Educational Resource Center of Broward

Great Books and Curriculum

There are no Florida State Homeschool requirements to mandate the curriculum you use.  It is up to you as the parent to use what works best for your child. 
Institutionalized school curriculum is generally designed to teach a wide range of academic levels that are put on the same grade level.
Home Education allows for private mentorship.  You are on an entirely different journey and are teaching your child based on their individual developmental readiness, which is sometimes sooner and sometimes later. 
Just key into their needs and interests and grow them from there.
Any graded guidelines are only general guidelines. 

Great Books and Teacher/Parent Resources

There are so may great books that can really help shape the way we think, do marriage, parent, home-educate, and basically do life in general.  Reading is a great family activity that helps us grow, learn, and just experience many things, places, and time-periods.  Read at your own pace.  One chapter a night is sufficient and better then none.  Be sure to follow up with discussions that foster good thinking and understanding of the material read.  Don’t be afraid to share your experiences and growth, as developmentally appropriate, with your children.

Teacher/Parent Resources

  1. “The Well Trained Mind” –A Guide to Classical Education at Home, By Jessie Wise and Susan Wise Bauer – Instruct your child from preschool through high school in all levels of reading, writing, history, geography, math, science, foreign languages, rhetoric, logic, art, music.  This priceless resource contains a plethora of book lists and curriculum suggestions.  A great resource, even if you’re not technically a classical home school.
  2. “From Playpen to Podium” – Jeffrey L. Myers, Ph.D. is a leadership development coach and home-education father.  His training strategies have helped thousands of parents equip their children with positive social and communication skills, as well as leadership confidence.
  3. “Thomas Jefferson Education”, By Oliver Van DeMille , founder and president of George Wythe College.  He and his wife Rachel have eight children and apply these principles in their home-education.   ***Transform the way you think about education***
  4. “The Seven Keys of Great Teaching” – Face to Face with Greatness Seminar Series by Oliver DeMille.  Do you want to raise leaders?  This is a great resource to incorporate into your home-education or any education.  It is a different approach to learning that will empower you to give your children and/or students a leadership education. ***Transform the way you think about education***  
  5.   “Children of Character” by Bill and Marty Freeman – A great resource for parents that want to raise children of solid character, even if they are not home schooled.  Bill and Marty have seven children and have home schooled since 1986.  Bill served as the board of director for FPEA from 1998-2004. 
  1. "How Am I Smart?" by Dr. Kathy Koch.  A parent's guide to multiple intelligences.  Identify how your child can best learn and study, explore your child's characteristic spiritual struggles and how you can awaken and nurture your child's weaker intelligences.
  2. “Parenting On Purpose” by Dr. Bob Barnes  (1) 101The Balance of Love and Discipline and (2) 201The Parent’s Training Wheel.  Dr. Bob Barnes is the executive director of Sheridan House Family Ministries.  He and his wife Rosemary live in Florida and have successfully raised their two children to be solid and responsible adults.  For other parenting and marriage resources visit:

Curriculum Resources


  1. “Excellence in Spelling – The Phonetic Zoo”: A Self-Teaching Spelling Program  By: James B. Webster and Andrew Pudewa, using ideas and material from the “Blended Sound-Sight Program of Learning” by A.G. Ingham, C.M.

2. Spelling Power –A well-known and effective sequential spelling program.

1. The Institute for Excellence in Writing - “Writing Structure and Style”

 And “Student Intensive Writing” by Andrew Pudewa
2. Classical Writing - A well planned and organized writing program.
Classical Writing is a writing curriculum for beginners all the way through high school. Our method is based on the ancient Greek progymnasmata, a writing tradition which has produced many of the best thinkers, authors, and statesmen of the past two thousand years. We believe, along with the ancients, that training in writing cannot be separated from training in virtue. Our aim is to teach students the art of putting virtuous thoughts into words — true, beautiful, and persuasive words. Visit:
“From Playpen To Podium” and “Secrets of Great Communicators”      By Jeffrey L. Meyers, Ph.D.


“Vocabulary Cartoons” are mnemonics designed for learning new words.  The books have strong visual aids and are lots of fun.  The pictures help the child store the words and meanings in long-term memory.


(The following three resources, when used together, make an effective beginning/emergent reading program.  This also works well as a remediation program for older children.)

  1. Reading Reflex- It’s not flashy or fancy, but is definitely effective for building strong readers.  ISBN 0-684-85367-1 Available at and other book retailers.  
  2.  Turbo Reader- an excellent, sequential, beginning to end, user-friendly reader.
  3.  Explode The Code Series- sequential, simple and comprehensive


1. Managers of Their Home – by Steven and Teri Maxwell A well organized home-management system.
2. Edu-track- A computerized home school record keeping and lesson planning software.  This program keeps track of everything and is very user friendly.  Some of the features are:  lesson plans, unit studies, assignment sheets, book and movie logs, hour and grade tracking, progress reports, report cards, transcripts, awards and certificates, forms, Diplomas, and more.

Thinking and Reasoning Skills

“The Fallacy Detective” and “The Thinking Toolbox” By Nathaniel Bluedorn & Hans Bluedorn   The Bluedorn brothers have put together an awesome set of books to help your children and you see through propaganda, as well as, recognize bad reasoning.

Sites With Great Readers and a Few Family Favorites

  1. - For great books that put teaching character first. 
  2. - offers great grade leveled language arts readers, with optional dictation and creative writing.  Check out the site, it is an education in itself and well worth the trip.

These are just a few personal favorites.
“Summer of the Monkeys”
“Where the Red Fern Grows”
“The Chronicles of Narnia”, By C.S. Lewis – All in the series are great.
“Hinds Feet on High Places” Children’s Edition By: Hannah Hurnard
“Invitation To The Classics” Edited by: Louise Cowan and Os Guinness - An introduction to classics and the writers.  For those just starting a classical education or those just wanting a simplified way of encorporating it.



There are lots of great devotions out there.  Here are just a few that take about 10 minutes to do.  These are great for a quick devotion in a pinch or as a regular before bedtime.

“ Just For Kids” Series and "For Kids Only" Series
Forgiveness, Honesty, Patience, and Kindness are a few in this series.  

“My Utmost For His Highest” By Oswald Chambers
There is also an updated
edition for that works well for pre-teens and teens.  We read the regular/adult version ourselves and the updated version with our kids each day, the days in both correlate.

1. “God’s Design For Sex”  **Pre-Read, before reading to your child.

·         Book 1: “The Story of Me” (ages 3-5)

·         Book 2: “Before I Was Born” (ages 5-8)

·         Book 3: “What’s the Big Deal?  Why God Cares About Sex” (ages 8-11)

·         Book 4: “Facing the Facts: The Truth About Sex and You” (ages 11-14) 


2. “The Princess and the Kiss” and “Life Lessons from The Princess and the Kiss” a companion guide.   

3.  “The Squire and the Scroll” and “Life Lessons from  The Squire and the Scroll” a companion guide.  By Jennie Bishop and Susan Henson.  Both are great resources for planting seeds of  purity in the hearts  of your children.

4. “So You’re About to be a Teenager”, By Dennis and Barbara Rainey with Samuel Rainey and Rebecca Rainey. or

5. “Rules For Young Friends”  by Gregg and Joshua Harris.  Provides simple rules and proverbs for friends.

Sometimes, we may feel we have to just accept what is out there as “normal”, 
especially if it comes from a “good place or source” or is a part of a “popular opinion.” 
Well, we don’t. 

We can go above and beyond to teach our children what is BEST,
even if we are the only one.

Above are some curriculums that have, “enlightened” me to what is best.

Don’t take the lax approach.  It will only teach your children the wrong thing by default.

Be deliberate about teaching your children to be LEADERS that will stand for what is right
and who will not grow weary of fighting the good fight.


Example is a good way, but it is not the only way.  Nor is it sufficient in and of itself.

You Choose!  
Regret is a lot more painful then discipline, with none of the benefit.

These are only suggestions, a starting place.  Research these options and see what works or your family.  You may also want to research other curriculums based on your family’s unique situation and personality. 

Be excited about your endeavor.  There are a multitude of curriculums out there and there is something that will work for you, if you are willing to look for it.

Equipping home-educators to run the race.

Thank you for allowing us to serve your family!

Educational Resource Center of Broward

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