Saturday, March 21, 2009



Katie Hines, writer

A Homeschool View

Katie Hines: graduated third in my class in high school and completed two years of college. I live in SC, and have two girls, now ages 18 and 21. I homeschooled for about 4 years.

Shari: My neighbor homeschooled her children. She said they pretty much worked on their own and spent less time with lessons than if they had attended public school. Did you find that to be the case?
Katie: I find that basically to be true.
Shari: I have heard many parents homeschool for religious reasons. Was that your motivation? Why did the idea appeal to you?
Katie: I homeschooled for a couple of reasons. First, all the stay-at-home moms in my church homeschooled, and they all said public schools were bad, and intimated that if you didn’t homeschool you were a bad parent. So there was lots of pressure from that point. I did believe that the girls would do better being homeschooled than attending public school,, and I didn’t like the idea of someone besides myself teaching my kids, of being an authority in their lives.
Shari: Did you homeschool from kindergarten through 12th grade or did your children attend public school part of the time?
Katie: My kids attended private school for a couple of years, interspersed with homeschooling. When they reached middle school age, we did put our kids in public school, and I have to say they both thrived and came out of their shells.
Shari: Does homeschooling allow children to study only subjects they enjoy? Or do they enjoy them because they have more freedom to explore the subject in their own way?
Katie: I don’t think my kids really enjoyed much of any subjects! They were better at some than others, and my youngest enjoyed art, but that was because we used an area art teacher and took them there. Small children don’t really explore subjects, at least mine didn’t. They both liked to read, but the curriculum that we used wasn’t always interesting as far as the reading was concerned, so we supplemented.
Shari: I didn't think homeschooling was an option. I find the idea really appealing but my kids are grown. Do you think more parents would homeschool if they knew more about it?
Katie: I don’t know. Homeschooling is a really individual choice. I find many many in our area know about homeschooling, and most don’t do it.
Shari: How did homeschool affect your children’s reading skills and habits? Are they good readers?
Katie: Both of my girls are good readers and they enjoy reading. I attribute some of that to homeschooling, but even more to the fact that I read to them from the time they were really little.
Shari: That is important for all children, homeschooled or otherwise. I know a lot of homeschooling today involves the computer. Did you use a lot of books also?
Katie: We didn’t buy the curriculum that uses computers, and they were not much of a factor when I homeschooled.
Shari: Did you buy books or rely on the library? Did you use ebooks at all?
Katie: We bought a lot of books, curriculum-wise. Did not use any ebooks.

Shari: Tell us about your latest book.
Katie: My book is “Guardian” (release: June, 2009). It is about a real-life treasure story, a boy’s promise to a dying mother, some magic sprinkled in, and a rush to discover the treasure and an ancient power before an age-old sect could claim it for their own. In this story, the boy struggled with his destiny and the power of a promise.

Shari: This sounds like an appealing book. We will be watching for it.

For more information about Katie Hines and her books for children go to:
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Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

Shari, want to thank you for including the sign-up form for my Sharing with Writers newsletter. The twice-annual AllTips edition is coming up so perfect timing!

Also, I'll be hitting that twitter button to follow you!

Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Author of the multi award-winning Frugal Book Promoter

Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

Just a quick note to thank you for including the sign-up form for my Sharing with Writers newsletter on you blog Shari. Really, so great! I have a twice-yearly AllTIPS edition coming up shortly. I hope people will sign up before that. My subscribers love it. (-:

Also, I'll be hitting that Tweet button to follow you! (-:

Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Author of the multi award-winning Frugal Book Promoter

Shari Lyle-Soffe said...


Thanks! Happy to do it. It is a wonderful resource.


unwriter said...

I've known a few that homeschooled. I used to totally disagree with it, but I've seen it done and the reason for it. I also know why it was important. I've totally reversed myself on my opinion. There are some for whom homeschool is the only option and if done correctly, is better than regular school.

Shari Lyle-Soffe said...

I am only an observer of homeschool, but I agree. I think homeschool is a wonderful thing and wish I had homeschooled my children. My kids were good kids but there were problems that we could have avoided if they had not attended public schools. (bullying, peer pressure, boredom when they weren't really challenged or receiving enough attention, etc.)


elysabeth said...

I know several folks who homeschool and I think Katie is right - it's an individual thing as to why folks homeschool. There was a friend of my daughter's down the street who was homeschooled for health reasons and there are others who have been doing it a long time, started their kids with homeschooling and have continued with each one after the first. If I had time to work with my kids more, they probably would have been homeschooled, but unfortunately, my job takes a lot of my time and now with writing, I don't have much time to attend activities any more. Anyway - good interview. Thanks for sharing with us - E :)