Homeschool Curriculum Choices in Nova Scotia
Parents interested in homeschooling always ask me where they can get homeschool books, often assuming they are issued by the Department of Education. The good news is, we have endless homeschool curriculum choices in Nova Scotia.
Since the Department of Education does not specify what course of study we have to follow, homeschoolers can decide for ourselves. Under the Regulations of the Education Act, Section 39 (Home Education) refers to “a parent providing a home education” and states:
A registration form required by subsection (1) shall include,
(a) in the case of previous public school experience, the last grade level attained;
(b) in the case of previous home education experience, the program level of achievement and estimated equivalent public school grade level; and
(c) identification of the proposed home education program.
Therefore, homeschooling parents in the province of Nova Scotia are free to determine what our “education program” looks like, and are simply required to provide this information to the Department of Education.
Some of the more popular homeschooling approaches and a few of the many curriculum options …
Traditional or School-at-Home
Traditional or School-at-Home involves using a boxed curriculum and/or textbooks.
Curriculum examples: A Beka, Alpha Omega, Calvert
The Classical method involves using real/living books to teach the children to learn and think for themselves.
Curriculum examples: The Well-Trained Mind, Teaching the Trivium, Tapestry of Grace
The Charlotte Mason approach is similar to Classical, but with more of an emphasis on nature.
Curriculum examples: A Charlotte Mason Education, Ambleside Online
Unschooling involves child-led learning. The child decides what they want to learn about.
Curriculum example: Does not follow a curriculum, but reading Learning at Home by Marty Layne and the works of John Holt will give an idea what it’s about.
Montessori is a private school system, based on the works of Maria Montessori, with an emphasis on wooden tools and toys, and organization and order.
Curriculum examples: Lisa Nolan Montessori, Montessori Homeschool
Waldorf is also a private school system, based on the works of Rudolf Steiner, with an emphasis on arts and hand-crafts, music, natural materials, and nature.
Curriculum example: Oak Meadow
Many homeschoolers put together their own curriculum from a wide variety of curriculum choices, using a separate curriculum for each subject.
Curriculum examples: Teaching Textbooks (math), A Child’s Geography, Visual Latin
Where to Buy
You can buy homeschool curriculum at any of the links above. There is also one homeschool curriculum store in Atlantic Canada where homeschool materials and curricula are available, Tree of Life, located in New Brunswick. A used homeschool curriculum store is also located in Berwick, Nova Scotia, Homegrown Homeschool Consignment. Many homeschoolers depend on their local library for wonderful books for their children, both fiction and non-fiction.
Online Public School Classes
Also, here in Nova Scotia, we can choose to have our Grade 7-12 students take Correspondence Study Program courses for some subjects. Although a full course load is not available, our children can take a few classes each year such as English, math, and science. These online courses are expensive, however, and tend to be full of the busywork typical of public school programs.
If you’re looking for more help getting started, click here for your FREE Getting Started Checklist!
If you’re already homeschooling in Nova Scotia, please help new homeschoolers by sharing what curriculum you use in the comments below!
Love, Luck &
Please note: This article was originally posted in April 2010 and has been revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
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