Check the title. Yes there are some available. NO. These programs are not accredited, but they provide free all-in-one curriculum that can be used alone or to supplement your existing homeschool repetoire. One the things I love most about these programs is that the only supplies you really need are a computer, printer, printer paper, ink, pencils and notebook paper. Honestly, you can wing it perfectly fine without anything else. Even the printer and printer paper can be non necessities. Chipmunk and I have personally used each of the websites mentioned below and love certain elements of each one.
Easy Peasy (All In One Homeschool) www.allineonehomeschool.com
Around our house this website is simply known as Easy Peasy. This site has curriculum for pre-k to 8th grade. Easy Peasy has a full curriculum consisting of Reading, Writing, Grammar, Spelling, Vocabulary, Math, History/Social Studies/Geography, Science, Spanish, Bible, Computer, Music, Art, PE/health, and Logic. It uses only free materials found on the internet.
The pre-kindergarten curriculum has two levels. The first level focuses on learning the alphabet, the sounds associated with each letter, and early sight word recognition. The second half of the preschool level is for those who have mastered the alphabet and are ready to begin early phonetic reading. The Reading, Writing, Spelling and Vocabulary curriculum are similar to an all in one English/Literature program you’d find published by school textbook publishing houses. The reading assignments are the center of the curriculum and the assignments for the other English/Literature assignments correlate to the Reading. Chipmunk loves novel unit studies so this portion of the program is one of her favorite parts. All texts needed for reading are found free online through public domain. Considering the works used are classics you can find them easily on sites like Amazon.com, eBay.com and Betterworldbooks.com for very little money.
If you are looking for a hands on Science curriculum Easy Peasy fits the bill. There are a lot of experiments. Chipmunk is a hands on Science kids that loves to read so this is great for her. In our day to day use of the curriculum we have found Youtube vidoes of the experiments being performed and that helps us figure out what and what not to do for good results. Each grade has a materials list details what you need for Science and Art for the entire school year. Most of the items on the lists can be found around the house or a quick trip to Wal-Mart or Target. The materials lists are itemized by day so you can plan for purchases on future shopping trips if needed.
Easy Peasy is an excellent free homeschooling resource. I could go on and on about the benefits of using it and detaiul each subject and grade level but I would be blogging for days. Go try it on for a week or two and see how it feels. Don’t forget you can mix and match it with what you are currently using or make it your main curriculum and use other major teaching sites like education.com for supplemental materials.
Discovery K12 discoveryk12.com
Discovery K12 is new to the seen of online homeschooling. This all in one homeschool curriculum just celebrated the end of its first school year. Like the above mention Easy Peasy, Discovery K12 uses daily assignments to deliver the curriculum content. Unlike Easy Peasy, Discovery K12 has tracking built into the site. Tracking includes attendance, completed assignments and grades. There is even a reading log where you child can record what they read for there thirty minute daily reading assignment. All this with the click of a button, Great for homeschool parents/teachers that want an easy way to have a record of their student’s day to day school activities.
The website’s delivery of daily assignments is similar to that of paid homeschooling sites whereas your child logs in to the site for day, and the first thing they see is the assignments only meant for that particular day. If your child has been absent, or you are using a custom school calendar you can still complete all 180 days of assignments by clicking on the Past Assignments link. This page is an archive of each day for your student’s grade level.
Chipmunk loves the fact that each assignment is short and to the point. She’ll be starting 5th grade work soon so we will be using this site for Social Studies/History, Science, Music, Art, and PE/Health. This curriculum is designed for the digital learner. Everything is done online. There is no need for pencil and paper. Most of the curriculum is taught in short, concise videos handpicked from the web. One thing Chipmunk and I feel is a little awkward about the site is it’s use of research to get more information. Our family loves details when learning, walk us through it and let us dig in. In some lessons after the video has been viewed your student is required to research the topic and record notes. This is great for high school students, not so much for elementary and middle school students. Yes, they will learn but the question is “Will your student take notes that contain pertinent information?”. Chipmunk is good at picking out important information but she is still learning so I will be supplementing with worksheets and hands on activities when use this site.
Overall I would give DiscoveryK12 a B+. The creator of the site has launched an excellent beginning to a great looking, easy to use website for homeschoolers on a budget. There are quite a few features in the works that will hopefully be launched by time September rolls around. Like any other homeschool program I recommend giving it a try for a week or two. Who knows, it could become like your favorite hoodie.
Lesson Pathways http://www.lessonpathways.com
This is the first online homeschool website Chipmunk and I ever used. We loved it. Now that she is older I still use it as a supplement for activities and worksheets. Check out my previous post about this awesome free curriculum here.