I started homeschooling in 1981, I did not know about teaching
methods. There was very little curriculum available
for homeschoolers; and, since I had no one to tell me what
a teaching method was, I had to come up with my own method
- probably much like families did in early American history.
I now know that the method I used is called "eclectic." I
used real books (fiction, nonfiction, biographies, historical
fiction), art supplies, science equipment, travel, nature
study, and an occasional textbook/workbook as I found ones
that were suitable.
there is so much curriculum to choose from, it's hard to know
what to buy. Curriculum Fairs are brimming with vendors selling
the newest products created especially for the homeschooled
student. How do you choose? To help you in your quest, you
might want to know a little about the teaching methods used
by homeschoolers. Here are the major ones and a brief description.
For more information, check out the resources listed with
1. Charlotte Mason
on the “trivium,” (grammar, logic, rhetoric)
instruction in logic, Greek, Latin, and the Great Works
of Western Literature.
method of teaching includes Public speaking, drill work,
memorization, and a full day.
Goal is to train future leaders and to teach them to think
Homeschooling - includes a complete scope and sequence
Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home,
Revised and Updated Edition
by Susan Wise Bauer
Story of the World: History for the Classical Child; Volume
1: Ancient Times & workbook
by Susan Wise Bauer (curriculum based on Classical method)
American and World History by Rea C. Berg (curriculum
based on Classical)
Guides - curriculum
based on Classical
of Grace - curriculum based on Classical
Covenant Home -
Structured, distance learning based on Classical
learning that is focused on a particular topic or time period
child completes age-appropriate activities that relate to
teach all ages of children at once
integrate social studies, science, fine arts, language arts,
religion, and occasionally math.
on a theme, historical event, science topic such as rainbows,
a character trait such as honesty, a piece of literature,
the life of a person, or a piece of artwork.
one on one teaching is done in the morning and afternoons
are set aside for hands-on projects and field trips.
goal is to instill a love of learning.
in a Row, Volume 1 and others by Jane Claire Lambert
Government Unit Study on CD-ROM and other resources
by Amanda Bennett
and others by Teacher Created Materials
Homeschool free units.
Wheelers list of unit studies.
Studies Made Easy by Valerie Bendt
Unschooling (also called natural learning)
on a child’s natural desire to learn as they experience
from website: “What it isn’t: Unschooling isn't
a recipe, and therefore it can't be explained in recipe
terms. Unschooling isn't a method, it is a way of looking
at children and at life. It is based on trust that parents
and children will find the paths that work best for them
- without depending on educational institutions, publishing
companies, or experts to tell them what to do. Unschooling
does not mean that parents can never teach anything to their
children, or that children should learn about life entirely
on their own without the help and guidance of their parents.
Unschooling does not mean that parents give up active participation
in the education and development of their children and simply
hope that something good will happen. Finally, since many
unschooling families have definite plans for college, unschooling
does not even mean that children will never take a course
in any kind of a school. Quote: Our son has never had an
academic lesson, has never been told to read or to learn
mathematics, science, or history. Nobody has told him about
phonics. He has never taken a test or has been asked to
study or memorize anything. When people ask, "What
do you do?" My answer is that we follow our interests
- and our interests inevitably lead to science, literature,
history, mathematics, music - all the things that have interested
people before anybody thought of them as "subjects".
goal is to teach them to think for themselves, train them
in practical life skills and allow them to be self-educating.
Wozniak, inventor of the Apple Computer, once said:
"Do what you love, and learn to do it very, very well,
and some day someone will pay you
very, very well to do it for them!" I think this goes
very well with the unschooler's philosophy.
am Learning All the Time - a children's book about
unschooling. Recommended for all! See my review at How
Do I Teach. . . ?.
Robinson Self-Teaching Curriculum
on the 3 Rs, adding other subjects only if needed.
a full school day
No TV, no sugar,
calculators until after calculus is mastered.
goal is to move them to be self-educating as soon as possible.
from real life
main job is to observe and mentor, no planned lessons
child to follow his own interests in choosing what to learn
(math is taught in a somewhat more structured manner)
an enriched, uncluttered learning environment, large
family library, art & music supplies, science
equipment, no junk food, no TV or computer
self-correcting teaching tools
goal is to instill a love of learning and teach life skills.
As you continue homeschooling, you may move from one method
to another until you find one you are comfortable with.
homeschoolers use a variety of teaching methods, depending
on their needs and resources. This is called the Eclectic
forget to purchase The Checklist
if you are the eclectic style and like to do it yourself!
to Step by Step Guide to Choosing Curriculum