Looking for 8th grade homeschool curriculum? Thinking of the middle school years can come with a little apprehension. But after years of homeschooling, these are the resources we have grown to love for the middle school years.
Before I give you my opinion on the best 8th grade curriculum, please note that there are many differing views on what should be taught and when it should be taught. I’m not seeking to refute anyone or call names. I’m sharing what has worked well for our homeschool after combining my experience in the classroom with teaching at home. Remember, that’s your job, too. Seek out what works best for your family and don’t worry about what everyone else says!
How Many Hours Do You Homeschool a Day?
I know you are wondering about this because everyone does. It typically takes my kids 3-4 hours to complete a 8th-grade homeschool curriculum. In the classroom setting, kids are expected to focus and pay attention for much of the day, but at home, you don’t have to do that. There’s no need to stand in line, sharpen 28 pencils, or participate in that fire drill one more time.
At home, your eighth grader is able to focus on the material at his/her level, so it really only takes 3-4 hours to get everything done. If it’s taking longer than that, you may want to reassess the level and your student’s workload.
Of course, this doesn’t mean your child is finished learning in 3-4 hours a day and will waste the rest of the day vegging into the land of no knowledge. If you encourage enriching activities (and limit screen time), your child will literally NEVER stop learning. And by middle school, kids have specific interests they can spend extra time exploring.
What Should My Child Be Learning in 8th Grade?
Middle school is such a fun time for students. Eighth graders are starting to discover their individual areas of interest. Their reading and math foundations have been laid. And now it’s time to really dive into other areas of study.
By eighth grade your student should be learning fully independently. If your student still leans on you to help with schoolwork, I highly recommend that you make responsibility your focus. They are plenty old enough to handle their own work. And with high school around the corner, you want them to know how to learn on their own. If this is still an issue in your homeschool, this post will give you 5 simple steps to teaching responsibility.
Typical 8th Grade Homeschool Subjects
- Language Arts
- Social Studies
- Physical Education
- Life Skills
In the next section, we will take a look at each subject’s recommended curriculum, as well as when and why you should teach it.
But first, we need to make sure you are legal. It’s very important that you consult with your state requirements. The most reputable place to find these laws are the HSLDA website. Note that I didn’t say to ask your friend who has been homeschooling for many years (that’s a big mistake- look them up yourself).
Most states are pretty light on requirements for middle school. Some have general guidelines for core subjects. Occasionally, you’ll find a strict state that requires specific hours to be completed. Again, the only way to know what rules you have to follow is to check the site yourself.
One thing to note is that even if you are required to teach science, for example, it doesn’t typically say that you must use a textbook that covers 180 days’ worth. As homeschoolers, we have the freedom to teach the way our kids need us to teach them!
8th Grade Homeschool Language Arts Curriculum
By 8th grade, your student will be getting much of their reading from science and history. So they don’t really need a specific reading curriculum. Instead, I have my kids keep a journal.
There are 30 different, half-page writing prompts to get kids thinking about what they read that day. The purpose of reading is to understand. Find out more about creating your own DIY Reading Curriculum Journal here.
If you’re looking for book ideas, here are some other great reading resources for kids:
In 8th grade, my kids are using IEW’s Phonetic Zoo. We use this program throughout middle school. There are 3 leveled CDs that are self-paced for independent learning. They teach rules and jingles. Kids write the words and keep practicing them until they are mastered.
Once these CDs are mastered, spelling is no longer a subject in our homeschool. Occasionally it comes up naturally in writing and we learn from there, but no additional curriculum is needed. For some of my kids, this happened before 8th grade. For others, it happened in early high school. Either way, it’s fine. Let them grow at their own pace.
Grammar and Writing
This is the one subject that often tips parents over the edge, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Grammar is simply learning to understand how sentences are put together to convey a clear thought. When your kids are first learning to read, grammar is relatively irrelevant to them. That’s understandable. However, it quickly can become a natural part of the conversation.
For 8th grade homeschool curriculum, we pick up formal writing. At this time, we add in a more in-depth grammar curriculum. We love Easy Grammar for this. It really is, well, EASY. The goal is simple and short assignments to help teach the concepts that will help your kids become better writers. From now to high school, this is a skill we want to focus a bit more time on. This will enable you to focus on writing killer essays when it’s crucial instead of needing to figure out an adverbial clause in the thick of it.
For the writing component check out IEW or Writing with Ease. Both programs are systematic approaches to writing with instructions for students and parents. Many parents choose to do this in a co-op setting, which is an excellent option.
8th Grade Homeschool Math Curriculum
There are probably 100 great 8th grade homeschool math curriculum options out there. But by far, this is my favorite math curriculum for middle and high school.
By 8th grade, my kids are using Teaching Textbooks. They love that the computer teaches the lesson for them and that there aren’t 500 problems to answer when the lesson is finished.
As mom, I love the instant grading feature. This makes my homeschool day so much easier. I also love that my kids are getting immediate feedback when a problem is incorrect. So often students do the whole page wrong only to learn they have to start over again. Teaching Textbooks doesn’t allow that to happen.
One final thought: If math really is more than you can handle as a homeschool parent, rest assured you can always outsource it to a co-op or online class. Sometimes taking the subject outside of your realm is good for your student and your relationship!
8th Grade Homeschool Science Curriculum
Eighth grade homeschool science curriculum should focus on laying a foundation. Explore as many ideas as you can and look for your child’s interest. In fact, I highly recommend letting your kids pick what they want to learn about!
For 8th-grade homeschool curriculum, we LOVE Masterbooks. It’s hands-on, provides tons of notebooking experiences, and is just plain fun. It’s Charlotte Mason inspired, featuring living books in many cases. I love that it’s lighter in content, but gives kids plenty of opportunities to dig deeper.
I absolutely KNOW I can trust the content being taught to my children. Not only is evolution taught as an incorrect theory, students are given tools for supporting and proving the fact that God created the earth. I love this point of view!
8th Grade Homeschool History Curriculum
Just like science, 8th grade history is a great time to let them choose topics they’re interested in. This will keep them engaged and increase their passion for history.
The World’s Story
The World’s Story is a fabulous option for parents who solid history without going overboard. Written by Masterbooks, it’s a trusted resource with a strong Biblical Worldview that provides simple assignments and engaging activities to supplement. This history curriculum is inspired by the Charlotte Mason method of homeschooling.
To Every Nation
To Every Nation is a study of missionaries, countries, and biblical truth. I wrote this to help us focus on these crucial elements of faith, as well as develop a compassion for the world. The study covers the lives of 12 different missionaries using a Charlotte Mason approach. It can be done in 12 weeks or you can go deeper with the novels of each missionary and enjoy it for the whole year!
Bible Curriculum for 8th Grade
Don’t neglect the most important subject in your child’s life! While I believe that our faith should be woven through every subject and every moment of our school day, we also need to be intentional about teaching our kids about God.
Our Bible studies teach on a wide variety of topics including sibling relationships, the power of our words, contentment, guarding our hearts, and more!
Our goal is to get kids into God’s Word in an effective yet fun way. We hope to equip kids with the tools they need for a lifetime of engagement with the Bible.
The Bible Study Club Pack includes a full school-year of Bible studies, a handy drawstring bag to hold them, buttons, pens, and the bonus fun pack included with each study!
These club packs couple theology you can trust with fun extras the kids will love!
8th Grade Homeschool Curriculum for Electives
Middle school electives are generally disguised as “extra-curricular activities.” Families often do music lessons, sports, or similar opportunities. This is GREAT! Just be sure you keep your purpose in focus. At this age, it’s less about perfecting a skill and more about pursuing the interests your kids have.
Try to expose them to all of the fine arts (music, art, drama) through homeschool classes, museums, and shows. You never know how God has gifted them! Exposing elementary kids to sports tends to be easier, as there are so many teams to choose from.
Just remember to keep your purpose in focus. I always remind myself that Michael Jordan didn’t even start playing basketball until he was in junior high. Forcing a four-year-old to play soccer against his desires won’t create a prodigy.
Use the middle school years to dabble and explore. Take field trips. Participate in one-day classes. Work hard on life skills. You’ll be thankful you took this approach.
Here are some courses I recommend:
Fine Arts Electives
Still Singing: Hymn Stories for Every Season
Still Singing Hymn Study is a music appreciation curriculum that includes language arts and history too!
- Voice Lessons (here’s a place that does online lessons)
- Piano Lessons (we take local lessons, but this online option is interesting)
- Art Appreciation curriculum is for grades 4-8!
- Artistic Pursuits
- Academy of Arts Ministries (drama)
Health and Life Skill Electives
- Bits Box (computer coding)
- Latin for Children
- 4-H gardening, animal care, etc
- Sewing, Crocheting, Knitting, etc
- Care of their space (Make your bed, tidy your room, empty the dishwasher, etc)
Check out our extensive list of homeschool electives here.
More Christian Homeschool Curriculum
Using my expertise as a certified educator and 12+ years of homeschooling, we’ve created a comprehensive list of the BEST Christian homeschool curriculum for each grade level. You’ll find each of them linked below.
- Preschool Homeschool Curriculum
- Kindergarten Homeschool Curriculum
- First Grade Homeschool Curriculum
- Second Grade Homeschool Curriculum
- Third Grade Homeschool Curriculum
- Fourth Grade Homeschool Curriculum
- Fifth Grade Homeschool Curriculum
- Sixth Grade Homeschool Curriculum
- Seventh Grade Homeschool Curriculum
- Eighth Grade Homeschool Curriculum
- High School Homeschool Curriculum
Still stuggling to see how everything fits together? Get a better overall vision for Christian homeschool curriculum in this post.
Through practical tools & Bible-based resources, Kim Sorgius is dedicated to helping your family GROW in faith so you can be Not Consumed by life’s struggles. Author of popular kid’s devotional Bible studies and practical homeschooling tools, Kim has a master’s degree in education and curriculum design coupled with over 2 decades of experience working with kids and teens. Above all, her most treasured job is mother and homeschool teacher of four amazing kiddos.