Many parents are making difficult decisions about school choices next year. There is no cut-and-dry right or wrong answer. Each family is facing a variety of different circumstances and challenges. For those that may be choosing homeschooling for the first time, it can feel like a daunting undertaking.
I can’t pretend that it is the easiest choice, but for our family, it has certainly been the most rewarding. I have compiled a few resources that I hope will help you as you begin this journey.
*Some of the links in my posts may be affiliate links see below for more information. *
What curriculum should I use?
First, one of the major questions that I have been getting from parents is what curriculum should I use? There are so many factors that go into this answer and there is no one set answer. Some students work well with textbooks, others enjoy literature based studies, some families need videos or online instruction.
There are many wonderful programs available but there is not a blanket answer to the question of which one is best. I will share a link to some wonderful programs at the bottom of this post.
I will say that I have recommended SchoolhouseTeachers.com to many families because of the flexibility and low price point. With over 400 courses covering all grades from Pre-K to High School, it is a great option for many families. There are courses that are printed out and completed as well as some courses that can be done online. We do not use them for all of our subjects, but do use them for a variety of courses.
Differences Between Public Virtual School and Homeschool
Another common question has been about the difference between public virtual school and homeschool. This may vary some by state, but here in North Carolina, a virtual school student is still considered a public school student and falls under their jurisdiction for attendance, grading, expectations, record keeping, etc.
Parents are responsible for grading, attendance, etc for a homeschooled child and they are registered with the Department of Non-Public Instruction.
What tips do you have for new homeschool parents?
I could go on and on about this question, but I wanted to share a few things that I think are really helpful in the beginning of your homeschool journey. Be flexible and prepared to change things (schedule, curriculum, expectations) as needed. Reach out to other homeschool parents and tap into the rich knowledge of the homeschool community (even if it has to be virtually). Remember that hard days do not mean that you are doing it wrong, there are hard days for everyone.
What books do you recommend for new homeschooling parents?
Help! I’m Homeschooling!: Helpful Habits for the Heart of Homeschooling is a great simple book with lots of good tips. I also really like Lifegiving Home by Sally Clarkson as an encouragement for moms.
The Read-Aloud Family is an excellent choice for helping encourage reading in your home. Finally, if you are looking for ways to teach your students together and have a ‘morning time’ together, I recommend Pam Barnhill’s Better Together.
You really can do this and there are many fellow homeschoolers who are ready and eager to help you get started. If you want to know more about getting registered, finding your style, and choose curriculum you may enjoy reading this post: How Do I Get Started Homeschooling?
I have included some links to Facebook Groups that can provide support as well as curriculum reviews and other resources below. Please feel free to reach out and let me know if I can help in any way.
Schoolin Swag Facebook Group ( over 5,000 members with great resources and discussions)
North Carolina Department of Non-Public Instruction
HSLDA (a great resource about legal questions regarding homeschool)
Evan-Moor Homeschool Resources (these books tend to align with public school standards for those looking for more alignment)
Resource Library and Affiliate Disclosure
When you sign up for the Schoolin’ Swag free resource library you will get a link and password to the library, we are adding to the library each month with new items. You will also get a bi-weekly newsletter email to keep you up to date on what we have going on.
This post may contain affiliate or referral links, including Amazon affiliate links. As always I will never recommend a product that I don’t believe in and you will never be charged more for purchasing through our links. It does help pay for the costs associated with the blog.
Deals and Freebies
So many folks looking for homeschool options at a reasonable price during this unusual time. SchoolhouseTeachers.com is having an amazing sale. For less than $200 you get 2 years access to over 400 courses that you can use with as many students as you have in your home! We use this for several courses and I am always happy to answer questions. Just click on this link and use code: SHARK20
Evan-Moor Learning at Home Skill Sharpeners Bundle is 20% off with Code : LAH20
This great writing program is 20% off through July 21st with code SUMMER20!
If you are looking for a fun way to encourage reading this summer, check out the FREE summer reading materials from Your Morning Basket with Pam Barnhill. The passport and reading bucket list are a great way to encourage reading!
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