Overview – Homeschooling Curriculum Options

There are probably as many different homeschooling curriculum options as there are homeschool students. Families make curriculum choices depending on their comfort level with homeschooling, and also the subject matter. Many families feel more comfortable creating curriculum for the early grades, while many feel greater ease using prepackaged curriculum for subjects they’re less sure about, such as biology or geometry.

Packaged Curriculum

Homeschooling families new to homeschooling, often start off with a prepackaged curriculum. Many companies offer a prepackaged curriculum. Explore the different offerings and try to evaluate the curriculum and see how it fits your family. Do you want a religion-based curriculum? Choose one that reflects your religious values. Are you a busy parent juggling the homeschooling of two or three children? You probably want to choose a curriculum that doesn’t require a lot of parent involvement and provides teachers.

Try to evaluate how your child learns. Is your child a visual learner? Is your child a kinesthetic learner? Is your child an active learner and self-motivated or does your child need more direction? Preview the curriculum activities with your child in mind. Many areas have homeschool curriculum stores where you can preview many different curriculum options. Many act as places where you can sell your used curriculum materials and buy new ones. This helps keep the cost down, but does limit your options.

Reputation and Accreditation

Parents can make curriculum choices based on the reputation of the curriculum publisher. Reading reviews from other homeschool parents helps to evaluate whether or not, the program is right for your family. Networking and talking with other homeschool families is a great way to get first hand information of what has worked for them and why.

Traditional schools are accountable through a process of accreditation. Outside agencies provide oversight and evaluation of the schools curriculum and practices. Homeschools are not required to be accredited and many homeschool parents don’t want any kind of oversight on the curriculum they choose for their family. But often parents and students worry about the high school transcripts and how college admissions boards will look at them, if they don’t come from an accredited school. But things have changed now, there is the option of working with an accredited distance learning school whom provides the accredited curriculum and teach support.

Distance Learning

More and more people are turning to the Internet for their homeschooling curriculum needs. Many schools are offering online classes for students at all grade levels. These distance learning schools are often a great resource for homeschool families. Students enjoy the online community aspects of taking online courses. Parents often feel secure because they have previewed the curriculum and they know their student is learning in a way they find to be beneficial while having the support of a teacher.

As students get to the high school level, distance learning becomes an indispensable tool. Students can take high-level classes, such as honors classes and online Advanced Placement courses, and receive credit from an accredited institution for them. Often, if the high school student has a strong interest or talent in a specific subject area, colleges will offer online classes to high school students for credit.