5 Fantastic Online Resources for Home Educators
I’m sure you already know all these websites; but did you know they’re rich with resources for homeschooling families? Take a look…
YouTube – the Ultimate Video Supplement
YouTube is more than just cat videos and music. There you can find videos on just about any educational topic you can think of. For example, I’ve found educational videos that explain atoms, document the reign of Alfred the Great, and show how to use your fingers as a multiplication calculator.
Of course, you can find They Might Be Giants Here Comes Science videos on there along with Schoolhouse Rock and BBC, Discovery Channel, and History Channel documentaries. Our latest favorites are Crashcourse (see World History – best for older kids), TEDed (Shakespearian insults is a good one) and Terry Jones’ Medieval Lives. Best thing about YouTube? You can make playlists to queue your favorite subjects and search other playlists to get ideas.
Pinterest – Your Gateway to Homeschool Blogs
You might think Pinterest is just for collecting home decorating ideas and recipes. Instead, think of Pinterest as a gateway to homeschooling blogs full ways to approach just about any educational topic. Yeah, you could just Google all this stuff, but Pinterest lets you organize it all. Plus, they just introduced Teachers on Pinterest (which has a lot of classroom management pins, but also has teaching ideas for grades Pre-K through 6). Seriously, if there’s a homeschooling topic, method, or philosophy, somebody is blogging about it. There are tons of ideas in the blogosphere, so start pinning!
Facebook – Connect with Locals and Like-minded People
Start typing “homeschool” in the Facebook search box and you’ll find all kinds of interesting groups to join. There are more than a few of groups here in North Alabama. Most are closed groups, so just send a request to join. You can also find groups according to your particular interest. Are you homeschooling for religious reasons? Are you a secular homeschooler? Are you interested in Waldorf-style homeschooling, Montessori, or Charlotte Mason methods? There’s a group for you. Just explore – and connect!
Yahoo Groups – Special Topics
You can glean a lot of information from those who’ve been doing this homeschooling thing for a while. Like Facebook, Yahoo Groups helps you connect with local groups as well as more topic-specific groups (Think methods and philosophies. For example: trivium/classical or unschooling). There are groups for every type of homeschooler as well as groups for specific learning differences. I’ve found a lot of things I would have otherwise not known about by signing up for different groups (even topics I’m interested in but not implementing). It’s a great way to tap the knowledge and experience of others.
Usborne Internet Linked Encyclopedias
Hang on a minute…This is a book! Yes, it is, but as you can see in the title it says “Internet Linked.” Usborne keeps a list of up-to-date websites referenced from the encyclopedia pages. Each page has a link and that link takes you to a page with additional links related to the page in the encyclopedia. Each link is researched and checked for appropriate content. The webpages include things like virtual tours, videos, maps, and art, and you can even print out images from the respective pages in the encyclopedia. We have used the World History and Science encyclopedias for supplements, but Usborne has MANY more titles to choose from.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t include the following in a list of on-line resources:
PBS Learning Media
What are your favorite online sources? Please share in the comments.
Looking for more topics about homeschooling, specifically in Huntsville & Madison County? See all the posts in this series HERE.
Karen Gann had a marketing communications career in high tech before taking a sharp turn into stay-at-home-momdom and homeschooling. She grew up in the Tennesse Valley, lives in Huntsville, and is wife to the wittiest man alive, mother to two head-strong and independent girls (they're adorable, really), and human caregiver to the cats. Addictions include Facebook, Pinterest, NYC's Radio Lab, coffee, food, and politics (not necessarily in that order but sometimes all at the same time). She's also the marketing director for Pandia Press in her spare time.
Hey Karen! Thanks for all the great info, especially the YouTube resources. (Gab and I are both becoming addicts 🙂 There are so many resources out there, so I’m always grateful when one of RCM family members helps a sister out with the leg work!