Homeschool curriculum is a hot topic among those new to homeschooling as well as those of us who have been at it for a while.
Questions about curriculum are some of the most common, perhaps even running neck-and-neck with the ‘socialization’ question.
A vast array of amazing curriculum exists to support you in this journey, no matter what method(s) you use or special needs you may need to address.
We have options!
In fact, it can sometimes feel like there are too many choices and you can feel overwhelmed.
(Remember the first homeschool convention you went to and the vendor hall? There is a lot!)
You don’t have to feel paralyzed when it comes to sorting through and choosing your curriculum.
- Grab your pencil and notepad – Make a Pro/Con list
- Ask for sample lessons
- Ask fellow homeschool families what they use
Once you discover some of what is available to you and you start to browse and research, it can help if you keep these things in mind.
Be Mindful of:
- Who is it for
- What is their learning style
- Will the curriculum support their learning style
- Will it span the ages of your children, or do you care if it does
- Will it help you achieve your end goal for your child(ren)
- Can you photocopy pages for use within your own family (check with publisher) “Homeschoolers Honor Copyright” (from iHomeschool Network)
- How will it fit into your schedule
- Can you easily adapt lessons for more than one child
- Is it available as a download
- Will it support your method of homeschooling “8 Homeschooling Methods“
- Will this help fuel the love of learning within your children
- Do you even need a curriculum to educate your child that particular subject
Truth is, as homeschool parents we can have many different levels of feeling overwhelmed when it comes to choosing curriculum for our children.
We can feel both blessed and cursed by the sea of books available to choose from. One of the most common questions I hear about curriculum is:
“What if it doesn’t work, what if I buy it and never really use it?”
And you know what? We have all been there, and done that!
From those who unschool to those who follow a more aligned path (meaning very much like the curriculum of local schools) we have all bought something we thought would be great, which turned out to sit on the shelf.
We have all held onto those resources and tried it with all our children, some of us get to finally use it and some of us end up writing it off completely.
As much as we plan we also have to be ready for the detours and sideroads.
A purchased curriculum which turns out not to be exactly what you needed doesn’t always have to be tossed aside. Instead you can adapt the lessons or at minimum use them as a guide to help plan a study. You can then head out to the library for books, find some hands on activities, or search for some YouTube videos to support what you are teaching.
- Break down your subjects and your goals for each child within that subject
- Get to know your child’s strengths and weaknesses
- Foster a love of learning
- Support your child’s curiosity, creativity and intelligence
- Have fun and be flexible – Seriously, this is your Home, not a stuffy classroom!
Homeschooling is not a contest, it is not a race and there are no “curriculum police“.
You are blessed with the freedom to choose, adapt and change if necessary.
For a peek into what we have been reading or using check out my Reading List page; Resources page; and my STEM Resources page.
Ok, your turn…
Share 1 tip about choosing curriculum to help encourage and support your fellow homeschooler!