Our Big List of Homeschooling High School Curriculum Favorites

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We’ve been homeschooling high school for a long time and we’ve had four homeschooled high schoolers. Along the way, we’ve gathered some favorite curriculum and resources. Some of these are so good we used them four times. For others, we discovered them when we had to make a change for our out of the box teens. Our Big List of Homeschooling High School Favorites is a list of our tried and true, ever faithful, always a favorite curriculum choices for homeschooling high school.

teen girl with steampunk goggles drawing a map

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There are so many favorites on our list, that I’m going to split them by subject area. You’ll find links to the curriculum or resource and you’ll find links to our personal experience with the program. Plus, I’ll link you to some favorites that I’ve created and that families have enjoyed, both free and paid. So, here we go!

How to Choose High School Curriculum

Before we get on with the list, it’s important to know what makes a good curriculum for your teen.

I’ve written about this in detail in How to Choose Homeschooling High School Curriculum, but I’ll share some basics right here.

The first thing to consider is what subjects your student will be tackling. Then you’ll need some criteria for what’s appropriate for your student. Make sure they are involved in the decision making process. That’s crucial to the handing over of the reins!

  • Student Goals– What are your student’s goals within each course? Some curriculum will better meet those once you know what they are.
  • Style of Instruction– This goes along with how your student wants to learn. They may not want the same style for each course, but they will want what matches them best.
  • Content– Does it meet your requirements for what the student is to learn? That’s an obvious one! This can also mean is there objectionable content. However, I would avoid dismissing curriculum at this point based purely on small objections or sections of content. The older your student gets, the more they need to be given the tools to discern material and separate content from their values- in the sense that they need to practice upholding their values in the face of content they might not totally agree with. You want to have these discussions before they leave for college- or the workplace!
  • Need for Outsourcing– Many parents want to use outside sources for course work in at least some areas. Choosing which way to do this is another topic, but in general suffice it to say that it will influence your curriculum choices.
  • Dual Credit, CLEP, & AP Options– These are not necessarily outsourced, but if you plan to use one or more of these options, you must know that going in so when the time comes you and your student are ready.

Homeschooling High School Favorites

What makes a favorite?

In our case, it’s any program that delighted us or gave us memorable learning moments.

Can you think of any programs you’ve used that would do the same for your family?

We’ve been homeschooling high school for 12 years!

Some of these might be older school than others, but I think you can find everything I’ve mentioned.

Let’s get started!

Favorite Homeschooling High School English Curriculum

One Year Adventure Novel

Hands down a favorite for several of our teens! In fact, this program cemented our oldest’s desire to be writer and he works as a full time writer post college, so that’s a WIN!

Photo Credit: Heather Woodie

books in a stack for Other Worlds

Other Worlds

This program is the second module to One Year Adventure Novel and it was just updated last year. I was all in for the new edition, so we bought that. This module focuses on writing science fiction and fantasy which involves world building.

Photo Credit: Heather Woodie

a text with the name Byline on a notebook with a fountain pen


Byline is another program from the One Year Adventure Novel. It is a program designed to teach non-fiction writing through historical journalism. My history loving student really enjoyed this option.

Photo Credit: Heather Woodie

a stack of books on a table

Excellence in Literature

I love this program because it is taught in a college format and gives teens the chance to read classics and write about them. It’s low key and flexible depending on what skills your teen already has.

Photo Credit: Heather Woodie

eBook on a notebook with a fountain pen. The book title is Growing Brave Writers.

Growing Brave Writers

Formally The Writer’s Jungle, Growing Brave Writers is a detailed resource for moms teaching writing. Whether or not, you outsource writing, this is a marvelous tool for your homeschooling mom tool box!

Photo Credit: Heather Woodie

writer's handbook on top of a notebook with a fountain on the paper

Handbook for Writers

This book is a go along for the Excellence in Literature program, but is a great reference book for essay writing in general. If you have a student who works better without your guidance, this is a wonderful resource.

Photo Credit: Heather Woodie


NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. The goal is to write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November. Our daughter took the time to do this in her senior year and earned a credit in Creative Writing.

Read about our experience

Photo Credit: Heather Woodie

six week writer’s workshop

6 sessions with 18 activities

Our workshop is designed for all ages to participate together in the workshop. There 6 sessions, with 3 each day which adds up to 18 writing activities for your group. Register for your FREE Workshop today.

Favorite Homeschooling High School Math Curriculum

stack of math texts on a wood deck surface

Math is a sticky subject for many of us.

Part of it is that we often don’t feel proficient ourselves.

I need to look for a curriculum that will not only bring my kids a challenge, but one that will be flexible.

  • Math on the Level– this program is amazing for math through Pre-Algebra. If you want to be in the driver’s seat for your student’s math education, have a look.
  • Life of Fred– Life of Fred is a different approach to math, but it is and intense learning experience in the high school years. After your teens complete this program, they will have left no math stone unturned.
  • CTC Math– We’ve used CTC Math with our teens from time to time. Some teens have used it more than others. It’s a great program for moms and teens. I’ve written extensively about CTC Math and I have another focused on Calculus coming soon.

Favorite Homeschooling High School Art Curriculum

When it comes to art, a lot depends on your teen. That’s the way it is for everything, but if your teen is creative, then discussing with them what their goals are for their art is important.

Many times, by the time our creative teens get to high school, they’ve had at least one round of the basics and they might be looking to take their art farther.

Before you say there’s no time in your teen’s schedule, read Scheduling Time for Creative Pursuits while Homeschooling High School.

Creativity is the foundation of everything your creative teen does. Start the day with creative pursuits and watch the rest of their work improve.

Join Masterpiece Art Society- colored pencils and paint on the table

Jane Austen for High School
tree painting with a palette full of green acrylic paint
This painting is from a Craftsy class on painting trees in acrylic.

Social media is a great way to find artists to follow and different forms of art to try.

  • Instagram– I follow quite a few mixed media artists there and learn so much. Often these artists also publish full videos on YouTube.
  • YouTube– Go there and do a search on the type of project you want to work on and you’ll come up with loads of tutorials. If you pay the minimal fee for YouTube Premium, you can watch all the videos commercial free. In fact, we subscribe to YouTube Music, so we get YouTube Premium with that.

Favorite Homeschooling High School Science Curriculum

stack of science biographies on a table with the title How to Teach Science through the Lives of Scientists

Science is one of those subjects that we approach in an out of the box way.

We can’t help it and we’ve been doing it since our kids were small.

How to Teach Science through the Lives of Scientists– is an explanation of how we use trade books about famous scientists to learn about their work and the concepts surrounding their expertise.

microscopic marvels

Explorations in Historical & Modern Microscopy

An affordable, year long course devoted to the study of microscopy through hands on observation, research, and scientific journaling.

CK-12– This is an open source science program out of California. We like it because it provides up to date information with multimedia opportunities. It is web based and there is an app for on the go reading.

Trade Books– while not a curriculum, as a category, we use a lot of books written by various authors who are experts on the topic. In other words, we use living books for high school science!

Our youngest learns this way best, so we’ve kept right on going!

When they can think for themselves, make connections between disparate bits of information, observe with interest, ask their own questions and unashamedly follow an interest in any direction, they are in league with some of the greatest scientists in history. – Laura Weldon, Free Range Learning

Favorite Homeschooling High School History Curriculum

boy writing at a table behind a set of atlases

We use a variety of curriculum and resources for homeschooling high school history and other social sciences. We definitely have a few favorites in this category!

Geography Quests– I wrote nearly 40 short geography explorations called Geography Quests. There are some from every area of geography, whether it’s political, physical, etc. These are free for you to use and you can find them all in one place.

Winterpromise– this is a comprehensive curriculum that is somewhere between unit studies and traditional learning. It was a great bridge for our kids. We used all of the high school history programs, but we carved our own path with it. Our historian loved all the great books.

text with a tablet open that says Northstar Geography

Northstar Geography

We’ve used many geography themed resources from Bright Ideas Press over the years. You can purchase this program in different formats. We used both digital and text, plus the audio version. The digital downloads are full of all sorts of options for activities.

Photo Credit: Heather Woodie

map graphics on a green background with Wondermaps across the middle


You do not want to miss the chance of using Wondermaps! These are digital maps that can be customized for color and content. We used this software to generate maps for any time we needed a map. It was these maps that inspired my Geography Quests.

Photo Credit: Bright Ideas Press

a Mapping the World with Art text on  top of a hand drawn map

Mapping the World with Art

If I had to pick a favorite of favorites, this would be it! We had a lot of great moments creating our own world atlas with this low key program. In fact, with one of my high schoolers, we used this for fine art. It’s has some history that goes with it, but we primarily used it for geography.

Photo Credit: Bright Ideas Press

Favorite Homeschooling High School Foreign Language Curriculum

Foreign language is one of the areas of homeschooling high school that is difficult to find the right fit. Do you go traditional? Online? Outsourced?

The answers to these questions will depend on your teen and your goals.

Here are some of the programs that worked well for us.

a teen at a computer with headphones and the title Learn Arabic at Home with Rosetta Stone and the packaging of Rosetta stone on a table

Rosetta Stone– We’ve used Rosetta Stone for Spanish, Arabic, German, and French. Not that Rosetta Stone is reliant on language recognition, so it may not be a good fit for every teen.

iTalki– this was an amazing opportunity our oldest had to learn Arabic from a native speaker from Egypt. It’s one on one teaching and it was a favorite.

DuoLingo– this is an app that is great for practice and for language learning on the go

Breaking the Spanish Barrier– for those of you who want old school language instruction, this is a great little text program. We used it with our third teen because with his history of apraxia and lingering articulation issues, the voice response programs were a no go.

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