You may have heard this thing floating around about being able to free homeschool.
Is it fact?
Is it a myth?
Does homeschooling for free really exist?
If you’ve been recently searching for a homeschool curriculum, you may be in sticker shock.
Pre-packaged curricula and online courses can sometimes run into the hundreds (or thousands) of dollars if you’re homeschooling multiple children.
So, how can you homeschool and not break the bank or, more specifically, how can you do it all for FREE?
Beware Free Online Homeschooling (and Others)
Before we go any further and discuss how you can homeschool for free, let’s talk about those things you see in online searches like free online homeschooling K-12 or free online high school or tuition-free online or virtual public school programs.
What you need to know is that these programs are not true homeschooling, even if they are done from home.
These programs point you to schooling at home and NOT home schooling, which are two VERY DIFFERENT things.
If you don’t already know, you need to understand the differences before moving forward.
(I wrote a detailed post about schooling at home versus homeschooling, so it might help to read that first and then come back to this post.)
If you are looking for true homeschooling, then avoid programs that are affiliated with public schools or are state sponsored.
The Truth About Free Homeschool
So, can you really free homeschool?
Yes, you really can free homeschool because there are many, many free online resources to cover just about any topic that you want or need for homeschooling.
However, homeschooling for free is not always easy (again, especially if you homeschool multiple children).
In some cases, you will be piecing together a free printable homeschool curriculum or free homeschool lesson plans with free homeschool worksheets and free homeschool printables from different sites and resources.
And, that’s fine, it just takes a little more time and planning than just ordering up an all-in-one, boxed homeschool curriculum.
How to Homeschool for Free in 5 Easy Steps
If you’re homeschooling for free, then you definitely need to get your ducks in a row.
(Or, bouncing around to different sites looking for something cool and interesting to learn will make you crazy and take up a ton of time.)
Follow these steps to get you ready:
1. Figure out what you need.
For each child that you are homeschooling, make a list of what you need for them:
• Grade/learning level
• State/country requirements
• Subjects you want to cover
• Other interests (don’t forget to ask your kids what they want to learn about!)
2. Understand how you teach and how your kids learn.
Understanding these two factors will save you A LOT of time and heartache.
(I cover some of this in my homeschool curriculum post if you need more help with it.)
If your kid hates doing worksheets, but you spend two hours each week printing out worksheets for him to do, then you’re wasting time for both of you.
(And, making your child frustrated with a learning method is one of the fastest ways to kill a child’s natural love of learning!)
However, if your kid learns best just by reading, then you know that the library will be your best free homeschooling resource.
If you need your child to do a majority of their work as independent learning while you work from home, then it doesn’t make sense for you to search out free resources where you need to assist your child a great deal.
Figure all of this out BEFORE you go on your hunt for free homeschool resources.
3. Take advantage of local free homeschooling classes.
Most businesses are getting hip to homeschooling. They’re tapping into our market by offering free homeschool classes, field trips, craft time, and more just to reach a growing audience.
Search online for homeschool classes near you and then sign up!
Also, don’t forget about the library–not just for the books, but many libraries offer free classes on a variety of topics!
Check this out:
4. Create learning around unit studies.
Unit studies take a topic of interest and then incorporate all the subjects into that one topic.
(This is a great way to give your children more say over what they’re learning, too.)
For example, let’s say your child is interested in ostriches. You could create a free unit study on ostriches by:
• Checking out books from the library on ostriches (subject covered: Reading)
• Watching a documentary on ostriches and where they live (subject covered: Geography)
• Comparing and contrasting how much faster or slower an ostrich runs than other animals (subject covered: Math)
• Painting an ostrich or creating a Play-doh ostrich (subject covered: Art)
• Visiting the zoo and documenting observations on ostriches (field trip)
These are just a few examples, but unit studies are only limited by your (and your child’s) imagination!
Need ideas for homeschool unit studies?
Check out our extensive list of theme lesson topics for homeschooling–which include hundreds of free resources!
5. Find a homeschooling group!
If you haven’t already, be sure to join some local homeschooling Facebook groups. (And, join us on our page, too!)
Many of these groups organize free (or very cheap) field trips, classes and other freebies for homeschoolers.
Plus, it’s a great way to grow your homeschool support network!
ALSO CHECK OUT : FREE Kids’ Activities for Fun Family Time
27 RESOURCES TO HELP YOU FREE HOMESCHOOL
There are thousands of sites that offer free educational resources that you can use for homeschooling. Here are 27 good ones to get you started!
Edsitement! (variety of lesson plans, K-Grade 12)
Freedom Homeschooling (curriculum/variety of subjects)
Ambleside Online curriculum (Charlotte Mason approach)
Mater Amabilis (Catholic Charlotte Mason approach, PreK-Grade 8)
Homeschool Buyers Co-op (list of free resources)
Education.com : PreK-Grade 5 worksheets and printables (filter on FREE)
Kahn Academy (variety of online courses)
Math Antics (really good math explanation videos)
Open Culture (variety of free educational resources/courses)
DuoLingo (free foreign language learning)
TIME for kids (different topics, K-Grade 6)
Teachers Pay Teachers (worksheets/printables, filter on FREE)
TLS Books (free printables, K-Grade 6)
CK-12 (STEM K-Grade 12)
Instructables (variety of different HOW TO videos)
Kids World Fun (fun learning topics for kids to explore)
Lakeshore Learning (variety of different lesson plans, K-Grade 5)
Lesson Plans Page (hundreds of lesson plans K-Grade 12)
Mensa (variety of different lesson plans)
Project Gutenberg (50,00+ FREE books to download)
Do you have a favorite place for free homeschooling resources? Leave it in the comments so we can share it with our homeschooling community!