Homeschool Requirements by State: Quick Reference Guide

Homeschooling Requirements: 50 States + D.C.

Are you curious about the requirements for homeschooling in your state or in other parts of the country? Here is a handy quick reference guide to what the requirements are for all 50 states plus the District of Columbia!

And make sure to join our How to Homeschool for Free Facebook Support Group for daily help, freebies, encouragement, and more in your homeschooling journey!

For detailed information about each state’s regulation, we highly recommend the Homeschool Legal Defense Association. Our family has been using the HSLDA for years and highly recommend membership for full-time homeschoolers.

How to Homeschool for Free is not a source for legal counsel or advice.*

Click on each state below to be taken to more information about the homeschooling requirements for that state:

Alabama Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

Alabamans have three different options for homeschooling. You can homeschool at a church school, homeschool at a private school, or homeschool using a private tutor. Head over to the Alabama page for more info.

Alaska Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

Alaskans have four different options for homeschooling. You can homeschool under the school statute, homeschool under a private tutor, homeschool with board approval, or homeschool as a religious private school. Head over to the Alaska page for more info.

Arizona Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

To begin homeschooling in Arizona you must file an affidavit of intent, provide a copy of the child’s birth certificate, and teach the required subjects. Head over to the Arizona page for more info.

Arkansas Homeschool Requirements {Low-Regulation}

Arkansas residents have only a few requirements to homeschool Head over to the Arkansas page for more info.

California Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

Californians have three different options for homeschooling. You can homeschool as a home-based private school, private school satellite program, or by a private tutor. Head over to the California page for more info.

Colorado Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Coloradans have three different options for homeschooling. You can homeschool under their homeschool statute, with an independent school, or with a certified teacher. Head over to the Colorado page for more info.

Connecticut Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

Connecticut residents are not required to file a notice of intent with their local superintendent but there are certain subjects they require you to teach from home. Head over to the Connecticut page for more info.

Delaware Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

Delaware residents have three different options for homeschooling. You can homeschool as a single-family homeschool, multi-family homeschool, or single-family homeschool coordinated with a local school district. Head over to the Delaware page for more info.

District of Columbia/Washington D.C. {High Regulation}

There are seven requirements that must be followed to homeschool legally in Washington D.C. Head over to the District of Columbia page for more info on these seven requirements.

Florida Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Florida residents have three options for homeschooling. You can homeschool under the homeschool statute, under a private school “umbrella” program, or with a private tutor. Head over to the Florida page for more info.

Georgia Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

George residents who wish to homeschool do so under the Georgia homeschooling statute. There are six different requirements that must be followed. Head over to the Georgia page for more info.

Hawaii Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Hawaii residents homeschool under the Hawaiian Homeschool Statute. To homeschool under this statute, there are four guidelines that must be followed. Head over to the Hawaii page for more info.

Idaho Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

Idaho residents are not required to obtain approval from their local school district to homeschool. There are a few steps necessary, however to homeschool in Idaho. Head over to the Idaho page for more info.

Illinois Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

In Illinois your homeschool is treated as a private school, however you do not have to register your home/private school with the state. There are a few requirements, however, so head over to the Illinois page for more info.

Indiana Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

Indiana homeschoolers are required to comply with Indiana’s private school statute. There are four steps to complying with Indiana’s homeschooling requirements, so head over to the Indiana page for more info.

Iowa Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

Iowa residents have five options for homeschooling. Independent Prive Instruction, Private Instruction, with a supervising teacher, with an annual assessment, or Home School Assistance Program. Head over to the Iowa page for more info.

Kansas Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

Kansas residents who homeschool are treated as a private school. There are a couple of options you can choose to be able to homeschool in Kansas: homeschooling as a non-accredited private school and homeschooling as a satellite of a private school.  Head over to the Kansas page for more info.

Kentucky Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

Kentucky residents are required to abide by the private school statute to legally homeschool. Head over to the Kentucky page for the necessary steps to ensure compliance.

Louisiana Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Louisiana residents have two options for homeschooling: a home-based study program or a home-based private school.  Head over to the Louisiana page for more info.

Maine Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Residents of Maine have two options for homeschooling: home instruction and private schooling. Head over to the Maine page for more info.

Maryland Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Maryland residents have four options for homeschooling: homeschooling under the portfolio option, under the church umbrella option, under the church-exempt school umbrella option, and under the state-approved school umbrella option. Head over to the Maryland page for more info.

Massachusetts Homeschool Requirements {High Regulation}

Massachusetts residents must abide by the compulsory attendance law in order to homeschool. Head over to the Massachusetts page for more info on the law.

Michigan Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

Michigan residents have two options for homeschooling: homeschooling under Michigan’s homeschool statute or as a nonpublic school. Head over to the Michigan page for more info.

Minnesota Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Minnesota residents have five guidelines that must be followed in order to homeschool. Head over to the Minnesota page for more info on these five guidelines.

Mississippi Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

Mississippi residents must file a certificate of enrollment in order to comply with the state homeschool law. Head over to the Mississippi page for more info.

Missouri Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

Missouri residents have two requirements that must be followed in order to comply with Missouri’s homeschooling law.  Head over to the Missouri page for more info.

Montana Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

There are five steps that Montana residents must follow to comply with the homeschooling law. Head over to the Montana page for more info on those five steps.

Nebraska Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

In Nebraska, a homeschool is considered a private school and must follow five steps in order to ensure compliance. Head over to the Nebraska page for more info on those five steps.

Nevada Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

Nevada residents are required to do two things to legally homeschool: file a one-time notice of intent to homeschool and teach the required subjects. Head over to the Nevada page for more info on these two steps.

New Hampshire Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

New Hampshire residents have certain guidelines that are recommended to follow in order to homeschool legally. Head over to the New Hampshire page for more info on these guidelines.

New Jersey Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

New Jersey residents are required to give their kids an education that is “equivalent” to what they would receive at a public school. Head over to the New Jersey page for more info.

New Mexico Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

New Mexico residents are required to do five things in order to homeschool legally. Head over to the New Mexico page for more info.

New York Homeschool Requirements {High Regulation}

New York residents who choose to homeschool perhaps have the strictest requirements in the nation and need to look very carefully at all of the requirements to ensure compliance. Head over to the New York page for more info on these requirements.

North Carolina Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

North Carolina residents must follow six requirements in order to homeschool. Head over to the North Carolina page for more info.

North Dakota Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

North Dakota residents have two options for homeschooling: homeschooling under the home education law or as a private school. Head over to the North Dakota page for more info.

Ohio Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Ohio residents have two options for homeschooling: homeschooling Ohio’s homeschool statute or homeschooling as a non-chartered, non-tax-supported school. Head over to the Ohio page for more info on these two options.

Oklahoma Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

Oklahoma residents have only one specific requirement for homeschooling but other guidelines that should be considered. Head over to the Oklahoma page for more info.

Oregon Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

There are three steps required to comply with Oregon’s homeschooling law. Head over to the Oregon page for more info on these three steps.

Pennsylvania Homeschool Requirements {High Regulation}

Pennsylvania residents have four options for homeschooling: homeschooling under the homeschool statute, homeschooling with a private tutor, enrolling your child in a satellite of a religious day school, or enrolling your child in a satellite of an accredited day or boarding school. Head over to the Pennsylvania page for more info on each of these three options.

Rhode Island Homeschool Requirements {High Regulation}

Rhode Island residents must follow five guidelines in order to homeschool in Rhode Island. Head over to the Rhode Island page for more info on these five guidelines.

South Carolina Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

South Carolina residents have three homeschooling options: homeschool under the homeschool statute, with the South Carolina Association of Independent Schools, or as a homeschool association. Head over to the South Carolina page for more info on these three options.

South Dakota Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

There are seven regulations that must be followed to homeschool in South Dakota. Head over to the South Dakota page for more info.

Tennessee Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Tennessee residents have three options for homeschooling: homeschooling as an independent home school, as a church-related school, or as a category III distance learning school. Head over to the Tennessee page for more info on each of these three options.

Texas Homeschool Requirements {Requires no Notice}

Texas residents have two requirements in order to homeschool legally. Head over to the Texas page for more info.

Utah Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Utah residents have two requirements to follow under the Utah homeschool statute. Head over to the Utah page for more info on this statute.

Vermont Homeschool Requirements {High Regulation}

Vermont residents are required to follow five guidelines under the Vermont homeschooling statute. Head over to the Vermont page for more info on these five guidelines.

Virginia Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Virginia residents have four options for homeschooling: homeschooling under the home instruction option, with a religious exemption, with a certified tutor, or under the private school option. Head over to the Virginia page for more info on each of these four options.

Washington Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

Washington residents have two options to legally homeschool: homeschooling under the homeschool statute or as a private or denomination school. Head over to the Washington page for more info on these two options.

West Virginia Homeschool Requirements {Moderate Regulation}

West Virginians have two legal options for homeschooling: homeschooling by seeking board approval or by submitting a notice of intent. Head over to the West Virginia page for more info on these two options.

Wisconsin Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

Wisconsin residents have six requirements to legally homeschool. Head over to the Wisconsin page for more info on these six requirements.

Wyoming Homeschool Requirements {Low Regulation}

Wyoming residents have two options to legally homeschool: homeschooling under the homeschool statute and as a parochial, church, or religious school. Head over to the Wyoming page for more info on these two options.

And make sure to join our How to Homeschool for Free Facebook Support Group for daily help, freebies, encouragement, and more in your homeschooling journey!

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The TOP Educational Websites for Homeschoolers

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BEST Learning Websites for Homeschoolers

Are you looking for the best FREE websites to send your children to for homeschooling? We’ve provided an exhaustive list of full curriculum and individual websites by subject to help you find the best resources in your homeschooling journey!

And make sure to join our How to Homeschool for Free Facebook Support Group for daily help, freebies, encouragement, and more to support you in your homeschooling journey!

Considering Essential Oils?

Click here to learn more about essential oils!!

If you’ve been considering essential oils be sure to check out this great post on How to Use Essential Oils to guide you in your journey!

Full Curriculum

Old-Fashioned Education – The creator of Old Fashioned education intentionally set out to create a full curriculum for her children using only free resources found online. Old Fashioned education was designed to use the Charlotte Mason homeschooling approach, but with a more structured feel to it.

Easy Peasy Homeschool – Easy Peasy Homeschool was created by a homeschool mom for her own children. She has created this amazing full curriculum totally online and mostly self-taught. It uses only FREE resources found online so you’ll only have to print a few worksheets from time to time.

Khan Academy – Khan Academy is a not-for-profit organization with a mission to provide a free, world-class education to anyone, anywhere. With over 2600 videos, they cover K-12 math, science topics such as biology, chemistry, and physics, and even reach into other subjects with playlists on finance and history.

***Find more great free Full Homeschool Curriculum options on HTHSFF!


Xtramath – XtraMath® is a Seattle 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to math achievement for all. Our goal is to develop effective, efficient, adaptive, and intrinsically rewarding supplemental math activities.

Math is Fun – Complete K-8, plus Algebra, Algebra 2, and Geometry curriculum. It follows a guided curriculum (scope & sequence) similar to many public schools, so you wouldn’t have to wonder if you forgot to include something.

Maths is Fun – Yes, it is “maths” with an ‘s’, in case you were wondering. 🙂 It includes tons of topics like measurement, operations, geometry, and so much more. There is plenty to do on the web site from Kindergarten all the way to high school.

Math Mammoth – Offers video math lessons on YouTube. There are optional worktexts to go along with the videos (that are not free), but you can get 300 free worksheets when you sign up for the Math Mammoth email newsletter (see info at the bottom of the page). This series is for grades 1-8. YouTube actually has numerous math resources if you take time to browse & find what you are looking for. Please comment if you have a favorite math channel on YouTube.

***Find more great free Math resources on HTHSFF!


American Heritage – American Heritage has a full K-12 curriculum. There are 3 levels of lessons: Elementary, Middle School, and High School. You can choose if you want the Texas Edition or the National Edition.

Student’s Friend – Student’s Friend was the first comprehensive Internet resource for teaching history and geography using online lessons. The website has free downloadable lessons, as well as a teacher’s lounge forum for discussion topics related to teaching the material.

Government Learning Resources – Several free resources on learning about our government and the election process including The Constitution for Kids, election lapbooks, mock elections, and more.

Eyewitness to History – This is a website that uses historical documents to show what events in history were like from those who were there. For example, when Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, his personal secretaries noted, “Vast as were its consequences, the act itself was only the simplest and briefest formality.”

***Find more great free history resources and free geography resources at HTHSFF!

Science – CK-12 is a company that started up with the intent to reduce textbook waste. These e-books are called Flexbooks. You get the student book, workbook, Teacher Edition, and the Answer Key for each subject. (Note: You have to email a request for the answer key.)

NASA and IMAGERS – NASA and IMAGERS have provided three thematic units. Within each unit, you will find lesson plans, reproducible worksheets, visuals, and links to useful resources. The adventure begins with the online book, Echo the Bat. The teacher’s guide will provide you with printable worksheets, discussion questions, and more.

The Vega Science Trust – has a series of videos and articles involving, well… science! If you want to learn how to generate electricity, click here to watch the video, but also click here to get the article that shows you the lesson. There are various lessons to get your student interested and ready to learn. Be sure to see what other lessons on video are also available!

***Find more great free science learning resources on HTHSFF!


Free Bible Timeline Printables – The Bible Story Printables site includes several printable resources you can use for your Bible studies such as printable timeline characters, notebooking pages, and much more.

Preschool Bible Learning Packs – On Mary Martha Mama, you will find several nice printable packs for learning about Biblical accounts with preschoolers.  They have Creation, Moses, The Exodus, Adam & Eve, Easter, Christmas, and more printables

1-Year Daily Audio Bible for Kids – One year through the New Testament with Daily Audio Bible host Brian Hardin and his daughter China, son Maxwell and wife Jill. Through the Bible for kids by kids.

***Find more great Bible learning resources on HTHSFF!

Foreign Language

BBC – Spanish – Spanish is taught here as an interactive video drama and Spanish course called Mi Vida Loca. It takes you on an intriguing mystery adventure to Madrid. There are 22 episodes, about 10 min each, covering basic learning points for Spanish absolute beginners.

Kypros – Learn Greek Online – This site is currently composed of real audio files (which are around 15 minutes each) and online student notes. It also includes a collection of collaborative learning tools and an online Greek dictionary and a Greek spell checker.

ASL Sign Language – Give your students a good head start in sign language with the free ASL resources you will find at Life Print. Life Print contains a self-study schedule you can use as a guide.  Just begin with lesson one, watch the videos, complete the milestones and the quizzes, & you’ll be on your way to learning ASL!

***Find more great free foreign language resources on HTHSFF!


Classic Literature – This is a list of thousands of classic literary works available to read for FREE online from several different online sources!

Free Online Audiobooks – This is a list we compiled here at How to Homeschool for Free on some of the best Audiobooks available including Storynory, LibriVox, and Online Audio Stories.

Free Online Phonics Lessons – This is a great list of free phonics learning resources to help your kids get started with reading!

Free Online Grammar & Writing Resources – This list is much more than simple worksheets, which can be found with a quick google search. Let’s get down to business finding some free grammar and writing lessons so our kids will know how to write a proper essay by the time they apply for college.

***More great reading resources from HTHSFF: Reading Curriculum, Lapbooks, Literature Guides, and Resources/Books for Young Readers.


Free Online Spelling Resources – This is a great list of free online spelling resources for everything from curriculum to games to Bible-based spelling lessons and more!

Free Online Spelling & Vocabulary Program by Grade – If you are looking for a free and easy to use spelling curriculum you will definitely want to check out this freebie from Grade Spelling.  They have a free spelling and vocabulary curriculum by grade for 1st – 8th grade.

Free High School Spelling Program – This program is designed for students in the 9th – 12th grade and comes with a spelling rules handout and 36 weeks worth of lists and activities.

***Find more great free spelling resources from HTHSFF!

P.E. & Outdoors

Nature Scavenger Hunt Printable – If you have access to nature right now this is a great way to be outside and learn about nature!

15 Easy & Fun Indoor P.E. Ideas – Several games from The Deliberate Mom to help you get creative with indoor P.E. ideas!

All In One Homeschool – All In One Homeschool has a completely Free Health and P.E. course for Grades 1 – 8 and High School.

***For more great free homeschooling resources please visit the toolbar at the top of this site to find more homeschool freebies including electives, printables, and more!

Considering Essential Oils?

Click here to learn more about essential oils!!

If you’ve been considering essential oils be sure to check out this great post on How to Use Essential Oils to guide you in your journey!

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

Educational PODCASTS For Kids! History, English, Science, and More!

Free Educational Podcasts for Kids!

There are LOTS of great podcasts out there that are perfect to add to your school day! Each link below goes directly to that educational podcast for kids on the Apple Podcast app, so you might want to click on the links from your phone so that the podcast app will open immediately.

Please be sure to share this page with anyone that you think might be interested. Also, if you’re new to homeschooling make sure to also check out this list of 450+ FREE Online Educational Resources!

***You can also join our How to Homeschool for Free Facebook Support Group for daily help, freebies, encouragement, and more to support you in your homeschooling journey!***

Story Time – Bible, Fairy Tales, and More

Superbook Video Podcast – Superbook teaches children in every language and culture timeless moral truths and life lessons through the captivating, Bible-based adventures of two time-traveling children and their robot friend.

Story Pirates – Story Pirates is a group of world-class actors, comedians, improvisers, and musicians who adapt stories written by kids into sketch comedy and musical theater.

1-Year Daily Audio Bible for Kids – One year through the New Testament with Daily Audio Bible host Brian Hardin and his daughter China, son Maxwell and wife Jill. Through the Bible for kids by kids.

Smash Boom Best – A debate show for kids and families. Every episode takes two cool things, smashes them together, and let’s you decide which is best. Cats versus dogs. Pizza versus tacos. Super speed versus super strength.

Circle Round – Created and produced by parents of young children, WBUR’s Circle Round is a podcast that adapts carefully-selected folktales from around the world into sound- and music-rich radio plays for kids ages 4 to 10. Each 10- to 20-minute episode explores important issues like kindness, persistence and generosity.

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Kids Corner Terrene Episodes – This half-hour adventure for kids (ages 6-12) follows Lizarardo “Liz” Lacerta and his reptilian friends in the little town of Terrene. In the quest for fun, Liz and his pals often get themselves into trouble! With the help of their parents and other grown-up lizards like Grandpa Anole and Granny Gecko, they wrestle with the challenges and drama of childhood, finding real answers in the Bible.

Andersen’s Fairy Tales by Hans Christian Andersen – The Little Mermaid, The Ugly Duckling, The Snow Queen, The Real Princess and a host of other wonderful tales which form so much a part of childhood are part of Andersen’s Fairy Tales, by Hans Christian Andersen.

By Kids, For Kids Bible Stories – Bible stories for children, brought to life with a rich tapestry of sound, performed by kids, for kids.

Kathy’s Kids Storytime Podcast – A weekly podcast for kids ages 3-12 where Mrs. Kathy tells stories that share life lessons and Christian values.

Stories Podcast – A Bedtime Show for Kids of All Ages – They perform a new children’s story every week. The stories range from retellings of fairy tales like Snow White to classics like Peter Rabbit and even completely original works.


Creation Science for Kids Show – Explores the Bible, history, and the world around us to see how much Jesus loves science

Brains On: Science Podcasts for Kids –  Brains On is a weekly science podcast for kids co-hosted by kid scientists! Previous shows include the topics of dust, pianos, and how the internet works!

Reasons to Believe – RTB’s mission is to spread the Christian gospel by demonstrating that sound reason and scientific research—including the very latest discoveries—consistently support, rather than erode, confidence in the truth of the Bible and faith in the personal, transcendent God revealed in both Scripture and nature.

Wow in the World – Hosts Mindy Thomas and Guy Raz guide curious kids and their grown-ups on a journey into the wonders of the world around them. We’ll go inside our brains, out into space, and deep into the coolest new stories in science and technology.

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Grammar Girl Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing – Grammar Girl provides short, friendly tips to improve your writing and feed your love of the English language.

Six Minute Grammar – BBC Radio invites you to build your grammar skills in their six-minute podcast every Tuesday

Six Minute Vocabulary – BBC Radio invites you to build your vocabulary in six minutes every Monday

Spanish Grammar Review – Provides interactive grammar exercises for the intermediate to advanced Spanish student.

Grammar and Writing Advice – English writing and Grammar advice brought to you guy Scribendi.


The American History Podcast – A weekly podcast dedicated to detailing the history of America from right before the time of discovery up through the present.

The British History Podcast – Chronological retelling of British history with a focus on the lives of the people.

The History of Rome – A Weekly podcast about the history of the Roman Empire, beginning with Aenea’s arrival in Italy and ending with the exile of Romulus Augustulus, last emperor of the Western Roman Empire.

Tides of History – World history about events across from all over the world in a high-quality, well-produced history podcast.

Wallbuilders Live! – Daily Journey into the past to to capture the ideas of the Founding Fathers of America and then apply them to the major issues of today.

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My Top 50 Favorite Homeschooling Quotes! Plato, Twain, C.S. Lewis, Einstein, Luther & More

Here are our top FIFTY homeschooling quotes to help encourage and inspire you on your journey! Plato, Twain, C.S. Lewis, Einstein, and More!

Here are FIFTY great homeschooling quotes to encourage and inspire you to keep moving forward with your passion and desire to direct the education of your children! Some of these quotes have to do with homeschooling specifically while others have to do with education in general but still apply to homeschooling. I hope you enjoy reading these quotes and please feel free to share this post if you love some or all of these great quotes!

“Knowledge which is acquired under compulsion has no hold on the mind. Therefore do not use compulsion, but let early education be a sort of amusement; you will then be better able to discover the child’s natural bent.”
-Plato, The Republic

“There is no school equal to a decent home and no teacher equal to a virtuous parent.”
-Mahatma Gandhi

“I believe that school makes complete fools of our young men, because they see and hear nothing of ordinary life there.”
-Petronius, The Satyricon

“Real education must ultimately be limited to men who insist on knowing. The rest is mere sheep herding.”
-Ezra Pound

“Education is a system of imposed ignorance.”
-Noam Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media

“School is the advertising agency which makes you believe that you need the society as it is.”
-Ivan Illich

“Self-education is the only possible education; the rest is mere veneer laid on the surface of a child’s nature.”
-Charlotte M. Mason, An Essay Towards a Philosophy of Education – More Mason

“The plain fact is that education is itself a form of propaganda – a deliberate scheme to outfit the pupil, not with the capacity to weigh ideas, but with a simple appetite for gulping ideas ready-made. The aim is to make ‘good’ citizens, which is to say, docile and uninquisitive citizens.”
-H.L. Mencken

“Homeschooling and public schooling are as opposite as two sides of a coin. In a homeschooling environment, the teacher need not be certified, but the child MUST learn. In a public school environment, the teacher MUST be certified, but the child need NOT learn.”
-Gene Royer

“The aim of education should be to teach us rather how to think, than what to think – rather to improve our minds, so as to enable us to think for ourselves, than to load the memory with the thoughts of other men.”
-James Beattie

“You will not reap the fruit of individuality in your children if you clone their education.”
-Marilyn Howshall

“Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn
 all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience.”
-Julia Ward Howe

“To confuse compulsory schooling with equal educational opportunity is like confusing organized religion with spirituality. One does not necessarily lead to the other. Schooling confuses teaching with learning, grade advancement with education, a diploma with competence, and fluency with the ability to say something new.”
-Wendy Priesnitz

“I was delighted to see him growing more cautious and skeptical about what he heard, especially when he heard it from someone in apparent authority. I think that is fundamental to a good education. And if it comes back to bite me from time to time, that’s a price worth paying.”
-Martine Millman, Homeschooling: A Family’s Journey

“What’s the matter?” asked the teacher, seeing her bewildered face.

“Why—why,” said Elizabeth Ann, “I don’t know what I am at all. If I’m second-grade arithmetic and seventh-grade reading and third-grade spelling, what grade am I?”

The teacher laughed at the turn of her phrase. “you aren’t any grade at all, no matter where you are in school. You’re just yourself, aren’t you? What difference does it make what grade you’re in! And what’s the use of your reading little baby things too easy for you just because you don’t know your multiplication table?”
-Dorothy Canfield Fisher, Understood Betsy

“As children become increasingly less connected to adults, they rely more and more on each other; the whole natural order of things change. In the natural order of all mammalian cultures, animals or humans, the young stay under the wings of adults until they themselves reach adulthood. Immature creatures were never meant to bring one another to maturity. They were never meant to look to one another for primary nurturing, modelling, cue giving or mentoring. They are not equipped to give one another a sense of direction or values. As a result of today`s shift to this peer orientation, we are seeing the increasing immaturity, alienation, violence and precocious sexualization of North American Youth. The disruption of family life, rapid economic and social changes to human culture and relationships, and the erosion of stable communities are at the core of this shift.”
-Gabor Maté, In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction

“Any child who can spend an hour or two a day, or more if he wants, with adults that he likes, who are interested in the world and like to talk about it, will on most days learn far more from their talk than he would learn in a week of school.”
-John Holt

18, 19.
“We cannot continue to send our children to Caesar for their education and be surprised when they come home as Romans.”
“The key is to understand that our children don’t belong to us—they belong to God. Our goal as parents must not be limited by our own vision. I am a finite, sinful, selfish man. Why would I want to plan out my children’s future when I can entrust them to the infinite, omnipotent, immutable, sovereign Lord of the universe? I don’t want to tell God what to do with my children—I want Him to tell me!”
-Voddie T. Baucham Jr., Family Driven Faith: Doing What It Takes to Raise Sons and Daughters Who Walk with God

“Children, even when very young, have the capacity for inventive thought and decisive action. They have worthwhile ideas. They make perceptive connections. They’re individuals from the start: a unique bundle of interests, talents, and preferences. They have something to contribute. They want to be a part of things. It’s up to us to give them the opportunity to express their creativity, explore widely, and connect with their own meaningful work.”
-Lori McWilliam Pickert

“Homeschooling will certainly produce some socially awkward adults, but the odds are good they would have been just as quirky had they spent twelve years raising their hand for permission to go to the bathroom.”
-Quinn Cummings

“So you think the best way to prepare kids for the real world is to bus them to a government institution where they’re forced to spend all day isolated with children of their own age and adults who are paid to be with them, placed in classes that are too big to allow more than a few minutes of personal interaction with the teacher-then spend probably an hour or more everyday waiting in lunch lines, car lines, bathroom lines, recess lines, classroom lines, and are forced to progress at the speed of the slowest child in class?”
-Steven James

“I was shocked, however, to discover that homeschooling is not allowed in the Netherlands. I could only imagine that after legalizing pot, prostitution and gambling, they had to outlaw something.”
-Quinn Cummings, The Year of Learning Dangerously: Adventures in Homeschooling

“Many of our elected officials have virtually handed the keys to our schools over to corporate interests. Presidential commissions on education are commonly chaired by the executives of large companies.”
-Alfie Kohn, The Schools Our Children Deserve

“Each of us is born with a crazy passion to learn. Each of us craves knowledge of our world and our place within it. We learn because we want to learn, because it’s important to us, because it’s natural, and because it’s impossible to live in the world and not learn. Then along comes school to mess up a beautiful thing.”
-ps pirro, 101 Reasons Why I Am An Unschooler

“The process of socialization is nowhere near complete at age five or six, when modern children start spending up to half their waking hours taking their cues from other people’s children. Because they accompany their parents’ daily routine, homeschooled kids spend plenty of time interacting with people of all ages, which I think most people would agree is a far more natural, organic way to socialize.”
-Quinn Cummings, The Year of Learning Dangerously: Adventures in Homeschooling

“It is no wonder that Satan hates the family and has hurled his venom against it in the form of Communism.”
-William R. Bowen, American Government in Christian Perspective

“In those days a boy on the classical side officially did almost nothing but classics. I think this was wise; the greatest service we can to education today is to teach few subjects. No one has time to do more than a very few things well before he is twenty, and when we force a boy to be a mediocrity in a dozen subjects we destroy his standards, perhaps for life.”
-C.S. Lewis

“People always understood, sensibly enough, that before you could teach something you had to know it yourself. But only very recently did human beings get the extraordinary notion that in order to be able to teach what you knew you had to spend years being taught how to teach…”
-John Holt

30, 31.
“…you either write your own script or you become an actor in someone else’s…”

“If you put fleas in a shallow container they jump out. But if you put a lid on the container for just a short time, they hit the lid trying to escape and learn quickly not to jump so high. They give up their quest for freedom. After the lid is removed, the fleas remain imprisoned by their own self policing. So it is with life. Most of us let our own fears or the impositions of others imprison us in a world of low expectations.”
-John Taylor Gatto

“All men who have turned out worth anything have had the chief hand in their own education.”
-Walter Scott

“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”
-Mark Twain

“Nobody rises to low expectations.”
-Calvin Lloyd

“You must pray…without prayer, all the schooling in the world will not produce the effect God wants homeschooling to give.”
-John Hardon

“…we have come to realise that for most men the right to learn is curtailed by the obligation to attend school.”
-Ivan Illich

“A tax supported, compulsory educational system is the complete model of the totalitarian state.”
-Isabel Patterson, The God of the Machine

“Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.”
-John Lubbock

“Great spirits have always been violently oppressed by mediocre minds.”
-Albert Einstein

“He is educated who knows how to find out what he doesn’t know.”
-George Simmel

“He who joyfully marches in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would suffice.”
-Albert Einstein

“I am beginning to suspect all elaborate and special systems of education. They seem to me to be built upon the supposition that every child is a kind of idiot who must taught to think. Whereas if the child is left to himself, he will think more and better, if less slowly. Let him come and go freely, let him touch real things and combine his impressions for himself, instead of sitting indoors at a little round table while a sweet-voiced teacher suggest that he build a stone wall with his wooden blocks, or make a rainbow out of strips of colored paper, or plant straw trees in flower pots. Such teaching fills the mind with artificial associations that must be got rid of before the child can develop independent ideas out of actual experiences. ”
-Anne Sullivan

“I am much afraid that the schools will prove the very gates of hell, unless they diligently labour in explaining the Holy Scriptures, and engraving them in the hearts of youth. I advise no one to place his child where the scriptures do not reign paramount. Every institution in which means are not unceasingly occupied with the Word of God must be corrupt.”
-Martin Luther

“I hated school so intensely. It interfered with my freedom. I avoided the discipline by an elaborate technique of being absent-minded during classes.”
-Sigrid Undset, Nobel Laureate

“I have no patience with the stupidity of the average teacher of grammar who wastes precious years in hammering rules into children’s heads. For it is not by learning rules that we acquire the powers of speaking a language, but by daily intercourse with those accustomed to express themselves with exactness and refinement and by copious reading of the best authors.”

“I learned most, not from those who taught me but from those who talked with me.”
-St. Augustine

“I remember that I was never able to get along at school. I was always at the foot of the class.”
-Thomas Edison

“Thank goodness my education was neglected.”
-Beatrix Potter

“Birds born in a cage think flying is an illness.”
-Alejandro Jodorowsky

When public schools are judged by how much art and music they have, by how many science experiments their students perform, by how much time they leave for recess and play, and by how much food they grow, rather than by tests they administer, then I will be confident that we are preparing our students for a future where they will be creative participants and makers of history rather than obedient drones for the ruling economic elite.
-Mark Naison

What are some of your favorite homeschooling quotes? Feel free to share in the comments below!!

10 Mess-Free Activities to Entertain Toddlers While You School the Big Kids!


Here are TEN mess free activities to help keep the little ones entertained while you're schooling the bigger kids!
This article was first published in 2013 but I wanted to repost as it’s a topic that is always relevant. I hope this post helps some of you with good ideas on keeping your little ones busy!

We’ve been talking a lot on the How To Homeschool For Free Facebook page about how in the world we keep 1 and 2 year olds occupied while we get school done with the older kids.

It was so much easier when I just had little ones and could play with them all morning until nap time.  We would go see friends, go to the park, look through books… and I still do these to some extent with my little ones.

But now I also have a 5th grader and a 2nd grader, and both of them still need a lot of individual instruction throughout the day.  It definitely makes it more of a challenge to keep the little ones (5 and 2) occupied with fun activities while I have instruction time with the older ones.

Now, we could just try to get ALL of the instruction done during my 2 year old’s nap time (thankfully he still takes a nap each afternoon!) but we all do better when we get the majority of our schoolwork done in the mornings and the older kids can use the afternoons to pursue things that they are interested in without the 2 year old coming in behind them and messing up their work.

So I have been on the hunt for activities that my 2 year old (and to some extend my 5 year old) can do that don’t make a MESS!  There are plenty of activities that he would have a blast doing but that would end up taking the rest of us hours to clean up.

I see activities like that on Pinterest all the time.  Moving beans/rice from one container to the other?  Um… yeah that didn’t work out so well in our house.  Stringing beads?  They ended up all over the floor/under couches/we will be finding beads until we move!  Cornstarch and water?  It was fun, but ended up everywhere too!

Anyone else in the same boat?

Hopefully these activities will help you as much as they have helped me!

1. Watercolor paints in the tub

I take off everything except the diaper for my 2 year old and my 5 year old gets one of my “painting shirts” and I give them watercolors, a little water, and paintbrushes. The great thing about this activity is that since it’s watercolor paint, cleanup is just rinsing the tub down with water from the shower head!

2. Signing Time

Signing Time has been a staple video in our house for the past 10 years! My mother in law bought us the first six DVDs a while back and they are the most well-used DVDs in the house. I don’t like to use TV as an activity very often, but when I do, Signing Time is always my first choice for the little ones (the bigger ones really enjoy Magic School Bus and Carmen Sandiego)!

Bubble Machine For Toddlers3. Bubble machine outside

Notice that I said OUTSIDE. I’ve tried the bubble machine inside… and it doesn’t qualify as mess-free. Bubbles will keep my little ones entertained for HOURS! We bought a sun canopy for the backyard and as long as it’s not a windy day we can all do school under there and let the little ones play with the bubbles.

And yes, that’s a professional bubble blower.  It’s double the price of the plastic kid-ones and is going to be one of my next purchases.

Twistable Crayons For Toddlers4. Twistable crayons & Color Wonder markers

Regular crayons = LOTS of broken pieces and labels torn off everywhere. Twistable crayons = PEACE. Enough said. 🙂

I also love the color wonder markers that go with the color wonder paper, but I’m not a fan of the color wonder paints. I end up with globs of clear “paint” all over EVERYTHING.

Paint with water books for toddlers5. Paint with water books

What’s easier than cleaning up water? Well, unless you let your 2 year old stand at the sink and “wash dishes” like I did earlier today… yeah, that one is definitely NOT a mess-free activity. But if you give them a little bit of water, a paintbrush, and a water painting book it’s not bad at all (notice the emphasis on a *little bit* of water)!

Just Dance Disney for toddlers6. Just Dance Disney

Does anyone else use Just Dance for PE? I’m really picky about the songs that I let the kids dance to on the adult Just Dance games (there’s a reason it says 10+ which I think should be even higher), but I’m comfortable with almost all of them on Just Dance Disney and my 2 year old LOVES it. He brings me the Wii remote at various times throughout the day and begs me to turn it on so he can dance. What’s nice is that you can set it to run through the different songs for a set amount of time. So if I want it to stay on for just 15 minutes then I can set it for 15 minutes and it will run through 15 minutes worth of songs.

Games for toddlers7. Hammer golf tees into foam

Not with a *real* hammer, of course! Get a plastic hammer, some foam from a craft store, and a bag of colorful golf tees. They can hammer the golf tees into the foam over and over again! Then when they get tired of that, they can hammer the tees into the ground in the backyard. Just be sure not to use any green (or probably not black) tees when they do that so that you can easily get them out before you mow. 🙂

iPad Apps For Toddlers8. iPad/Tablet apps

We love our iPad. I guess I should say my 2 year old’s iPad. It’s *supposed* to be a family iPad but he’s the one who typically ends up with it. I’m planning a whole post on my favorite iPad apps for 2 year olds, but here are a few of his favorites:

  • First Letters – you drag the matching letters to each other and then at the end they sing the ABC song.
  • First Words – you drag each letter to the right place to make the word.

Put plastic colored balls in a pack n play for toddlers!9. Pack N Play ball pit

There’s no need to buy an inflatable ball pit when you can just put a package of plastic balls in a Pack N Play and create your own! All of my kids have loved sitting in a pile of colored pastic. If you have two younger ones like I do then you can put the younger one in the Pack N Play with the balls and have them throw the balls out for the older one to run and get and put back into the Pack N Play.

What are your favorite mess-free activities for toddlers? Please share them with us in the comments below!

Disclosure: There are links in this post that are affiliate links because, well, it would be silly for me not to use affiliate links where I can. Affiliate commissions help to keep How To Homeschool For Free… FREE! 🙂

20 Reasons Why English Can Be Hard To Learn {Infographic}

So true!! 20 Reasons Why English Can Be Hard To Learn...

Click on the picture to enlarge!

Are there any other sentences that you can think of to add to the list??

Free Online Phonics Lessons!

Reading Resource – Progressive Phonics

Progressive Phonics is a free phonics program that you can use to teach your little ones how to read. This program uses phonics and sight words, and there are handwriting lessons to go with each reading lesson.

***For our full list of online Phonics resources, check out our FREE Phonics Curriculum Options Resources page!***

You begin with the Alphabet books and then each book gets harder as you move through the different levels. You have the option of printing the books or having your child read them on the screen.

Go here to check out Progressive Phonics.

Free Ancient & American History Curriculums!

Here are some GREAT free homeschool history curriculums for ancient and american history!
If you’re looking for a free history curriculum to use in your homeschool then you will definitely want to check out Guest Hollow. Guest Hollow was created by a veteran homeschooling family who created this curriculum for their own children, and is now sharing with others for FREE. Guest Hollow has 2 levels of American History as well as Ancient History and a History Timeline Schedule.

The Guest Hollow History Curriculum uses books that you can find on Amazon or in the library.

Head over here to check out Guest Hollow History.

For more free online History resources, check out our FREE History Curriculum Options Resources page!

Homeschool Greek Foreign Language for FREE!

Your kids can learn Greek online with this fabulous FREE resource!

Does your child want to learn the Greek Language?  There is an excellent resource that it absolutely FREE that will teach your student Greek. Kypros has many free courses to teach Greek (from beginner to advanced).  The lessons are audio lessons so the student can actually hear how the words are supposed to sound.

Some of the best features of Kypros:

  • Audio Lessons
  • Discussion Forum
  • Free Textbooks
  • More

Go here to check out Kypros. For more free online language resources, check out our FREE Foreign Language Curriculum Options Resources page!

Ultimate Guide to Early American History Curriculum!

Here is a wonderful FREE resource for guiding your children through early American history!

If you’re looking for a primer on American history for your kids with an emphasis on the founding documents, here is a great looking, free resource to help your kids learn their history!

Mom’s Mustard Seeds and Founders Academy have created this wonderful Ultimate Early Guide to American History Course that will teach your children about American History. These lessons include:

  • The Mayflower Compact
  • The Declaration of Independence
  • The Constitution of the United States of America
  • The Federalist and Anti-Federalist Papers

Be sure to check out all of the free homeschool history resources on How to Homeschool for Free!

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