Seeking a Second Opinion

Want a second opinion before making the final choice? You are in luck. Help is available in a variety of formats.

Just remember to consider the source of the review: What is the author seeking to accomplish? What are the author’s particular biases?

 

Online Reviews

Keep in mind, some online reviews are associated with a particular approach.

 

Homeschool Forums

You will receive many differing opinions from other homeschool parents on the homeschool boards who have used a product of interest. Remember, what reviewers CAN tell you is how the program works and what they like or dislike. You can compare their comments to your list of needs and expectations. What they cannot tell you is if it will work for YOU!

 

Supplier Catalogs

Some homeschool suppliers’ catalogs provide extensive reviews of the products they carry. Just remember that in reading their reviews you are making use of their advice and experience. Consider purchasing the products they have “sold” you on from them.

 

Publishers’ Websites

Obviously the product descriptions are slanted to put the material in the best light. They can still be valuable sources of information if you are looking for answers to specific questions. Many publishers also provide a table of contents listing and samples from their materials on their websites.

 

Additional Resources

How to Read a Review
“We worry that we’re missing something absolutely foundational, and that we won’t realize it until our children are in high school (and by then it will be TOO LATE!). We worry that we’re using an inferior curriculum but aren’t well-informed enough to realize it. We worry that our children are going to hate learning instead of loving it, and it will be OUR FAULT. We have, in fact, all of the normal worries of any conscientious parent; we worry over emotional, physical, social, and emotional development … and then add educational development on top of all those other concerns. No wonder we long for some help in choosing curricula!” Great tips from Susan Wise Bauer to ease you through the great material search!