Are you just getting your feet wet in the world of homeschooling? If so, you’ve probably realized how difficult it is to select the right homeschooling curriculum that fits the needs of your entire family.
Just a few years ago, there were only a handful of curricula to choose from. But today, there seems to be countless choices, making it difficult for new homeschoolers to decide which one to use. But with enough preparation, the process of choosing the best homeschooling program can be fun and easy. The following are some tips to keep in mind when finding a curriculum for your family.
1. Write a mission statement.
Your first order of business is to determine what made you decide to pursue homeschooling in the first place. The curriculum you choose must align with your purpose for homeschooling. It’s vital to be honest during this step. Be sure to write down your goals and all the things you want to accomplish by the end of the school year. Knowing what you want to achieve can measurably narrow down your choices of homeschool curricula.
2. Decide on a teaching style and method.
By now, you probably know that there are several styles of homeschooling. Most families use more than one style. It’s normal to change from one teaching style or educational philosophy to another. But for starters, it’s best to begin with a more structured style. As you get used to homeschooling, you can make adjustments and break the rules, so to speak. You can start with a pre-packaged curriculum and then eventually move on to a self-created curriculum, making use of different teaching styles to enrich the knowledge and experience of your kids.
3. Determine what subjects to teach.
Figure out if your state requires you to teach certain subjects. It is essential to understand that not all subjects need a curriculum. There are also subjects that do not have to be taught every day. There are hundreds of subjects to choose from. Other than the basic subjects of math, reading and writing, be sure to select other subjects that will nurture your child.
4. Consider curriculum costs.
The costs of homeschooling programs can vary a lot. There are some that put a serious dent in your pocket. Be sure to consider the number of children you’ll teach, their grade levels, the subjects and other resources such as a computer. There are ways to save on curriculum costs such as utilizing the resources of your local library and going to curriculum book fairs to enjoy discounts.
5. Read curriculum reviews and visit different vendors.
You can read curriculum reviews online to see what other homeschoolers have to say about their experience. If possible, try to get a personal recommendation from someone you know. Keep in mind that expensive doesn’t necessarily equate to high quality. There are plenty of budgetary options and some websites even help parents homeschool their kids absolutely for free. Similarly, don’t just go for the most popular curriculum. The needs of your family are unique, so it’s imperative to find a curriculum that’s tailored to your family.
Choosing the right homeschooling curriculum can be a long and tedious process, but by knowing what things to look for, you can ensure that you’ll find one that caters to the needs of your family.