By Ashley Hooker, Crosswalk.com
Homeschooling is not a new way of educating our children. Before the turn of the 20th century, all children were taught from their homes. Public school was introduced in the late 19th century and attendance laws were enacted. The movement to have children receive their education outside the home began.
In the 1980s, homeschool came back on the scene. It was primarily evangelical Christians taking advantage of this opportunity. Because of religious convictions and a rising aversion to public schools, homeschooling saw a growth in popularity.
The year 2020 is proving to set a new record in the homeschooling arena. Due to health concerns regarding COVID-19, we are witnessing families being thrown into homeschooling and trying not to drown. To help these families and others considering homeschool options, we are discussing why you should consider homeschooling and listing the best Christian homeschool programs just for you.
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Why Should You Consider Homeschooling?
For most parents, homeschooling is not an option. They either feel unqualified or believe it can’t be done because of jobs or other responsibilities. The very idea of homeschooling is just too scary for some families.
Well, let us ease your fears. The fact that you are considering homeschool is enough to understand you have the power to teach and impact your children for the greater good.
Families should consider homeschooling for numerous reasons, and this year we have added health and safety to that list. Let’s go over a few reasons families should entertain the idea of homeschooling.
You know what is best for your children
Parents are the only people that fully know their children. As a parent, you have their best interests at heart. Homeschooling allows you to teach them in a way that is conducive to their learning style. The curriculum is developed around them, not state standards.
Homeschooling was begun in part by evangelical Christians. Today, we still see a large number of Christians choosing to homeschool, but they not the only ones. If your family has devout religious beliefs, then homeschooling is a way to integrate those beliefs into their education.
Virtual learning is an option
Public school students are already using virtual learning to receive their education. Homeschool families can use this prior knowledge to enhance their school. Not only can you build a curriculum that is right for your child, but you can also use the virtual platform for your child’s benefit.
Health and safety concerns
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the health of our children has become a huge concern. We are no longer looking at bacterial infections or minor viruses. This is a serious illness that could potentially be fatal. With these concerns, families should consider homeschool as an action to keep their children healthy and safe.
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Online Christian Homeschool Programs
As stated in our introduction, we are going to discuss the best online Christian homeschool packages out there. While this list is not all-inclusive, and in no particular order, it is what we consider to be the best options.
1. School House Teachers
School House Teachers is a division of the trade magazine for homeschoolers, The Old Schoolhouse. It is a Christian, self-paced curriculum that is customizable. Families can pay a yearly fee that covers the entire family.
This package includes 24/7 unlimited access to all videos. There are no books to buy and all teaching is done online. The curriculum can be accessed from any mobile device, making it perfect for on the go families. All you need is a Wi-Fi signal. For students entering or completing high school, School House Teachers offer high school credits. You can visit their website at SchoolHouseTeachers.com to learn more.
This curriculum has been around since 1954 and has emerged as a top choice for Bible-based education. They do offer the traditional books and paper curriculum but have designed what they call the Abeka Academy.
The Abeka Academy uses video lessons along with manuals to teach students. Parents and students can choose an accredited or independent study based path. Full grade enrollment from grades K4-12 includes language arts, math, history and geography, science and health, and the Bible. Single subjects are available for grades 7-12. Cost varies depending on the grade and purchase of books. Discounts are available.
3. Bob Jones University
Bob Jones University press has been in the homeschool business for over 20 years. They offer an online distance learning package for grades K-12 that will cost around $900.00. Parents can purchase either by grade or by subject.
When you purchase your online package, you will receive physical copies of essential textbooks. All other needed texts are available as eTextbooks. Parents can customize the curriculum to fit their child’s needs and have ultimate control with grading. This curriculum can be accessed from mobile devices. For more information, go to the BJU Press website.
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Established in 2004, Time4Learning has quickly become an excellent source for online homeschool curriculum. It is an easy and affordable option. Grades PreK-8th are priced at $19.95 for the first child and $14.95 for each additional child. High school courses are priced at $30.00 for each child and includes four courses.
Parents use Time4Learning because it is self-paced with automated grading, progress tracking, and keeps reports for homeschool portfolios. It is flexible with access available 24/7.
5. Monarch Online
Monarch is the online option within Alpha Omega Publications. It is completely online and compatible with PC or MAC. Includes automated grading and record-keeping. Parents and students will have access to over 50,000 multimedia elements with Monarch.
Pricing for this package is around $360.00 per year for one student. You can make monthly payments. The family package is around $630.00 with monthly payments available.
6. Easy Peasy
Easy Peasy was created in 2011 by a veteran homeschool parent. It is a complete curriculum that is totally free. Students in grades K-12 can log in to their EP assignments and begin working anytime. Easy Peasy does not offer automated grading or record keeping. Their site states that they are not a “homeschool” because the school is your home.
7. Answers in Genesis
Creation apologetics is the focus of Answers in Genesis. Parents of high schoolers looking for classes to enrich their child’s education will find Answers in Genesis Master Classes interesting. Six classes will cost you $49.00 each. Answers in Genesis does not offer a complete online homeschool curriculum. You can purchase these classes through this link.
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Online Christian Academies
Families new to homeschooling due to COVID-19 or other circumstances might feel more comfortable enrolling their child into an academy. To conclude our list of the best online homeschool curriculums, we are sharing the best Christian academies with you.
1. Veritas Scholars Academy
This online academy is a branch of the Veritas Press homeschool curriculum. It is an accredited program completely online. They offer a diploma program which gives parents peace of mind about their child graduating and being prepared for college.
2. Alpha Omega Academy
Alpha Omega Academy offers a curriculum for grades 1-12. Students are given placement exams and a personalized staff is chosen. They offer flexible access to classes and keep your records up to date. This academy does offer dual credits for high school students as well.
3. NFC Academy
The NFC Academy is a fully accredited school offering students a rigorous curriculum all from a Biblical worldview. To enroll in the NFC Academy online, your student must be in grades 3-12. They serve families from across the United States and the world. Families in full-time ministry, military duty (active or retired), full-time missionaries, and first responders can receive a tuition discount.
4. Northstar Academy
Northstar Academy is a private online Christian school. It offers students in grades 4-12 a college preparatory education. It is fully accredited and staffed with teachers who share a Biblical worldview. Student tuition varies depending upon the number of courses taken.
5. Lighthouse Christian Academy
Lighthouse Christian Academy is the online option from Accelerated Christian Education (ACE). They offer students in grades K-12 a curriculum based solely on a Christian worldview. Students who complete this program will graduate with an accredited diploma. Tuition and fees vary upon grade levels and full and part-time options. Discounts are available for returning students and multiple child enrollments.
6. Sevenstar Academy
The Sevenstar Academy is known for giving homeschool, missionary, and international students the education they desire. They are open for enrollment of students in grades 6-12 and offer classes that are NCAA approved. Students can focus on their personal interests as well as their education.
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7. Apologia Academy
An extension of Apologia Educational Ministries, Apologia Academy has been ranked #1 in online science and Bible classes. Their curriculum is designed for middle and high school grades only. Tuition varies on grade and number of classes taken. Discounts are available. Courses available are in the areas of science, math, Christian worldview, language, literature, and government.
8. Christian Academy of America
Based out of Texas, the Christian Academy of America is an online Christian private school. They offer classes for grades 3-12 and are accredited. Students can complete their curriculum and earn a diploma recognized by all colleges. They also offer open enrollment and courses are compatible with computers or tablets.
9. Heritage Homeschool Academy
Began in 1999, Heritage Homeschool Academy was developed by a Christian family looking to help other families. They are an accredited program for preschool through graduation. Parents can view their child’s progress anytime online. The cost will vary depending on what program you choose.
Our Final Thoughts
Parents are at an unfamiliar time in the life of their families. They have been thrust into a homeschool situation that they may not be comfortable with. But online homeschooling is an effective way to give your children the education they deserve from a Christian perspective.
Take some time to research for yourself the different options available. Keep in mind that all children are not the same. They have different learning styles and interests. Using our list and God’s help, you will be on your way to creating a home conducive to learning.
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