I have a love/hate relationship with the internet when it comes to homeschool resources. I love that there is a wealth of information, ideas, and printable pages available. I hate that I will often spend hours and hours hunting for the exact thing I had in mind. (Not to mention the time I spend online chasing down thoughts that have nothing at all to do with the subject I'm supposed to be researching.)
Recently I've been finding great homeschool resources through CHSH-Teach.com. (The full name is Christian HomeSchool Hub which is generally easier for me to remember without mixing up the letters in the shortened version.) I received an Annual Subscription to CHSH Download Club for this review and had access to over 50,000 pages of educational materials. I had high hopes that I would find everything I needed in one place and wouldn't spend hours hopping all over the internet in search of good materials.
Lynda Ackert creates and sells materials on several popular resource sites, including Teachers Pay Teachers and CurrClick. As a Download Club member, I had free access to all of her materials as well as to a variety of other resource materials that CHSH has received permission to share. There was a lengthy list of options available, and I just jumped in to see what I could find.
My first task was to find some elementary materials to print for Lauren. I wanted to put together a packets so that I could grab-and-go on appointment days. Instead of gathering our regular school books, I'd just grab a folder of supplemental materials that would either correspond with what we've been studying or provide a bit of review.
Lauren spent most of last year working on division in her regular math curriculum, so I wanted to find some printables that would give her more practice now that we've switched gears to another math topic. I was excited when I found a 76-page book covering "Division with Three-Digit Dividends (with and without remainders). Unfortunately, Lauren is accustomed to having fewer problems per page and having a generous amount of room on the page to work the problem right there. The pages in this book would require her to either write very small or to work the problems on a separate sheet of paper. Both of those could be reasonable options for some students, but would likely lead to more complaining than learning if I gave them to Lauren on a day that I was already messing up her routine by squeezing in work among doctor's appointments.
I had better luck when I browsed through the materials trying to find something interesting instead of hunting with a specific goal in mind. For instance, I found an awesome daily geography workbook from Evan Moor. I think I've looked at purchasing a physical copy of it in the past and was excited when I saw that the company had granted permission for it to be on the CHSH-Teach website where I could download it.
I also found several impressive looking books of high school materials on the website. Brennan is currently doing Spanish (with lots of help from me), and I was able to download a 583 pages textbook for Spanish I. Unfortunately, when I read through the corresponding Teacher's Guide, I realized that these materials had originally been written as PASS materials (Parallel Alternative Strategies for Students) distributed by the Florida Department of Education. They are appropriate for "students who have disabilities and other students with diverse learning needs." I am therefore not confident that these materials are the best choice for creating a college-preparatory curriculum for my homeschooled high schooler. Sadly, I later noticed that several of the other appealing high school options (American History, World History, Marine Science, etc) were also PASS materials.
My general impression of CHSH-Teach.com is mixed. Although I wasn't able to find resources that my specific needs (and perhaps picky criteria) when I went searching for them, I was able to find a few valuable materials to add to our homeschool days.
An Annual Subscription to the CHSH Download Club costs $25 and a Lifetime Subscription costs $99.99. I found materials suitable for all ages of homeschooled students -- from preschool to high school.
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