Homeschooling: Free Educational Materials From The Government

Looking for great a curricula, or lesson plans for homeschooling? Get free instructional materials by contacting government agencies!

Did you know that different government agencies offer educational and instructional materials free for the asking? They even pay postage! Some offer a simple booklet or video tape, but others offer full-blown lesson plans complete with hand-outs and quizzes. Take advantage of some great government freebies for homeschoolers listed here:

The Federal Reserve offers a series of comic books that deal with a number of economic issues. Different issues have different themes, such as the purpose of money, the effects of inflation, the benefits of saving and consumer rights and responsibilities. These comics are colorful, fun and informative. They can be obtained by searching the Federal Reserve System Publication Catalog, which is available on the internet.

Did you know that October is National Stamp Collecting Month? The U.S. Postal service offers a kit for educators called "Stamp Cool-lecting!" It includes teacher activity cards, student activities, samples and other goodies.

The Department of National Ocean Services (NOS) gives away a "Discovery Kit" to interested parties that introduces scientific subjects relevant to the NOS's mission. Kits include online tutorials, a list of resources for further study, and lesson plans for educators.

Contact the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery for a teacher's guide to educating students about George Washington. It offers activities and lesson plans, a chronology of Washington's life, and some issues and events that shaped his life. It also comes with a museum quality poster of George Washington.

Contact the Department of Social Security online to get a teachers kit entitled "Social Security And You." It is aimed towards high school students and contains lessons, activities, quizzes, and a video tape to teach students all about the social security system.

From NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology, you can get a free, interactive oceanography CD-ROM.

The Oregon Trail Education Resource Guide can be obtained by contacting the National Historic Oregon Trail Interpretive Center in Baker City, Oregon. The kit is meant to accompany the popular computer game, "The Oregon Trail" in which a player attempts to make the long and treacherous journey along the historic trail in an interactive and fun game. While the game doesn't come with the kit, it can be found at many libraries and places that sell CD-ROM games. The kit has software to help a student understand the historical significance of the Oregon Trail, and includes a map.

The Jefferson Lab Science Series Video Library will loan science videos via mail for a period of 15 days. You are free to copy the videos for your own use. They even send a return address envelope with postage included.

For more homeschooling freebies than you can ever download, visit the Federal Resources for Educational Excellence (FREE) online, where you can be linked to interactive educational web sites or find free printable worksheets, lesson plans and materials on every subject imaginable.

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