educating a high school age student herself.  It just shows that one doesn't necessarily have to live something to contribute to the discussion.  

 

 

I actually agree with you here, Monica, but I do want to point out that my mother and co-author had educated three high school students, and much of the original high school section came out of her experience. And I had been one of those students, so I had "lived" it in a way. 

 

SWB

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Read aloud culture isn't anything new, of course, and I don't feel I "need" to listen to the podcasts or read the blog to learn anything. Yet I have really enjoyed listening to a number of them while I do my planning on the weekends, and also reading some of the posts. I have even found a few new books I wasn't aware of, to check out. So I've become a fan. :)

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I actually agree with you here, Monica, but I do want to point out that my mother and co-author had educated three high school students, and much of the original high school section came out of her experience. And I had been one of those students, so I had "lived" it in a way.

 

SWB

Thank you for clarifying, I had forgotten your mom was co-author of WTM!

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I really wasn't planning to listen, but I caved. SWB was mostly fine, but I didn't find anything especially revelatory. But come on, Sarah Mackenzie has never heard of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle by Betty MacDonald, the Dark Is Rising series by Susan Cooper, and Centerburg Tales by Robert McCloskey - and that's just in this one episode! I can understand not having read all of them, but it's like she is hearing these titles mentioned for the first time in her life! I still can't understand why someone with such a lack of expertise is assuming the role of some kind of guru.

The books Sarah is unfamiliar with shock me on a regular basis.

 

And yes, I am well under 40, but I am a children's librarian and the daughter of one so that may make a difference.

 

I want to tell all the subscribers to visit some libraries, find a great librarian, and make a friend for life. :D

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I agree with this. Sarah Mackenzie said herself that she wrote Teaching from Rest because she needed to read it. She is learning right along side us as she interviews people for her podcast. I think that's great, I think it shows humility. She's nice to listen to and I like her energy.

 

I don't believe she views herself as a guru and I wouldn't call her a guru either, but I do appreciate what she is doing and I find it helpful for my family's home educating journey. I am her peer though, so I think you are on to something. When a bunch of us homeschooling moms sit around a table at the park while our kids play, we talk homeschooling stuff, parenting stuff, life stuff. I think this current culture of online homeschooling moms doing podcasts and writing blogs just broaden that same experience. I'm grateful for that.

 

I do value the veteran homeschooling moms just as much. I value it all. Do I embrace it all. Nope. But I'm glad it's available to me.

I agree with this post. Sarah Mackenzie isn't trying to sell that she knows every remotely good book ever written for children. Not even close! Her point is that she wants to have a family culture filled with shared books and she wants to share her journey (cause even she has said she's still travelling - and really, aren't we all?). Not ony that, she wants to encourage us to get out there and discover our own great reads with our own great families, then come back to the community she's built and share it - so everyone can benefit!

 

As always, take what you can use and leave the rest. Best part of homeschooling :)

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I really have enjoyed all the podcasts.

 

Our local libraries are not filled with friendly advice giving librarians. They employ older retirees and young adults who need part time work.

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I'd heard of all the books mentioned in the RAR podcast, but never of Herrick, Arnold, The Egg & I, or Lentil. I'm on the low end of the age range you gave (40-50). I love reading, but I definitely missed reading many good & great books when I was younger that I'm enjoying finding this time around.

 

A group of friends I was speaking with yesterday had never heard of Robert Herrick or Matthew Arnold.

 

Why should they? Why should Sarah Mackenzie know about The Egg and I, not to mention Mrs. Piggle Wiggle, or Lentil?

 

I enjoyed SWB on RAR, but didn't see many other podcasts I was interested in listening to. Was there one by Janice Campbell that I missed? 

I'm always on the lookout for good audiobooks! So far, however, I haven't been able to find the narration of Mrs Piggle Wiggle by John McDonough. (We've listened to several of them with Karen White narrating.) 

 

I'm in admiration of Sarah for parenting so many kids & taking time to do a podcast for other homeschool moms to listen to. Kudos.

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The books Sarah is unfamiliar with shock me on a regular basis.

 

And yes, I am well under 40, but I am a children's librarian and the daughter of one so that may make a difference.

 

I want to tell all the subscribers to visit some libraries, find a great librarian, and make a friend for life. :D

 

You all do realize that Sarah is probably reading this thread, right? So be nice.

 

We went to the library yesterday, and...

  • none of the computers were working, so no one could do an online search for anything.
  • the copier was broken, but it didn't matter, anyway, because...
  • the change machine was out-of-order, and
  • we were not allowed to donate the lovely books we had brought, due to "space restrictions," so we carried them back to the car (we'll take them to another library farther away).

There was one crabby person at the front desk, and one helpful person in the children's section. We couldn't find the books we wanted (Then There Were Five and Spiderweb for Two, by Elizabeth Enright -- in case Sarah is reading this ;)), and the large number of unrestrained toddlers crying and climbing the shelves made us beat a hasty retreat. Not every library is a Shiny Utopia of Reading Pleasures, but we work with what we have.

 

As for "learning along the way," we all do that. Who will ever be encouraged to step up into leadership, or even into making a contribution to what could be a joyful and collaborative endeavor (homeschooling), if every time there are detractors who say, "Who does she think she is? She doesn't even know Fact X, but I know Fact X, therefore I am beyond her knowledge." How can we be so enthusiastic about a child learning about a book or a concept for the first time, but slam down an adult for discovering the same thing? My 65 year old seminary professor used to always say, "Still learning, still learning, still learning." The man was encyclopedic -- everything from Ugaritic to Dead Sea Scrolls to the habits of honeybees, but he was still learning. :)

 

I am grateful for those who are brave enough to teach us, even as they are learning along the way.

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I actually agree with you here, Monica, but I do want to point out that my mother and co-author had educated three high school students, and much of the original high school section came out of her experience. And I had been one of those students, so I had "lived" it in a way. 

 

SWB

 

 

I think the co-authorship is what makes TWTM so unique and so helpful. 

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I want to tell all the subscribers to visit some libraries, find a great librarian, and make a friend for life. :D

 

Like another poster, we don't have any real librarians at our local library. There is a dearth of good books at our local library because 1) anything not checked out for a certain period of time gets chucked to make room for the new fluff stuff, 2) in our area, not many people read hardcopy books from the library anymore, especially the classics (see #1), 3) the new fluff stuff is show-cased front & center, 4) our library is small to begin with, and 5) more room is being given to computers (which are used heavily) than to books every year.

 

I found Shipwrecked! by Rhoda Bumberg on the shelves locally & it hadn't been checked out since 2003. I had read her Commodore Perry in the Land of the Shogun before, but hadn't realized she had another book from such a different perspective of the same relative timeframe. What a find! When I brought it up to the desk to check it out, two of the workers had never heard of it (& one had never heard of the author) and told me to let them know if it was any good. It is the blind leading the blind where I live!

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I plan to listen to the podcast, because I enjoy all of SWB's talks.

But I have used Sonlight for years so there is no need for a read-aloud revival at our house!

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You all do realize that Sarah is probably reading this thread, right? So be nice.

 

 

 

You're right. I was definitely snippy last night...the curmudgeon that many in our profession are accused of being.

 

Don't get me started on poorly funded, depressingly stocked, sad libraries staffed by cranks, though, or I might slip back into character.  :lol:

 

I've been reading Amongst Lovely Things for a many years, and like Sarah. :) She has always struck me as very genuine, willing to learn, and happy to share her journey! 

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I love Sarah and her podcast. The monthly fee for the membership is out of my budget, but I so appreciate the podcast! Loved hearing SWB too!

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Have you all listened to Pam Barnhill's new Your Morning Basket podcast?  She is one of Sarah's friends, but has two podcasts of her own.  Her second episode she interviewed Andrew Pudewa.  I know many on this forum love his talks.  I got a lot of value from this podcast.

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Sarah, I love your podcast, website and book.  Your enthusiasm is contagious, and that's such a blessing for homeschool moms.  I've been homeschooling for the past 21 years, with four years left to go, and I've learned (and been reminded of) several things I need to be better at accomplishing from your site and your guests.

 

The most important message for homeschool moms that I can offer is....We're all in this together, nobody's perfect, and we need to be supportive of one another and our efforts.

 

Have a great year, everybody!

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I had never heard of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle (along with many others) until I started homeschooling my own kids. I was a lit major in college, too. In my opinion, there are just too many great books out there for us to all know about each one. Plus, all the greats I did read were not read in school but ones gifted to me by my bibliophile grandfather, including the Little House series. Our library is horribly funded, although we do have an awesome children's librarian!!! We have come across several titles from WWE that my dd has requested to read the whole book after listening to the narrations, and they hardly ever have the titles we want and I have to buy them.

 

I am also a newbie to the RAR podcasts, but I am in love with them. I don't necessarily learn vast amounts from them (and lit major....reading is a priority in this house), but I am always inspired and refreshed after listening. Sarah just has this quality about her that is calming and inspiring at the same time:) Plus, I always come away with new books added to our Read Aloud wish list.

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I really wasn't planning to listen, but I caved. SWB was mostly fine, but I didn't find anything especially revelatory. But come on, Sarah Mackenzie has never heard of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle by Betty MacDonald, the Dark Is Rising series by Susan Cooper, and Centerburg Tales by Robert McCloskey - and that's just in this one episode! I can understand not having read all of them, but it's like she is hearing these titles mentioned for the first time in her life! I still can't understand why someone with such a lack of expertise is assuming the role of some kind of guru.

After this thread I went and listened to several of the podcast episodes. I've really enjoyed them.

 

I was homeschooled all the way to university, I'm a voracious reader, and our home was full of read alouds. I now read quite a bit to my kids and regularly research, borrow, and buy good books. And yet I was unfamiliar with Mrs. Piggle Wiggle and despite loving Robert McCloskey and owning several of his books, I didn't know about the Centerburg Tales.

 

There are just too many good books for everyone to know all of them. Let's have some grace about that. Sarah's working on exposure and she is humble and real.

 

And I haven't yet heard a 'guru' attitude in any of the podcasts. Sarah reminds me more of a reporter who is interested in a subject and who interviews experts, documentary style. She's hasn't claimed to be en expert, just to have an passion for this topic. If her podcasts aren't for you that's fine, but your broad criticisms seem out of place.

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Extremely rare for me to post, but feel compelled though I am way late to this discussion.

 

I am 40 something and just recently discovered Read Aloud Revival, Sarah Mackenzie, and all those wonderful things at her site.  Love the podcasts; brighten my day.  Even bought that little book Teaching From Rest, though it is simple in content, it speaks to me.  Didn't think I needed the journal to accompany it, yet one day I took the notion that I did, so I downloaded it.   Trying to figure out how to apply these simple words to teaching my one child who is almost to high school. 

 

I didn't think this perky, young homeschool mother of six would have anything to offer that I would be interested in and now I subscribe to her site.  My only gripe is that I just do not have time or the unlimited bandwith to watch all these wonderful things she puts out. 

 

So much bad, mediocre and awful in this world.  When someone comes along bringing good, happy, innocent, and positive, I want to embrace it and do what I can to help promote it. 

 

She doesn't have to be an expert.  Doesn't have to have a Phd in library science or anything. Doesn't have to be a curriculum publisher.  Just another mother learning and trying to teach her children in peace and maybe make a little money doing it is even better.  Honestly, it is refreshing to hear from someone not touting her credentials.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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