Homeschooling is becoming a popular choice for parents because it allows children to learn in a more personalized setting. With homeschooling, parents have the flexibility to teach their children what they are interested in and cater to their individual needs. In addition, online homeschool programs provide a wealth of resources that can supplement a child's education, such as online textbooks, video lectures, and quizzes.
There are a variety of homeschooling programs available, including online school programs and at-home curricula. Each type of program has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it's important to choose the right one for your child.
Online Homeschool Programs and Their Advantages
Many parents are choosing to homeschool their children for a variety of reasons. Some online homeschool programs offer advantages that at-home curricula cannot.
An enormous advantage of online homeschooling programs is the flexibility they offer. Parents can easily tailor lessons to their child's needs and interests. Many online programs also offer a wide range of courses, so students can explore different subjects.
Another of the great benefits of homeschooling is that it allows students to learn in a comfortable and familiar environment. This can be especially helpful for students who struggle in a traditional school setting.
Overall, online homeschooling programs offer many significant advantages and are becoming an increasingly popular choice for parents.
Accreditation: Does It Matter?
There are many online homeschool programs that are accredited. This means they meet the same standards set by the government as traditional schools. For some parents, this is an important distinction.
Some of the best accredited online homeschool programs include Memoria Press Academy, Veritas Press, Sonlight, and Abeka. These programs offer a variety of courses, from math and science to English and history. Some also offer at-home curricula in addition to their accredited online academies.
For parents who want the assurance that what they're teaching their children is high quality and meets high standards, but who prefer a more hands-on approach, purchasing a curriculum to use at home from a school that also offers an accredited online academy can be a great option.
What About Online Public School?
Online public school can be an excellent option for homeschooling families. It provides a well-rounded education, with a variety of course offerings, and it's fully accredited, so parents can be confident their children are receiving a high-quality education.
It's also free in many areas, and where it's not, it's very affordable. Many online public schools offer scholarships and financial aid. The best online public schools have dedicated teachers who provide personal support and guidance to students.
Examples of online public schools are Connections Academy and K12.com. While these can be good options for many parents, we didn't include them in our Top 10 list since they are technically public schooling at home rather than a parent-chosen homeschool academy or curriculum.
Homeschool Curriculum: Full Kit or Piece-By-Piece
When deciding whether to purchase a full kit homeschool curriculum or piece-by-piece, there are a few pros and cons to consider.
A full kit homeschool curriculum typically includes all the materials parents need to homeschool their children. This can be helpful, especially for parents new to homeschooling, because it takes the guesswork out of what materials to buy.
However, full kit curricula can be more expensive than purchasing materials individually. That said, if you have multiple children, you can reuse the full kit curriculum, saving money in the long run. However, they may not be tailored to your child's individual needs and interests.
Piece-by-piece homeschooling allows you to choose the specific materials you need for your child's education. This can be more affordable and flexible each year than buying a full kit curriculum for each child. You'll still be able to reuse many of your materials by doing things like making copies of workbook pages rather than having your child fill in the workbook itself.
Ultimately, the decision of whether to purchase a full kit or a piece-by-piece homeschool curriculum depends on your individual needs and budget.
Top 10 Best Programs for Homeschooling
When we talk about "the best homeschooling programs," we're referring to accredited homeschool programs online and at-home school programs that have received stellar reviews for years from parents and professionals alike. This is a mix of the top 10 best online homeschool programs and the best homeschool curriculum programs available.
Time4Learning is one of the best online homeschool programs available. It is accredited, which means that it meets the high standards set by the government for grades K-12. It also includes a curriculum that covers a wide range of subjects, from math and science to history and language arts. Plus, it's affordable and easy to use, making it a great choice for parents who are new to homeschooling.
Keystone School Online is another great online school. It's accredited, like Time4Learning, and it offers a curriculum that covers a wide range of subjects. The curriculum is tailored to each student's needs, and parents have access to a variety of resources to help them succeed. Plus, Keystone School Online offers a variety of support services, including online tutoring and live classroom sessions.
This makes it a great choice for parents who want the flexibility of online learning but also want the support of a traditional school.
If you're looking for a high-quality, accredited online homeschool program, Bridgeway Academy is another that should be at the top of your list. Their online program offers students a flexible and personalized learning experience, with access to a wide range of courses and subjects. In addition, all students have the opportunity to participate in online classes with other students from around the world.
Bridgeway Academy's online program is perfect for students who want a flexible learning environment. Students can work at their own pace in each course.
Bridgeway also offers a full at-home curriculum for families interested in a more hands-on experience.
Calvert offers online and print-based curricula for grades K-12. The online academy is more flexible and can be tailored to each student's needs, while the print-based program is more traditional. Both programs are accredited and cover a variety of subjects and topics. Tuition for the online academy starts at $259/month, while tuition for the print-based program starts at just $39.95/month or $399.95/year.
Khan Academy is a website with online courses for students in grades K-12. The courses are completely free and cover a variety of subjects, including math, science, history, and English. In addition to the online courses, Khan Academy also offers practice problems and quizzes to help students review and practice what they have learned.
Khan Academy is an accredited homeschool program and has received praise from educators and parents alike. The courses are high quality and engaging, and the platform is easy to use. Khan Academy is an excellent option for homeschooling families who want a comprehensive online curriculum that is both affordable and high quality.
Geared toward high school students and adult learners, edX is a website that offers online courses from some of the best universities in the world, including Harvard, MIT, and UC Berkeley. The courses are free to take and cover a variety of subjects. edX is an excellent option for homeschooling families who want an affordable but rigorous online curriculum.
The courses offered on edX are college-level, and students are expected to complete assignments and exams on their own. However, the platform is easy to use and provides excellent support for students. In addition, many of the courses offered on edX also have certification options, which can be helpful for students looking to pursue higher education.
Easy Peasy Homeschool offers a free online Christian curriculum that is perfect for parents who are currently homeschooling or planning to homeschool their children. The program is very comprehensive and includes all the subjects and topics that your child will need to learn in order to be successful in school. Easy Peasy Homeschool also provides a support forum where parents can ask questions and receive help from other parents who are using the program.
If you're looking for a top-quality homeschool curriculum that's stood the test of time, Abeka can't be beat. They've been one of the top names in homeschool education since 1972.
Their program includes a Christian perspective and covers all the basic subjects, as well as electives like music and art. Today, the curriculum is available online or in print form, and you can choose from different levels depending on your child's age and ability.
One downside to Abeka is that it can be quite rigorous, so it may not be suitable for younger or slower learners. It follows a mix of classical and Charlotte Mason methods of teaching, so keep that in mind as you're considering this curriculum.
Sonlight has been a popular Christian homeschool curriculum provider since 1990. Sonlight's curriculum covers all the basic subjects, such as math, reading, and science, as well as Bible study and Christian history. The program offers different homeschool curriculum packages to choose from, and each includes all the materials you need. Sonlight also offers a money-back guarantee if you're not satisfied with the program.
Power Homeschool is a website that offers over 400 Acellus® online homeschool courses for students in grades K-12. It's a fantastic option for parents looking for a way to supplement their children's homeschool curriculum.
The affordable $25/month subscription gives you access to a variety of subjects, including math, science, history, and English. In addition to the online courses, Power Homeschool also offers practice problems and quizzes to help students review and practice what they have learned.
The courses are high quality and engaging, and the platform is easy to use. For homeschool parents who are looking for a fully accredited online academy, Acellus® Academy offers a full range of options.
How To Choose the Right Program For Your Family
When choosing a homeschooling program, it's important to consider your family's needs and preferences. What's right for some isn't right for all. It's not a decision to be taken lightly.
Of course, it's also not a decision to take too seriously either. You can always make changes if you find out that things aren't working quite the way you'd hoped. Or add some supplemental courses to mix in some variety and interest.
That's the beauty of homeschooling - the choices are up to you and you have the flexibility to make them!
So, consider your family and their needs. Consider yourself and your needs.
Make decisions. Then get started. See what happens.
Succeed. Fail. Change things.
Learn with your kids.
After all, that's the best part of homeschooling anyway, isn't it?
If you'd like more information on homeschooling resources, we invite you to attend a conference and see what all the excitement is about!