General Homeschool Helps


Learning Styles

  • Why learning styles matter

    Learn the three reasons why it's important to know your children's learning styles.

  • Teach to your children's learning styles

    Become a better teacher and find the best homeschooling curriculum for your family by Exploring Your Child's Learning Styles, a webinar with veteran homeschool moms Judy, Kelly and Jill. Runtime: 34 min

  • The Way They Learn

    If you have ever been frustrated with your child because you can't seem to communicate, or if you have ever questioned the crazy way your child says s/he prefers to study, then this book is for you: The Way They Learn.

Homeschool Encouragement


  • How to Organize Your Homeschool

    Do you start the day already feeling behind? Do you feel like you can't homeschool because you can't seem to get your act together?

    You can! Just follow these tips on how to organize your homeschool.

    1. Set your priorities.
    2. Start with devotions.

    Remember, for household tasks, your family is a team. Conquer the clutter, don't let it conquer you. Even little ones can help with the laundry, with the goal that, eventually, everyone does their own laundry. For meals, create a weekly plan, shop based off that plan, and be sure to use a crock-pot to make your life easier.

    The bottom line: Invest time now so you'll have less stress in the future. Set your own standards, and enjoy the process!

  • Podcast: The Importance of Setting Goals for Your Homeschool

    Part 1 of organization and time management for homeschooling.

    10:15 run time

    Next: Part 2

  • How to Set Great Goals For Your Homeschool

    In this downloadable PDF, get a step-by-step guide to setting goals and charting the course for your homeschool.

  • Creating space for your schoolroom

    You don't have to turn your home into a school in order for your children to learn, but sometimes it's nice to have a little space set aside solely for learning. In this article, learn how to create your school space.

  • Conquer Your Clutter in 8 Easy Steps

    In this downloadable PDF, learn eight simple steps to get victory over clutter in your house!

Teaching Tips

  • Podcast: How to Love to Learn

    Break through the "School is boring" barrier! A follow-up to How to Do It.

    19:15 run time

    Next in the series: Staying the Course

  • Podcast: Homeschooling with Special Needs Children (Part 1)

    Part 1 of strategies to help your advanced or delayed student get the most out of his/her education at home.

    10:32 run time

    Next: Part 2

  • Teaching gifted/accelerated learners:

    How do you homeschool accelerated students? How do you keep pace as they zoom through books? How do you meet their thirst for knowledge? In two blog posts, Sonlight's president, Sarita, shares four academic tips for teaching gifted children and three enriching extracurricular ideas.

  • Teaching multiple children:

    Teaching children of varying ages is both a blessing and a challenge. In this article, discover the secret art of teaching multiple kids at one time.

  • Teaching writing:

    Do you struggle to motivate your students in their writing? This article gives ideas on how to encourage your students to write well.

  • Developing character in your children:

    How do you successfully instill character in your children as a natural part of your life? This article will help you find ways to develop character in your children—and still get the laundry done.

  • How literature encourages character development:

    Do books specifically designed for character development work? What happens when you read real literature with your children? Read what veteran homeschooler Jill's learned in Part 1 and Part 2 of her "Catching Character" blog posts.

  • Why you should read picture books:

    Sonlight co-founder and president Sarita Holzmann believes picture books are a vital and wonderful part of a child's education. But many modern parents feel pressure to move quickly beyond picture books. Read veteran's homeschooler Jill's blog post on the alarming decline of the picture book, and Sarita's enthusiastic agreement with Jill that we must bless our kids with picture books.

  • Six ideas to encourage summer reading:

    Do you have a child who hasn't yet fallen in love with reading? In this blog post, Sonlight president Sarita Holzmann shares six tips to help struggling readers warm up to reading during the summer or any time of year.

  • Seven questions to ask when choosing an extra-curricular activity

    How do you even begin to choose which outside activities (if any) to choose for your children? As you pray for guidance, talk with your spouse and your children and look into options, Sonlight president Sarita Holzmann gives you seven questions to help you choose an activity.

  • How to use pie to teach fractions

    Do you children scratch their head at fractions? In this blog post, homeschool expert Judy shares this step-by-step plan to unlock fractions for your children ... with a real pie!

  • Give children tools, not toys

    In one of our most popular blog posts, homeschool mom Jill shares her father's wisdom to give children tools, not toys to play with. Then, she follows up with practical advice on how to limit toys in your house.

  • How kids learn through play

    In her blog post titled When I Play, I am Learning! Homeschool veteran Jill gives a fascinating list of what children actually learn when they play on climbing equipment, play with puppets, do puzzles, build with blocks, and more.

  • To Test or Not to Test

    What about tests in your homeschool? Do you need to do standardized testing? Should you test?

    Homeschool veterans tackle tests in homeschooling. Learn about the history of testing and how it was designed for classroom teachers to gauge how all their students were doing on a very broad level. As a homeschool parent, you know how you child is doing even without tests. Your daily interactions give you a very good idea of how your student is doing.

    On the other hand, standardized tests are a great way to get an outside perspective on your student. Tests can help you discover the areas and subjects in which your students excel and struggle. Taking a standardized test while homeschooling can be encouraging and informative.

    Be sure to learn about your state's standardized test regulations. Some states have strict rules you must follow when it comes to testing for your homeschool.

  • Summer Suggestions

    What can you do over the summer with your homeschoolers? Find ideas you can implement today!

    For example, limit TV and computer games. The more they are on, the more easily children become bored. Carry some of the "school time" schedule into the summer. Read-aloud over the summer. Get them started playing outside and they are likely to continue. Keep up with daily chores and some routine.

    Sometimes it's hard to get creative. So keep some ideas in your back pocket:

    • Set days a week we go to the beach/park/pool
    • Do some backyard cooking/camping
    • Have your children start a small personal garden
    • Play board games

  • Homeschooling with Toddlers (Webinar Version)

    Toddlers add a whole new layer of difficulty to homeschooling. How do you keep your toddlers happily occupied while you teach your older children?

    Homeschool moms share the things they've learned about homeschooling with toddlers in this helpful webinar.

    When homeschooling with preschoolers, it's important to have special school supplies just for them. Get some great picture books, some "school only" toys, and some large crayons and paper. This will make school time special for your preschoolers while giving you time to homeschool your other students.

    It is important to schedule your school time strategically as well. Do the subjects where you need to really devote attention and time to your students during nap time. Even setting up a special quiet time will enable you to homeschool with your preschooler.

    It's also helpful to get your older children involved with helping their younger siblings. Older students can read the school read-alouds to their siblings while you care for the toddler.

    Also make sure you have "Mom Time" where you can spend time one-on-one with your preschooler.

    Play Dates can be a great way to interact with friends, change things up, and give you connections. But be careful to not get so many people together that you can't pay attention to your children anymore. You can find support and friends for both you and your children.

    Homeschooling with preschoolers is a challenge, but it is only a season. This time passes quickly, so don't miss opportunities to value and include your preschooler in your homeschool.

  • Homeschooling with Toddlers (Podcast Version)

    How to minimize distractions and maximize the learning.

    17:20 run time

  • Podcast: How to Homeschool While Working (Part 1)

    12:45 run time

    Next: Part 2

  • Podcast: Homeschooling with a Large Family (Part 1)

    Part 1 of teaching Sonlight with a large family using multiple Sonlight programs.

    61:52 run time

    Next: Part 2

High School

  • Homeschooling High School: Quick Tips

    Homeschooling high school doesn't have to be scary! In this blog post, expert homeschooler Judy shares some quick and practical pointers to help you homeschool high school with confidence.

  • How to Homeschool High School

    In this workshop, Kelly walks you through the high school years of homeschooling. She shows you how to teach advanced subjects, prepare your children for college, gives you pointers on preparing transcripts and more.

  • High School: How to Create Transcripts

    Homeschooling high school brings with it the world of transcripts. Don't let transcripts keep you from homeschooling your high schooler.

    Packed with helpful information, this webinar walks you through the basics of creating a high school transcript for your homeschool. This video gives you plenty of tips and tricks to get you started down the right path of high school record keeping.

    You can homeschool high school. Start keeping records early and you'll do just fine when it comes time to submit your transcript for college admissions.

  • High School: How to Create a Syllabus and Grade Your Students' Work

    Veteran homeschooler Judy shares how she learned to set expectations for her high school students' work and then grade it fairly. Read her blog post High School and Grading and Transcripts ... Oh My!

  • High School: How to Create a Four-Year Plan

    The thought of homeschooling high school once left veteran homeschooler Jill shaking in her boots! In this blog post, she shares how she gained confidence and learned to create a simple four-year plan for her students.


  • What About Socialization?

    Judy, Kelly and Jill—homeschool veterans—answer the question Is socialization really an issue? in this informative webinar.

    This webinar is filled with tips and suggestions--as well as excellent reminders--that homeschooling provides the best socialization opportunities and environment. Homeschooled students are active in their homes and their communities. Your children can make friends.

    You will also discover the ways that traditional school environments create a non-optimal socialization experience. You'll see how homeschooling can be the best socialization preparation your student can get. Homeschooling is a great opportunity to make friends and gain real-world experience in society.

Links to other resources

Sonlight-specific helps

  • Getting Started with Sonlight

    You're going to have a great year with Sonlight. Sonlight guarantees it with a money back "Love to Learn" guarantee. This webinar will help you organize and get started using Sonlight's homeschool curriculum.

    Double check to make sure your order came with everything. If you have any questions, please contact us.

    Next, put together your Instructor's Guide, week by week.

    Tweak your binder so it works for your homeschool.

    Sit down and read the Instructor's Guide introduction so you can get the most from your IG.

  • Get More from Your Program: World Cultures

    Suggestions for field trips, more hands-on activities, writing & geography projects, and more for your World Cultures studies. Sonlight's World Cultures programs include levels A and F.

  • Get More from Your Program: World History

    Suggestions for field trips, more hands-on activities, writing & geography projects, and more for your World History studies. Sonlight's World History programs include levels B, B+C, C, G, H and W.

  • Get More from Your Program: American History

    Suggestions for field trips, more hands-on activities, writing & geography projects, and more for your American History studies. Sonlight's American History programs include levels D, D+E, E and 100.

  • How Sarita got started

    Read a letter from Sarita Holzmann (Sonlight's President) called "How you can avoid the $1,000 mistake I made when I began homeschooling."

  • Why use "real books"?

    Read how living books (not textbooks) create a thirst for learning.

Homeschooling Curriculum

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