If you are currently homeschooling, or considering homeschooling your children, you likely already know that the curriculum available to you is nearly endless. There is a vast array of material out there. This is why just the right curriculum for your kiddos can be difficult to find. However, not only is there a lot to choose from, but there are also different styles and formats to choose, which can make narrowing your choices down even harder. So, how can you try out a homeschool curriculum for free, before you drop a hefty sum of money on it? Here are just a few ideas!
Borrow From a Friend
When you homeschool your children it is vital that you find a group of other local homeschoolers to connect with. You can pick each other’s brains when you are struggling with certain areas of your homeschooling. It is a great way to let your kiddos play with their friends, by getting them all together to hang out and play for a bit. And it is also a great way to familiarize yourself with curriculum that others are using. Simply ask another parent if you can borrow their materials for a short while when they are finished with them. Give the curriculum a quick try to help you decide whether it is right for you and your child.
Homeschool Curriculum Fairs
Did you know there are homeschool conventions that are scattered throughout the U.S.? It is true! These expos are put on by numerous different organizations and/or companies. They are a great way to find resources and physically see curriculum before you purchase it. This will give you an opportunity to flip through pages and see and read through it first-hand. It’s the perfect opportunity to see if certain material is actually going to be a good fit for you and your child. If you are fortunate enough to live near a homeschool convention, do not miss it! Of course, the year 2020 has made it practically impossible to attend an in-person convention, but there have been quite a few of the bigger ones switching to an online format for 2020.
Free Online Trials or Samples
The internet is a great resource to help you find homeschool materials and ideas. A simple search on the web can even lead you to tons of different homeschool curriculums. While some of them can be costly, the good news is that some of these sites and companies offer free trials and/or samples – allowing you to try out the curriculum for free, without paying a single cent. So be sure to look for those for the curriculum or courses you are considering (you’ll likely find a link to samples on the curriculum description page). If you don’t see an offer for a free trial or sample lessons on their website, contact them and ask!
Here are some of our favorite curriculum companies that
offer trials or samples –
- RightStart Math – 4-9 lesson samples, depending on level
- Teaching Textbooks – free trial of lessons 1-15
- UnLock Math – 10 sample video lessons
- Apologia – sample of first lesson/module (includes text & notebook)
- Journey Homeschool Academy – sample one lesson (click on course and then preview)
- Friendly Sciences – 2-4 lesson samples (click on course and then sample lessons)
- Notgrass History – 3-5 lessons depending on course (click on course and then sample lessons)
- Home School in the Woods – sample lesson in history studies products (click on product, then on sample tab)
- Mystery of History – a month’s worth of lessons (scroll down to find samples of the different volumes)
- All About Reading – several sample lessons (choose the level, scroll down to See Inside…)
- All About Spelling – several sample lessons (choose the level, scroll down to See Inside…)
No one wants to be stuck with homeschooling material they don’t like. Make sure you try homeschool curriculum for free before you buy! And if you buy and then decide it’s not a good fit, be sure to check the company’s return policy or see if they have a money-back guarantee; if you can’t return it, there are lots of great places online to sell used homeschool curriculum.