Books and Schoolhouse Battles

Those of us who homeschool admire the one-room schoolhouse model of previous centuries. With simple resources, a wide-range of ages, and a school year that fit the needs of the community, one male or female teacher reigned in the classroom.

…Unless there were “big boys” whose sole purpose in showing up seemed to be disturbing the peace. Thankfully my older sons are not seeking to physically throw me out (they do challenge my authority on occasion, but they don’t storm the aisle while pushing up their sleeves), but over the years I have found it curious how many literary classics include a schoolroom battle, either physical or psychological. Usually the teacher is victorious (but not always).

While I have an embarrassment of curriculum riches to choose from, no prairie fires or snows to worry about, and I am grateful that the “principal” works just upstairs to cover any disciplinary issues, the daily spiritual challenges all of our families face are real no matter how you choose to educate your children.

The secret is not in a bullwhip or Shakespeare, but in the Holy Spirit, whose power we access by prayer.

As we’re heading back to school, I’ve rounded up a few memorable read-alouds with battles that take place in a school room. I’ve also linked to some wonderful resources from previous years that address some of the literary challenges that are faced in schools and on reading lists.

We pray they will help you, as parents, teachers, librarians, and grandparents, to be discerning and love your neighbor in the classroom.

Strawberry Girl by Lois Lenski

Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder

Little Town on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder

Caddie Woodlawn by Carol Ryrie Brink

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

The Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt

Frindle by Andrew Clements

Wayside School Gets a Little Stranger by Louis Sachar

Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

Matilda by Roald Dahl

What would you add to the list?

Related Resources at Redeemed Reader

Back to School Picture Books

Back to School Books for Middle School

Reviewing School Book Lists, Part Four: Reading is Spiritual Warfare

The Abolition of Man, Part One

12 Substitutions for The Kite Runner

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