11 Best Homeschool Programs & Homeschool Curriculum Ideas
With so many homeschooling curriculums & methods to choose from, it can feel overwhelming and confusing.
Whether you’re considering homeschooling or already homeschool your children, the best homeschool programs & curriculum ideas could be different for each family depending on your child’s needs.
So, Brigette, from our iFamilyKC Mom Squad team shares her top homeschool curriculum options & the highlights of each program.
11 Best Homeschool Programs & Curriculum Ideas
When my family started homeschooling, there were already many k-12 homeschool programs out there, but since we began our homeschool journey, that number has likely tripled.
Starting a journey like this can be overwhelming in many different ways. You will begin to question your every move (and so will onlookers who are watching you).
Knowing that you have a solid, well-rounded, and liked curriculum will take so much of the pressure and self-doubt off of your shoulders. So, here are 11 of the best homeschool programs & curriculum options to start with.
More Homeschooling Resources:
- Check out different homeschool approaches
- Homeschool PE & other activities for homeschoolers
- The Complete Homeschooling Guide
- Have your own library week where you read & attend library-like activities 🙂
If you are looking for supplemental homeschool programs, Schooolhouse Teachers is a membership based site, where you can get many different subjects & grade levels all in one place!
Whats is the Best Homeschool Program?
If you are beginning your homeschooling journey, there are so many options to consider. Don’t wonder, “How to homeschool my children…?”
This is an online educational program that is great for homeschooling or supplementing traditional school options.
You can purchase different membership packages to get access to all their resources too!
I debated if I would let our curriculum choice be known, but I love it so much I had to just tell you! This was our third curriculum choice and it had been perfect for us. It is definitely a beneficial, but easy homeschooling program.
Most of the work is online but there are options to print a lot of it out. This is a free homeschool curriculum and is fits grades Prek through Highschool.
I am able to keep track easily with their daily tracker and layout.
This is another favorite in our house! This program is designed for toddlers- 3rd grade readiness.
While this one is not free, it is very reasonable and has a lot of “life learning”. Kids can take care of pets, clean rooms and even dress their avatars in the online homeschool program. ABCMouse has a learning path for each level to ensure they are learning age appropriate lessons.
Students can even head to their classroom to pick their own interests!
This program is for Pre K HS. Time 4 learning is also a mostly free online homeschool, but does offer printable lessons as well.
With this program, you can change grade levels on individual subjects to fit your child’s needs. They even keep track of your child’s work for your HS portfolio.
This is a Christian homeschool curriculum that can be done in 3 ways.
Abeka offers “School in a box”, online homeschool programs and video lessons. With Abeka, you really can’t customize each subject for your kids. If they are ahead or behind on a specific subject, you may need to use a different resource for supplemental materials.
This is also a Christian based curriculum set. Sonlight is for those wanting to only use book and can be used for Prek- 12th grade. They even include college prep lessons as well. Sonlight is a little more customizable than Abeka as you can purchase individual subjects. If you are not sure which lesson to purchase, they even have a shop by level so you can ensure you are selecting age appropriate material.
Starfall was a program we used when Thai was in kindergarten. We used the free version to help with her reading and it was wonderful! Starfall also has a membership program which opens up more learning activities. Starfall is designed for Prek-2nd grade and is 100% online with the option to create printables to supplement.
This is a one stop shop for a Christian homeschool curriculum.
They offer options for book learning, online learning and student or teacher led learning. You can select which style works best for you and your family.
This is a public school at home option, which is one of the best online homeschool programs in our opinion.
Even though you will be at home, K12 offers teacher led classroom lessons, projects and check ins with you! K12 is designed for students in Kindergarten – 12th grade. K12 offers private school education or public education and they provide you with most of your materials needed for learning.
#10 Create Your Own Curriculum
This homeschool program may or may not work with your family. All of the planning, teaching, reading and record keeping is your responsibility.
While it may take more time organizing lessons and projects, you will be able to fully customize your child’s homeschool curriculum. This will ensure your child in interested and you know what and where their strengths and weaknesses are.
If you have a child with specific learning styles, this is a homeschool option you should consider.
This was our first curriculum and since we started using it, it has undergone some major improvements! MobyMax is great for elementary middle school students.
MobyMAx was designed to fill gaps in subjects and to help students learn at a faster pace, so you can even use it if you are not a homeschool family. With this program, you are in charge if picking subjects, time frames and how often it should be completed.
While they do track progress in subjects, you will need to keep a daily log of subjects to make sure your child is working on all the appropriate lessons.
How to Homeschool: Different Approaches
It took me almost 2 years to settle into an eclectic learning method before I felt confident!
Remember, no two families are the same, no child learns the same and every family knows what works best for them. I hope this list is easy to follow and helps you find the best approach for your family.
Each of these methods are unique in their own way and you never really know what is best for you and your soon-to-be homeschoolers until you try it! So, Check out these different homeschool programs & options for learning to find the best fit for you:
#1 Project Based Learning
Project based learning is almost the polar opposite to the learning styles of public schools.
There are a lot of projects, hands on learning materials and your child really can “direct” themselves in learning about topics they choose.
When doing PBL, it is important to remember that your homeschooler is in control. Try resisting the urge to correct their projects or help when they are creating. Let them navigate the project themselves. Learn more about Project Based Learning to discover if it’s the right fit for your K-12 homeschool needs.
#2 Unit Studies
The Unit Studies approach is similar to PBL when it comes to homeschooling.
Unit Studies focus on a theme and all of the subjects are based off of the chosen theme. For example, when picking a theme you would do research on the history of your particular theme, study the scientific process of it and make a replica of it out of clay.
Unit studies really focus on your child’s interests and they are incorporated throughout the learning process.
For example, if your child loves Ninja Turtles:
- You can create a science project based on animal characteristics of turtles
- Create math problems & equations using Ninja Turtle characters & concepts from the show
- Study the history of turtles & how they have helped society
- Read Ninja Turtle books to practice phonics & reading
Unschooling is one of the most unique homeschooling programs, where your child takes the lead & learns in their daily life.
They learn things they want and create lessons from their day to day life. From a simple trip to the grocery store to daily chores, unschooling allows your child to explore the world around them.
It is important to note, there must be some structure by the parent to keep your child on track with educational requirements.
#4 School at Home (School In a Box)
This is one of the more traditional approaches to homeschooling. School in a box is very similar to the public school learning style.
You can purchase a full homeschool curriculum and ready-to-complete assignments through text books based on grade levels. There are also many online homeschool programs that meet this criteria as well.
If you are looking for easy homeschooling options, this will provide you everything you need to get started & ensure your child is on the right track.
The Montessori learning method is more rigorous in terms of language, numbers and life skills.
In Montessori programs, children learn with all 5 senses. It is based on the idea of prepared environments, where children can choose from many different activities in order to learn. The program promotes discovering, self-discipline, motivation & self-starting.
Simple tasks like cleaning up after themselves or washing their own dishes teaches them more independence in their daily lives. If you’re considering the Montessori approach, dive into researching this homeschooling option before you make the choice.
#6 Classical Approach
This approach teaches children to think as opposed what to think. By focusing on critical thinking, children can practice independent thinking, grammar and speech.
With different stages of learning, the classical approach is very rigorous and requires more formal study habits from your homeschoolers. They must also be disciplined.
#7 Eclectic Homeschooling
This approach combines the best of all styles. Eclectic homeschooling is a lot more relaxed than most methods but still maintains more structure than some.
It is almost a catch-all approach where you combine the parts you like best from each homeschooling option.
The most important tip I would offer is to not to sweat the first year of homeschooling.
Your homeschool doesn’t need to replicate the classroom. Spend time teaching academics, but focus on developing character and relationships. Set the course that you want to take over the next few years with your family.
Homeschooling your kids isn’t a sprint, it’s a long distance run and you will be so glad you chose it.
All of these top homeschool curriculum ideas have been used for years by many families.
Each program fits for different families, so consider trying multiple approaches before settling on one.
When picking a curriculum, keep in mind that it’s not about the most expensive, the most elaborate or the one with the most books. The best curriculum is one your child loves to work on, keeps them interested and pushes them to do more! We hope this post has helped you get ready to start your homeschooling journey!
From our family to yours, iFamilyKC