What Every Homeschool Mom Really Wants This Holiday Season

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure statement for more information.


Written by Caitlin Fitzpatrick Curley of My Little Poppies

Kara and I were going to take the month of December off, to do all of the things Melissa suggested, and to work a little bit behind the scenes here at The Homeschool Sisters Podcast.

But, we received a question this week and, after chatting about it, it seemed like the time is NOW to answer it.

Because this is the time of year when we tend to acquire a lot of stuff and, unfortunately, a lot of the stuff isn’t necessarily helpful. And so if this post can help you politely suggest an alternative when your husband/mother/sister-in-law inquires, that’s wonderful! If not, just save it in your back pocket and use it as a wish list. Start small and go from there.

What Every Homeschool Mom REALLY Wants this Holiday Season

Dear Homeschool Sisters, 

Hi! I’m a mom of a 2.5 year old. We have felt a calling for homeschooling and are slowly learning and preparing our world to better accommodate a future homeschool environment. This mostly consists of learning to take care of all those mom tasks without a “kid’s at school” break and picking good toys and tools that will last for many years to come. I’m an avid podcast listener and love the inspiration you give even though we are not officially to the homeschooling age. As the holiday season approaches I’d love to hear about tools you find beneficial as a parent/homeschool educator/mom. We’ve got some of the basic educational toys but I’m just wondering what might be good to put on my wish list for long term use (example laminator). Thanks for all your encouragement and inspiration. I find it so beneficial even during these younger years.

~ J.

What we all *REALLY* Want

Now, let’s be honest here. This is what we REALLY want:

  • Peace and quiet
  • 10 hours of uninterrupted sleep
  • A clean kitchen
  • An empty laundry hamper
  • A dinner fairy
  • A fantastic, available, and affordable babysitter
  • An amazing expense-free vacation in a tropical locale

What Every Homeschool Mom REALLY Wants this Holiday Season best homeschool resources

This post will get you none of these things. I’m sorry. I wish I could.

(I can, however, offer you a delicious Adult Granola recipe before delving into the other things that every homeschooling mom wants.)

The only thing we *REALLY* Need

I truly believe that the only thing you need to homeschool is a library card. Honestly. Read everything, read everywhere, and talk about it. That’s an amazing education right there.

But… we all have a wish list, don’t we?

What homeschool mamas really want

Kara and I sat down (I wish I could say this happened in person, but alas…) and chatted about all of our favorite homeschool resources and tools, past and present. We are listing our favorites here today in hopes that it helps a fellow homeschool mama. When you are finished reading, we’d love to hear your absolute favorites. Let’s all help J grow her wish list!

must-have basics

Before I dive into the fun stuff, here are the basics:

  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00VY9U9W0″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Fun pens[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B019QBPDSM” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Sharpies[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B01ETRLXXM” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Planner[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B005GLKJK4″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Coffee[/easyazon_link] or [easyazon_link identifier=”B01F2DIFVA” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]tea[/easyazon_link]


Here is a smattering of some of the tools that have helped our families on this homeschool journey:

  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00VKKKA0E” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]An amazing globe[/easyazon_link] or [easyazon_link identifier=”0528012797″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]world map[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B0017S3JXO” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]A hands-on calendar that teaches days of the week, months of the year, years, and seasons[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00GGY85EC” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]A top-rated microscope[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B01MEH9OWS” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Electric Pencil Sharpener[/easyazon_link] because you will lose all the pencils. And the ones that you have won’t have tips.
  • As J alluded to in her question above, every homeschooler needs[easyazon_link identifier=”B00ZI7MI96″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]a laminator[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00AFTQ4X8″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]3-Hole Punch[/easyazon_link] and lots of binders. You will find an organizing system, and then you will change it. Rinse and repeat.
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B0006HUPU2″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Heavy Duty Stapler[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00AVWKUJS” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]An awesome printer[/easyazon_link] (and then try to find deals on ink cartridges because you’ll go through them at record speed!)
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B016LDV41S” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Paper Cutter[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00AWI6ZFY” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Learn to tell time clock[/easyazon_link] for little ones. I put this clock in our kitchen and my kids learn to tell time without much effort!
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”1933622717″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Durable book lights[/easyazon_link] so your kids can burn the midnight oil with that gigantic stack of library books you lugged to the car!
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B001TI9Y2M” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Telescope[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B002TKLN46″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Sleep Clock[/easyazon_link] so that mama can get [some] rest. I used these clocks to help my children stay in their rooms until a reasonable morning hour. These are also great for quiet times. Set it for 45-60 minutes and have everyone regroup with a book, puzzle, or single-player game.

What Every Homeschool Mom REALLY Wants this Holiday Season best homeschool resources

Books for the Homeschool mom

It’s important for homeschool moms to engage in professional development. Yes, you can call it that, sisters! Here are some of our favorites:

  • [easyazon_link identifier=”1451698224″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Carry On, Warrior: The Power of Embracing Your Messy, Beautiful Life[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”1592408419″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0310344131″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Give Your Child the World: Raising Globally Minded Kids One Book at a Time[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0310242460″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Honey for a Child’s Heart[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0201484021″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]How Children Fail (Classics in Child Development)[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0201484048″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]How Children Learn (Classics in Child Development)[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”1591810094″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Instead of Education: Ways to Help People do Things Better[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”156512605X” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0201550911″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Learning All The Time[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”1455507229″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Magical Journey: An Apprenticeship in Contentment[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0310342996″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0812995821″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Rising Strong: The Reckoning. The Rumble. The Revolution[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0345507983″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”1600512879″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler’s Guide to Unshakable Peace[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0738206946″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Teach Your Own: The John Holt Book Of Homeschooling[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0446409499″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]The Gift of an Ordinary Day: A Mother’s Memoir[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”159285849X” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”161620141X” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]The Nature Principle: Reconnecting with Life in a Virtual Age[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”014312160X” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]The Read-Aloud Handbook: Seventh Edition[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”1616205784″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Vitamin N: The Essential Guide to a Nature-Rich Life[/easyazon_link]

What Every Homeschool Mom REALLY Wants this Holiday Season best homeschool resources

favorite gadgets

You don’t need these gadgets, but gadgets are fun!

  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00FLYWNYQ” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]A Magical Cooking Pot[/easyazon_link] or [easyazon_link identifier=”B004P2NG0K” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″] a programmable crock pot[/easyazon_link] because it can be tough to balance all the things and these items guarantee dinner on the table
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00ZV9PXP2″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]eReader [/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B018KXK652″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Tablet[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B01GNYFT8E” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Bluetooth Wireless Headphones[/easyazon_link] because you’re going to want to listen to your favorite podcast while folding the laundry!
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B010OYASRG” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker[/easyazon_link] to stream music, stories, podcasts, and more. So much learning can happen this way!
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B0081XAXXM” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Bose  Noise Cancelling Headphones[/easyazon_link] because a girl can dream.

What Every Homeschool Mom REALLY Wants this Holiday Season best homeschool resources


Speaking of fun, did you know we now have a Zazzle store? We are filling it with homeschool apparel and gear… and we take requests! Here are two of our favorites, but be sure to check out the others and send us your wish list!

What Every Homeschool Mom REALLY Wants this Holiday Season best homeschool resources

best educational toys

In my experience, kids can learn oodles and bunches with a cardboard box. You don’t have to spend a ton (one year I made a $5 Tinker Kit and my kids play with it all the time), but if Gram is asking what she can get the kids, here are some of our favorites:

  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00008W72D” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Wooden blocks[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B000CBSNRY” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Magnatiles[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B0009O1J0C” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Cash register and play money[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00ELRFLZM” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Play kitchen[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00I2UZXZW” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]K’NEX [/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B002F9NH7W” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Dress up clothes[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00CIXVIRQ” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Snap Circuits [/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00BJEYLOC” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Wooden Marble Run[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00JBIY0MG” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Puppets[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B0007KLH1Y” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Wooden planks[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B005AW85YG” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Trains[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B000VO3GQU” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Dollhouse[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00005RF5C” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Instruments[/easyazon_link]

What Every Homeschool Mom REALLY Wants this Holiday Season best homeschool resources

art supplies

One of the many homeschooling perks is the ability to explore the arts. Here are a few of our favorite supplies:

  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00IO06VEM” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Beeswax crayons[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B002Y6CWCM” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Portable easel[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00MC7TC6M” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Chalkboard and Easel combo[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B000A7JJF0″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Sketch pads[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B000E23RSQ” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Prismacolor pencils[/easyazon_link]


Gameschooling totally counts as school, and the holidays are the perfect time to build that game closet. Games make perfect gifts!

What Every Homeschool Mom REALLY Wants this Holiday Season best homeschool resources

nature essentials

Here are a few of our favorite tools for exploring nature with children:

  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0801493846″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]The Handbook of Nature Study[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”1612122310″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Nature Anatomy: The Curious Parts and Pieces of the Natural World[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00LAX52IQ” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Portable microscope[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B0000A0AEM” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Binoculars[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”0307590917″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Nature journal[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”061851743X” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Field guides[/easyazon_link]


Sensory play for little ones

If you are homeschooling multiple ages, it can be challenging to teach with little ones underfoot. These can help:

  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B003U32DAY” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Sensory Table[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00JM5GW10″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Play-Doh[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B01K16G83A” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Kinetic Sand [/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B000FA6APE” locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Insta-Snow Jar [/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier=”B00LV0ZQ52″ locale=”US” tag=”thehomeschoolsisters-20″]Wooden Dough Tools Set[/easyazon_link]
  • Bubbles are always a win!

What Every Homeschool Mom REALLY Wants this Holiday Season best homeschool resources

Did you know you can support the homeschool sisters podcast without spending any extra?

Many listeners have asked how they can support The Homeschool Sisters Podcast. The answer is a simple one. Do you shop online? Click our link first. You won’t pay any extra, but a small percentage goes toward The Homeschool Sisters Podcast to help offset our expenses. Every little bit counts, and we are so grateful for your support!

Kara wrote a great post about how affiliate links work, and if you’d like to do your holiday shopping we have listed our affiliates here in one handy-dandy spot. We will be adding to them over time so be sure to check back!

Now, it’s your turn. Tell us: What is on your homeschool wish list? Share here!



This is our last post for 2016 but fear not- we will be back in 2017 with so many plans! In the meantime, send us your questions and your favorite holiday hacks.

Have a fantastic New Year!


You can hang out with Cait and Kara on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and Pinterest.


Looking for more gift ideas?


2 thoughts on “What Every Homeschool Mom Really Wants This Holiday Season

  1. Homeschool Literature says:

    This is an amazing list!! I love how comprehensive it is. Planners, YES! So much yes. 🙂 And an eReader…they really are the BEST. I adore my eReader. And all those gift ideas for kids…definitely keeping this list handy!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *