Check out some of my favorite homeschooling resources.
I am an affiliate of Amazon and you will find affiliate links to the books that I recommend below. If you do decide to purchase one of these products through the link I will receive a commission at no additional cost to you and I thank you for that. I want you to know that I will only recommend products that I truly feel are great products from my own experience. The links are a great way for you to see the products in more detail and read other reviews. Just like I do, when possible I encourage you to check out your books from the library or even borrow from other homeschooling moms. Trust me, I know what it is like to need to save money!
Check out these great websites that provide free resources to supplement your curriculum.
“Khan Academy offers practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard that empower learners to study at their own pace in and outside of the classroom. They tackle math, science, computer programming, history, art history, economics, and more.”
Code.org® is a non-profit dedicated to expanding access to computer science in schools and increasing participation by women and underrepresented minorities.
“Engaging Curriculum for K-12/College: Your students will love our fun and entertaining typing curriculum. Featuring engaging exercises, interactive typing games, and positive reinforcement, Typing.com is perfect for all age ranges and skill levels.” NOTE: This one does have ads unless you pay to upgrade to the ad-free version.
“Book Adventure is a free, online reading program for children in grades K-8, brought to you by the experts at Sylvan Learning. Our goal is to help kids learn to love reading through interactive tools, games and motivational rewards. We make it easy for children to find a book, take quizzes and win prizes for their reading success. Plus, our site is packed with tips and resources parents and teachers can use to boost reading skills and track progress. There’s something for everyone at Book Adventure!” NOTE: Sadly this website will be coming to a close June 30, 2018. I will be on the hunt for another similar option. Please message me if you have any suggestions!
Check out these other awesome blogs and websites for more great homeschool information.
“CRHE was created to educate and inform citizens, lawmakers, and service providers about the protections homeschooled children and youth need. We are working to create a world where every homeschooled child receives a good education in a safe home environment. We are committed to providing resources, conducting research, and promoting policy to protect homeschooled children and youth from falling through the cracks if their parents or guardians are unable or unwilling to responsibly educate them. We are a nonpartisan organization committed to ensuring that the interests of the homeschooled child are respected alongside the interests of the homeschooling parent.”
“DIYHomeschooler is all about helping you educate your children. We offer tools that complement a learning lifestyle including books, how-tos, activities, unit and book studies, guides, and other practical resources, along with finds from around the web.”
“Hip Homeschool Moms is a Community for Families Living the Home Education Lifestyle. This blog is for all those interested in homeschooling. Their goal is to connect homeschool moms together for encouragement, information, friendship & fun.” blog.feedspot.com
“Honest. Quirky. Real. Practical tips, candid reviews, and stereotype-smashing humor for homeschooling families.” blog.feedspot.com
“Rebecca Spooner spends her day homeschooling, planning in her beautiful traveler’s notebook and tries to seize every moment and share her chaos so that the readers feel right at home. Her blog provides Homeschool encouragement, curriculum reviews, free printables and more.” blog.feedspot.com
This is a website geared toward teachers in a classroom, but they have a ton of great free worksheets for all grades and all subjects that may complement one of your studies. Just hover over the Worksheets section and see what all they have to offer. I have used some of their worksheets for our plant science study.
This is a free tool that can be used to create personalized word searches, crossword puzzles and handwriting sheets for your kiddos. “EdTools is an EdTech project started by Jimmy Zhang Our mission is to build online tools for teachers using the latest technology.”
Check out these fantastic books for invaluable homeschool information.
This book has been like a mentor to me. There is so much great information about how to help your child learn and in-depth information on curriculum options, that this book has truly been a guide for our homeschool. “The Well-Trained Mind will instruct you, step by step, on how to give your child an academically rigorous, comprehensive education from preschool through high school―one that will train him or her to read, to think, to understand, to be well-rounded and curious about learning….”
A homeschool friend of mine introduced me to this book and man was I thankful. This book is chock full of curriculum suggestions and the breakdown of so many of the options out there. “102 Top Picks makes it easy for home educators to select the right curriculum for each family situation and each child’s learning style. Widely-recognized curriculum expert Cathy Duffy walks you through the curriculum selection process: goal setting, figuring out which educational approach to use, developing your own philosophy of education, determining your teaching style, and identifying your children’s learning styles.”
Check out these great books for your science curriculum.
The Animal Book: A Collection of the Fastest, Fiercest, Toughest, Cleverest, Shyest – and Most Surprising – Animals on Earth
My kids LOVED this book and in turn, they claim animal science as their favorite. I truly believe this book is a must-have, no matter the age if you will be covering any kind of animal science study. The information is fascinating! “Animals smooth and spiky, fast and slow, hop and waddle through the two hundred plus pages of the Caldecott Honor artist Steve Jenkins’s most impressive nonfiction offering yet. Sections such as “Animal Senses,” “Animal Extremes,” and “The Story of Life” burst with fascinating facts and infographics that will have trivia buffs breathlessly asking, “Do you know a termite queen can produce up to 30,000 eggs a day?”
A great book to use as your human body study worktext or as an aid for another curriculum. They recommend for ages 8-12 for this book, but I used this with my (at the time) 4 year old and he followed along really well. I think the illustrations and fun facts are great for all elementary kids. “What’s going on inside your insides? From the skeleton to muscles and blood flow and respiration, kids can discover how all parts of the human body fit and work together. Readers can answer quiz questions to make learning interactive and fun, and try out prompted activities to learn even more. This book also includes information on sleep, going to the doctor and dentist, and body language.”
This is a great book to use as an introduction to astronomy and space. The little book is jam-packed with information that could be a little intimidating for the 4-6 range but great for 7-10. This can definitely serve as a stand-alone astronomy curriculum. I used it as our primary worktext and incorporated in some fun fiction books and short youtube videos. Like most Usborne books, this book has Usborne Quicklinks where you can find even more information to supplement your study. “A narrative introduction to the mysteries of space and the secrets of astronomy, packed with scientific facts about the solar system, comets, the Big Bang theory, telescopes, space exploration, and lots more. Diagrams and amusing illustrations help make complex ideas easy and fun. Also includes star charts, a glossary, and an astronomy timeline.”
Kobee Manatee: 3 Book Series – Heading Home to Florida, Shipwreck Sea Friends, A Wild Weather Adventure
My son actually picked out these books from the library and I was pleasantly surprised when we sat down to read them. Not only are these fun little fiction stories, but they are filled with fantastic fun facts about sea life and weather patterns (depending on the one you read). “Packed with exciting illustrations and interesting facts, this adventure story will enchant as it creates awareness for the endangered Florida manatee.” “Kobee Manatee and his pals, Tess the seahorse and Pablo the hermit crab are en route to Puerto Rico to explore the SS Antonio López, a historic shipwreck from the 1898 Spanish-American War.” travels across the mighty Atlantic Ocean into the strong Gulf Stream current . . . during hurricane season! ”
Check out these excellent resources for your history curriculum.
The Story of the World series was a recommendation that I took from The Well Trained Mind and I have not been disappointed. We are currently working through Volume 1, Ancient Times, and both of my kids love it. I use this as history for both my 3rd grader and Pre-K/Kindergartener. This history curriculum runs a close race to their favorite, The Animal Book. The text does a phenomenal job of working in short stories to coincide with the fact-filled chapters. The Activity Book takes it up a notch by providing great comprehension questions, additional fiction and non-fiction reading suggestions, map work, color and activity sheets, and awesome hands-on learning activities. Don’t let the fact that this is part of a classical curriculum turn you away, this can be used across the board. We are excited to wrap up Volume 1 and move on to The Middle Ages!
“Told in a straightforward, engaging style that has become Susan Wise Bauer’s trademark, The Story of the World series covers the sweep of human history from ancient times until the present. Africa, China, Europe, the Americas―find out what happened all around the world in long-ago times.”
The Story of the World: History for the Classical Child: Volume 1: Ancient Times From the Earliest Nomads to the Last Roman Emperor, Revised Edition
The Story of the World, Activity Book 1: Ancient Times From the Earliest Nomad to the Last Roman Emperor
The Story of the World: History for the Classical Child: Volume 2: The Middle Ages: From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of the Renassaince, 2nd Revised Edition
The Story of the World, Activity Book 2: The Middle Ages: From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of the Renassaince, 2nd Revised Edition
The Story of the World: History for the Classical Child: Volume 4: The Modern Age: From Victoria’s Empire to the End of the USSR
The Story of the World, Activity Book 4: The Modern Age: From Victoria’s Empire to the End of the USSR
Take a look at some of the books that we use for math.
My son has enjoyed this math workbook as part of his Pre-K/Kindergarten curriculum. This workbook has not only worked on teaching introductory math skills but has challenged him with handwriting and drawing skills. This is only a piece of his math curriculum but this is his primary workbook. “Comprehensive workbooks that practice important math skills, as identified by NCTM standards. These books can be used to supplement any math curriculum. The student is motivated to complete each exercise with a sticker progress chart. Each completed page earns a gold star sticker (stickers are included). Parents’ notes and reduced-page answer keys are located in the back. Very little instruction is provided on the workbook pages themselves so be sure to check the parents’ notes for teaching tips.”
Take a look at some of the books that we use for spelling, grammar, reading, and writing.
This guide takes on the classical style of teaching by using poem memorization to learn the alphabet sounds. That being said, I was shocked at how well my son was able to memorize the vowel and consonant poems with only spending 15-20 minutes a day per lesson. This book does an awesome job of walking you through teaching your child to read with minimal resources; however, I did feel there was quite an abrupt transition from letter sounds into blending sounds and reading sentences. Even though my son could recognize all the letters and their sounds he was not quite “ready” to start reading, so we had to take a long break between Part 1 (letter sounds) and Part 2 (reading). I did start this book when he was only 4, so I think that if we would’ve started later we wouldn’t have needed the gap.
“The Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading cuts through the confusion, giving parents a simple, direct, scripted guide to teaching reading―from short vowels through supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. This one book supplies parents with all the tools they need.”
My daughter enjoys the activities that go along with each lesson in her workbook. I like that the activities not only teach spelling, but comprehension, proofreading, and writing. (This series is defined by letters (A,B,C,D, etc) and the letters are approximately the equivalent of A-1st Grade, B=2nd grade, etc.)
“Students learn spelling skills based on phonics through unique, cross-curricular reading passages, practice, and high-interest writing activities. Packed with flexible lessons, motivating activities, including fun riddles and puzzles, this dynamic program leads students to spelling success!
- Provides detailed lesson plans for either a 3-day or 5-day plan.
- Offers strategy activities for reinforcing and analyzing spelling patterns.
- Includes Dictation Sentences for a Pretest and Final Replay Test.
- Suggests tips for meeting the needs of English language learners.
- Features Take-It Home masters to help foster home involvement.
- Follows the same scope and sequence of MCP “Plaid” Phonics.”
This is the Grammar curriculum that I selected for our first year of homeschooling. Let me be honest, these books (because you need the Student Workbook also) cover the information needed, but since it is so scripted it can get boring. Yes, it has been fun for my daughter to memorize the poems, and to learn all the history, science, literature facts sprinkled into the lessons, but the repetition gets monotonous and I find myself paraphrasing the lessons and trying new ways to fit it best to her learning style. Yes, I do think this is worth looking at as an option for your grammar curriculum, but I would advise taking a trip to your local bookstore and actually flipping through the pages to see if it would be a good fit for you and your child first. (The Levels on these are equivalent to the grade level. Level 3 – 3rd grade)
“BIG Preschool Workbook is packed with 300+ colorful exercises that make learning fun!
These proven activities will help prepare your child for success by teaching colors, shapes, alphabet, basic phonics, numbers, early math and more! “
“This Big Alphabet Workbook combines popular School Zone workbooks into one convenient 320-page volume. Child-friendly exercises and full-color illustrations make learning fun. Use Big Workbooks to reinforce or review grade-level skills or prepare for the upcoming school year. Contents include: Beginning Writing, Uppercase Alphabet, Lowercase Alphabet, and ABC Dot-to-Dot. “
Both of these preschool workbooks have served my son well for practicing his handwriting skills and his letter sounds. He loves the mazes, dot-to-dots, and the alphabet poems. I know these are your typical pre-school and kindergarten workbook, but they are truly and a great supplement for learning.
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