Sometimes, life hands you a blog post. I had intended to write about something very different today, but last night a woman I like very much pm’d me on Facebook. Her daughter is about to start homeschooling her own littles, and she wondered if I could advise them where to go to get free curriculum. I started getting the list together for her, and I realized this list might benefit a whole lot of people, even veterans looking to spruce up their schooling plans. So rather than pm her back and keep all this yummy goodness between us, I thought it might be a good idea to share it with you, too. I’m cool like that.
Because I’m in the planning stages of a whole new homeschool year and since I promised to bring you along with me, I thought it would be helpful to share my favorite places to go when I need a little help getting our curriculum together. These are in no particular order, and nothing is on the list that I don’t use with frequency.
1. Currclick Currclick is an amazing site where many different curriculum publishers sell their worksheets, ebooks, unit studies, and the like. Each publisher offers freebies and most of the products are well-priced. They also offer live classes in almost every subject, especially handy if you want your homeschoolers to learn something you’re not comfortable teaching, like a foreign language. Another interesting offer from Currclick is the free clubs, including Lego Club, American Girl Club and Magic Treehouse Club. Once you sign up, you get a library where all your downloads are kept indefinitely with no limit to how many times you can download a product once you’ve purchased it.
2. Scholastic Teacher Express Scholastic isn’t just for public school teachers. I can’t tell you how much it helped when we were doing American history last year. This site also offers ebooks and worksheets for sale. Several times a year they have a $1 sale on tons of their products. Even though their regular prices are doable, I stock up during those sales. The only drawback is that you have only three opportunities to download a product once you’ve purchased it. I usually save them to a flash drive at purchase so I don’t have to worry about it.
3. School Express offers over 17,000 free worksheets. If you’re looking for a worksheet to supplement your schooling, this is a good place to go. My favorite thing about this site, hands down, is the free create-your-own-worksheet option. There are several different types of worksheets you can create including spelling lists, word puzzles, word searches, and quizzes. They are awesome to use for spelling practice.
4. TeachersPayTeachers Here’s a site where teacher-generated worksheets and ebooks are for sale. Because they are created by teachers, you can be pretty sure they’ve been tested on students already and found to be successful. If you sign up for their newsletter, you receive links to 10 free downloads a week. Often I find just what I’m looking for among those freebies. The prices range from free to over $10, and every subject is covered.
5. The Old Schoolhouse This site is aimed specifically toward homeschoolers. It is a font of knowledge, advice, and encouragement. I eagerly look forward to the quarterly magazine. I have mentioned them before because it was here I found a great source for Middle about becoming a video game designer. Their store offers a variety of products on every subject imaginable.
6. EarthSky Although this site doesn’t offer ebooks or worksheets, it is so full of information about Earth and space, I would be lost without it. It has some of the most beautiful photos and interesting articles I’ve ever seen. When we studied astronomy I used it daily. Two years later, we still read the newsletter every day to keep up with what’s going on both in our world and out in space. The store does offer some cool stuff, like planispheres (tools for locating constellations), an astronomy kit, and an atlas of the sky.
7. Writing with Sharon Watson Sharon offers writing courses that can be a big help if you’re struggling with how to teach your child how to be a good writer, but perhaps even more helpful, she offers free middle- and high school-level prompts that are Amazing. If you really want your child to dig a little deeper when practicing his writing, utilize this site. Sharon also blogs about homeschooling and writing, so make sure to check out her great advice!
8. Enrichment Studies This site offers composer studies, artist studies, art appreciation, and biographies. In short, it is a deep humanities well from which all children should drink. The products are well-written and -researched, and there is no expiration on downloads once you’ve made a purchase. They often offer freebies and discounts. In fact, through June 6, they are offering a free Women Artists of the Renaissance to new newsletter subscribers. It’s a beautiful collection, so be sure to sign up! Erica also blogs about fine art, so check that out, too.
9. The Art Curator for Kids I adore this site, I’m not going to lie. Cindy is an online art teacher, and her site is filled with brilliant information about art and how to appreciate and accomplish it. It is an invaluable resource, and Cindy’s passion for it makes it even more interesting. She offers free worksheets, printables, and powerpoints to help you guide your children through the world of visual arts. If you’re teaching art at any level, you have to check out this site!
10. Barefoot Ragamuffin/Barefoor Meandering This site offers homeschool curricula based on the classical approach and the Charlotte Mason approach. My favorite (of course) is English Lessons through Literature. I’ve often mentioned how expanding your child’s reading will expand vocabulary and grammatical usage, and this product offers a way for you to guide your child through those lessons. But check out Kathy’s site yourself, she offers some of the most beautiful freebies in her newsletter. Be sure to sign up; my article on adding literature to your nature study will appear in the June 2 edition.
Whew. Those are not nearly all the sites I use in planning. Check back tomorrow to read about my Top 10 Favorite Homeschool Blogs.
Do you have any favorite educational sites? If so, please share them in the comments. Not only will it help your fellow readers, you might know one I’ve never heard of. And you know I could Always use a little help!