DON’T PANIC, Part Two: A Homeschooler’s Guide to Online Resources

By Mikki Bates & Kat Bates Published on March 31, 2020

Earlier we posted “DON’T PANIC: A Homeschooler’s Guide to the Quarantine,” which offered advice to those who suddenly find themselves having to homeschool their kids. The good news is there are plenty of online resources available to enrich your home education experience.

Many companies are making content available free for “a time such as this.” Others have COVID-19 specials. Edutainment great for kids!

Free!

Khan Academy — https://www.khanacademy.org/

This is the rock star of math curriculum — dedicated to remaining free. They have added courses in computer coding, science, history. Its 5 minute Youtube tutorials have been helping students and parents survive math terrors for years. It can also be a complete self grading math curriculum.

http://www.sheppardsoftware.com/ — Free geography games (and more) that range from the tutorial level to cartographer. My kids began playing with this when they were little!

Quizlet.com — Automated flashcards. Math, spelling, languages, with games. Make your own set, or find one that matches your curriculum. Check for accuracy, because kids make a lot of the sets. Free and paid options.

https://www.nitrotype.com/ — Addictive typing game/competition — great for a wake up between subjects.

https://online.seterra.com/en — A free geography website that our kids began using for the 7th grade Geography Bee.

https://www.britannica.com/ — Encyclopedia Britannica has free resources and paid subscriptions. Paid versions are ad free and offer three reading levels for all articles. Great for “Wiki-free” research.

Local public libraries have numerous free digital resources that include ebooks and as well as classes.

Audio Sources

Free audiobooks — from public domain sources — librivox.org. You’ll discover favorite readers. You might volunteer to read a book for librivox yourself!

Temporarily free audiobooks — stories.audible.com It’s a special collection of K-12 audiobooks.

Podcast — https://www.wfmt.com/programs/exploring-music. Bill McGlaughlin’s, “Exploring Music is an adventure — an expedition through the world of classical music.” Check the archives for a favorite or new genre.

Shakespeare — Free audible versions of seven plays through July, 2020. https://shakespeare.folger.edu/

Online Field Trips

Virtual Field Trips — with activities:

https://adventuresinfamilyhood.com/20-virtual-field-trips-to-take-with-your-kids.html

https://www.travelandleisure.com/attractions/museums-galleries/museums-with-virtual-tours

https://www.nps.gov/yell/learn/photosmultimedia/virtualtours.htm

Please Support The Stream: Equipping Christians to Think Clearly About the Political, Economic and Moral Issues of Our Day.

Free Opera from the New York Met — Dress up, dress down. Try it. You might like it. https://www.fastcompany.com/90478031/you-can-stream-the-met-opera-for-free-during-the-coronavirus-crisis-heres-how

https://www.classicalmpr.org/story/2020/03/16/free-online-classical-concerts — lists free concerts with links for the upcoming season.

YouTube Favorites

Crash Course and Crash Course Kids — The Crash Course YouTube channel offers science, history and more. Slow the speed down for littles with Crash Course Kids.

PragerU – From Dennis Prager and featuring top experts, Prager U offers quality videos on important topics of the day. Great stuff.

https://fee.org/shows — Engaging videos on economics and the free market, designed for students.

Smarter Every Day — The Smarter Every Day Youtube Channel is a popular science channel for good reason.

Hillsdale College — always has free courses on many topics, focusing on the “great ideas of Western Civilization.” How does “Congress: How It Works and Why It Doesn’t” sound? With the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II in Europe just weeks away, perhaps you will want to try the current featured course “The Second World Wars.”

TwoSetViolins — is a great way to entertain your performers, especially if they play stringed instruments. Tips, observations and humor by two young Australian violinists. “You should be practicing!”

For Mom or Dad

http://donnayoung.org/site-index.htm. Free calendars, organizers, printables, penmanship papers. Create your own handwriting worksheets. TONS of resources.

Free for Now

IXL and ALEKS have interactive learning programs for a complete curriculum. They are self-grading online programs

While schools are closed, IXL has free relief packs that are divided by grades. https://www.havefunteaching.com/resources/relief-packs/?fbclid=IwAR2PXr4KNiVkERDt_hWyOZ9iaUY0GqAyWz21waW2pzn71S4lBmdIU0UvBUU

ALEKS offers one month free trial.

IEW — or Institute for Excellence in Writing helped all of our children become confident writers. They have created several free — 3 Week packs — for you to download. You can look at their site for other freebies as well. They have a booklist “For Boys Who Would Rather Be building Forts.” https://iew.com/three-weeks-of-language-arts-instruction-from-iew

https://ymca360.org/on-demand#/— Exercises classes online — while centers are closed.

Cathy Duffy has reviews of resources for your family.

https://cathyduffyreviews.com/homeschool-reviews-core-curricula/handwriting

Paid Options

Short, interest led courses are available on Outschool, Udemy, or Squilt.

Currently Dave Ramsey has his high school Personal Finance course — Self Study version (meaning digital and self grading) for sale for $19.99 Save $100! Many schools will give a half or full credit for this class. https://www.daveramsey.com/store/product/foundations-in-personal-finance-high-school-edition-for-self-study

https://curiositystream.com/. This “Geekumentary” resource is available for $12 this year. It renews automatically. It now has an option to limit the videos to kid friendly content.

 

Mikki Marugg Bates is a wife and homeschool mom in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Her homeschooling adventure began thirteen years ago with her Classical Conversations community. She has successfully launched two children to college, a violinist and a writer, and is homeschooling a cello-playing Boy Scout. Previously, she worked in technical support and sales. Her family shares a love of music, history, travel, classic British comedy, and Western Swing. Her husband, Michael Bates, blogs at batesline.com.

Kat Bates is a writer and language-lover currently reading roughly all of the western canon at St. John’s College, Annapolis. Homeschool credits include: teaching her younger brother how to read, learning Latin, diagramming sentences, and falling in love with the history and the classics. Platonist, not Aristotelian.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Comments ()
The Stream encourages comments, whether in agreement with the article or not. However, comments that violate our commenting rules or terms of use will be removed. Any commenter who repeatedly violates these rules and terms of use will be blocked from commenting. Comments on The Stream are hosted by Disqus, with logins available through Disqus, Facebook, Twitter or G+ accounts. You must log in to comment. Please flag any comments you see breaking the rules. More detail is available here.
Inspiration
Forget Fools
James Randall Robison
More from The Stream
Connect with Us