Top 10 Favorite Homeschool Resources

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It’s been almost two years since I wrote about our favorite homeschool curriculum. While we still love everything on that list, the kids have gotten older and some of our curriculum needs have changed. I thought it was time for an update.

So, here is our Top 10 (updated) Favorite Homeschool Curriculum:


1. Trail Guide to LearningTrail Guide obviously gets our top spot. We’re loving it! I never thought I’d be so crazy about an all-inclusive curriculum, but I am. Trail Guide covers everything except math and it’s completely laid out for the parent. My planning consisted of hitting the print button a few times and making sure I have all the supplies needed for the projects we’re doing each week. Works for me!

2. Teaching Textbooks – Josh and Megan have used Teaching Textbooks for several years now. It really comes in second after Horizons, but the fact that the kids can get individualized teaching lessons and their work is automatically graded (with immediate feedback for them) makes it our top pick for math these days.

3. Real Science Odyssey – If we were to do anything for science other than what is covered in Trail Guide, we’d go back to Real Science Odyssey. I love all its hands-on learning.

cell lab

4. Switched on Schoolhouse – So you probably already know that I don’t feel that SOS is without its annoying quirks, but it fits well with Brianna’s current homeschool season. It allows her independent learning within well-structured parameters.

5. Thinkwell Math – We’re not currently using Thinkwell since Brianna is using SOS, but it was such a good fit for her that it’s what we’d go back to if we made any changes to her math.

6. Dave Ramsey’s Foundations in Personal Finance – Brianna and I have really enjoyed this personal finance course from Dave Ramsey. It’s practical and entertaining (Dave’s a funny guy).

While we let ourselves get off track and currently have this loaned out to a friend, we’ll definitely get back to it and complete the course before Brianna graduates. I’ve got workbooks set aside for Josh and Megan, too, when they get a bit older.


7. A Young Scholar’s Guide to Great Composers – I really love the way this workbook is laid out. Composer study is another hit-or-miss subject around here, but this is one of the best books I’ve seen on the topic.

It’s currently on sale, too. You can get the Young Scholar’s Guide to Great Composer’s combo set for 30% off.

8. Algebra Help – I’ve mentioned this one before, but it’s worth mentioning again. This site allows you to input your student’s algebra problem (you know, the one you can’t figure out because it’s been 20+ years since you’ve thought about algebra) and it doesn’t just give you the answer – it shows you how to get the answer.

Even if you choose not to tell your kids about this one, bookmark it so that you can figure out how to help them with their math.

Since my Top 8 cover all the things that we’re either loving and using right now or that we have have enjoyed since my last top choices post, I’ll have to close with two of my all-time, would-go-back-to-them-in-a-heartbeat choices:

9. All About Spelling – I still say All About Spelling is one of the best spelling programs out there. It teaches spelling in a hands-on, multi-sensory way that is almost like phonics instruction. It’s spelling instruction that just makes sense.

10. Easy Grammar – Easy Grammar will always be my top pick for grammar. Until we switched to Trail Guide, we had used Easy Grammar since my oldest was in 3rd grade. I like the way Trail Guide teaches grammar in a practical, hands-on way, but I know that Easy Grammar has given my kids a solid foundation on which to build.

That’s my Top 10 – what’s yours?

Be sure to check out my top picks by grade level:


First and Second Grade

Third and Fourth Grade

Fifth and Sixth Grade

Seventh and Eight Grade

This post is linked to Top 10 Tuesday.

This post contains affiliate links.


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Kris Bales is a newly-retired homeschool mom and the quirky, Christ-following, painfully honest founder (and former owner) of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers. She has a pretty serious addiction to sweet tea and Words with Friends. Kris and her husband of over 30 years are parents to three amazing homeschool grads. They share their home with three dogs, two cats, a ball python, a bearded dragon, and seven birds.

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  1. These are a valuable resource, Kris.  Thank you!

    Interesting about TT — my kids have done Horizons math for three years and next year we will be switching to TT for sixth grade (my youngest will stay in Horizons).  I think I'm switching for the reasons you mentioned in your post.   

    I also love The Young Scholar's Guide to the Composers.  I would love to make a co op class out of it, actually – being a musician by training, it's the best I've seen, too.

    I'm going to click on your other grade level recommendations, too.

  2. I really like what I see with the Real Science Odessy.  Does Level 1 (1st – 4th) finish in a year or is it made to span over several years?

  3. Are you using Easy Grammar along with Trail Guide or do you only use the grammar in Trail Guide?  What about spelling or vocabulary?  

  4. Oh, you're right, Mary — Young Scholar's Guide to Composers would make a *great* co-op class! Love that idea!

  5. Each book is set up to be completed in a year. It's actually one of the first science books that we finished in a year with time to spare, which was very nice.

  6. Trail Guide is all-inclusive, except for math, so that's all we're using right now. You might want to check out my Trail Guide review. It answers those questions and *many* more about Trail Guide. (The review is linked on my review page or in the body of the desciption of Trail Guide on this post.)

  7. I hadn't heard about a lot of these.  They sound great and I will have to look at them.  The only one of those I've used is Easy Grammar.

  8. We love Beautiful Feet Books! I learned about them through the comments section on your blog when you were looking for an American history curriculum.

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