Finding and choosing a secular homeschool curriculum, or non-religious curriculum, can be a challenge. Your available options depend on things like your definition of curriculum, your budget, and your child's grade level. Fortunately, today there are many great secular homeschool curriculums available that are affordable and sometimes even free.
Awesome Complete Secular Homeschool Curriculums
You may be able to find a great online homeschool program or complete homeschool curriculum from one place that fits all your needs. These curriculums cover all subject areas and often include grade-level curriculums from preschool through high school.
Homeschool reviewer Cathy Duffy lists BookShark as one of her top pics for an all-in-one program. BookShark is a literature-based curriculum with studies for kids from preschool through high school. It covers history, science, language arts, and math using fiction and nonfiction books with hands-on experiments. The curriculum covers a 36-week school year. Instead of grade levels, the curriculum is separated by age levels. Each level includes instructor guides for parents and is scheduled for a 4-day week. The All-Subject leveled packages come with all the materials you need and cost $700-$725.
- The curriculum for grades K-2 is print based while the curriculum for grades 3-12 is online.
- The full-grade complete curriculum kits from Calvert for lower elementary grades cost between $200 and $400 all the textbook/workbooks kids need to master their core concepts.
- The online version for older kids covers history, geography, language arts, math, and science through 45 courses. One year of the online version costs about $400.
Global Village School
Global Village School is an international distance learning online school that also offers curriculum options without enrolling in the school. Their focus is on preparing students to be global citizens. Their unique focus and approach is what makes them a great option.
- There is a curriculum for each grade level from kindergarten through eighth grade and each costs about $120.
- Each curriculum covers history, social studies, science, language arts, math, and arts.
- You get a resource list, guidelines and instructions for each school year, scheduling suggestions, and tons of resources, but you have to buy the materials on your own.
Moving Beyond the Page
Moving Beyond the Page is a literature-based curriculum aimed at gifted kids in grades K-8. Reviewers at SecularHomeschool.com have mostly positive reviews for Moving Beyond the Page. The biggest strengths of the program are that it requires little to no planning for parents, it's a complete curriculum for elementary kids, and there's a lot of hands-on learning involved.
- It is built around critical thinking and project-based learning from a Constructivist point of view.
- The curriculum is separated by age rather than grade level and covers science, social studies, math, and language arts in alignment with state and national standards.
- You can buy the full-year curriculum, which includes all the materials you need, starting at $450 for preschool ages and running up to almost $1,000 for ages 12-14.
The Saxon Math curriculum is a favorite among homeschool bloggers because it was designed for public school use, but fits in a homeschool environment. You can get Saxon Math programs for grades Pre-K through 12 that revolve around the use of a textbook and a lot of assistance from parents. Each skill builds on the next and each grade builds on the last. You'll spend between $100 and $150 to get a complete curriculum for each grade level.
For about $60 per month, middle school and high school students can enroll in the homeschool edition of Study.com. This allows you to enroll in an unlimited number of courses available on the website where students learn through video lessons. Students also get unlimited help from instructors, so parents can be mostly hands-off. This type of curriculum is a happy medium between independent study using a curriculum textbook and enrolling in an online school.
The Time4Learning website allows you to customize a curriculum for your child to learn online. It uses interactive lessons and activities along with printable worksheets for kids in grades Pre-K through 12.
- Kids work at their own pace through the automated process in math, language arts, science, social studies, and even foreign languages.
- The elementary and middle school programs cost $20 per month while the high school program costs $30 per month.
- Time4Learning has been on the Top 100 Educational Websites list from Homeschool.com every year since 2009.
Great Individual Secular Curriculums
For some families, building a complete curriculum out of different individual curriculums is the best option. You can pick and choose which curriculum is best for each topic and use them together. From free life skills curriculum options to the top 10 science curriculums, you should evaluate each program and how it fits into your budget to make the most of your money.
Teaching Textbooks is a math curriculum with programs for kids from grade 3 through high school. Southeast Homeschool Expo lists this as one of their Top 5 curriculums because of the clear explanations and the fact that parent participation is minimal.
- Each course is designed for independent study and includes between 120 and 160 hours of instruction.
- Earlier versions of the curriculum include just a textbook or a disc so you can do the program on your computer.
- The newer 3.0 version is completely online and purchased as a one-year, per student subscription. One course costs about $40-$60 dollars.
- Available courses are: Math 3-7, Pre-Algebra, Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2, Pre-Calculus
The Homeschool Resource Room lists Torchlight as a top secular homeschool curriculum because it is one of the larger secular curriculum companies. Torchlight is a literature-based curriculum for grades Pre-K to 3 that spans 36 weeks. Through books and creative activities, students will focus on language arts, social studies, science, art, and critical thinking. The curriculum includes a list of books to buy and use for the entire 36 weeks and books you can borrow from your public library and use for shorter periods. You pay around $45 for the curriculum, then purchase the books separately.
While it's not a curriculum in the traditional sense, Usborne Books & More can be a great curriculum provider for elementary children. Christine from This Bit of Life blog echoes what many homeschool blogs say about using Usborne books for homeschool saying the books are "surprisingly durable," "available for literally every subject," and "they are unique, fun, and easily engage" kids.
- As the largest publisher of children's books in the UK, Usborne has a distinct focus on education.
- Their Learning From Home section features resources categorized by grade to help you find fiction, nonfiction, and activity books in almost any subject.
- Books cover everything from coding to art and activity books give kids the chance to practice skills like telling time or writing.
- There are curriculum packages available in math and English for around $70 each.
The Best Curriculum for You
Part of choosing the right homeschool curriculum is choosing the one that's best suited to you, your child, and your homeschool philosophy. You can read reviews of homeschooling programs to discover which ones are most popular, but that doesn't mean they'll be the best fit for your family. Explore all your secular curriculum options, then decide for yourself which is best.