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Choosing Homeschool Curriculum from Free Resources
We have many resources available at our fingertips that are free especially online. There are wonderful free curriculum and resources that are available to us. We just have to look for them and choose wisely. I will be sharing tips on how to choose homeschool curriculum from free resources. The free resources I will be talking about are found online. I will be talking about the ones that I know of and have used.
1) Guest Hollow website
Guest Hollow is one of my favorite site for free and low-cost resources. They offer free curriculums for all grade levels. One of my favorites is their Biology curriculum. Almost all of it is free. The only thing that is not free is their schedule for using their Biology textbook. I highly recommend it.
They also offer grammar, geography, elementary science, high school science and history at a low cost. Guest Hallow is my first go to site for curriculum and resource. I check their site before I even look at other sites for curricula.
They have a wonderful reading list for chronological history. This Chronological History reading list fit well with the Classical Method which is the method I use. In the list, there were also movies to watch which broke up the reading a bit.
I highly recommend you look through this site and pick what will work for you. You can always add your own materials to their curriculum. For example, I added stuff I already had on my shelf to their Biology curriculum. I was very pleased with their Biology textbook but I also wanted other books that I had to go along with it. With free curriculum, it’s easy to add or take away books or materials.
I am eyeing their Chemistry program. My daughter is not a math girl which their Chemistry program is for the non-math kids. I am excited to use their program and support this small family’s business.
2) Easy Peasy all in one homeschool
Easy Peasy program is huge. So many free curriculum and resources to choose from. This particular site houses all materials from K to 8th grade. They offer all the subject matter. I highly recommend you download whatever course you are interested in and make sure you are satisfied with the program before using it with your children.
Make sure all the links are working. I did find some links that didn’t work for us so that was a bit frustrating. Do a test run on all of the courses you pick in Easy Peasy. When you do this it helps you decide whether you want to use it or not.
Easy Peasy has a sister site for the high school curriculum. Its called All In One Highschool. There is something for everybody in both sites. Always check the links and materials on both sites. Be careful in overloading your high school kids with so many subjects. It can be overwhelming to go through both of EasyPeasy site. Make your decisions carefully.
YouTube has many educational videos. There are videos about science, art, graphics using online free programs, coding classes and many more. You can even find science experiments that you do not want to do in your home but the kids can watch and write a report.
Always preview YouTube videos before your kids watch them. There are some you may not want your kids to see. Some of the advertisements are mature so you may have to invest in commercial-free YouTube or set parental control to limit the maturity of the ads.
My daughter learned how to draw and other ways of doing math problems using Youtube. My son learned how to build a woodworking project by watching on Youtube. I learned how to meal plan by watching Youtube.
If you are concerned about inappropriate materials on Youtube, you can control the settings of youtube on their account or your account if they are using your link.
4) Your Local Library
The library also has many resources. They do have textbooks, encyclopedias, and literature books. If you do literature-based history, you can always find books at the library that is related to the time period you are reading. I used the library a lot when my kids were younger. The kids and I loved spending time there and picking out books.
We used it for Science, Art, history, and literature. I even checked out math textbooks even though we were using a different math program. It was very helpful to see a different way of doing math than what our program did.
Libraries offer many different enrichment programs for kids of all ages. Depending on your library policy, some may be free and some are not free. The one we went to all had a charge for the enrichment activities. I have heard of other libraries offered them for free. So check them out and see if it’s free or low cost.
There are many sites that offer free worksheets, experiments to watch, e-books plus more. Whatever you are looking for, do a search for it and it will pop up in your search engine. There are endless resources at our fingertips online. Again, check them out carefully and make sure you want your kids to have access to the sites.
There are a lot of homeschool bloggers who blog about their homeschool adventures. They also post their curriculum and may have some that are free on their site. I love the ones that post their science experiments. These are cool to watch online and see the results of their experiments.
Social Media is a good thing.
Facebook: There are many homeschool groups on Facebook. There are two that I know of that focus on working moms who homeschool. Another Facebook group example is Homeschooling with YouTube Videos, Amazon Prime and Netflix. There are also curriculum-based homeschool groups on Facebook.
Pinterest: There are many helpful articles that homeschool bloggers have pinned their posts to Pinterest. Pinterest is wonderful to use because its a search engine based not social media however many believe Pinterest is a Social Media outlet. I have learned so much about homeschooling by searching through Pinterest.
There are many more free resources online than what I have talked about here. The main thing you need to do is to have your plan of studies for your kids. After you do that you can search for free resource and curriculum. The five I listed in this article will help you get started. Here are the things you need to think about when choosing a free resource or curriculum.
- Is it a full curriculum?
- Are the links broken?
- Do a test run to see if you are happy with this free resource/curriculum before you use it with your kids.
- Look at the background of the curriculum. Is it secular? Is it Christian based? Does it align with your beliefs?
- Always ask your homeschool friends if they used it and what their thoughts are.
Low-Cost Books to Help with Curriculum Planning
I have several helpful books about selecting and planning curriculum for homeschooling which I still have them on my bookshelf. I always refer back to them each year to help guide me in selecting curriculum. We are working homeschool moms so we have to make sure we do not blow our budget in buying curriculums that won’t get used.
Here are my suggestions:
I love this book. Home Learning Year by Year by Rebecca Rupp. If you want to learn how to design your curriculum for your homeschool, this book is a gold mine! She talks about curriculum and what your K-12th-grade kids need to know and learn.
This one is a bit on the pricier side and it is a bit dated. I would try to find a used one or borrow from your public library which is what I did. Cathy Duffy is well known in the homeschool community for her knack in reviewing curriculums for us. She gives a very honest review of the curriculums portrayed in this book. If I had this book when I started I would have saved money instead of buying curriculums that didn’t work for us. We found our favorite literature program that I had not considered before reading this book.
This next book is one of my favorites which is Homeschool Your Child for Free by LauraMaery Gold and Joan Zielinski. It is outdated as it was published in 2009 but still a lot of great ideas for homeschooling for free which still applies today. I linked to an ebook on this book because its cheaper than buying new. There are many copies available for a buck or two plus your local library may have this one.
The Ultimate Book of Homeschooling Ideas by Linda Dobson which is another book I refer to for fun ideas to incorporate into my homeschool. Over 500 ideas! I still didn’t do them all but it’s a keeper for me to refer to when I have grandchildren in the future. Again your local library should have this book as I have seen them in several library systems in my area.
There are many more I recommend and hold dear to my heart however they are on a bit pricier side which deserves its own post. I will do my best to write up a post of books that I loved and helped me through the homeschool adventure.
I hope these tips help you get started on choosing free resources and curriculum. have shared tips on how to choose curriculums from free resources. What is your favorite tip? Do you have a favorite online resource? Please comment below and let me know.