I have a few friends who are considering homeschooling their children next year, and they have asked me a bunch of questions. I started this mini-series as a result of those conversations. If you missed Part I about the pros and cons of homeschooling, click the link to read.
The other main question I am asked relates to curriculum suggestions.
I wrote a little on this topic last year and compared buying a curriculum to purchasing a new car. It helps to have an idea of what you want before you start looking, and asking friends for suggestions is a great place to start. However, it is good to keep in mind that one size does not fit all, and different seasons of life create different needs. What works for your friend or favorite blogger, may not necessarily be the best fit for your family. What suits you well this year simply may not the next.
Finding a curricular fit for your family can be tricky. Have you ever seen a dress on the rack at the department store and thought it was lovely... until you tried it on? Just like some styles flatter us, and others don't, certain curricula will work wonders in some families and flop in others.
This does not mean the curriculum is poor, or one family is right and the other wrong. It is a matter of style and needs, and homeschooling gives you the freedom to be flexible. If you buy a dress that does not fit well, it will not look good on you, no matter how beautiful it was on the rack or how lovely it looks on another woman. A poor-fitting curriculum can have the same effect and make schooling uncomfortable.
With that said, do not feel the pressure to get it right the first time. You will make adjustments each year that you homeschool. In fact, I am seven years into the process and have not found a "perfect" curriculum for us. I am an eclectic homeschooler who likes to build a versatile program that combines a number of resources and teaching/learning styles.
I will share about what we have used since we started this journey and some of my feelings about each program over the course of the next few posts. Some of the programs we have chosen have fit as if tailored for us. Others have needed some adjustments to work, and some have just been a really bad fit.
Whatever the case, the work of God's grace has been what has carried us through. So, I will end by reminding you to "seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you." (Matt 6:33)
The Lord will provide, and by His grace, you can homeschool your children.
Happy Curriculum Hunting!