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Choosing curriculum is so personal, so take recommendations as a list of places to check out but know that there is no such thing as a “BEST” curriculum, regardless of price. The best curriculum is the one that fits your family. You need to determine your homeschool philosophy and your child’s learning style. There are an overwhelming number of options out there. This is why it’s essential to spend time figuring out WHAT you want to teach and HOW you want to teach it. To help you find the right fit for your family, check out our episode with details and resources that will help narrow down those options: 7 Steps to Choosing Curriculum
If you’re specifically looking for resources to support your child’s reading development, consider these options. Reading readiness is essential before you begin. Learn more on our episode, “How Do You Teach Your Child to Read?”
All About Reading: is a super easy to use program and is totally scripted, open-and-go. It uses the Orton-Gillingham approach which not only helps kids with learning challenges, but kids without learning differences find it’s a lot easier way to decipher the code of reading
Curiosity Chronicles is a secular homeschool history curriculum written in dialogue form. Their two main characters, Ted and Mona, take students on a tour through history beginning in ancient times. Curiosity Chronicles takes a global perspective and includes the history of people all over the world. They cover cultural, artistic, and scientific history in addition to political history:
Hands-on Secular History Curriculum written by real historians for 1st-12th grades. The curriculum from Pandia Press fits a more traditional learning and teaching approach. The style uses narrative living books and encyclopedias and workbooks. This format is presented to be interesting and not boring at all and keeps kids engaged.
History Quest (1st-6th): This is Pandia’s newest curriculum which features hands on history curriculum for elementary ages. This would be great if you’re interested in more hands-on and less literature-based history.
History Odyssey (5th-12th): Courses with the classical 4 year rotation through ancient history, middle ages, and modern times with American history offered for grades 8-12.
Timeline Book and Figures
Book of Centuries for the Secular Homeschooler: Timelines have long been used as a visual representation of historical events. Relate subjects together and view historical events as interrelated in your homeschool. This book uses the abbreviations BCE and CE notation that is preferred in scientific and academic writing just for secular homeschoolers.
Hands-on Secular and Science-Based Curricula written by real scientists and historians for K-10th grades. The curriculum from Pandia Press fits a more traditional learning and teaching approach. The style is textbook based with labs. This format is presented to be interesting and not boring at all and keeps kids engaged.
Mr. D Math
Mr. D Math offers high school level Math courses (and others) with tons of support. All students (and parents) have a built-in teaching partner to support them during his courses to answer any questions that come up. Students will follow along while watching Mr. D work out each problem step-by-step on a whiteboard. He also has live interactive group sessions students can join. We love to use a local brick and mortor for some of these upper level math classes, but we know this isn’t an option for everyone. See a DEMO of their live online class>>
All In One (Combined Subjects)
Calvert Homeschool offers self-paced learning for students with step-by-step lesson plans for parents. Calvert Education was acquired by Edgenuity as part of their Glynlyon purchase in 2019 and currently offers mainly digital curriculum (preK-4th is still print-based). This would be considered a traditional school “at home all-in-one curriculum.” PreK-12
Build Your Library
Build Your Library offers a literature-based approach to education that follows a historical timeline. It covers history, literature (including poetry), science, and art. Math, spelling, grammar, and phonics/beginning reading need to be taught separately. There are programs covering grades K through 12.
Outschool Outschool offers a variety of classes and over 100,000 Interactive Online Classes for every age group from 3 to 18 years. You can use it as full academic classes or supplements. They offer a variety of engaging small-group classes online. It can be a huge time saver and opportunity in your homeschool. Read more in our detailed post about Outschool.
Moving Beyond the Page
Moving Beyond the Pageis a comprehensive literature-based spiral open and go program. It integrates language arts, science, social studies, and math. The curriculum follows a daily structure and has a variety of activities (from grammar worksheets to cooking to making a diorama) to complete routine activities from day to day. Grades: K-8th
Favorite Subscriptions that keep learning fun
Universal Yums is a subscription service that delivers a box of snacks from a different country to your doorstep every month. Each box contains a variety of snacks, such as chips, candy, and cookies, as well as a booklet that provides information about the country’s culture, history, and food. It also contains games, trivia, and recipes to continue learning about the culture. It’s easy to build an entire UNIT STUDY around each country – and my kids love getting to “travel” from home. All Ages
MEL Science is an educational subscription that offers 100+ hands-on projects delivered monthly and 50+ digital experiences available anytime. Each kit contains all the materials that you need to conduct 2-3 science experiments at home. There are different options for subjects including STEM, math, chemistry, physics, space, and medicine. The kits are designed to be educational and fun, and the experiments are not your run-of-the-mill baking soda and vinegar. Each kit comes with access to the Mel Science app. This app provides virtual reality and 3D animations to help you better understand the scientific concepts you’re exploring. The app also includes detailed explanations and videos that help you learn more about the experiment you’re conducting. Most of the kits are designed for kids age 8+ however, there are some options geared towards younger or older children.
Curiosity Box In this monthly box, your kids ages 5-10 will enjoy 3 craft kits plus a small STEAM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) project We fell in love with these boxes! Everything you need – including instructions and supplies comes in the box. Each month has a variety of activities that my kids can do independently while I meal prepped or working one-on-one. Each box contains real, high-quality science equipment that we have used in OTHER experiments.