Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Home Work

If you read my title, you probably think I am about to dole out an opinion on the amount of work children should bring home from school. Or maybe some advice about how to get your children to work independently. However, this post is about something far more interesting... the TOS publication, Home Work: Juggling Home, Work, and School without Losing Your Balance.

This e-book, available for download at the TOS Magazine Schoolhouse Store for $12.45, is a compilation of stories chronicling the adventures of homeschooling families who manage home businesses. A variety of business ideas are highlighted, everything from sewing to printing to computer-based businesses... and more. Each family has a different purpose for their business and a different style of management. Each family is also very honest about the obstacles they have faced and the challenges they must meet daily. They also offer wisdom and practical advise on starting a business, including the children in the process, scheduling work and school, and keeping your eyes on the Lord in the midst of it all.

My only criticism is that I found some chapters much more interesting than others. I believe this is because some of the businesses did not appeal to me as much as others. However, that is what gives this e-book so much potential. What did not interest me, may interest you. What works for some families featured in the e-book, does not work for others. There are a variety of ideas and organizational systems to glean from. You can treat the book like a buffet and pick and choose ideas that will meet the needs of your family.

In my opinion, the final two chapters are the most helpful. Carol Topp, the Homeschool CPA, explains how to keep the finances of a home business organized. She offers advice on record keeping, even providing a sample bookkeeping system. Katy Dawn suggests ways to keep everything organized. She leads the reader through a system of prioritizing, scheduling, planning, and setting the stage for success. I found her chapter helpful even though I have no plans of starting a home-based business and will use some of her suggestions for my home classroom.

This is a little longer e-book with 95 pages. If you like to print a hard copy of your e-books, be sure to take that into consideration. The book was easy to buy and download. I did not experience any technical problems, and there was no shipping to pay.

If you are looking for seasoned home-business advice or organization ideas for your homeschool, click here and get busy with Home Work.

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