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Unschooling Books

Unschooling can mean many things to many people - it is more a way of life than just an educational approach. You can find information about unschooling at and

See our selection of books by John Holt, who created the term "unschooling" and is recognized as the father of the modern homeschooling movement.

Here are many other good resources to help you on your unschooling journey:

Homeschooling Our Children, Unschooling Ourselves
by Alison McKee is the author's reflection on her family's adventure in homeschooling, her work as a schoolteacher, and the insights she gained from both. After reading about some of the frustrations Alison directly experienced within the school system, you may better understand why so many teachers don't send their own children to public school!

...An unusual and clear-headed examination of what children need--and why even well-meaning schools can't supply it.- John Taylor Gatto.

Paper, 168 pages.

#0627 $18.00


The Unschooling Handbook: How to Use the Whole World As Your Child's Classroom
by Mary Griffith -Just from the cover, you can tell this is not your typical homeschooling book - and not just because it has "unschooling" in the title!

The colorful cover shows a drawing of a family driving past a zoo, the beach, a capitol building, and a museum. They are smiling and pointing; obviously enjoying their journey and many interesting things along the way. Just like life should be! Inside, Mary has provided lots of good information, including resources for different subjects, real-life examples of what people do, and lots of great explanations.

If you or someone you know doesn't understand this whole unschooling idea, then this may be the book to convince you (or them) to try it. If you are already an ardent unschooler, it will still give you lots of good tips and insights into what other unschoolers may do, and lots of information to help you explain and defend your unschooling decision.

Paper, 230 pages.

#2764 $16.95 $13.99

Real Lives: Eleven Teenagers Who Don't Go to School by Grace Llewellyn. Author of the popular Teenage Liberation Handbook, Grace Llewellyn edits this book of firsthand accounts written by teenagers about the things they can do when given the opportunity. It is reassuring for parents and kids to hear the voices of "real-life" teenagers. It is also fascinating to read all the different teenage stories and see the variety of interests they have and the different educational experiences they've gone through.

We have the Eleven-year anniversary edition, with updates from all the writers).

First published in 1993; updated in 2005.
Nominee, Best Books for Young Adults 1994 (American Library Association)
Includes index, appendix, recommended resources, and black & white photographs.

From the publisher:

In 1993, eleven homeschooled teenagers described their lives in rich detail, and Real Lives quickly became a homeschooling classic. Erin's favorite teacher was her horse Nick, blind in one eye. Kyla flew to South America in September of what would have been her senior year alone, except for her mountain bike. Jeremiah and his sister Serena published a newsletter on peace issues. Patrick, who hoped someday to design video games, had spent the past few years compiling portfolios of his writing and artwork. Rebecca worked at homeless shelters and, through Habitat for Humanity, built houses for people in need. Anne tended honeybees and plucked a bluegrass banjo. Ayanna kept pace with 50 pen-pals mostly in Africa while Kevin talked with people all over the world on his ham radio. Amanda performed with a violin quintet and worked through the mail with her writing mentor. Vallie answered questions at a marine science center; Tabitha answered the phone at a crisis line, and helped midwives at births.

Now those eleven homeschoolers have grown up and engaged the territory of adulthood, college, and career and the new edition of Real Lives includes updates from all of them. From gaining admission to an Ivy League institution without taking the SAT to crafting a simple life centered on writing and gardening, they tell where life has taken them and where they have taken life, and offer hindsight and advice for others choosing to learn outside of school.

This is great reading for teenagers (schooled or unschooled), homeschoolers of any age, educators who want to broaden their understanding of how people learn, and anyone who is curious about what homeschooled kids think of homeschooling--and what those same "kids" think eleven years later. Lots of black/white action photos!

Paper, 320 pages. Updated & revised edition.

#912X $18.00 $15.99

Teenage Liberation Handbook: How to quit School and Get a Real Life and Education
by Grace Llewellyn. This is a terrific book! Written especially for teenagers and people with teenagers in their lives, it is also helpful for anyone who has ever gone to school. Grace discusses how to regain the natural ability to learn and be excited about it, ways of going to college, volunteering, apprenticeships, and more. Leans toward an "unschooling" approach, which Grace is able to superbly articulate. Popular for teenagers who plan on taking charge of their education, whether they are currently homeschooling, planning on homeschooling, or moving on to college. Highly recommended. Paper, 443 pages.

This is the complete, international, revised and expanded edition. There is another less-expensive version available, but it only contains about 1/3 of the content. This edition has more anecdotal material and background information included for each topic and is recommended by the author.

 #9170 Out of stock.


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