Most home schooling programs are fully comprehensive and provide everything you would need for your child’s complete k-12 education. However, you should keep in mind that many experienced home schoolers do not stick to just one program. They pick and choose from what they believe are best of each of the various programs. I cover in greater detail how people mix and match in my home schooling newsletter.
There are many popular and respected home schooling programs. The ones I’ll cover briefly here are Saxon, Center for Learning and Curriculum Associates.
Perhaps one of the more well-known home schooling programs comes from Saxon. Saxon is a part of Harcourt Achieve, a publisher that provides a variety of educational materials across various subjects. Saxon focuses on math, phonics and early learning. Many home schoolers like Saxon’s math texts. Math is an area that children will need expert instruction in. If the parents don’t have a math background, Saxon may be the right math program for your child.
The Center for Learning is another of the great home schooling programs. They provide curriculum materials to public, private and parochial schools. They are also a favorite choice of home schoolers. Just as Saxon provides good math texts, the Center for Learning provides materials on English, Language Arts, Drama and Social Studies. They provide religious materials.
Finally, another favorite among the various home schooling programs is Curriculum Associates. Their materials focus on Reading, Language Arts and Math. They also have materials on test preparation, study skills and assessment.
As I mentioned, most parents will not stick to any one of the home schooling programs. They will choose Reading from this publisher and Math from that one. They often find what they like best through experimentation or from what their friends recommend.
So, which of the home schooling programs do you choose? If it were me, I would contact your State’s Department of Education Home School contact person. This individual will know what programs with which students are having the most success.