Which Homeschool Curriculum is Right For You?
Whether you’re new to homeschooling or have been doing it for a while, you’ve probably wondered how to choose a homeschool curriculum for your child.
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Whether you’re new to homeschooling or still wondering if this is the path for you, you’ve probably wondered how to choose the right homeschool curriculum for your child. Even seasoned home educators find themselves asking similar questions when it’s time to find a new program or move to a new level of learning.
With so many choices for homeschool curriculums available, the process of evaluating a homeschool curriculum can feel daunting and quickly leave you feeling overwhelmed.
To help you decide on a homeschool curriculum, we put together a simple guide to help you sort through your initial curriculum search and maybe even make a decision.
To start, here are some options to consider:
Evan-Moor titles have been used in over one million U.S. classrooms and over 90 countries worldwide, with over 400 titles across subject areas including, language arts, reading, writing, math, science, social studies and the arts. The homeschool curriculum caters very well to those students that work well with workbooks, or teachers that prefer an open and go style curriculum. Materials are available in print and digital format, and also available on a per-subject basis, or for supplemental learning.
ABC Mouse/Adventure Academy
ABC Mouse and Adventure Academy are great options for supplemental learning. These options are non-traditional in the sense that they are subscription based curriculums, where everything is online through the app. The program is very well done, with over 10,000 books, games, songs, puzzles, and art activities. ABC Mouse is suitable for ages 2-8, while Adventure Academy is ideal for those that are 8-13.
Coding is becoming an increasingly more common skill that is taught in early education. Ensuring your homeschooler gets exposure and practice will keep them ahead of the game. Codeverse is an excellent option for one-on-one instruction for 6-13 year olds, and they teach coding in a way that builds the fundamental concepts. One unique characteristic of Codeverse is that they do not teach specific coding languages, but their own Kidscript that is fully functional, and takes concepts from different languages to teach important lessons, rather than focus on a specific language that may become obsolete by the time your child would be able to put their coding skills to use in a professional way.
For grades pre-k through 8, you can’t go wrong with this one as your math curriculum. Singapore Math’s track record demonstrates a clear ability for students to have a deep understanding of mathematical concepts, rather than just regurgitating numbers onto a worksheet for a test, and then eject it from memory. Students of Singapore Math regularly test considerably higher than the national average. This curriculum does not follow the same structure of traditional U.S. math programs, or common core. It heavily focuses on mastering concepts and problem solving to a deeper level.
Moving Beyond the Page
This curriculum is a great open-and-go option for grades K-8, with everything you could need for the whole year available as part of the package. As the name would suggest, this is literature-based, and covers a lot of different concepts, backed up with age appropriate reading materials. If you want an all-in-one option that can provide everything you’d need and minimize the need to hunt for manipulatives or supplemental materials, this one’s for you.
1. Consider the child’s learning style
One of the top reasons families begin their homeschool journey is to meet their child where they are academically, or to better serve a particular learning style. Even if you’re homeschooling due to pandemic-related needs, it’s still important to take time to consider how your child learns the best.
Some children excel with workbooks, whereas others thrive with more project-based learning. You may also consider presenting subjects or lessons in the form of a game, either hands on or with online tools. All are valid options and there is no one size fits all approach. Methods can vary from subject to subject, just as they do from child to child. The more you can tailor your curriculum, schedule, and goals to who your child is and how they learn, the more successful your homeschool experience will be for all involved.
The good news is that there’s a curriculum available for just about any learning style, and there are plenty of great resources to help you and your child succeed.
2. Your teaching style is important too
The child’s learning style is indeed an important aspect to keep in mind. You also need to take into account your own personal teaching style and how much time you have to prepare. Busy families may gravitate to open and go style curriculums, which allow you to skip the prep and teach based on the provided materials. Others may enjoy the freedom self-prep curriculums offer and will thrive being able to design the lessons and projects on their own. Homeschool curriculums are available as printed textbooks/workbooks, PDF files, online instructor-led classes, all in one curriculums, and subject specific programs. There is something for everyone and many ways to make it work for your space, time, and budget.
There are plenty of options for all teaching types, and finding the best fit for you is a great way to start your year on the right foot.
3. Consider the child’s age and academic level
In the traditional in-person school model, the numeric grade level is the main indicator of what the child will learn in any given year. In homeschool, this often isn’t the case, and it doesn’t have to be as strict of a rule. Programs are often designed with this in mind.
Homeschool affords you the opportunity to teach your child based on what they know, what they need to learn, and how they learn. This may mean you seek materials at a grade or age level that is different from what the traditional school system would follow. Many programs have placement tests available to help you pick the right level of learning. Your ideal homeschool curriculum may end up being a mix of different levels, so placement tests/guides are a useful tool.
4. Take into account future education plans
Future plans should also play a role in picking your homeschool curriculum. Will your child homeschool long-term or only for a year or two depending on circumstances? Long-term homeschoolers have greater flexibility in when and how they learn the necessary subjects. However, homeschool children that intend to later enroll in-person may need to consider homeschool curriculum options that align with their state’s standards.
High school level students need to also be aware of their post-graduation goals, including college aspirations, SAT/CAT testing standards, or specific vocation goals.
5. Seek out reviews and support
Researching homeschool curriculums can feel daunting, but there is a lot of advice and support available. You should be able to find a wide array of reviews and shared experiences for any homeschool curriculum you’re considering. Homeschoolers love to share what works and what doesn’t, so seeking out reviews is an invaluable tool in your search.
You can often find helpful reviews on Youtube by searching for the homeschool curriculum you’re considering by name. You will find real families sharing their experience, offering flip-throughs, or even day in the life lesson examples.
Whatever your reasons for homeschooling, seek out a homeschool community that fits with your family dynamics, circumstances, or views. Many areas have homeschool groups that will offer meetups of varying types. You can meet other families, or even find group lessons and activities for homeschool children in your area. If you rather seek support online, a search will find a vast array of online homeschool groups for all ages, types, and methods. You can also find many groups on Facebook as well.
You have everything you need to begin your homeschool curriculum search and narrow down the options to the best fit for your child. Happy learning!
Resources and Helpful Links:
Homeschool Laws by States:
PK-12 Homeschool and Distance Learning
K-12 Homeschool and Distance Learning
Middle and High School:
Workbooks, Digital Resources, & Curriculums:
Teacher Created Materials:
K-8 Math Curriculum:
Science Materials & Curriculum Kits:
Reading and Handwriting Curriculum:
1st-6th History Curriculum:
Homeschool Support Groups: