When my parents first pulled my brother and me out of private school to educate us at home in 1994, we were on the very fringe of an often misunderstood movement. We knew only two other families who homeschooled their kids. We heard rumors that there were others, but had no way to get in touch with them. It was nearly impossible to find resources, so my mother used a lot of the same curriculum that had been used by our last school. My mother often said that she wished she had pulled us out to homeschool earlier, but she had no way of knowing where to purchase materials or curricula. Obviously this was before the internet became widely used.
The homeschooling landscape has changed a lot in the last twenty years. Negative stereotypes that hounded us in 1994 have largely been proven ridiculous. When I started homeschooling my kindergartener last year, I was up to my eyeballs in resources, many of them free. My parents spent $1000 on curricula the first year they taught us at home. In 2014 I spent less than $100.
Here’s a selection of my favorite articles and homeschool resources for all ages, and they’re all free.
Homeschool Philosophy/ Homeschool Tips
1) Avoiding Homeschool Burnout
Burnout is the #1 problem homeschoolers face, which is why I listed it as the very first link. How many of us start the year with glorious expectations of our children’s academic success, only to find, six weeks in, that we are living an unsustainable model? Read Avoiding Homeschool Burnout for tips from experienced homeschooling parents.
2) Using Netflix in Homeschool Curriculum
I confess I do not have a Netflix account, but I use YouTube in a similar fashion in my own home school. Read Homeschooling with Netflix Documentaries and Using Netflix in Our Homeschooling.
3) “The Baby IS the Lesson”
Many families homeschool for moral or religious reasons. Moral instruction is an important part of a child’s upbringing but sometimes gets lost in the busy-ness that is homeschooling. Read The Baby IS The Lesson for inspiration.
Resources for Teaching Art
4) Harrington Harmonies
The author of this blog regularly posts fun and useful art projects around a theme, perfect for younger children who love to explore.
Simple, step-by-step instruction on the more technical side of drawing. Topics include line, value, shape, perspective, and color. Some lessons are free, others require a paid subscription. Browse here for all kinds of lessons in art.
6) Metropolitan Museum of Art – books with full text
You know those giant coffee-table books with all the pictures that they sell at museums? The Metropolitain Museum of Art has published a couple hundred of these over the years, and many of them are now available as free pdf downloads. Not only a good resource for art, but history as well.
7) Google Cultural Institute
Will the wonders of Google never cease? The cultural institute is a searchable image database of museum collections from all over the world, along with item descriptions.
Resources for Teaching Literacy
8) This Reading Mama
Lots and lots of free printable worksheets and emergent readers to inspire literacy in young children. The author of This Reading Mama blog also has products for sale.
9) The Amazing-Incredible Handwriting Worksheet Maker
My kindergartner is not inspired by his handwriting workbook, which encourages him to write, “Grey Goose,” and “The band can play,” dozens of times. He is very interested, however, in writing about things that interest him, so I regularly print up worksheets for things that say, “Space Shuttle,” and “Jupiter,” and “Kuiper Belt.” This site lets you choose from print manuscript, D’nealian, and cursive handwriting fonts.
Resources for Teaching Math and Science
10) Khan Academy
What started with a guy sharing simple videos on how to do a variety of math problems has evolved into a sophisticated online system of courses on a variety of subjects. Khan Academy math classes range from elementary-level mathematics to differential equations and linear algebra. Also offered are video lectures on history, art history, science, economics, and preparation for college entrance exams. The math section is Common Core Aligned.
11) Physics Animations
Sometimes you have to see a scientific principle in action before you understand it. These short animations of physics concepts are clear and concise.
Resources for Teaching History
12) BBC’s Primary History
This BBC website includes information on a wide cross-section of time periods – colorful illustrations and clear, easy-to-read text.
For Advanced Students: Open Courseware
Open courseware is a term that describes recordings and materials from actual university courses now available for free. Subjects vary from technical fields to history and social science.
14) Massachusetts Institute of Technology
For Special Needs Students
15) Homeschooling with Dyslexia
Dyslexia is often misunderstood, and can really throw a wrench in one’s educational plans. Some homeschool philosophies proclaim, “reading is easy, don’t sweat it.” Ha. (As a dyslexic, myself, I ought to know!) This site, Homeschooling with Dyslexia, probably would have been nice to have when I was growing up.
16) Homeschooling Autism.
This Homeschooling Autism blog has a lot of valuable information, though it hasn’t been updated in a few months.
Free! Homeschooling Resources for All Ages
17) Homeschool Giveaways
If you are looking for a site that does all the work for you in compiling lists of free worksheets and print-out activities on nearly every subject you can think of, here it is. This site primarily provides outside links to other sites, some of which require that you sign up for their email newsletter before you can access the material.
18) Homeschool Share.
This site has hundreds of free lapbooks, for a variety of age levels. Each download includes both the activities and the research required to complete it. If you have children in the younger elementary grades, they will love these cut-and-past activities.
If you need to begin homeschooling immediately either by desire or necessity but still don’t know quite where to start, there are several sites that include entire online curricula from kindergarten to high school.
19) Easy Peasy All-In-One Homeschool
A complete curriculum for all subjects that can be done by a student entirely on the computer.
20) Ambleside Online
Comes with the Survival Mom Stamp of Approval.
21) Discovery K12
Another complete online curriculum.
There are as many different approaches to homeschooling as there are children to be homeschooled. When I first began our homeschool year with my kindergartner, I had a very clear, structured idea of what we would be doing. Our reality became quite different as I decided to pull from a variety of different approaches instead of following one set curriculum, choosing to follow my child’s interests in lieu of a predetermined syllabus. Having the ability to access free homeschool resources for all ages has been a definite help.
Whether you are already homeschooling, or just thinking about it, I hope this short list (because this could have been much, much longer) will be of use.
Latest posts by Beth Buck (see all)
- Get Ready to Feed Your Baby During Disasters or Supply Crisis - May 11, 2022
- How to Spin Yarn & Keep Your Loved Ones Clothed and Warm - April 3, 2022
- Five Food Storage Lessons from World War II (That Are Still Useful Today!) - January 26, 2022
- A Brief Guide To Edible Weeds - March 20, 2019
- Need More Mistletoe Time? Try These Food Storage Holiday Recipes - December 4, 2018
13 thoughts on “21 Homeschool Resources For All Ages”
In the first sentence, there is a grammatical error. It should read, “When my parents first pulled my brother and ME….” If we want to promote homeschooling, and laud its benefits, it would be good to speak grammatical English.
Thanks for pointing that out, Janis! Sometimes things get overlooked during the editorial process. We’ll get that fixed. I am sad to report that my English grammar took a bit of a hit when I started studying college-level Arabic.
It’s probably worth mentioning that my younger brother (who is dyslexic and still has extreme difficulty with spelling) is running circles around his peers in his university classes. He may not be able to spell, but he is a wizard when it comes to molecular biology and genetics.
Actually there is no error. The “me” in question is part of the compound object of the verb “pulled.” It is correct to use the objective case.
I started homeschooling in the 80s and would have loved to have had these resources! I still collect material for educating and sharing — THANKS for the list
Able to get access to different free homeschool resources is really helpful, which can save us a lot of money. Very helpful list. Greatly appreciated.
Pingback: Staying Prepared » 21 Homeschool Resources For All Ages
Beth, very nice article. My wife has homeschooled my son who is now 15. She has kind of run into the wall on math, so now wants to send him away to a Christian Academy, which is breaking my heart since we really have a great time working and playing together on our homestead.
We are using the traditional math books, but the algebra has gotten a bit too hard for us to help with. Do you have any suggestions, or are we doomed to lose the company of our son? Public school is NOT an option.
I am going to recommend the Life of Fred. These books are organized to teach math as a narrative instead of rote memorization of formulae. They’re also hilarious. It goes up through algebra and geometry up to calculus – a friend of mine purchased the calculus one and she reads it for enjoyment. One criticism of Life of Fred is that it doesn’t include enough drill, so you will probably want to purchase an inexpensive workbook, or else encourage your son to spend a few minutes on the Khan Academy site.
Another option is to hire a math tutor – it would definitely be cheaper than sending your son away. If you live by a university or community college, you could see if there are any math majors who wouldn’t mind making a few extra bucks.
Ron Paul, too.
Pingback: Homeschool resources for all ages (guest post) | libertarian dad's Blog
http://Www.learningpage.com has free math, science, & English for pre-K through 3rd grade, all in PDF format. My kids and grandkids love it. http://Www.starfall.com is another (mostly) free site, with a fantastic phonics program.
My kids absolutely loved Starfall, and so did I. I was kind of sad when they finished all the levels and activities and we moved on to something else.
Heya. I am so grateful that I have such a lot of options. I have looked at workbooks in a local bookshop in order to begin things with. However I have not bought any yet. I have now also looked hard at the free stuff online to use in addition to make things easier on me. I also have now researched some free family activities online in addition.
I have read a cheap bunch of shop magazines as well in case. We will aim to visit the famous galleries and museums here and so on. Good luck to you too. I know where to obtain the old copies of free exam papers. Skills and qualities are crucial.