November 2022 Monthly Newsletter

November 1, 2022

The following post will be a blog archive copy of Build Your Library’s November 2022 Monthly Newsletter. If you missed the email, you can subscribe to our mailing list here. [Scheduled to be sent 10/1/22 8:00 AM EST]

[November 1, 2022 ] – Welcome to our November Video Newsletter!

You should have gotten our regular monthly e-mail newsletter in your inbox if you subscribed. But you can now watch the video highlights and read the full details below or watch the BYL November 2022 Video Newsletter on Facebook.

Hey everybody, it’s Emily from Build Your Library! If you are just going to skim the beginning, here are the main topics in this month’s newsletter:

Now that I have your attention, here are the details on those items and more.

“In November, the earth is growing quiet. It is making its bed, a winter bed for flowers and small creatures. The bed is white and silent, and much life can hide beneath its blankets.”
― Cynthia Rylant, In November

Monthly Newsletter

November is upon us already – the golden colors of fall are beginning to fade as winter creeps ever closer. But the holiday season is arriving too, and the lights and colors and delicious smells and foods along with it. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to dive into all the end-of-year things!

As far as the newsletter goes, we have some new information to share, as well as some reoccurring monthly reminders!

Announcing our Newest Lit Bite: Dry

Lit Bites are small literature unit studies, based on just one book. These bites contain everything you need to study a piece of literature with your child. They include vocabulary, discussion questions, and activities based on the story. We released four Lit Bites already, with more coming soon!

Our latest Lit Bite: Dry by Neal and Jarrod Shusterman has just been released!

“When we’ve lost the strength to save ourselves, we somehow find the strength to save each other.” 

How long can you survive without water? When the drought becomes bad enough for the taps to run dry across Southern California, everyone scrambles to find water however they can.  Alyssa and her family hope that the government will step in and send aid.  Kelton’s family are preppers who have everything they need and more to survive this event. The Dry Lit Bite is flexible age-wise, but best for ages 14+.

Have you tried a Lit Bite yet? Lit Bites are literature units focused on just one book. These bites contain everything you need to study a piece of literature with your child. They include vocabulary, discussion questions, and activities to help you get more out of the story.

These short units are perfect when you just want to study a specific title, or when you need to swap a book out of a level. Now you will have a ready-made literature unit to use instead of having to come up with something on your own!

Our first 7 Lit Bites are available in our store and I plan to add more soon! These are becoming the next evolution of our Read Aloud Book Clubs, as instead of buying the whole package, you can just order the “unit study” portion and source the book yourselves. This opens it up for you to either purchase the book online, locally, or borrow it from your local library. Or even download the audiobook version. Sadly, you will have to make your own bookmarks, although that sounds like a fun activity!

This also makes them available to our overseas customers who were unable to get the book club packs sent internationally. Now you can order the PDF lesson plans, and find the book on Amazon.UK or whichever vendor is local to you, without exorbitant shipping costs! We expect to be able to offer new Lit Bites approximately as frequently as the RABCs were offered in the past. So stay tuned for upcoming releases!

Build Your Library Updates

In an attempt to answer when the next level update will be ready, we have compiled our projected schedule into a post for easy reference. We will periodically update the chart when we make progress or have any changes to our tentative schedule.

I am currently plugging away at the Level 9 update. The high school level updates are going to be a slower process than the younger levels, but I still hope to move through them at a good pace. I am anticipating having Level 9 finished in mid-February 2023.

I’m also hoping to get to the Darwin and Evolution unit soon. It should also be a pretty quick update as the majority of the books will be staying as is. I mostly need to update links in that unit study. There are also a few new Lit Bites in various stages of completion from concept to rough drafts. So hopefully we will get some more of those out in the not-too-distant future.

I am always brainstorming and collecting books for various unit studies too… lots of exciting new things in the works! I hope to be able to share more about those projects soon!

FRC and RABC Booklets Now Available as PDFs

At long last, our Family Reading Crate and Read Aloud Book Club “Booklets” are now available to purchase as PDFs! All previously sold-out FRC and RABC discussion booklets can now be purchased separately, allowing you to source any required books as you see fit. We have provided Amazon links to all of the books for your convenience, or you can visit your local library or used bookstore to acquire these titles.

We have now transitioned away from the mailing out of packages, except for the RABC that are still available. Our newest offering of this type is our Lit Bite series. The Family Reading Crates had more books in total, but the Lit Bite unit studies are more robust than the RABC… Now all of these options are available to you to use as your need for this type of material arises!

November Giveaway

Congratulations to our winner of last month’s Giveaway!

good-luckThis month we will be giving away a copy of our Winter Holidays Around the World, just in time for your December studies! Actually, it will be a BYL gift card for $7.95, which you could either use to purchase another unit study or just put towards your next purchase of whatever. But we will say that is the suggested prize for the drawing on December 1st. 🙂

Each action gives you entries into this month’s drawing, with some allowing for daily clicks. Odds of winning depend on the number of entries received.

Check out the contest page for more details, and come back each month for new opportunities!

November Bookish Holidays

November is another huge month for bookish holidays, most notably National Novel Writing Month. Both National Authors Day and National Family Literacy Day is November 1st. The first Saturday of the month (Nov 5) is Book Lovers Day. We also have National Nonfiction Day (Nov 6), I love to Write Day (Nov 15), High Five a Librarian Day (Nov 18), and the third full week of November is National Young Readers Week and National Book Award Week. It’s also Non-fiction November all month long!

As far as literary birthdays go,  we have Bram Stoker’s Birthday (Nov 8, 1847), as well as Neil Gaiman (Nov 10, 1960),  Neal Shusterman (November 12, 1962) Robert Louis Stevenson (Nov 13, 1850), and Madeleine L’Engle Camp (Nov 29, 1918).

History of Thanksgiving Unit Study

We’ve all heard the story – the Pilgrims sailed to America on the Mayflower and landed on Plymouth Rock. After a rough start, they were saved by the Indigenous people who then celebrated with a Thanksgiving feast… But how accurate is that tale? With this unit study, you and your child will explore the history surrounding Thanksgiving. Why did those brave people sail to an unknown land to start their own colony? Did the Native Americans really save them? Who were the Pilgrims and why did they come to America anyway?

I have a bonus blog post with my favorite Thanksgiving books to read to younger children.

We also have a “Thanksgiving-themed” – Can Your Teach Creativity? article from a few years back. This was a fun and interesting twist on an old holiday decoration project.

Is it time for NaNoWriMo again?

National Novel Writing Month (or NaNoWriMo for short) is a yearly write-a-thon that challenges aspiring writers from all over the world to write a complete 50,000-word manuscript in just 30 days. It is not for the faint of heart, and even some of the most gifted of writers still find themselves unable to complete the full 50k. But it’s a challenge that few writers can pass up.

For younger writers, I recommend checking out for their Young Writers program!  It’s basically the same thing as the main event, but the final word count and stress level are lower. Additional resources are also provided, like workbooks for story planning and daily writing prompts to keep the story going if you get stuck!

I always try to participate, but this year I’ll be sitting it out. Perhaps next year will be my year to finally write that novel bouncing around in my head! Are you going to participate in NaNoWriMo this year?

History Book by Book (HBBB)!

We have recently started to create some blog post articles on HBBB! You can check out our first couple on our HBBB Blog.

History Book By Book is our database collection of engaging, entertaining, and educational books about various historical topics. Whenever possible, we have cross-referenced topics, internally linked additional suggestions based on like subjects, and created useful categorized lists for you to search and browse. Hopefully, you will be able to glean a vast amount of information and find as many history-related books as you would ever want to find. We discussed it in depth during a recent Tea With Emily Livestream on Facebook, you can view the recording here.

As a long time homeschooling parent, and the author of literature-based homeschool curriculum, we designed HBBB to help:

(1) homeschooling parents looking for additional resources to read to their children,
(2) homeschooling parents looking for more historical based books to give their children to read themselves,
(3) any teen or adult looking for categorized historical reading material for their own enjoyment and knowledge.

Reading your way through history… one book at a time.

History Book By Book Main page

Homeschool Tidbits Blog and Video Series

We have an ongoing series on both our blog and YouTube channel called Homeschool Tidbits!

In this weekly video series, I will briefly discuss a homeschooling-related topic and will share some of my knowledge and expertise as a long-time homeschooling mother of 4 children, Three of whom have graduated high school, and one is also a brand-new college graduate!

This series will consist of an approximately 10-minute “quick-bit” YouTube video and a corresponding blog post article.

Our next Homeschool Tidbit will be up on November 4th!

Most Recent Episodes:

“Tea with Emily” Facebook Live Streams

We hope you all enjoyed our last “Tea with Emily” Facebook Live Stream. If you missed our “Build Your Library Q&A” in October, you can find a recording by scrolling through our Facebook or direct links on our past events page.

Our next Livestream will be on Friday, December 2nd at 1pm (EST).

Every other month, I host a 30-60 minute Build Your Library homeschooling chat. You can ask questions about homeschooling, using Build Your Library curriculum, book recommendations, etc. We will announce the date ahead of time, and you will be able to submit questions you would like to cover. Additionally, you can also ask questions during the interactive live stream. Grab a mug of tea (or coffee) and cozy up with our virtual hangout!

Build Your Library Support

Are you looking for help or advice on your homeschooling journey? We have compiled all of our helpful resources into one blog post for you. From the many BYL-related Facebook groups to my book A Literary Education, there is a treasure trove of information and helpful parents out there to help guide you along your homeschooling adventure. If you have any questions, just ask!

For a comprehensive, everything you ever wanted to know about homeschooling with Build Your Library, check out our “Build Your Library University (for Parents).” We have collected the definitive list of articles, videos, and books about Build Your Library, Charlotte Mason, and general homeschooling, all categorized in a logical order for you to peruse.

BYL Social Media Shout Out

We always have our Social Media “chicklets” at the bottom of our newsletters and web page, but we wanted to ensure you follow us on our other platforms. The Build Your Library Facebook is our go-to social media site, and we post there frequently with cool Amazon products and book recommendations we think you would like, as well as all of our Read Aloud Book Club announcements, blog posts, full-year and unit study product releases and updates, and more.

Our Build Your Library Instagram page regularly posts pictures and insider info about projects I’m currently working on or what I’m doing with my kids.

Although not 100% exclusively Build Your Library related, our Arrrgh Schooling YouTube channel has videos about books and homeschooling, but let’s be honest, it’s mostly books. If you want to see what I’m reading, join my Arrrgh Booked Book Club. Or if just want ideas for books to read (either for you or your children) you are sure to find something useful! We are currently on hiatus until January, I should have a video up in mid-December sharing the titles we’ll be reading for the first few months of 2023!

We also have a BYL Twitter feed where I share links and information about BYL and homeschooling. Or you can stay subscribed to our email list and browse our monthly newsletters.

Wrap Up

I hope you have a wonderful November! I can’t wait to see what this new month brings!

“It is also November. The noons are more laconic and the sunsets sterner, and Gibraltar lights make the village foreign. November always seemed to me the Norway of the year. —— is still with the sister who put her child in an ice nest last Monday forenoon. The redoubtable God! I notice where Death has been introduced, he frequently calls, making it desirable to forestall his advances.”
― Emily Dickinson, Lettere 1845-1886

If you are looking for some more inspiration, here are some articles you might find helpful:

We have well over 100 blog posts on various homeschooling and book-related topics if you want to browse for more.

I think that is about all for this month. Again, please follow us on whatever social media you frequent, there will be periodic updates posted there as well, but we will try to keep everyone in the know wherever you are surfing!

Thanks and Happy Reading! Emily

See Also:

October 2022 Monthly Newsletter

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About Build Your Library

Have you been looking for a literature based homeschool curriculum that is secular? How about a way to incorporate narration, copywork, dictation and memory work into your child’s education? Or art study that ties into history?

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