Selecting curriculum is an important part of homeschooling. However, doing so can be difficult because there are so many choices. (It’s like trying to pick a new cereal from among the hundreds of boxes in supermarket cereal aisle!)
We want to choose a curriculum that will meet our children’s needs, but how do we sort through all of the choices? Here are some things to do when selecting curricula for your homeschool.
- Take your time. Take time to review the choices. Look through the textbook and carefully examine any supplemental materials that accompany it. Be sure to spend time studying the teacher’s manual as well. Give yourself time to think about the pros and cons of each curriculum. Don’t rush the decision.
- Realize that one size rarely fits all. When we find a great curriculum, we may be tempted to get our money’s worth by using it with every child over the next few years. Yes, that math curriculum may be the perfect one for your son, but it may not work well for your daughter.
- Know your child’s learning style. Children learn in different ways. Some children are auditory learners, while some are kinesthetic learners, and some are visual learners. You’ll want to select a curriculum that matches your child’s learning style.
- Consider how much work you want to do. Are you okay with spending lots of time planning and assembling supplemental materials or do you prefer a curriculum that can be used right out of the box? Choose a curriculum that realistically coincides with the amount of work you’re willing to do.
- Think about the cost. Some curricula is expensive, while some is much less expensive. Think about your budget and purchase accordingly. Keep in mind that expensive does not always mean better!
- Don’t jump on the bandwagon. Though it can be helpful to see what others are using, you should not let that be the single criteria you use for selection. Just because your homeschool bestie says she has found “the best science curriculum ever!”, doesn’t mean you have to buy it as well.
- Don’t let “experts” dictate what you buy. Just because a homeschool influencer says a certain curriculum is amazing, you should not automatically run off and purchase it. Check out the curriculum, but seriously consider if the curriculum will be a good match for your child.
- Check for accuracy. See if the information presented within the curriculum is accurate. If a publisher is pushing a false narrative or attempting to rewrite history, skip it. Children need to be presented with factual information and no parent wants to spend time reteaching inaccurate or untruthful information.