TEACH by Dennis DiNoia: Learn How to Empower Independently Responsible Learners in Your Homeschool

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TEACH by Dennis DiNoia is a book full of practical, easy-to-implement strategies to get your kids on the path to self-directed, inspired, and independently responsible learning. Read on to see why this will become a staple in your homeschooling-how-to resource library!

Today, our homeschool math lesson looked completely different than it ever has before. It began typically: my daughter logged in to her online class, watched her lesson, then started dutifully completing the problems on her worksheet.

However, when I went to check her work, I came face-to-face with the situation every homeschool mom dreads: I found myself marking almost every math problem wrong.

Can you relate? Do you feel like a bit of you just dies a little inside when this happens?

Because usually, this means that after I have graded the page, I have to lecture my daughter about paying attention to her teacher, spend precious time re-teaching the same material, and make my daughter try her problems again, praying that she gets it this time around.

There are usually tears. Sometimes from the kids too.

But not today.

Because today, I was armed with wisdom from the book TEACH by Dennis DiNoia (you might know him as Mr. D Math).

Right as I was about to launch into my lecturing-math-teacher-mom mode, I realized…I shouldn’t be the one doing all the work. This was my daughter’s lesson! If she didn’t understand it from her teacher the first time, how would my simply repeating it to her (in a frustrated tone, mind you) be any better?

I realized that I wanted her to learnand realize she was capable of learning, of figuring this out on her own.

TEACH by Dennis DiNoia is a book full of practical, easy-to-implement strategies to get your kids on the path to self-directed, inspired, and independently responsible learning.
** This is a sponsored post. I received this product or compensation for review purposes only and was compensated for my time. I was neither asked nor required to share a positive review; all opinions are my own. READ HERE for more information.

The solution was so simple. I printed out a supplemental worksheet from my teacher manual that had similar problems (not exactly the same), and the worked out solutions. I told my daughter she was responsible for fixing her mistakes, and if she wasn’t sure what to do, she could find a similar problem, see how it was solved, and apply it to her work.

Simple – right?

My daughter was intrigued. I was pretty proud of myself. And you know what?

When she figured out the answers and turned in a perfect paper, she was pretty proud of herself, too!

No tears. No lecture. No wasted time.

Homeschool friends, this is just one of the many nuggets of wisdom I gleaned from the book TEACH: Creating Independently Responsible Learners. This is a book that will empower you, change how you homeschool, and help your kids take confident control of their learning. You’ve got to read it.

More Than Just Math

Dennis DiNoia is known in the homeschool world for his online curriculum and classes, which cover math topics, life skills, test prep, and more. He left a teaching career in a system that failed to help develop what he coins “independently responsible learners”, and turned his efforts to the homeschool market and private tutoring to teach kids how to learn.

TEACH by Dennis DiNoia is a result of the discoveries he has made over years of experience working with students showing them how to take control of their learning.

Yes friends, there are strategies we can use to foster a love of learning in our homeschools, help our kids set goals, and give them valuable skills that transfer to many areas of their lives.

TEACH: Creating Independently Responsible Learners

Dennis describes an “Independently Responsible Learner” as a student who is free to do things on their own (without outside control), trusted to do it the way it was meant to be done, and willing to ask for support when needed.

TEACH by Dennis DiNoia

Sounds pretty good, right? I want this for my kids, not only in our homeschool, but in life. But sometimes I get stuck just plugging away at the curriculum without thinking whether or not our daily routines are producing the kind of learners I want my kids to be. And even then, I haven’t always been sure what I should be doing differently.

This book is a great place to start, as it offers practical suggestions you can apply right away in your homeschool.

Encouraging and Empowering Parents AND Students

I found this book to be a very relatable, easy read. Dennis’ conversational style made it feel like he was sitting right across the living room from me.

As much as it is a book for parents, older kids will get a lot out of reading some of the chapters as well (a few chapters felt like they were, in fact, written directly for students).

For all of you homeschooling parents out there, you’re going to learn things like:

  • how to better train your kids to be independently responsible learners
  • how to better teach skills that have value outside of our homeschools, through your current curriculum
  • why letting your kids teach you is an important part of the learning process
  • a big thing that is missing in education (is it missing in your homeschool?)
  • why you shouldn’t skip testing
  • how you can teach your kids how to be great thinkers
  • a great visual strategy you can teach your kids to use to set and attain their goals

The kids that read this will learn:

  • you CAN do things unaided (you are a capable learner)
  • how becoming independently responsible will benefit you throughout your life
  • the real purpose of turning in work
  • 3 secrets to taking a test (any test at all)
  • what a mastermind group is (and how to lead one!)

My Favorite Chapters

Out of the ten chapters in this book, I really loved chapters six and eight.

In chapter six, Dennis tackles the subject of tests – which I know can be a heated debate in the homeschool world (to test or not to test? Grades or no grades?). It was eye opening to read his views on this subject, plus, he shares three secrets to taking any test at all. Step 2 is exactly what I use with my kids to tackle the dreaded word problems in math – don’t miss it!

Chapter eight spoke to my heart because it addressed tuning in to what we love to do, what our kids love to do, and how being an independently responsible learner ties into this. I wish I had read this chapter when I was much younger to help me figure out my path in life; I’m sure it’s going to help a lot of kids that read it.

Big Takeaway

In sharing about his approach to education, Dennis offers up so much advice in this book I think homeschool parents need to hear. I had never heard the term “independently responsible learner” before reading it, but now I can see that this is exactly what I have meant these past few years when I talk about wanting to develop a “love of learning” in my kids. This book has given me a better vision, and more tools, to make that happen.

Grab TEACH by Dennis DiNoia for Your Homeschool Library

Friends, I know we all want more for our kids. We want them to be engaged in their learning, curious about what they don’t know, and invested in doing their best work. TEACH by Dennis DiNoia is full of easy and practical ideas to begin implementing right away, across any subject in your homeschool. Your teaching strategy will never be the same!

TEACH: Creating Independently Responsible Learners is available in paperback, audio or Kindle version.

Dennis makes a bold claim in this book that, “being an independently responsible learner leads to being a person who lives their life to the fullest.” You’ll have to see if you agree after you put some of these strategies to practice!

Drop a comment below: if you’ve read the book, what is your biggest takeaway? I can’t wait to hear about it!

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29 Comments

  1. Hi,

    I have not read your book. I seems like a great book. I’m commenting on this review in order to participate in the giveaway.

  2. This sounds like an amazing book. I can’t wait to read it and apply the ideas to our homeschool. I would love to see my children become independently responsible learners.

  3. Brenda Martinez says:

    This book sounds like something I need to read. I want to raise an independently responsible learner. A bonus would be winning your copy of the book!
    Thank you for everything you do!

  4. Sara Muscatello says:

    I think it is important to teach our children to become independent and responsible learners in life. Haven’t read this book yet – but it sounds wonderful.

  5. This sounds like a great book! I definitely want my kids to become more independent learners and to feel like they are capable! Thanks for the review.

  6. LAUREN PATRICK says:

    I haven’t read this book, but after reading your review I think this is just what I need. This has been a thought in my mind since day 1 of homeschooling. I’m a former teacher and know the need for the independent opportunities, but when you’re with them and right there all the time, it’s hard to encourage that. Can’t wait to delve into this!

  7. I would absolutely love to have an independent learner! My oldest school-aged child is headed into 5th grade and I would love to learn how he can obtain some skills on being more independent! This book sounds fabulous, thank you for the review!

  8. Monica Maldonado says:

    I haven’t read this yet, but would absolutely love to in order to better teach my kiddos and build the ever important skill of independence.

  9. This has been a big issue for me and my middle kids. This book sounds like a great way to fix the cycle of frustration. Would love to win!!

  10. I need to read this! I have 2 highly dependent little learners! 🤪 Thanks for the review!

  11. Greta Hernandez says:

    Thank you for reviewing this book. I am not a homeschooler, although I did homeschool for a bit. I presently work in a very young, small classical Christian school and teach small (mostly Junior High/Logic School) groups of students. This is exactly where I’m headed–leading them to become independent learners and take ownership of their learning. It looks like this book will be one that will help me plan better for the year to come.

  12. Janell Tuley says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your review of this book!! I’m always looking. To learn how to improve our homeschooling program and how I can make things more engaging and enjoyable every day for my kids! I appreciate your time and willingness to share!

  13. Thank you for this review. This books definitely sounds like something we could use in our home!

  14. Teach sounds like it would be encouraging in any homeschooling family. We have a few short years left with our children still at home (11&14) and want to finish well.
    Our top priority is that they love Jesus and others, and in whatever they do (math or dishes), it’s to the Glory of God.

  15. Lijanne Stevens says:

    This looks great, thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!

  16. Meghan Davis says:

    Love the thoughts in this book! Actually something we are trying implement in our homeschool more.

  17. Rose Long says:

    Thank you for sharing this post and your takeaways from the book. I’m super intrigued and am going to put it on my list to read. I love the tip about giving them the similar math problem and the solution … a little bit of gold right there : )

  18. This book sounds great! Especially the getting your child to teach you. I’m adding it to my list :).

  19. Thank you so much for sharing this.
    I have found that my son doesn’t want to learn Independently, not only that I struggle to find good books that offer me guidance.
    Off to the shops!

  20. Phyllis Namorato Daley says:

    I woulkd love to win a copy thank you for the chance

  21. Testing. I know there’s benefits but don’t know the best way of implementing them. I live in Texas so laws are really relaxed, so I just haven’t bothered to test.

  22. I haven’t read the book but it looks like an eye-opener to homeschoolers and any parent for that matter. There is a lot of wisdom in allowing kids to take ownership of their learning in order for them to grow into their full potential. I love the idea of encouraging kids to become independent learners!

  23. I have not read the book, nor have I begun Homeschooling … we are about to embark on that adventure. In the process of figuring out what Homeschool will look like for us, I have been reading books, blogs, etc. I’m overwhelmed but was intrigued upon seeing your email as I want my kids to develop a love for learning. Thanks for the review … I guess I have another book to add to my list of books to read. Now, if only I had enough hours in a day for all the books!!!

  24. Carolyn B Bobbitt says:

    I am not a homeschooler yet nor have I read the book. I found out two years ago, during the covid shutdown that if I plan to succeed in this adventure, I need a lot of help in teaching these guys here. This book sounds like it could be very helpful in doing so. Thank you for the review..

  25. I am in the beginning years of our family’s homeschool journey and would LOVE to use principles in this book to teach my kids to be independent learners and thinkers from the very start! What an important skill set to learn, and being a homeschool mom I can help foster this in my kids. Thank you for your insights and takeaways from this book. I would be honored to be considered to win your copy. Blessings!

  26. This would be perfect for my kids.

  27. Thanks for the review definitely adding to my read list!

  28. I recently started to implement something similar in our homeschool (much more rudimentary since my son is still young), but it worked so well for him. This book is going to be a must read for me so I can understand how to apply it going forward and with intention.

  29. I would love to raise my children to be independent learners!

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