You’re in a “No Shame Zone”

Julie Bogart

So I’m out and about the other day, and suddenly a darling family shouts hello and calls me by name…and I meet an after-schooling Brave Writer family! It is the most delightful discovery!

For those of you who would walk right by me at Kroger without a glance: welcome. I’m Julie Bogart and I’m dedicated to you (and my favorite sports teams and UCLA, obvz). I’m a homeschool veteran with five grown kids, one daughter-in-love (and one spectacular granddaughter). We homeschooled, Charlotte Mason schooled, unschooled, and even public schooled a little. The five all got accepted into great colleges and three into law school and grad school—a little reassurance for your journey! Your hopes and dreams—their hopes and dreams—are possible!

What you’ll find here at Brave Writer is an outlook on learning that I hope offers you:

  • support,
  • concrete practices to implement,
  • and vision for a life of love and learning with your kids.

Your fragile faith in that vision is justified!

“No Shame Zone”

You’re in a “no shame zone” when you spend time with me or Brave Writer. Risks? Welcome. Trial and error? Expected. Breakthroughs and insights? Promised.

All you need to start is desire: a desire to experience learning, love, parenting, and growing together as a family. You don’t get there in one big step, but little ones, over time, noting your moments of joy long enough to value them. When you do, you build momentum and your homeschool becomes more and more what you want it to be. Until it doesn’t any more and it’s time for the next dream—whatever that is. Until then: I’m here!


Brand new to Brave Writer? Start Here.

This post is originally from Instagram and @juliebravewriter is my account there so come follow along for more conversations like this one!

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Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang: Mar. 2021

Brave Writer Dart Arrow Boomerang

Good books grow empathy, and this month’s Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang selections are no exception. As we explore grammar, punctuation, spelling, and literary devices, we’ll have the opportunity to grow new perspectives and deeper understanding.

We’ll see the world through the eyes of:

  • swans,
  • young dragons,
  • and a beloved TV hero.

We’ll witness their hardships and cheer on our protagonists in their quests to overcome adversity.

[This post contains Amazon affiliate links. When you click on those links to make purchases, Brave Writer receives compensation at no extra cost to you. Thank you!]


The Trumpet of the Swan, E.B. White

Like the rest of his family, Louis is a trumpeter swan. But unlike his four brothers and sisters, Louis can’t trumpet joyfully. In fact, he can’t even make a sound. And since he can’t trumpet his love, the beautiful swan Serena pays absolutely no attention to him.

Louis tries everything he can think of to win Serena’s affection—he even goes to school to learn to read and write. But nothing seems to work. Then his father steals him a real brass trumpet. Is a musical instrument the key to winning Louis his love?

The Trumpet of the Swan joins E. B. White favorites Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little as classic illustrated novels that continue to speak to today’s readers. Whether you curl up with your young reader to share these books or hand them off for independent reading, you are helping to create what are likely to be all-time favorite reading memories. ~Amazon

Get the Dart.

Purchase the novel here.


Wings of Fire (Book One), Tui T. Sutherland.

A thrilling series that soars above the competition and redefines middle-grade fantasy fiction for a new generation!

The seven dragon tribes have been at war for generations, locked in an endless battle over an ancient, lost treasure. A secret movement called the Talons of Peace is determined to bring an end to the fighting, with the help of a prophecy—a foretelling that calls for great sacrifice.

Five dragonets are collected to fulfill the prophecy, raised in a hidden cave and enlisted, against their will, to end the terrible war.

But not every dragonet wants a destiny. And when the select five escape their underground captors to look for their original homes, what has been unleashed on the dragon world may be far more than the revolutionary planners intended… ~Amazon

Get the Arrow.

Purchase the novel here.


They Called Us Enemy, George Takei.

George Takei has captured hearts and minds worldwide with his captivating stage presence and outspoken commitment to equal rights. But long before he braved new frontiers in Star Trek, he woke up as a four-year-old boy to find his own birth country at war with his father’s—and their entire family forced from their home into an uncertain future.

In 1942, at the order of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, every person of Japanese descent on the west coast was rounded up and shipped to one of ten “relocation centers,” hundreds or thousands of miles from home, where they would be held for years under armed guard.

They Called Us Enemy is Takei’s firsthand account of those years behind barbed wire, the joys and terrors of growing up under legalized racism, his mother’s hard choices, his father’s faith in democracy, and the way those experiences planted the seeds for his astonishing future.

What does it mean to be American? Who gets to decide? When the world is against you, what can one person do? To answer these questions, George Takei joins co-writers Justin Eisinger & Steven Scott and artist Harmony Becker for the journey of a lifetime. ~Amazon

Get the Boomerang.

Purchase the novel here.

Brave Writer Language Arts

Friday Freewrite: What Is It?

Friday Freewrite

Pick an object in your house. Describe what it looks like but don’t say what it is or does! Now see if family members can guess the item from your written description.

New to freewriting? Check out our online guide.

Let Your Child Reassure You

Let Your Child Reassure You

Nothing reassures you the way your children’s own growth does. Recognize the spark of learning, the personality of your kids popping through their writing, the happy confidence of accomplishment in any task. Then you’ll know you’re on the right track.

A wise friend once said that when she doubted her child’s progress or felt worried about an interest, she would get some time alone with that child—lunch or a shake. She’d ask her child about that interest, she’d open space for a conversation that interested the child. She said she’s never had a one-hour time alone with a child that didn’t remind her that her child was learning and growing just as she had hoped.

Do it.

  • Take time to listen,
  • to be with,
  • to observe

Be amazed all over again (the same way you were amazed when your bigger kid was a baby).

Let your child reassure you.

Your kids are learning!

This post is originally from Instagram and @juliebravewriter is my account there so come follow along for more conversations like this one!

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Don’t Forget to Include Yourself

Don't Forget to Include Yourself

Your interests. They not only fuel your homeschool, they fuel you!

When you follow an interest, you discover that you’re a smart person—that you have curiosity and skill and capacity to grow.

Tapping into your interests:

  • improves your outlook on life,
  • allows your children to see you happy and learning,
  • makes adulthood look awesome,
  • and gives your kids a role model for what it means to pursue an interest.

You may find that what you love enhances a school subject or acts as a key to unlock a previously opaque subject. Your curiosity is aroused which allows you to be creative!

For instance, if you are suddenly into sewing, you may whip up a batch of capes for dress up clothes for history or tea cozies for poetry teatime. If you get curious about native plants to use in landscaping, where might that lead in your family? Might you discover the history of where you live, how the original inhabitants lived with those trees and shrubs?

Let your interests lead you, so that you can lead your children into a world of skill and happiness. An education is fueled by connections and joy in learning. Bring yours to the table!

This post is originally from Instagram and @juliebravewriter is my account there so come follow along for more conversations like this one!

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