I used to review curriculum, now I create it

Traditional Homeschooling Style


So you took the Homeschool Style Quiz and you found out you have a Traditional Homeschooling approach. Or maybe you just want to learn more about this homeschool style. Traditional homeschooling essentially means “playing school”. It means taking a traditional school setting and trying to mimic it in your homeschool.

You know you’re a traditional homeschooler if:

  1. You have little desks for each of your children (and maybe even a teacher’s desk for you!)
  2. You love workbooks
  3. You love schedules and have a little planner for both you and the children
  4. You have a regular homeschool day that you try to never sway from
  5. You write down “recess” (I do that by the way)
  6. You pack your kids little lunches in the fridge so that they are getting the full experience
  7. You want your kids to be completely on track with their school aged friends
  8. You focus on curriculum that aligns with what the schools are teaching (at least in ability and concept)
  9. You love tests and evaluations to track your progress
  10. You have a little filing cabinet you fill with examples of your students work and maybe an attendance list
  11. You are drawn to curriculum that has a teachers planner and very well laid out lessons
  12. You love to teach TO your kids

Now after reading that list, some of it may be a bit of an exaggeration to you, but you may be sensing that this is not the most effective homeschool style, and for many people that is the case. But it is a common approach, especially for new homeschoolers. Why? Because it is the way I was homeschooled, it is the way you grew up in the school system (or homeschool) and it is how you were taught or modelled learning, so naturally you are going to continue in the same pattern.

Traditional homeschooling has it’s pros and cons, but it can (and often does) breed burnout, discouragement, and a feeling of failure. Because home life is different than school, it is messy, it is busy! You have multiple grades you are working with at the same time! You have good days and a lot of bad ones, and you have such high expectations that when it doesn’t work you feel like an utter failure. It is important to remember that there are so many other ways we can approach homeschooling now that may work better for you if you are willing to learn about them.

I was 100% a traditional homeschooling mom when I started. I fought to stay on that way, but the reality was I was burning out, my kids were hating school, and I was very unhappy and discouraged. So I broke away from what was natural to me, I explored new methods and brought new curriculum into our homeschool and I have never found so much joy and contentment as I have now!

That being said, some kids just thrive in that environment. I have one of those myself. I personally loved learning in that environment. Some children are drawn to workbooks, to bookwork and tests and paper and writing. For those children, this might very well be an effective method of homeschooling.

Take a look at some of the other styles or take the quiz for yourself here! And make sure to pin this on your homeschool board for later!

What is traditional homeschooling and what does it look like? Come take the quiz and find out if you are a traditional homeschooler! traditional homeschool | homeschool style


Is your homeschool style traditional or do you want it to be? Why? What appeals to you the most in this style? Comment below!

Make sure you go back and take the homeschool style quiz if you haven’t already, and take the time to read about each of the homeschool styles. The more we can become aware of the focus of each style, the more we will find what resonates the most with us, and sometimes that is fluid and changing!


  1. I tried to link up with your Chat (thanks for the offer- but I’m not on face book- husband advises against it as time is soaked up already enough without that adding to the mix!)
    Anyhow, just want to say a Big Thank You for your encouragement (through taking the quiz and through the above ‘Traditional’ post): to make a change!!
    I must say I stumbled across your ‘Take the Quiz’ page in the search of a last attempt to keep homeschooling. It feels like Life is not working let alone ‘school’, because of the way we have been dong things. (It did for a season.)
    Your words of experience have helped me realise / face that it is not working now, and I’ve been encouraged from your own testimony of making a change – I hope for the joy and contentment too!
    I will now retake the quiz, and read the various posts.
    Did you write a post on your transition, how you did it or what changes you made from the traditional style?
    Thanks Again and God bless!! Donna, England

  2. Oh my. I stubled upon your homeschool quiz as I was searching for ways to help my seven year old find focus during our homeschool day. I am a first generation homeschooler. Was never homeschooled myself, public school through most of my schooling years, then private my senior year. I just knew then that homeschooling was the way I was going to go when I got married and had kids. We have been STRUGGLING with school the last few weeks. My kids gung-ho about it this year, we actually started four weeks early. I am almost in tears, as you hit the nail on the head with the quiz. Traditional homeschooler here. But now I don’t know what to do. Do I keep going with the way things are now, textbooks and such, or do I scrap it all and scrour the web for free things? My youngest isn’t doing poorly, but he would probably benefit from something other than textbook learning. We can’t afford to scrap it all and start all over. (Who can?) Im so scared I’m doing it all wrong, my kids are going to end up emotionally scarred for life, and my family is going to say, “I told you so.”

  3. Rebecca…I stumbled across your youtube videos about 2 weeks ago as I was struggling to buy curriculum for our new school year. I have 4 (12, 10, 7 & 5) that I have homeschooled since the oldest was 4. Last year was literal torture for me and my 1st grader (my third child and only daughter). All summer I looked into homeschool enrichment programs and even a classical christian (brick and mortar all day every day school). I was terrified to start the school year and anxious to find help. My husband and I decided right after we got married that I would homeschool. We have several convictions for doing, which has kept me plugging along all these years. The first few years were wonderful and fun and I loved learning alongside my son. As we added children and scholars to our home, it became more difficult and less fun! I want my kids to love to learn and love the Lord. Last year was the last straw. I was desperate to do something different but I just couldn’t send the school. When I found your curriculum reviews, I sighed a breath of relief! It was exactly what I needed. Now as I have explored your blog, podcasts and social media posts, I find myself often in tears. Your journey was my journey. We started traditional because that was all I knew and I needed the structure and order to just know what to do and how. As our journey of homeschooling continued, we all started to burn out. Learning was not fun and I was often having explosive shouting matches with my kids! This was not what I had pictured in my head for homeschooling! Watching the review of your new Bible curriculum made me cry. To hear your heart for the Lord and your heart for children to know the Lord…still makes me tear up. I just wanted to share my heart with you as a way of encouragement! My journey this summer was hard and scary at times, but the Lord in His Sovereignty, led me to your videos at just the right moment. Thank you for sharing your heart, your love of learning, your wisdom and experience in all things homeschool. After taking your quiz, I realized I am an eclectic Homeschooler. I am most comfortable with traditional (23% and recovering A type) style, but my heart is Charolette Mason (25% a love for learning and keeping the Lord and His church a priority in our family) and Classical (18%). We are starting our school year with a whole new mindset, outlook and schedule. Lots of Charlotte Mason inspired workbooks (a nice compromise between CM and Traditional) and an excited mama ready to teach and explore with them. Thank you Thank you Thank you for all the work you put into helping other homeschooling mamas!! We appreciate you!! (btw…I’m not a “commenter” type person….I usually read and move on. But just want to show my appreciation!)

    • Ashley,
      Thank you for sharing some of your story here as well. We’ve been doing Charlotte Mason type schooling this year (a bit…I’m very eclectic). It seems to be a little too slow for us as a family. We want to do more, read more, learn more, in the year than what our current CM curriculum is guiding us. I was wondering if you could share what CM inspired workbooks you ended up using and if you liked them.?

  4. It is much more difficult to study at the university than anywhere else in reality. The further you study, the more they demand. In the last courses, it was really easy for me, because with the help of the site I was able to order excellent help for students from them and realize myself in what I want. Of course, I have the highest marks, and to some extent, if I need to, I study it myself, and if I’m lazy, I use this site, I advise everyone.

  5. Hey Rebecca! I’ve really been blessed by your reviews as I’m on the homeschooling journey. I’m a traditional style homeschooler by nature and am learning to branch out. I wondered if you have lists of curriculum for each kind of homeschooling style? I would really benefit from such a list detailing which curriculums cater to the different teaching styles. Thanks again for all the hours you spend researching and blessing the rest of us with the results! – Joy

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I used to review curriculum, now I create it!