How to Find the Right Homeschool Curriculum

Updated: Aug 26, 2020

Should you choose an all in one curriculum or find a separate for each subject? What if you spend lots of money on a curriculum and it ends up not being a good fit? How do you sort through all the ads to find something that will be easy to teach, engaging for your student, AND rigorous enough that your student is prepared for later success?



Finding a curriculum that meets all those standards and more can be a daunting task. Here are a few things to consider when choosing a curriculum.


What is your child's learning style?

Research the many different ways students can learn (auditory, kinesthetic, visual, reading/writing…). If auditory is a really important part of learning for your student, it may be important to find a curriculum that has videos or look for podcasts as a supplement. If Kinesthetics is important for your child, you may need to look for a curriculum that incorporates activities and hands-on experiences. The curriculum should be something that works for your child. The last thing you want to do is use a curriculum that brings the same problems your child was having at school into homeschool.



What is your teaching style?

You might be saying, "I don't know my teaching style!" Do not fear, your teaching style is usually pretty similar to your normal style. If you're someone that can't keep to a schedule, use a curriculum that can be flexible. If you're a planner who needs to know what is happening well in advance, find a curriculum that has a nice layout. If you know you are weak in one subject, find a curriculum that will give you a lot of guidance in teaching that subject.


What do you want MOST from your curriculum?

No curriculum will have everything you want, so determine what is most important (do you want it to be hands-on, differentiated, organized, standard-based, contain social-emotional components, etc.)


What is your budget?

As someone who has experience as both an educator in a traditional classroom and someone who works with homeschoolers, it is very disappointing to fall in love with a curriculum that you really can’t afford. Even worse, to buy the curriculum and then not end up using it because things don’t go like you planned. You CAN find great things within your budget, you just might have to put in more work or piece things together. As you get a better idea of what you are looking for, you can make a better plan as to how much you want to purchase vs how much you want to create. Teachers Pay Teachers or ETSY are great places to find both comprehensive curriculum and single lessons or units that might be good to incorporate.



What are your options?

If you’re not sure where to start, ask other homeschool parents and educators. Connect up with homeschool groups on social media. Look at blogs and reviews for different products. Remember, more expensive doesn't always mean better. Here is a list of free resources that are comprehensive, rigorous, and engaging.


Khan Academy

Engage New York

ReadWorks

Ducksters

Prodigy

Find More Ideas HERE and HERE!


Move Forward With Confidence!

Finding a curriculum is a very important part to create a successful homeschooling situation for your family, but like most things, there is a learning curve. Try something out, determine what is working and what isn’t working….you can always add in supplemental resources throughout the year as you see fit. Great teaching is a malleable and changing process, there is no perfect solution written in stone, only people working together, becoming better.


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