52 Books in 52 Weeks
Unschooling Rules: 55 Ways to Unlearn What We Know About Schools and Rediscover Education
This is quite inexpensive in Kindle format, probably because it's a fairly quick read -- I don't know how it weighs in paper form, but I would guess it's light. I liked it. The author's blog is here. He says that the title "Unschooling Rules" is supposed to be both an oxymoron (since unschooling has no Rules, of course) and a double entendre -- you know, like you might say "Oregon Ducks Rule!" The book makes the point that schools as they exist today are anachronistic and ineffective, and that education should better reflect how we do things and how we live in the real world. There is a pragmatic slant to it but you could take a lot of the general principles and apply them to situations beyond unschooling. I probably will blog more about this book in future because I found it relatively easy to absorb and retain the ideas. I think that is because of the "55 Ways" format.
Raising Charitable Children.
Another quick read. It was positive, practical and nicely presented. Every chapter started with a story -- either from the authors own life, or from someone else's life -- and then had a "how to" section which gave various ideas on how to bring the chapter's concept into being in your own life. It is one of those "pot-pourri" type books where there is not a whole system to learn or a lot of information to absorb, just ideas and encouragement that you can take no matter what your situation. It seemed like the author tried to present several lower-income families practicing charity in simple ways so charitable effort wasn't just something for the well-to-do. I got it at Paperback Swap because I was thinking we don't do as much as we should in the area of helping those in need and so this book fits the bill well. It makes the point that many children aren't really aware of neediness around them and that charitable giving is a good antidote for the "gimme" syndrome.