Homeschooling Methods

There are different homeschooling methods. How can you find one that is right for your family? You can read more about each style. Then try one that seems right to you.

Some homeschoolers use unit studies, others are unschoolers. Some like to bring school home and use textbooks for their materials. Some students like studying on the computer. There is also the classic approach and Charlotte Mason philosophy.

Read more about some of the most popular homeschooling methods.

Which one will you choose?

There is something for everyone. Some can even be done in a short amount of time when you want to try something new.

Unit Studies

I have used the unit study method. I bought a product that combines all of the subjects except reading and math.

People who like unit studies usually believe that combining subjects are better for learning. Unit studies are good for families that have more than one child.

Advantages / disadvantages  - Using themed studies are good for families that have more than one child. Read more about the advantages and disadvantages of using the unit study method.

Buying Curriculum - Here are some companies that sell unit studies.

Free  - Want to try before you buy? Here are some themes that I have written.

What homeschool method to use

You can also develop your own unit studies. It is not too difficult to do. Find a topic that your child is interested in. Then find fiction and non-fiction books to read. Think of writing assignments for your child to write. Think about what you can do for science. Research the history of the topic.

You could combine unit studies with other homeschooling methods.


Notebooking is similar to the unit study approach. You can make notebooks for each school subject or for just one. Here are some ideas;

  • Make a timeline for history.
  • Keep your writing assignments in a notebook.
  • For science keep a lab book.

 Notebooking can be a way to keep track of the projects that your child does in a subject especially if you do not do a lot of testing. If your child likes making scrapbooks this might be the method for you.

Notebooking Learn more about how to use this style of teaching,


Lapbooks are similar to unit studies. My son did a lapbook on the 20 century. He learned about wars, food, music, and other topics related to the 20 century. He either read information that was provided in the unit or researched the material. For each topic he placed a shape on his lapbook.

Lapbooks read more about the benefits of using this way of teaching.

Index Cards

You can use index cards with most of the homeschooling methods. They are great for learning facts and organizing information.

Index cards Read about more ways you can use index cards.

Textbooks / Workbooks

Using textbooks and workbooks is a traditional school method. The method is similar to public and private schools. Your child will read the text, do the assignment, the take a test. There are several homeschool providers that sell textbooks or workbooks.

People who use textbooks usually like structure and routine. They like grades. Using textbooks are also an easy way to keep records.

The textbooks usually come with a teacher's manual so that the parent knows how to teach the subject.

Traditional schooling -  Read more to see if this way of teaching is right for your family.

Computer Based

Computer based and online learning is very similar to the traditional approach. It is good for children who need to be independent.

Since the assignments are usually done on the computer there is no need for workbooks. This can save paper and space.

The computer approach is great for keeping records. The computer corrects assignments and gives grades.

I used a computer based homeschooling for a while. I had younger children who I needed to teach the basic. I had my older children use the computer for their schoolwork.

Computer based -  can be good for children who have special needs.

The Classical Approach

The classical approach uses the philosophy of the Romans and Greeks. The child goes through three stages. The method relies heavily on memorization. You child will also read the classics. There are also publishers that make classical Christian materials.

Classical -  learn about some of the companies that sell curriculum that uses a classical approach.

Charlotte Mason

If your child likes to read he should like this approach. Your child will read great literature, study nature, and build character.

Charlotte Mason is a philosophy of education that many homeschoolers use.

Literature Approach

If you like reading but do not like all of the aspects of the Charlotte Mason philosophy you can still use the literature approach.

You can use literature to teach language arts, history, and sometimes science.

There are curricula that you can buy that uses books to teach different subjects. Five in a Row uses literature to teach a theme.

If you are creative you can also teach using literature. Have your child copy passages. Read historical fiction and biographies.

Literature can be used for teaching. You can also buy curriculum that uses this approach.

Unschooling / Relaxed / Directed Learning

Unschooling goes by several names such as relaxed or directed learning. In this method the child determines what they want to learn. They use everyday experiences for learning.

The parent might help by providing books on the child’s interests. The parent may also have the child write about what they are learning. The child will usually have daily math assignments.


Parents who follow the eclectic approach combine several homeschooling methods. The more that I teach the more I follow eclectic I become.

With this approach you might start out with a relaxed approach but then realize that your child is not doing math or practicing their writing. You will add required subjects to your child’s day.

Other parents start out with one method but add another method to it. We started out using unit studies. Now we use several textbooks in our homeschool.

There are even some curriculum dealers that combine more than one teaching philosophy. Heart of Wisdom combines the Charlotte Mason and unit studies.

Eclectic - Learn more about this style of teaching.

Hands-on Homeschooling

Some families only use a manipulative for math or do hands-on projects for science. Some families use hands-on methods for teaching all subjects.

Hands-on learning some children learn better with a hands-on approach.

Hands-on Activities You can use Lego blocks to learn different subjects.

Homeschooling Methods How to Choose

What approach you use will depend on several factors such as;

  • Your philosophy of education
  • Your teaching style
  • Your child’s learning style

Remember that no teaching style is perfect.The best homeschooling method is one that works for your family.

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