Thursday, December 2, 2010

Choosing a Homeschool Curriculum

Choosing a curriculum for your children is a huge decision, and a very personal one. While the available options may be very similar, each family approaches the decision differently. Your outlook may be colored by the circumstances of how your children were previously educated. Maybe you’re pulling them out of a troubled public school system with a substandard curriculum, or your spouse lost their job and suddenly expensive private school is out of reach. Or perhaps you’re beginning to homeschool right from the starting line, in kindergarten, and don’t know where to start.

One option that some families transitioning away from public school prefer is commonly referred to as “e-school”. This is basically a public school curriculum done from home on a computer. There are several private companies that each state contracts with to provide these services. Often, the state even pays for the child to have a computer at home for doing schoolwork.

However, most homeschoolers choose their own curriculum from the multitude available. Some choices include curriculum-in-a-box options where the texts and workbooks for an entire grade level are bundled together. There are also single subjects available separately. The great part about picking and choosing your own curriculum is that you can choose a math book from a publisher known to be strong in that subject, and a science program from a publisher respected for its science texts. You can also have a child working at grade level in one subject and either up or down a grade in another subject, so that your child’s curriculum is tailored to their needs.

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