Raising Children, Homesteading Books, and Other Wisdom From Helen and Scott Nearing

In this installment of an ongoing feature, Helen and Scott Nearing responded to reader questions about raising children in a homestead environment and suitable homesteading books to prepare for moving back to the land.

| November/December 1978


Scott Nearing meets a visitor.


The following are questions readers submitted to Helen and Scott Nearing in their regular column on homesteading.

Q: Do you think raising children in a "homestead lifestyle" during these difficult times is a good idea? We've tried both communal living and alternate educational systems, and haven't found either to be particularly helpful.

A: Children can readily adapt to—and participate into—a day's homestead life. Young people should be called upon to contribute to the household, and to enjoy doing so. Keep them away from television, and much in the company of their peers. If you enjoy what you're doing, your children will enjoy sharing in your work.

Q: My wife and I are just about ready to "make our move" to the country. We have been spending our weekends (we both work in the city right now) building a house and clearing enough land to plant our first garden. We would be very pleased if you would share with us your personal choices for a small library of homesteading books.

A: I got carried away looking through our library to answer your question! Here's a list of more than twenty that we've used and enjoyed:

Food First by Frances Moore Lappe and Joseph Collins (Houghton Mifflin, 1977).

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