Frequently Asked Questions for Prospective Families

What is The Bookish Society?

The Bookish Society offers online literature and art classes for homeschooling families. Classes are led by Jenn Naughton and Katherine Vernon.

How does The Bookish Society meet?

Bookish Society classes are held live online using Zoom, with course materials stored in the Canvas Learning Management System.

How often do classes meet? How long do classes last?

Bookish Society classes meet either once or twice a week, from September to May, with regular holiday breaks. Classes are 45 minutes long.

Check the Important Dates page for details on start and end dates and breaks.

How many students are in each class?

Class sizes are small, usually between 6 and 12 students. Small class sizes help us create and maintain the warm, safe, and supportive atmosphere that Bookish families value.

What kinds of books do you read?

We focus on contemporary middle-grade and young adult novels, including new releases. Our goal is to build empathy with “mirrors and windows.” Mirrors are characters that reflect the students’ own diverse identities, while windows are characters and situations that provide insight into others’ experiences. We emphasize works that center stories too long overlooked in mainstream publishing: stories by and about women, people of color, LGBTQ+ people, neurodiverse people, disabled people.

How do I know what level is right for my student?

Age ranges are listed in each class description. These ranges are based on our experience teaching homeschooled students, on the social needs of children, and on the subject matter of the assigned books.

What is a typical Bookish literature circle like?

Literature circles are lively, seminar-style discussions driven by students with the expert guidance of a teacher. Each class starts with a check-in as the group gathers. We spend the next thirty minutes on the lesson before transitioning to our show and tell/special interest time to wrap up the class.

In all our classes we take the time to get to know each student and encourage students to get to know each other. Our dynamic is as similar to an in-person classroom situation as it can be, given the online setting. Middle grade classes enjoy playing group games while teen classes thrive on debating the meanings behind the literature we read. We strive to create a safe and supportive atmosphere where students can take chances and ask questions that they might not in person.

How much does The Bookish Society cost?

Please see the Classes page for current tuition. In addition to tuition, families are responsible for providing books, materials, and supplies as well as a computer or tablet with reliable high-speed internet service.

Will I need to buy books, curriculum, or other materials?

Yes. Parents are required to provide student texts, materials, and supplies. Click the booklist links on the course description page to view and purchase texts. Alternatively, you may purchase the books from any retailer you prefer, or borrow them from the library. A few classes require curriculum materials that must be purchased directly from the supplier; this information is listed in the course description.

I’m in! How can I find the current class offerings?

Check the Classes page. All times listed are in the US Central Time Zone.

When does class registration begin and end?

Class registration begins approximately six months before the start of each semester and closes two weeks before the semester begins to give students time to order and receive their texts or other supplies. Classes can fill quickly, so we encourage families to enroll early. Subscribe to our newsletter to get current information about registration dates, new classes, sales, and other updates.

How do I register for a class?

At the bottom of each class description page, you’ll see a box labeled “Tickets.” Buy purchasing a “ticket,” you are buying your child’s seat in the online classroom. Choose your payment option—single semester or full year—and specify the number of students you want to enroll for the class. Then click the “Get Tickets” button to add the class to your cart. Once you’ve chosen all the classes you want, click the shopping cart icon at the top right of the page and follow the instructions to pay and complete your registration.

What forms of payment does The Bookish Society accept?

Our secure online payment service accepts Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover credit and debit cards.

I’m registered! What’s next?

Once you’ve received your confirmation email, your child is registered. The next step is to follow the booklist links on the class description page and order your child’s texts for the class. Finally, you’ll want to add the class to your existing digital calendar (Google Calendar, etc.). You can find the link to do this on the class description page as well.

Before classes begin, you will receive an email explaining how to connect to the Zoom online classroom and to the course materials in Canvas. You’ll also find an invitation to join our private Facebook group for Bookish families so you can connect with other parents.

The course I want is full! Is there a waitlist?

Yes! Please contact us to be added to a waitlist.

If a seat becomes available in the class, it will be offered to the first student on the waitlist. If they do not accept the spot and pay their tuition within 48 hours, the seat will be offered to the next student on the waitlist. Once their tuition has been paid, your child will be invited to attend class.

Is my child’s Bookish class “enough” for ELA?

You may remember from grade school that, while you had lessons in spelling, vocabulary, grammar, reading, and writing, they were all part of English Language Arts. In high school, English courses combine literature and composition with a smattering of grammar and vocabulary.

Bookish Society classes cover the literature content area in your homeschool ELA program. Bookish Society literature circles cover twenty-two literary devices in the course of reading nine novels. We also study vocabulary, current events, historical events, sociological terms, media literacy, and critical thinking.

You will still need to provide your children with instruction in ELA skills areas, such as grammar, composition, and spelling. We recommend that families provide, at minimum, formal instruction in grammar through grade 8 and composition through grade 12.

Does The Bookish Society give grades?

While most homeschoolers do not need grades, Bookish Society teachers can provide a pass/fail grade upon request.

Do you submit paperwork to state or district homeschooling offices?

No. Parents/guardians are responsible for reporting to their local homeschooling authorities.

Do you offer scholarships? What about sibling discounts? Payment plans?

The Bookish Society does not offer scholarships, sibling discounts, or payment plans. However, we do hold an annual enrollment sale every June during which families can save more than 20% on the cost of tuition.

Do you pro-rate fees for students who enroll after the start of the semester? What if a student misses classes due to illness, family vacation, etc.?

We cannot pro-rate tuition for late enrollments, and there is no reduction in fees based on how many times your student attends.

What are your academic policies?

You can download a complete list of our policies here.