In Defense of Workbooks



“I confess! I’m guilty! I use… dare I say it aloud? Workbooks. The word has been blacklisted by homeschoolers, unschoolers and school-at-homers alike for years. In fact, if you’re ever at a gathering of people whose children aren’t in school it’s a good ice breaker. How about those workbooks, huh? Glad we don’t have to use those anymore! Everybody in the homeschooling community seems to agree that workbooks are taboo, the quintessential school tool and embodiment of all that’s vile about institutionalized education.

“Boring, dreary practice pages with boxes lined up like little soldiers just waiting for the right answer to be filled in (and checked against the key, of course). Chapter reviews, drill exercises, skills practiced over and over and over ad nauseum. Such are the stuff of the creative, freewheeling homeschooler’s nightmares.

“Well I’d like to state clearly for the record – I Love Workbooks! Workbooks are Great!”

From the May/June, 1997 issue of Home Education Magazine: “In Defense of Workbooks,” by Joanne M. Billmers. Read the entire article online, free, at the link above.

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