Monday, March 11

YouTube Schooling??

We use YouTube for all sorts of things these days.....   
In the past week alone, I've learned how to : unlock something I accidentally locked on the computer, fix the door handle of my car, and store eggs long-term.  I've also looked up reviews for school electives that we're considering using.  YouTube can be a great resource!

Some advantages of YouTube include :
  • It's free
  • Videos are often short - right to the point
  • You can find just about anything on there
Subscribe to our YouTube Channel for curriculum reviews & videos to accompany the Good & the Beautiful

However, YT isn't the place you want to go for in-depth material and long-term classes.  Some of the reasons for this are....
  • Staying focused.  With autoplay and all of those suggested videos off to the side, it can be very distracting.  As an adult, it's easy to fall down into that bunny hole...can you imagine how the kids feel?
  • Filters.  While we have a restricted mode on the kids' accounts, sometimes they still get 'unsavory' suggestions or pop-ups.  I don't want my child exposed to these while watching school, do you?
  • Quality / source.  There are many self-proclaimed experts out there, just waiting to share their knowledge.  True, some of them have quite a bit to offer, but there are quacks out there as well.  How do you judge which to watch?
This is not to say that we don't still use YouTube.  As you've seen through the playlists on our channel, we supplement schoolwork with short clips.  YT is not their primary source, but it helps the kids to visualize what they've just learned.

If you've got a child who wants to learn a skill that you are not prepared to teach, there are several great online options out there, including :

Another fabulous option is Sparks Academy, where your students will be part of an interactive co-op with other high school students. Current class offerings are for The Good & the Beautiful language arts and Notgrass history (four levels of each subject) and Apologia / Berean Builders science (three levels). Classes begin on August 15th. Enrollment closes for the '22-'23 school year on August 20th. Use code LASTMINUTE to save 25%  (exp 8/10/22)

These resources provide an expert instructor, thorough (and filtered) video instruction, and the ability to ask further questions by contacting the instructor.


If you're going to be schooling through videos, this will probably be a combination of DVDs and streaming services.  Having one device dedicated to school has been a lifesaver in our home, and I highly recommend it for you, too!  This Sony blu-ray with streaming player is capable of playing anything we need.  It doesn't take up a lot of space, connected easily and 'plays nice' with our tv and computer network, and pretty much gets the job done.  One of my favorite things about this player is that it not only plays the new stuff and streams well, but it also plays all the older DVDs, which isn't always the case with newer players....

SchoolhouseTeachers is one of our go-to resources for video-based content because we know that it has been vetted and is appropriate.  They have hundreds of courses - ranging from preschool to high school - with video content.  Some are video-based (meaning it is all video content), while others are both text and video.  There are also interactive courses, worksheets, activities, and printable materials to accompany the videos.  You can see a list of all the video courses here.

In addition to the classes, we also love getting a video streaming service as part of our SchoolhouseTeachers membership.  It's one annual cost, which covers all of the curriculum for all of the kids (sweet!), as well as a printable magazine and other cool extras for the parents, and a streaming service -- so no need to pay for Netflix or Disney+.  The service includes vetted videos that are family entertainment.  Some of the videos are included in classes, while others are purely for entertainment value.  You can see all of those videos at this page.  

There are many more options for online courses, but these are the ones that we, personally, have used in our homeschool and can vouch for (there are also a few we've used and have not included in this list, because we would not recommend them).  

What online courses have you and your family tried?  What was your experience?


  1. av stem is a new one for me. I will need to check that one out.

    1. Oh! He does this one EVERYDAY. It's a fabulous program! And based out of western Canada / Alaska. :)


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