Biographies that Build Character

I homeschool so that I can teach Biblical values to my children as we go throughout our days. When I rise up, and sit down, and when I’m walking by the way (Duet 6:5). It’s something that is important to me, and one of my favorite ways to incorporate Biblical values is by using biographies that build character.

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Using Biographies that Build Character in our Homeschool

One of the main reasons I homeschool my kids is so that I can have more time with them to encourage good character traits in their lives. I have prayed for my kids since before I even had kids. My deepest desire as a mom is not that they grow up to be millionaires, or even that they have the most amazing educations and attend an Ivy League school. No, my most heart-felt prayer for my kids is that they grow up to love God and do what He wants them to do in their life. I want them to be good people who treat the people they meet with care and compassion. In other words, be kids (and later, adults) filled with Godly Character.

When you have a goal in mind, it makes it easier to figure out the steps it will take to achieve the goal, right? So since having kids of Character is the goal, how do we get there?

In our home, I try to infuse good character into all of our studies. This includes reading books like the Children’s Book of Virtues during morning time, and listening to Adventures in Odyssey all day long. There’s something about a story that helps them get it. They are not just being preached to, but shown people who live it.

There is something inspiring about learning about a real person who faced terrible odds and still overcame. It makes us want to rise to the occasion and emulate them. So I try to find books to use in our history studies that show people who are living a life of character. Here are some of my favorites.

 The Sowers Series by John Hudson Tiner

We are reading this Louis Pasteur book right now for our World History studies, and I love that it emphasizes hard work, determination, and perseverance. I am excited to read more of this series!

 Value Tales by Anne Donegan Johnson

These were some of my favorite books when I was a kid, and my own kids can’t get enough either! These books are out of print, but you might be able to find them at your library, or at a used curriculum sale. I couldn’t decide whether to put them with the historical fiction last week, because they each have a small character in the book that the subject of the book talks to, but they definitely tell the facts about the person’s life, and I consider these books more biography than fiction. We really love these books!

 Christian Hereos: Then and Now

This is another great series that help get your kids excited about history, and encourage Christian values too! I am excited about reading this book together later in the school year!

The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom

This lady was amazing! Every time I hear her story, I shake my head and say, “I could never have forgiven like that.” She extended grace and forgiveness to the men who killed her father and did unspeakable evil in the name of “making the world a better place.” Such an inspiration to me and my kids to extend grace to the people in our lives that have hurt us.

 Little Britches by Ralph Moody

I remember my dad reading this book to us when we were kids. After a long day of hard work in construction, he would sit on the bed surrounded by kids and read a chapter from this book. I remember many nights begging for “just one more chapter, pleeeeeaaaase.” A wonderful autobiographical book with many character lessons.

 The Little House books

Another autobiographical series that probably is familiar to most. Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House books are classics in their own right, but they also teach wonderful lessons about growing up with character.

Now it’s time for the What to Read Wednesday Link-up!

The most popular post from last week was:

How To Guarantee That Our Kids Don’t End Up Like Josh Duggar

What to Read Wednesday

Our hosts will still share a themed selection of our favorite books each week.

If you’d like to join us as a co-host for What to Read Wednesday, please contact Anne.

Anne at Learning Table Leah at Sandy Toes Creations Crystal at Castle View Academy
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This list has our book themes for 2016, but you don’t have to stick to that to link up–any family-friendly posts are welcome. So, come on! Join in the fun!

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  • Amber Harrop

    September 21, 2016 at 6:41 am Reply

    So great books here thank you for sharing with I am Pinnable Amy

    • Amy Lanham

      September 23, 2016 at 9:48 pm Reply


  • Susan Evans

    October 10, 2016 at 8:10 pm Reply

    We’ve read many of these books, and they are really good. I want my kids to love God more than anything else in life, so we have also focused on God’s Word and godly character.

    • Amy Lanham

      October 10, 2016 at 9:58 pm Reply

      That is my heart’s prayer as well, Susan! I have prayed for my kids since before they were born, and I feel a strong responsibility to lead them in the truth. A large part of that is to teach them how to be more like Jesus and building their character.

  • Emily

    October 10, 2016 at 9:40 pm Reply

    I’m so glad you shared the Sower Series here. I’m not familiar with that series, but I’m going to check it out now! E

    • Amy Lanham

      October 10, 2016 at 10:01 pm Reply

      We only have the one about Louis Pasteur but I have heard great things about all of them. Let me know what you think after you read them.

  • Michelle Caskey

    October 11, 2016 at 7:33 am Reply

    Love reading biographies of inspirational people! The Hiding Place is one of my all time favorites. If you read that book, prepare for your life to be changed. Oh, and be sure you have Kleenexes handy. 🙂

    • Amy Lanham

      October 22, 2016 at 7:08 pm Reply

      I agree! I am a better person for reading (listening) to her story and her heart!

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