If you’re considering an Abeka Academy homeschool curriculum for your family in 2022, you’re on the right track! In this article, we’ll be looking at 50 forum reviews from the angle of a parent who’s researching the Abeka curriculum for the first time. We’ll distill these reviews and see if we can come to some common conclusions about the curriculum. Then we’ll pull out some of the pros and cons of an Abeka curriculum and look at them.
What we’ll cover:
- What is the Abeka Academy homeschool curriculum?
- Accreditation questions
- What forum reviews say about this program
- The pros and cons of an Abeka home education curriculum and
- My experience with this curriculum
Let’s get started!
While I’m not an affiliate with Abeka, some of the links on this page are affiliate links. This means I can earn an income for our family.
What is the Abeka Academy Homeschool Curriculum?
Abeka Academy is affiliated with an American College in Florida called the Pensacola Christian College (PCC).
PCC is a Christian, independent Baptist, not-for-profit liberal arts college founded in 1974 by two graduates of Bob Jones University, Arlin and Beka [Rebekah] Horton (hence, Abeka or A Beka).
Christian homeschool parents often choose between buying the Abeka or the BJU Press curriculum because they are similar.
What Homeschooling Method Does This Program Use?
The Abeka curriculum uses the traditional homeschool method. Using a traditional homeschool method means children perform their work primarily by sitting at a desk and completing workbooks as children do at school.
Abeka also tests children like a traditional school would (through paper testing methods), comforting parents who want to know exactly where their children are up to compared to their school peers.
If you don’t know much about homeschooling methods, sign up to my free homeschool methods quiz & course on the topic.
Abeka Academy Accreditation
Of course, the advantage of traditional testing and education (over other homeschooling methods) is that you can get accreditation by studying at Abeka Academy (keep in mind, there’s also a non-accredited version of Abeka Academy).
This said, although many people think accreditation is a must-have, this is a misconception as parents can easily get their teenagers into high school without homeschool accreditation.
However, some parents want a program to be accredited as it gives them peace of mind to know that they’re following an accreditation-approved course.
One of the great things about homeschooling with this program is that it offers accreditation for the same price as non-accreditation:
The Accredited Program is the premium package—except it’s the same price as Independent Study. You can choose to do either an entire grade in K5–12 or a single subject in grades 9–12…Your child’s education will be accredited by both MSA CESS and FACCS, which can help you meet state homeschool requirements and college admissions requirements.
The Academy will also keep digital records for you and grade exams for Year 9 through Year 12. Accreditation gives your child a chance to participate in a homeschool graduation ceremony if they choose.
They’ll get a diploma at the end of their home education years with official transcripts.
It will be free if you want to do optional standardized testing to find out where your child is up to.
What Grades Does this Curriculum Offer?
- Kindergarten Abeka Academy Materials (K4 and K5)
- 1st Grade, 2nd Grade, 3rd Grade
- 4th Grade, 5th Grade, 6th Grade, 7th Grade, 8th Grade,
- 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, and 12th Grade.
There are also electives which consist of the following courses:
- Spanish (#2)
- Consumer Math
- Business Math
- Orchestra (#1 and #2)
- Document Processing
- Family/Consumer Sciences
- Home Ec. – Sewing and
- Physical Education
You can see links to all the Abeka electives here.
How Do I Choose My Homeschool Curriculum from Abeka?
You can choose to buy just one subject with Abeka or all subjects to cover your child for a year. And you can do this for your children, no matter their age. This link has the options for Grade 1.
As you can see, you can buy all the books for ‘Grade 1 Enrollment’ or just a particular subject that you fancy.
When we were homeschooling, my parents chose different subjects from different curriculum providers, depending on what they thought suited us best. (This was facilitated because they visited warehouses with hardcopy home education curricula for sale.)
How Popular is the Abeka Academy?
The Abeka curriculum is quite popular among home educators today as it has been around for decades.
Many children raised using this curriculum are now considering using it for their own children (one study says 82% of homeschooled children will choose to educate their own children home, either full-time or part-time).
In addition, the Academy gets good reviews on its Facebook Page. If you look at the Abeka Academy Facebook reviews page, the curriculum gets 4.2 out of 5 stars (based on 270 reviews to date).
As you will see below, I distilled 50 comments from 4 websites (including TheHomeschoolMom and Top Consumer Reviews), and most were positive.
Can You Look at Samples of the Curriculum Before Buying?
You can look at some sample Abeka Academy videos lessons at this link.
You can also go into the Grade subjects you’re interested in and watch videos about the program (for example, on these links, you can see Grade 1 Arithmetic, Science, History, and Bible Enrollment.
What the Reviews Say About Abeka Academy
When looking at forum reviews for this curriculum, you’ll find a few common themes.
Many like the program’s Christian perspective. Others like that there is so much video included, and children can feel part of a classroom (in a small way) when they watch the video.
And as far as the price goes, you get a lot for what you pay – and accreditation for no extra if you choose. (More on the cost below).
Many parents on different forums said the Abeka Academy curriculum is repetitive (e.g., busy work) and not overly hands-on. (It’s mostly video-learning or book-learning.)
Keep in mind that the curriculum has a very patriotic American flavor that may hit the right notes for some parents and the wrong ones for others.
Pros and Cons of an Abeka Homeschool Curriculum
When I looked into the pros and cons of an Abeka curriculum, I found a surprising amount of conflicting reviews (albeit, most were quite positive).
Some people found the busy work a pro, while others considered it a con. Other families loved the strong, Christian, patriotic flavor of the Abeka program, while others intensely disliked it.
Some parents found the work engaging and helpful, while some found it painful and lacking motivation. Let’s have a closer look at what some parents said below.
Pros of the Abeka Homeschool Curriculum
Some of the advantages that seemed apparent from reading these reviews included:
- The price for curriculum materials is the same whether the material is accredited or not.
- If you’re a Christian, you’ll love the philosophy behind Abeka. Their philosophy is Christian Protestant.
- If math lessons become too hard for you to teach, you can buy DVD/online classes so children can learn through online teachers instead. (In fact, you can purchase video lessons from the beginning for only about $100 more).
- You don’t have to teach your children always – only at the younger ages. You can set your children up with an Abeka Academy homeschool curriculum and watch them learn independently.
- Some parents liked the repetitive nature of the Abeka program as they said it helped their children memorize things more easily.
Cons of the Abeka Curriculum
Most Abeka reviews were positive.
But, although many parents were thrilled with this curriculum and had (in some cases) used it for many years with no complaints, other mothers felt differently.
Some Abeka complaints I encountered among the reviews were:
- Abeka isn’t very hands-on. While you might do a few science experiments, arts, and crafts, the Abeka Academy isn’t as hands-on as other homeschooling curricula might be. While you can supplement the material with your own hands-on activities, this is a lot of work on top of a full curriculum.
- Textbooks are not reusable, so you can’t use them for subsequent children.
- You have to buy the teacher’s copies of the answers separately, which is recommended to save time checking the children’s work.
- Some Abeka complaints centered around the vast quantity of quizzes and review materials in this curriculum. However, some families have side-stepped this issue by exempting their children from specific tests/quizzes. Another mother said that while Abeka was a lot of work, it was worth it. But, other parents countered this by saying the Abeka workload led to homeschool motivation problems and boredom.
- Some Abeka complaints also centered on too basic texts such as the Science subjects. Other subjects were praised, however, such as Social Science and Reading.
A Pro or Con of Abeka Academy Homeschooling: Creationism
Depending on your theology, you may or may not agree with the creationist perspective. If you have a biblical worldview that accepts that creation came about in six literal days (with God resting on the seventh), you will like that Abeka Academy holds this perspective.
As such, Abeka Academy reviews either thoroughly praise the creationist worldview or want to send it out of business for having (as they claim) ‘an unscientific worldview.’
In one state, California, this came to a head when a judge decided that Abeka was teaching things that were ‘inconsistent with the viewpoints and knowledge generally accepted in the scientific community.’ You can read more about this case in Association of Christian Schools International vs. Roman Stearns.
Flexible Options with the Abeka Curriculum
You can get around some of the pros and cons of the Abeka curriculum by choosing to customize your homeschooling curriculum. Selecting a personalized program (by creating a bit of an eclectic program) means you can still add special projects and field trips into your homeschool routine or adjust the pace of the curriculum to meet the needs of your students.
To help you customize your child’s education, Abeka has the Home Education FlexTeach option, which allows you to buy extra components to supplement your Christian curriculum, including:
- kits containing physical textbooks
- specific textbooks to supplement an eclectic homeschool
- parent guides and
- standardized tests.
Essentially, you can mix and match the curriculum according to your desires. This also means you can get engaged and teach the subjects you like or feel confident teaching. But, if you don’t want to teach some subjects, you can leave that to the video tutors.
Many parents like teaching English and History but struggle with Math and Science. Therefore, FlexTeach might be an ideal option for them! Abeka puts it like this, ‘They are your tools – not your taskmasters!’
How Much Does the Abeka Curriculum Cost?
The Abeka curriculum costs $1074 for Grades 1-6 and $1365 for Grades 7-12.
Compared to other curricula, the Abeka curriculum comes in at an average price. You can look at the graph prices below (as of Februrary 2022).
Buying videos on top of the curriculum doesn’t cost too much extra, taking instructional pressure off you to teach your children yourself all the time.
(If you want to know a little more about the cost of home education in general, read this article on how much homeschooling costs.)
What are the Abeka Teachers Like?
Abeka offers video lessons. These lessons are an opportunity for students to learn from teachers, while parents can sit back with a cup of tea and have a break.
Abeka Teachers are warm and friendly and (in my experience, quite funny at times). I’ve enjoyed watching the videos.
You can look at a sample of Abeka Teachers in action here.
Abeka runs a K4 and a K5 curriculum for kindergarten students. These cost a fraction of the price of older years, so it is a great way to get kids into homeschool curriculum work slowly.
Abeka Kindergarten (K4)
K4 comes as an unaccredited version only and costs $276. You can check out the Abeka Teacher, Mrs. Stewart, for K4 here.
Abeka Kindergarten (K5)
K5 comes in accredited and unaccredited versions. The accredited version costs $706, while the unaccredited version costs $677. The Abeka teacher for this subject is Mrs. Turner. You can read more about her here.
Abeka Academy vs. Bob Jones Curriculum
In my other article on the BJU homeschooling curriculum, I compared Abeka vs. the Bob Jones curriculum.
In particular, I compared the curricula using forum-sourced comments from about 30 people. I’ve copied the section here for you to see:
Compared to Abeka, the BJU program is a bit of a favorite. Home educators love that the BJU videos are brief (whereas Abeka videos are pretty long). The program is also quite media-rich. An Abeka program is more labor-intensive compared to BJU. One mother said BJU assignments were manageable, but Abeka assignments were ‘never-ending.’ This said, Abeka is an inexpensive option compared to BJU, particularly if you’re considering accreditation costs.
Of course, if the cost is a huge factor for you, I recommend you look at free home education curriculum packages.
One of my favorites is Easy Peasy All-in-One. Although it’s not accredited, it ticks many boxes as it is a Christian online curriculum with printable sheets available if you want to do some offline study.
My Experience with the Abeka Academy
I’m a homeschool graduate, and my parents bought the Abeka math curriculum, which my brothers and I used for most of our elementary years. We used the curriculum from Grade 5 through to Grade 9.
Because I’m not excellent with math, I found the repetitive nature of the curriculum quite good. I needed a good amount of math repetition to get the concepts in my head, so I believe the Abeka curriculum was quite good.
My two brothers also studied the math curriculum and had no complaints.
Some might say repetition isn’t the way to go and that I should have found another curriculum that worked for me better. I’m not sure about this…all I know is that I learned my math well with this program and don’t have any problems recommending it.
How the Abeka Academy Helped my Parents Homeschool
A little while ago, I wrote an article called Why You Can STILL Home Educate Despite Not Being a Teacher! I wrote this article because I have heard a lot of people say, ‘You can’t homeschool because you’re (1) not a teacher, (2) not highly educated, or you’re (3) dyslexic.’
These comments assumed you have to know a bit about education to teach your child. But, that’s not true because my parents, especially my mother, weren’t teachers, weren’t highly educated, and, in one case, was dyslexic.
However, they managed to educate three children who have had very successful academic careers and lives. (You can read about my brothers’ (and my own) home education experience here.)
And, for my parents, I think Abeka helped take out the uncertainty of homeschooling. My parents knew they could sit us down with a curriculum, and we would do it, and we’d be ‘getting an education. When they started with home education, this was an immense comfort.
Other Curricula Similar to Abeka Academy
If you’re still not sold on Abeka, maybe you’d like to check out other curricula that are similar to this package. Three very similar curricula to Abeka are the:
BJU is probably the most similar to Abeka in terms of content as it offers textbook paces and online video tutorials. It is more expensive, but some say it’s worth it (you can read BJU reviews by clicking this link).
The SOS program is a Grade 3-12 Christian home education curriculum on the computer. It is entirely computer-based but can be done offline if you install the CDs or USB software (you can read SOS reviews by clicking this link). As of 2022, SOS has been discontinued. So they’re not making new curriculum. However, you could pick up an old USB copy of this course.
Monarch is the same as SOS (because they’re both published by Alpha Omega Publishing), except it’s entirely online – meaning you need an internet connection to access the curriculum.
Curriculum Dissimilar to Abeka Academy
If you’ve just started homeschooling and you want to explore educational methods that suit a home education well, but you still want to do a curriculum, check out different choices below:
- Charlotte Mason method – investigate ten different Charlotte Mason curriculum packages here
- Classical method – investigate six different Classical curriculum packages here
If you don’t know anything about different educational methods, you can explore them more here.
Contact: Abeka Phone Numbers
Customer Service (U.S. and Canada)
Mon.–Fri.7 a.m.–6 p.m. (CST)
Customer Service (International)
Mon.–Fri.7 a.m.–6 p.m. (CST)
Abeka Academy Academic
Mon.–Fri.7 a.m.–6 p.m. (CST)
Abeka Academy reviews suggest this curriculum is a great way to go if you don’t mind replicating a school-at-home approach. I would recommend this program for new homeschooling parents as it is so familiar to many of us who are used to this approach. However, the reviews suggest that Abeka lacks individuality, which I would like to see more. Overall, however, this program is hard to go past, and you can feel confident your children will be getting a good education if you choose this Christian curriculum.