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If you're just beginning to homeschool or exploring new curriculum options, the huge market of materials and terminology may seem overwhelming. Click here for a concise explanation of the basic types of homeschool instruction and a helpful overview of evaluating and choosing curriculum.
There are often two responses to any list of resources: some readers feel overwhelmed by the vast array of options; others feel cheated that the list did not include every available option. We've tried to hit a happy medium with this list. It's not intended to be comprehensive, nor a "creme de la creme" elite ranking system. It's simply a concise start to your search for the right curriculum; and, of course, we encourage you to carefully evaluate any educational resources before allowing your children access to them.
After determining what courses are required in your state and any additional courses you and your student think he should take, you're ready to start selecting curriculum. Some people find it helpful to check out an overview of curriculum and course options.
Most people purchase a year's curriculum at a time, but some prefer to buy everything at once. If finances are tight, there are several ways you can tap into the used curriculum market. Invite your student to join you in investigating the educational opportunities below, and enjoy the journey together!
|Need help choosing a high school curriculum?
If you are a member of HSLDA you can talk to your high school coordinator. You can use the Contact Your Staff section of the members website or call (540) 338-5600. Not a member? Why not join today and here are some reasons why.
These publishers offer a complete package of curriculum from grades K-12 covering most or all of the subjects necessary for high school. Curriculum usually includes student books, teacher's guides, workbooks, and even tests and quizzes. Check out the publishers' websites for catalogs and online ordering.
Correspondence schools offer a variety of courses for high school students. It's possible to take all of your courses at home, and the correspondence school will provide testing, grading, record keeping, and usually a teacher/consultant should you have any questions. Most correspondence schools will also provide transcripts as well as diplomas.
There is a wide variety of online courses now available to homeschool students. These courses may be chosen “a la carte”—you pick and choose which classes you would like your child to take. The instructor spells out the requirements for the class, the method of evaluation, and the cost. Some online courses are more interactive than others—if interactivity is important to you, be sure to check this out before you sign up for a class. The University of Nebraska’s booklet, “Characteristics of Successful Online Students,” is a useful resource for parents and students that highlights the skills necessary to do well in online courses.
- Torrey Academy (affiliated with Biola University)
Advanced Placement courses are rigorous courses taken in high school but taught on a college level. (For detailed info on AP courses and tests see the home e-vent “How to Navigate the World of Advanced Placement Courses.” In order for homeschoolers to label courses as “Advanced Placement” on their high school transcripts, the course syllabus must now be pre-approved by the College Board AP Central. (AP is a trademark and to use it without approval is illegal.) Besides studying the course material, students also prepare to take an Advanced Placement test administered through the College Board. If students score well enough on the AP test, college credit can be earned for the course. Individual colleges set their own policies regarding which AP tests they recognize and what score must be attained to receive credit. For more information see Testing. The following individuals/organizations offer AP courses online to homeschoolers:
- Supplemental AP Test Prep
This list by no means covers all of the quality curriculum available, but it provides a starting point from which to investigate resources for high school courses. We will be adding to our curriculum resource list regularly, so be sure to keep checking back. As you develop your teen’s high school plan, you will consider both core academic courses as well as elective courses. This list includes ideas for possible high school electives.
- Church History in Plain English, Bruce L. Shelley
- Sketches from Church History, S. M. Houghton
- The Church in History, B. K. Kuiper
- Other Resources
- Reagan Foundation—Civics and Citizenship (free materials)
- New Perspective Series
- New Perspectives on HTML, XHTML, and Dynamic HTML, Comprehensive, Third Edition
- New Perspectives on HTML and XHTML, Comprehensive
- New Perspectives on Microsoft Office 2003, First Course, Second Edition
- Rules of the Road
- Interactive DVD to use as a supplement to Driverís Ed curriculum
- Includes quizzes and a printable teacherís guide
- Economics: Work and Prosperity (Abeka)
- Economics (BJU Press)
- No Free Lunch: Economics for a Fallen World (A free online textbook by Dr. Jeff Haymond, professor of economics at Cedarville University)
- The Biblical Financial Study Collegiate Edition (Crown Ministries)
- Complete Financial Guide for Young Couples: A Lifetime Approach to Spending, Saving and Investing by Larry Burkett
- Discovering God’s Way of Handling Money Teen Study (Crown Ministries)
- Foundations in Personal Finance by Dave Ramsey
- Money Matters for Teens by Larry Burkett
- The Motley Fool
- National Endowment for Financial Education (free high school financial planning program)
- The World’s Easiest Guide to Finances by Larry Burkett
- Annotated Mona Lisa: A Crash Course in Art History from Prehistoric to Post-Modern
- Artistic Pursuits
- Barry Stebbing, How Great Thou Art
- Cartoon Fundamentals: How to Draw a Cartoon Body
- Cartoon Fundamentals: How to Draw a Cartoon Face Correctly
- Drawing Textbooks by Bruce McIntyre
- God and the History of Art
- Iguana Paint
- Picturing America art curriculum
- Short Lessons in Art History: Artists and Their Work
- The Animation Course
- The Story of Painting by Sister Wendy Beckett
- Art History
- A Noble Experiment by Tim Spickler
- Basic American Government by Clarence Carson
- The Heritage Foundation’s Guide to the Constitution (online version and teacher’s guide are free)
- Sewing and Fashion Design Resources
- Auto Upkeep: Basic Car Care, Maintenance, and Repair by Michael E. Gray and Linda E. Gray
- Basic Electronics for Tomorrow’s Inventors by Nick Dossis
- Learning Language Arts through Literature The Gold Book: World Literature and A World Literature Anthology
- For Such a Time as This Ministries (Literature Series by James Stobaugh)
- High School Education Resources
- Business Mathematics
(May be an acceptable math option for students directly entering the workforce after graduation)
- High School Education Resources
- High School Education Resources:
- The Spectrum (Chemistry)
- Lab Science Supplies
- Supplemental science resources
- Fun Physics Projects for Tomorrow’s Rocket Scientists by Alan Gleue
- Virtual labs
- “How to Become a SuperStar Student”—The Teaching Company
- Woodside Learning Center (online study skills course)
- High School Education Resources
- C. S. Lewis’ Case for Christ by Art Lindsley
- True Truth: Defending Absolute Truth in a Relativistic World by Art Lindsley
- Lukeion Project (College Research Writing Seminar)
- Supplemental Resources
The following Teaching Tip blog contains links to several recommended high school reading lists. This Teaching Tip blog links to three online sources for recommended short stories (free pdf download). Some of the books and short stories on these lists are not suitable for every teenager, so we recommend that parents exercise discernment.
Check out the following links for more information on literature study:
If you would like an explanation of the typical progression of high school math courses, this table provides suggestions based on your teen’s post-high school plans.
If you would like an explanation of the typical progression of high school science courses, this table provides suggestions based on your teen’s post-high school plans.