Choose Your Own Adventure: Top Teaching Tools for the Accidental Homeschooler

One of the nice things about designing your kids' homeschool curriculum yourself is that you know your kids best – meaning you know where they need more challenge and where they need more help.

But knowing that is just the first step. Next you have to find the resources to help where help is needed.

While I love the idea that all-purpose platforms are designed to give kids progressively more difficult work – or to hold them on one subject until they've mastered it – my casual observation shows that it doesn't always work just the way you'd think it should. And that's when it's time for a targeted assist.

To help you do that, we've put together a list of online teaching tools for the discerning parent, to help you find just the right worksheet, game or tutorial to help hone in on problem spots. (Or to build a whole custom curriculum if you'd like – thought that's way beyond my own personal aspirations as a homeschool coach, so I don't want to mom-shame you with false implications.)

Here are my personal faves:

  • Dad's Worksheets :: Admittedly, I'm obsessed with my kids learning math (probably because I'm so bad at it myself – and I want them to avoid the tragic fate of following in my footsteps and becoming a lawyer). And when it comes to math in the early years, there's really no substitute for boring repetition of math facts. In my search for quick morning worksheets (a la Kuman, but without the ... rest), I found Dad's Worksheets. They're basic. They're easy to print (without a zillion crazy ads or weird dimensions). And they work. Good job, Dad.
  • Poetry 4 Kids :: I love this resource mostly because there just aren't that many products or sites focused on teaching kids a love of poetry – and it's such a huge miss, because kids love wordplay and rhymes. This is a very cool site with lots of useful resources.
  • Learner.org :: This is a collection of absolutely astounding lesson plans for every age group and every subject, including teaching instructions, hands-on projects, and continuity across a series of lessons. While there are some videos and other tools for self-study, this is largely meant to guide parents (or teachers or tutors) in in-person instruction. Perfect for parent-lead homeschooling or to help give direction to a learning pod.

Those are my favorites, but there are so many more! Check them out here.

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About Liz Oertle
Denver, CO
Liz Oertle is the CEO and co-founder of Nanno. A recovering attorney and mother of two, she is passionate about helping parents connect with high quality childcare on demand.