Good news, homeschoolers, the options for secular homeschool curriculum are growing in leaps and bounds! In the following article, we break down your curriculum and resource choices by style, age, and subject.
Before you scroll, bookmark this page. Curriculum will be updated annually, and your bookmark will direct you to the most current guide.
In the past few years, we have seen huge growth in the homeschool community. With that, the demand for more versatile and comprehensive secular curriculum has grown.
Now, we homeschoolers know a little about supply and demand. And I’m thrilled to share that as demand has grown, curriculum companies and a few very savvy homeschoolers have risen to the occasion.
Homeschool parents now have a great variety of options in secular curricula. Everything from complete online programs to homeschooler-made unit studies to public school materials that have been redesigned to fit our unique needs.
Finding Secular Homeschool Curriculum Options
The dictionary definition of “secular” is something that does not have a religious or spiritual basis. Seems pretty straightforward, right? Well…
If you’re a homeschooler in the US, you probably already know that the vast majority of homeschoolers are Christian, with a large percentage identifying with an evangelical church.
Being part of the majority is great. It makes it easier to find resources, support, and a community of homeschoolers that understand and champion your decision to homeschool. There are tons of options out there because the demand has been consistent and long-term.
However, if your family is homeschooling with secular materials you may have found yourself facing the many challenges of being in the minority. One major challenge is finding quality secular options for homeschool curriculum and materials.
Is this Secular?
In the past, the options for secular homeschool curriculum have been extremely limited. Searching for secular resources is a real challenge that homeschool parents face.
Sometimes we find materials that appear to be secular but are not. Materials saying they’re secular but are actually better qualified as religion-neutral leave out concepts such as evolution and may present biblical history as fact while stating that other religious texts and stories are myth.
Knowing the difference between secular and religion-neutral resources can be tricky. Especially when you’re sorting through professional marketing efforts of companies specifically trying to reach a secular audience.
Secular Homeschool Options
So how do you find secular resources and curriculum that will fit your family’s needs?
Many homeschoolers have come up with unique solutions. Some parents put together a variety of resources on their own or outsource subjects to secular charter or online public schools.
But more often than not, the solutions I see are one of the following:
- Secularizing religious homeschool materials
- Using public school curriculum
- Searching out *actually* secular homeschool options
“Secularizing” Religious Materials
With limited options, some homeschoolers have decided to “secularize” religious and religion-neutral materials. That is, parents take the extra step to remove religious references and/or add additional materials to balance the perspectives presented.
This is a completely valid option, however it takes extra effort from the parents. Including pre-reading and preparation, sourcing additional materials, and sometimes making bigger changes to your curriculum plan or sequence.
Benefits of secularizing are that there are many options for religious and religion-neutral materials can be found very inexpensively – and even for free.
Using Public School Materials
Another response from the secular homeschool community is to use resources designed for public schools at home. Public school materials are generally faith-free and are readily available online.
I would not dissuade you from using public school curriculum or teacher made materials. There are some fantastic options out there – some of which are included in this guide. However, using materials designed for a class of 30 kids is not always optimal.
Textbooks and teacher’s editions can be very expensive, and if you’re not experienced in the classroom, sorting through the huge variety of options in a TE can be overwhelming. The public school materials included in the guide below offer homeschool-specific packages and options.
Searching Out Secular Homeschool Curriculum
Still other families take the extra time to search out homeschool resources that are *actually* secular. There are a growing number of resources for families who choose secular homeschool. Personally, I feel that this is the best option.
Finding these resources can be somewhat of a challenge. In an attempt to relieve some of the pressure, I’ve reviewed, researched, and created the updated guide below for your reference.
Unlike many of my reviews, this is not a recommendation post. I have not tried all of these materials – with the shear number on this list, that would not even be possible!
However, I hope this list serves as a jumping-off point for you. I would encourage every homeschool parent to thoroughly review these materials, ask around in your favorite secular forums or groups, and weigh your options.
Secular Homeschool Curriculum
The following list was developed with a great deal of research and care. My hope is that this list will help you find more secular options with less frustration. You will find resources from homeschoolers, curriculum companies that offer homeschool packages, and independent curriculum publishers.
Feel free to browse the selection below. The curriculum and courses are presented in alphabetical order under the following headings:
- Secular Publishers
- Online Curriculum and Courses
- Curriculum by Subject
- Additional Resources & Supplements
*Note about purchasing resources:
These links lead directly to the publisher or owner’s website. These may be the best prices you can find. However, I would urge you to research titles thoroughly, and when you have made your decision check for programs available through Homeschool Buyers Co-op and for homeschool curriculum books on Amazon to find deals.
Secular Publishers with Homeschool Curriculum Packages
The following publishers offer a range of curriculum from preschool to twelfth grade in a variety of subjects. It’s likely you’ve come across these large publishers and mid-level curriculum companies in your research.
*You will also find some of these companies listed by subject if they offer stand-alone courses by a different name.
Offers curriculum and online courses for language arts, writing, and grammar with full year and book study units available. Five years old to high school.
Build Your Library
Literature-based program that includes language arts, history, and science. They also offer stand-alone book-based, history, and science units. Note: this program uses Story of the World and Elemental science. BYL states that their program leaves out the religious components of these books, essentially secularizing the neutral material for you.
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
A large public school publisher that offers homeschool packages for reading, language arts, math, science, social studies, and languages with a textbook-online blended approach.
Moving Beyond the Page
Offers full coursework packages for ages 4 through high school, plus stand-alone unit studies, and single-subject packages.
Global Village School
Offers curriculum for kindergarten through high school with options for varying levels of teacher support. This unique program offers private school enrollment for distance learners.
Offers all-in-one curriculum or purchase by subject for K-8, high school courses may be purchased individually.
Offers science and history curriculum written specifically for secular homeschoolers.
A large public school publishing company that carries homeschool packages of their Reading Street, Interactive Science, and enVision MATH programs.
Royal Fireworks Press
Publishers focused on creating content for gifted children. Their catalogue features MCT (Michael Clay Thompson), Problem-Based Learning (by Shelagh A. Gallagher), as well as Latin, science, history, arts, and philosophy.
Publisher of a unique text-workbook hybrid that includes hands-on learning in history, math, literature, and science. We really enjoyed the hands-on American history timeline series, read our review here.
Offers 36 week curriculum for grades pre-k through 3 that include language arts, social study, and art. Also provides recommendation for learn-to-read and math programs (must be purchased separately).
Secular Online Curriculum and Courses
Online curriculum is a popular choice for many homeschool families. The following companies offer online homeschooling packages, virtual classroom, and face-to-face tutoring in a variety of subjects.
Subject-specific online courses can be found in the next section.
An online platform that offers full curriculum and individual courses for grades 3 – 12.
Online courses in all subjects for grades K-12
Full online homeschool curriculum covering all subjects for kindergarten through 12th grade.
Kahn Academy, free online courses with a full online selection of math, science, language arts, history, government, economics, and AP classes for all grade levels.
National Geographic and Cengage
A catalog of math, science, social studies, reading/language arts, ESL, foreign language, high school honors, and career/technical education based on National Geographic texts.
Next Level Homeschool, a variety of online courses that can be treated as curriculum unit studies, or supplemental/enrichment. See individual class
Hands-on Montessori math and language arts curriculum that promises open-and-go instruction for preschool through high school levels. descriptions for recommended ages.
Offers online and book-based hybrid kits for homeschoolers. Language arts and math are currently available for preschool and kindergarten levels.
Online video courses for grades 3-12 with college credit courses available.
Thinkwell, offers middle school, high school, and AP coursework in math, science, and social studies.
Full online curriculum for grades pre-k through high school that include math, language arts, science, social studies. Additional courses can also be added including languages (see language section below), art, and writing.
Secular Homeschool Curriculum by Subject:
Secular Language Arts, Writing, and Grammar Curriculum
All About Learning Press
Offers courses in reading and spelling for preschool through grade 7.
Blossom and Root
Currently K-3 with 4th grade coming in 2020. A secular, nature based program that includes language arts, nature study, and art.
Daily Writing Prompts from Circle Time with Miss Fox
This listing features 240 daily writing prompts to be used with your writing instruction. Appropriate for elementary grades.
Essentials in Writing
Writing, literature, and online classes for ages 6 through high school.
A workbook based program where students solve problems through space “missions.” Note: you will see a dedication to God in these books, but the rest of the material and educational content is secular.
Soaring with Spelling, Winning with Writing, Growing with Grammar, and Digging into Diagramming. Grammar, spelling, and writing curriculum for grades 1-8.
Logic of English
Offers reading, phonics, spelling, and handwriting instruction for ages 4-7 with a second package for struggling readers ages 8 and up.
Reading Street, K-6 Pearson
WriteShop Primary and Junior
Kindergarten through 6th grade writing curriculum. *Note: Per the website “WriteShop Primary and WriteShop Junior are free of religious references. WriteShop I and II contain occasional religious references. “
Secular Reading and Phonics Instruction
A series of phonics readers that build reading skills for primary grades k-2.
Explode the Code
Phonics workbooks for direct phonics instruction.
Hooked on Phonics
Ages 3-8 learn to read kits. *Note: We used this program in our homeschool and really enjoyed it. They have added videos and apps recently that make this solid program very engaging for young children.
Free reading program for primary grades.
Words Their Way
Spelling and phonics program for learning to read from Pearson publishers.
Secular Homeschool Math Curriculum
AoPS Academy (Art of Problem Solving)
Middle and high school math offers text and online courses.
Comic book based math instruction for kids 8-13. Book and online interactive programs available.
enVisionMATH, K-5 Pearson
Math in Focus, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Integrated approach to math that includes hands-on learning and writing for grades 1-5. Based on the Singapore method.
Complete math curriculum for grades 1-7.
Miquon Math Lab Materials
Hands on curriculum for grades 1-3.
Right Start Math
Elementary and middle school math program that focuses on kinesthetic and visual learning with manipulatives including the AL Abacus.
Saxon Math, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Integrated approach to math that includes step-by-step instruction, lessons, and practice for grades kindergarten through advanced high school.
Curriculum for pre-k through 8th grade based on the Singapore method.
Complete online math courses for roughly grades 2 and up. Placement test is given to set the initial level. *Note: We have used this and really enjoyed it. Find our review on this post.
Workbooks, textbooks, and tutoring options for grades 1-5
Secular Science Programs
Classic Science Curriculum, Mr. Q
High school science including (free) Life Science, Earth Science, Chemistry, Physical Science, Advanced Chemistry, Advanced Biology, Advanced Earth Science, Advanced Physical Science
Interactive Science, K-8 Pearson
Real Science Odyssey, Pandia Press
Science4Us online STEM curriculum, K-5 Time4Learning
The Story of Science by Joy Hakim
A set of texts where narrative storytelling meets secular science, these are great for high school science and language arts studies. You can also find Student’s Quest Guides (published by Johns-Hopkins University) that can be used as a curriculum to accompany the texts.
Secular Social Studies & History
A History of US by Joy Hakim
A series of books that mixes accurate history lessons and narrative storytelling, these make an excellent base for middle to high school US history and language arts lessons.
Book based secular history program for elementary students.
History Odyssey and History Quest, Pandia Press
Book based secular history curriculum for grades 1-6.
Foreign Language Curriculum
Cambridge Latin from University of Cambridge
Offers independent learning and video-conference lessons.
Language learning app that features short lessons and games in Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Japanese, Arabic, and Czech. Free program with ads or upgrade to Plus to remove ads.
Homeschool Spanish Academy
Online instruction for ages 5 through high school (and adult).
I Speak Latin by Quidnam Press
Text based course for conversational Latin for beginners.
A variety of options including independent study, big books, and live online classes.
Live foreign language tutoring in Spanish and Chinese for ages 2-17. My son loved his tutoring sessions, read our review here.
Packages include complete courses in English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Arabic, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Russian, Portuguese, Greek, Polish, and more. Choose from 6 month, 12 month, and lifetime access.
Time4Languages from Time4Learning
English, Spanish, French, German, Chinese, Latin, Italian, Japanese, Russian, and Hebrew.
Secular Arts Instruction
DVD and text based art curriculum for preschool through high school.
Raising Da Vinci
Courses including filmmaking, art, photography, and music.
Time4Art from Time4Learning
Online art courses for creating your own art (on and off the computer) fourth grade and up.
Hands-on Homeschool Activities
Preschool program by Homeschool Mastery Academy. Full year of hands-on preschool activities based on learning through play.
Handwriting Without Tears
An excellent program for handwriting suitable for preschool through elementary grades. Covers pre-writing, printing, and cursive.
In this post, I briefly review three free online typing programs for lower elementary through middle school.
Additional Secular Resources for Homeschooling
If you’re searching for resources to enrich your curriculum or expand on a certain topic, here is a list of sites where other secular materials and supplements can be found.
A Child’s Introduction to…
A secular book series that can be used as a spine for arts curriculum. Titles include A Child’s Introduction to… Art, Ballet, The Night Sky, Poetry, African American History, Greek Mythology, and more.
Big Fat Notebooks
These middle school study guides can easily be flipped into a curriculum and include subjects such as English Language Arts, World History, American History, Math, and Computer Science & Coding.
Videos aligned with the NGSS to support and enrich your science curriculum.
Workbooks that include all subjects for grades preschool – 6 that can be used as a base for instruction and practice.
A wonderful and engaging resource for middle to high school students, these courses can be found on YouTube. These can be used with science and history unit studies or as a supplement to your curriculum.
DK Books, part of Random House Publishers
Offers a variety of excellent published resources including Big History, Eyewitness books, and the Big Ideas series which can be used as spines or supplements for families who wish to put together their own curriculum.
Prodigy Math Game
A fun curriculum-aligned supplement for your math curriculum for grades 1-8. This program is online and completely free with an option to upgrade to a premium so your child can get better gear for their avatar.
A series of workbooks for various grades and subjects that can provide a base for instruction and practice.
Note about curriculum included in this list:
I attempted to include as many secular homeschool programs as possible that offer complete curriculum and/or guides that make it easier on the homeschool parent to deliver instruction.
Left off this list:
- Publishers that I straight couldn’t figure out what was going on with their website or products
- Products and publishers that describe themselves as “faith-neutral”
- Sites that take steps to assure homeschoolers that evolution is purposefully not included in their programs
- Public school curriculum publishers that do not offer homeschool packages
- Programs that describe themselves only as supplements for public school education
Additionally, if I couldn’t find a definitive answer to the question: “Is this product secular?” or “What specific components of this product are/are not secular?” I did not include it in this list.
With that in mind if you would like to recommend a secular curriculum or product please contact me, and I will add it to the list!
Before you go!
Don’t forget to bookmark or pin this page. This list will be updated annually to include new programs and curriculum. The link you save will direct you to the most current guide.