I'm a wife to my "Mr. Right". A momma of five. A maker of slow food and simple living. A collector of memories, a keeper of books, and a champion for books that make memories. An addict who likes my half-and-half with a splash of coffee. A fractured pot transformed by the One Who makes broken things beautiful. I heart homeschooling, brake for libraries, and am glad you're here with me on the journey! Be sure to subscribe to my monthly newsletter. Or, follow along with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google +, Youtube, or Pinterest.

3rd Grade Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2020-2021

3rd Grade Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2020-2021

For the first time in over thirteen years, I will not be teaching anyone phonics. My youngest has officially moved from learning-to-read to reading-to-learn. And while I could not be happier for him, I'm secretly a bit sad to admit that I'll miss those early years of bright-eyed phonemic revelation. 

(This post contains affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy for full details.)

With phonics behind us, however, he and I can concentrate on building a love of great books! He's already plowed through some of my favorite chapter book series from my own childhood like the Cam Jensen collection and the Nate the Great titles and has moved on to a newer illustrated chapter book series his older brothers enjoyed called The Secret of the Hidden Scrolls. This year is definitely shaping up to be the Year of Books for him!

In addition to reading, he'll also be discovering and doing many grand and glorious things. Here's what he'll be learning this year in 3rd grade. Since we only homeschool 4-days a week, you can assume that each of these subjects will only be covered four times each week unless otherwise indicated.

3rd Grade Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2020-2021

Content-rich Subjects

As always, he'll do all of his content-rich subjects like Morning time/Bible, history, science, art, and creative writing with his older siblings. You can see those curriculum choices here>>>

Personal Devotions- every day


  • LLATL The Yellow Book (Use coupon code unlikelyhomeschool at checkout to get 15% off your entire purchase from Common Sense Press, the makers of LAHTL.)
  • Finish All About Spelling Level 2 and move on to Level 3.
  • Read for pleasure every day.
  • Read the following books that correspond with the LLATL Yellow Book.
  • The White Stallion
    Meet George Washington
    The Courage of Sarah Noble 
    If he's not currently working through an LLATL suggested book, he will read a chapter from a book that I assign to him. These will be classics, biographies, or exceptional fiction.


  • Math 3 from BJU Press Distance Learning- After using and loving the BJU Press Distance Learning for upper-level science for the past few years, I've decided to take the leap and switch from Teaching Textbooks math to BJU Press math. Math is definitely a subject I've never felt equipped or excited to teach, and so I've always deferred to an online program for my third-grade-and-above students. While I've appreciated Teaching Textbooks and have seen great results from it (My oldest daughter got an A in her first college math class last year after having graduated with a Teaching Textbooks background.), I feel like BJU Press will offer a much more user-friendly learning experience for my boys who crave a live teacher experience. (You can read my review of the BJU Press Homeschool Distance Learning science program here>>>
  • free online review games and apps (like Math Mateer and Monkey Math) for math process review (every few days) OR
  • flashcard drill with his dad for 5 minutes


Typing- 1x a week

Life Skills/Extra Curriculars 

  • Lessons in Responsibility for Boys 2- 1x a week

  • Udemy for online drum lessons
  • Co-op for two enrichment type classes- 2x a month
  • Clean his room and make his bed each day.
  • Daily chores: sweep the music room, empty the dishwasher with his older brother, empty all the bedroom and bathroom trash cans
  • Weekly Chores for his child-of-the-day privileges and responsibilities: help make lunch/dinner and do two loads of laundry (Fridays)
  • Monthly Chores: three chores that he randomly selects from our chore jar one Saturday each month

Third grade starts in just a few short weeks. I don't know what seems more impressive at this point--our shelves lined with potential reading and learning adventures or the size of his eyes as he stares in anticipation at it all!  


  1. We've never tried BJU's Distance Learning courses, but we have used their math curriculum (worktexts/books and teacher's manuals) from K through 6th so far with great results. Hope it works well for your family, too!

  2. That's great to hear! I have no doubt that it will be just perfect. BJU Press has never steered us wrong.

  3. First time homeschooling the kiddos and it's a little over whelming with all the choices! I feel like veteran moms pick and choose different curriculums for the best picks. Do you recommend LLATL over BJU for English/language for 4th grade? I'm really enjoying your site!! Thanks so much for the help!!

    1. I've used both of those. Both are solid programs. LLATL is from a Charlotte Mason approach which emphasizes real books and BJU is more a traditional curriculum. So, it all depends on which of those two educational philosophies would work best for you and your kids.

    2. I'm not sure? Would you recommend one over the other if she goes back to a private Christian school in a yr or two? My mind has been melting the past few months on what curriculum to choose and now I'm dissatisfied with what i chose and want to completely re work it ! Ugg! I have been homeschooling my 2 kindergarteners over the summer with abeca but for 4th grade would BJU be a go to over. abeca? I'm thinking for at least science and language. We tried the teaching textbook online from your blog and my daughter loved it !! so at least math is checked off haha :) I really appreciate your help!!thanks so much!!

    3. If you plan on putting her back in a Christian school, then probably go with BJU. It will make for a smoother transition for her.

  4. LLATL. Obviously you like it if you're using it, so I'm sorry if this is a dumb question... :) would you say it's enough for kids to learn all the grammar/basic spelling/stuff they need? Or do you end up incorporating more stuff later to help out with that? I'd looked up the program on christianbooks.com and put it on my wishlist but I've been so wishy-washy about what to get for this year. Also, neither of my boys is particularly fond of writing so I didn't want a language program that was too writing-heavy at this point. I guess I'd love to hear your pros and cons of this. Thanks!

    1. Yes, LLATL has made for an easy transition into more formal grammar in the high school years. One of the days each week has heavier writing, but the rest of the days' assignments can even be done orally if your kids would prefer. I let my kids answer many of the questions out loud to me and we skip the "write your answer here."

  5. Great suggestions and advice. We are new to homeschooling and one thing I have noticed off the bat is that homeschool dads seem to be overlooked. When I say homeschool dad, I mean, I am the primary teacher. My wife is a full time public school teacher and I am at home most of the time. We are not always the bread winners. Food for thought.

    1. Yep. I get that. We have a family friend who does the primary teaching for his family. That said, my ministry is to moms. I'm not trying to intentionally exclude dads and they are always welcome to join the conversation, but they're not my primary focus.

  6. I remembered your post about Learning Language Arts Through Literature way back in 2017. So I came to your site to see if you are still using it and I see your younger children are all still using LLATL! I bought the orange & purple book for my 5th grader on Thriftbooks for $5 each book just so I could look at it (since I wasn't able to attend convention this year due to Covid). It was the old version, but I like what I see. I am going to give it a try and maybe by the new version of the purple book for her for next year. I really love language arts being integrated into real literature. I think that makes such a difference in retention.

  7. I love reading through your curriculums and insights! For your older kids I know you used BJU Language at 3rd grade but see you aren’t now. What was your thoughts behind that change? Thank you!!

    1. Great question! You can read about why we switched here>>https://www.theunlikelyhomeschool.com/2017/04/learning-language-arts.html

  8. In the end, I am very glad I navigated away from TT. They were great for a season, but my boys' math retention was slipping more and more each year. I don't feel like the upper-level TT is robust enough.