Judging by the multitude of school supply displays in nearly every store I’ve entered in the last week or so, I think the start of school must be around the corner. For parents whose kids attend traditional school, this means the return of packing lunches and backpacks, car pool, and a regular schedule. However, for the homeschooling parent, this means lesson plans, juggling housework with school work, plus planning all the extras that they would like to or need to accomplish during the school year.
Having been a homeschool family for 12 years, I feel your pain…and your excitement!
We loved receiving our books, organizing the classroom for the year, planning field trips to enhance the curriculum, and determining start and end dates. When we were homeschooling though, specifically in those early years, we didn’t have the internet and the multitude of resources available. (I know, I know. It sounds like “walking to school in the snow uphill both ways.”) But, thankfully, the internet is available now which really can help parents create a very unique educational experience for their children.
Every family has their own specific ideas and preferences regarding curriculum, scheduling, etc. Therefore, I will forego any tips regarding those. I do, however, want to provide resources for things that might be considered outside-the-box and areas you might not have considered yet.
Review is an important aspect of teaching. Check out these resources: Crossword Labs (create your own), DadsWorksheets.com (math worksheets from early learning up to pre-algebra and geometry), EdHelper.com (create your own worksheets; many types and subjects), Jeopardy Labs (Jeopardy-style DIY creator), Soft Schools (pre-K through high school; many subjects; worksheets, games, and more), SchoolExpress.com (17,000+ worksheets), The Algebrator (software/for purchase; pre-algebra to College Algebra, Trigonometry, and Statistics; can do any textbook math problem; helps to see process; great back up for the math-challenged).
Looking to add music appreciation or music lessons to your curriculum? 40 Ways to Learn Music Online for Free This teachthought.com article provides a wealth of resources for those who teach or play. Links there include places to print your own staff paper, teaching tips, resources, and so much more.
Have a student considering college? Not sure where to go for testing or scholarships? CollegeBoard.org has everything you need to know if you desire to go to college. On a side note, we recommend begin searching for information by the end of freshman year or beginning of sophomore year.
One area that homeschoolers sometimes neglect is that of standardized testing. Whether it is required testing to stay compliant with the state, gauging your child’s progress, vocational and career assessments, or college entrance tests, these resources are something every homeschool parent should bookmark. The ACT Exam (college entrance), ASVAB Testing (military vocational aptitude testing), Bayside School Services (standardized testing resource), BJU Press Testing (various standardized tests), Brewer Testing (various standardized tests), and Jackson Vocational Interest Survey (JVIS) (career & college assessment)
We have additional resources listed over on the ministry website: churchhelps.org/homeschool
What are your favorite homeschool resources? Don’t be shy. Add to the story by leaving your favorites in the comments. We all can learn something new!
original photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/7729940@N06/7982475989″>Colorful set of pencils-6</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a>
photo editing: Melissa Woltmann