Before purchasing materials for your home school, take time to read homeschool curriculum reviews that have been written about the product you are considering. Homeschool reviews allow you to learn from the positive and negative experiences of other homeschoolers. They can help you narrow down your choices and decide which products to purchase, and they reduce the chances that you will purchase the wrong curriculum.A homeschool curriculum review can be written by a merchant who is describing products that are available for sale, an author who is paid to review products that are received from publishers, or a homeschooler who has actually used the product. In my experience, reviews written by other homeschoolers are more helpful because they tend to be more honest and objective, and they realistically portray the use of the materials in a homeschool setting.You can find reviews in homeschool magazines, books, catalogs and online. Mary Pride’s Big Book of Home Learning and Cathy Duffy’s Top 100 Picks are favorite books among home educators. Homeschool catalogs like Sonlight, Timberdoodle and Rainbow Resources also contain detailed reviews. My favorite source of online reviews is Successful Homeschooling, a website that contains a database of hundreds of reviews written by other homeschoolers.Message boards, forums and yahoo groups are another valuable online source of opinions. These interactive formats allow you to ask questions and get information about how well a product will fit your family. Other parents may also be able to help you choose the correct level for your child and share advice for using the program.When reading home school curriculum reviews, make sure you consider your family’s lifestyle, your children’s learning style, and your preferred homeschooling method. Also remember that you are reading opinions, not facts. A product that works well for one family may not work well for another, and vice versa. Carefully consider your family’s needs and goals when choosing materials for your home school.
In response to the increased interest in homeschooling, individuals and groups everywhere have taken it upon themselves to develop a variety of resource and reference books designed to do everything from supplement and existing curriculum, to actually helping a parent design their very own course of study. The following is a list of 10 of the most popular homeschooling books currently available.1. Home Learning Year by Year – A very affordable guide for what it covers, this book serves as a comprehensive guide that is designed to help parents develop their own homeschooling curriculum from the ground up. Written by a true expert in the field, this book features a traditionally based, grade-by-grade approach and structure that has been tailored specifically for the homeschooler.2. Little Man in the Map – Teaching about all 50 states is something that all homeschoolers have to do. This creative little book, written in rhyming fashion, is a great alternative approach to helping students learn about each and every state.3. The Ultimate Book of Homeschooling Ideas – Any curriculum, be it traditional or homeschooled, has to every once in a while make use of creative and interactive learning activities and techniques. This book is full of several hundred ideas designed to help homeschoolers find creative ways to teach and bring life to even the most mundane topic.4. 100 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum – A simple and straightforward guide designed to help parents select a curriculum that will meet the needs and learning style of their children.
5. The Imperfect Homeschooler’s Guide to Homeschooling – A book that reads much like a “chicken soup” book, this title gives parents a chance to hear from a 20-year veteran in the field of homeschooling. The author, Barbara Frank, takes great care to cover all the necessary topics that might come up over the course of teaching a homeschool course, from ways to make learning fun, to avoiding burnout.6. Homeschool Your Child For Free – With the economy being what it is, this book is an excellent source for parents who are looking for affordable ways to educate their children, without digging into their college tuition fund.7. The First Year of Homeschooling Your Child – A great guide to help parents get off to a great start in homeschooling their child. This guide is very well-laid out and a perfect starting point for any new homeschooler.8. The Well-Adjusted Child – This book provides solid support for the benefits of homeschooling a child, especially in terms of how it can benefit students socially.9. So-WHY Do You Homeschool – A great resource guide for anyone considering taking a homeschooling approach to educating their child, this book provides readers with advice and testimonials from others who have made the decision to “do the homeschool thing”.10. The Complete Home Learning Source Book – One of the most comprehensive guidebooks available, this little book is packed with everything a parent needs for his or her homeschooling curriculum, including internet sites, lesson plans, and other types of resources.