What is the best homeschooling curriculum? Which homeschooling method is best? These are often the first questions a new homeschooler will ask. Likewise when two homeschoolers meet for the first time, the inevitable questions are “what kind of homeschooler are you?” and “which curriculum do you use?”
There absolutely are right answers to these questions, but so many people get them wrong for so long. What are the answers?
- What is the best homeschooling curriculum? The one that works for your child.
- Which homeschooling method is best? The one that works for your child.
There is only one reason to choose a homeschooling curriculum and that is because it works for your child.
There is only one reason to choose a homeschool method and that is because it works for your child.
Our Homeschooling Choices
My homeschooling method is now some form of relaxed homeschooling that borders on unschooling. This would not have been my choice. This was the method that chose us because along the way I realized relaxed homeschooling was the best homeschooling approach for my child. If I had my way, I would be doing something totally different because I have ideas about how I would like to homeschool. But those methods are a terrible fit for my child. And her needs are the only thing that matters. I’m doing this homeschooling thing for her, after all.
Pressures from Other Homeschoolers and Non-Homeschoolers
If you are feeling subtle (or not-subtle) pressure to choose a particular method because people around you deem it “better” or “superior” to what you are currently doing, please ignore them. Seriously.
If someone is telling you that they are using the absolute best homeschooling curriculum and everything else is clearly inferior, feel free to do a mental “la la la la la la la” while they are talking.
If non-homeschoolers who know nothing about homeschooling and your family are giving you grief about your carefully made choices, please ignore them.
Ignore The Homeschool Method Crusaders
Some people become so passionate about their particular method that it’s like they lose all objectivity. They denigrate other methods and the people who use them. If you are unfortunate enough to run into someone who is a zealot for any particular kind of homeschooling method, you have my sympathies. You also have my support to walk away from their zealousness and happily choose what works for your family.
The truth of the matter is every kind of homeschooling approach and curriculum is the perfect fit for some family. They all work in certain homes. But none of them will ever work in all homes. And people who put down people who choose something different are only showing their smallness.
Did I Make The Wrong Choice?
At some point in your homeschooling journey you may realize on your own that a particular curriculum or approach isn’t working for your family. If you think you chose the wrong curriculum or the method isn’t working, don’t be afraid to make changes! So often people become slavishly dedicated to their homeschool method of choice, even when it clearly isn’t working. They fall into the sunk cost trap.
What works for one child might not work for the next one. What works for your children in elementary school might not work in middle school. Making a choice once does not mean you have to stick with it forever. Know when to cut your losses and move on.
There is only one reason to choose a homeschool method and that is because it works. There is only one way to determine what the best homeschooling curriculum is and that is because it works. How you determine that will be up to you. As a Christian, I pray a LOT about how to homeschool my child because she’s just so different from me. I’ve had to depend on wisdom from God to make my choices and hope I’m not screwing up her education and her life. The bottom line is make decisions for your child and let the rest from other people roll off your back.