An Honest & Thorough Review: “The Good & the Beautiful” Homeschool Curriculum

An Honest & Thorough Review: “The Good & the Beautiful” Homeschool Curriculum

After a busy summer settling into our new property, chopping wood, planning gardens, and exploring our new 5 acres, we are now almost two months into our school year!  We have a 9 year old, a 7 year old, a 6 year old, and an almost 5 year old.  Of course, like any homeschool mom, I labored long and hard over the curriculum decision… wanting the absolute best for my kids.  However, being on a tight budget, “the best” seemed a far off dream.

Enter, The Good & the Beautiful! (Important note: These are my honest to goodness thoughts about this curriculum, I am not being compensated for this review, and we purchased the curriculum ourselves for use this year).


A friend introduced me to The Good & the Beautiful just weeks before I planned to start our school year.  I spent hours reading reviews, exploring the freebies, and learning about the mission of this company.  I tear up just writing this post!  As I read Jenny’s mission, her values, and what she wanted to accomplish in creating this curriculum, my heart swelled inside me and I KNEW beyond a shadow of a doubt that THIS is what we were looking for!  I talked with my husband that night, showed him what I’d been learning, and he knew as well.  We ordered the levels we needed and waited in anticipation for them to arrive!

I am not one to skimp on academics so I also want a curriculum that covers all the bases.  The Good & the Beautiful goes above and beyond in that it includes an emphasis on good character and values in every lesson and reading!  This emphasis really spoke to me on a deep level because even above academics, I value character development… Jenny’s curriculum weaves character and values into every lesson.  It is a faith-based curriculum, but it doesn’t delve into doctrine or the deeper concepts of denominational differences.  She keeps it basic and focused on creation rather than evolution, and beauty rather than doctrine, allowing you as the parent, to incorporate doctrine and specific beliefs in according to your particular bent.

My motivation to “do school” swelled ten-fold as I prepared with new energy and excitement… I’m emotional again just now remembering that HOPE for a beautiful year of exploration and discovery guided by something I couldn’t create on my own. Below you can see the evolution of beauty in our homeschool space – this isn’t a post about our space… but as I anticipated with excitement the beauty of this curriculum, I was inspired to create… I hadn’t even received all the printed materials yet and I was already inspired just by browsing the pdf files I’d downloaded!  Jenny’s dream and passion is truly contagious!

Fast forward two months … We are fully in the throws of homeschooling… and honestly – loving it more than any other year!  Allow me to walk you through the products we are using and tell you what we love about them.

But first… take a look at these excited kids!

The Good & THe Beautiful-003


Look at these photos of our struggling reader/speller… he has seriously grown so much just in these couple months of working with The Good and the Beautiful Language Arts Curriculum.  Look at those words he can READ and SPELL!  The repetition built into the program is fantastic but not tedious or boring.  It’s woven in artfully throughout the program in different ways so as not to become mundane.  The Mini-books (readers) that come with each Language Arts level are beautiful as well. The illustrations are quality, the stories are entertaining – often evoking peals of laughter from my children!

The Good and the Beautiful Curriculum is in an “Open and Go” Style.  This means there is little to NO prep work for teacher (do you hear that, Mom? No Prep!).  In the Language Arts programs, it is literally open and go, NO PREP!  Some of the history and science lessons do require some prep, but it isn’t extensive nor is it expensive – Thank you Jenny!

Jenny, being a homeschool mom herself, obviously KNOWS what we homeschool mom’s need… Look at this excerpt from one of the language arts books!  Do you see the lovely check boxes!  This “open  & go” style of workbook with it’s handy check boxes make it SOOO easy to keep track of what’s been completed and where we need to start next time!  Being a teacher of multiple children and grade levels at one time I find this feature to be a HUGE help in keeping me on track.

The Good & THe Beautiful-004

Overall, I LOVE The Good & the Beautiful Language Arts Curriculum!  We have been using the Level K & Level 2 curriculum this year.  Our 6 year old will graduate to Level 1 probably about half-way through the year and our 4, almost 5 year old, will probably graduate INTO Level K.  Our 8 year old, 9 this week, is working through the Level 2 book and will probably finish it before the year is up as she is highly academic and independent.  She LOVES the geography that is so beautifully incorporated into the curriculum, and is truly learning to understand and appreciate art!  I love all the beautiful pieces and the brief history of the piece as it is mentioned in the lessons.

Frugal Mom Tip:  I would highly recommend purchasing the PRINTED curriculum for at least one child.  I purchased the printed book and the PDF downloads.  I printed the whole download in black and white for each child, and then, when we come to a page with artwork or something else better viewed in color, I pull out the printed book.  In this way I am able to use the printed book for more than one child.  If you can afford to purchase the printed book for each child, I also encourage you to do that just to support this amazing company!


Oh how we are loving science!  We are working on the Arthropod (Bugs) unit this year!  As I was creating our homeschool space the kids were inspired and motivated to prepare for their bug study – energy and inspiration is contagious – The Good and the Beautiful got us ALL excited for the school year!  They scrambled with the small amount of summer we had left to collect various bugs for their bug board!  They accumulated quite a collection!  Here is a sampling!


Check out the variety of Science Units The Good and the Beautiful offers!  None of these sets is over $22 for the PRINTED COPY and all are full color on high quality glossy paper.  We ordered the Meteorology unit for our next unit as we will be finished with Arthropods by the beginning of 2018.  And there are more units planned for the coming years, so keep checking back!

The Good & THe Beautiful


I cannot begin to express how thrilled I am with this course!  My 8 year old is fast becoming an accomplished typist!  She types quickly and accurately without looking at the keyboard, and all without the “video game” style distraction of most modern programs!



We have been using the Nature Notebook this year but I also ordered the Creative Writing Notebook.  The Nature Notebook is wonderful for exploring the seasons.  Once a week is enough to accomplish each season’s activities during that season.  The Creative Writing Notebook is beautifully designed and we can’t wait to use it next year.

e 4


The Handwriting courses are wonderful independent work for the kids!  As you can see below, my son’s handwriting has improved visibly in just the past several weeks!

The Good & THe Beautiful-002

Each page includes handwriting practice and art!  Sometimes just asking to draw or color a picture, sometimes giving more direction like, “Draw a picture of a mountain or a rainbow”.  I love that the kids can work independently on their practice as the numbers and arrows are there for their instruction. 45



Can I just say, this History Curriculum is GORGEOUS and FUN!  We’ve been learning about Creation and Ancient Egypt so far.  The activities are not only educational, they are fun as well!  Dressing up like Egyptians, making a representative timeline on the floor demonstrating how LONG the period of Ancient Egypt was as compared to how long the US has been a nation!  I’M learning along with the kids!  The Big Book of History Stories is high quality, full color, and engaging writing!  We love when we get to pull that book out with a lesson!

IMG_4506We adore the audio dramatizations that accompany the curriculum as well!  I really feel they enhance the experience.  Also, even though our children are young, we’ve been enjoying the Keys of History Board Game.  I, as the teacher, appreciate the sneaky repetition this board game accomplishes!  Seriously, all those facts I labored over in public and private school – all here, in cooperative game fashion (we work as a team to “beat the clock”), studied from a young age.  These kids will actually REMEMBER these facts when they are adults… and they won’t even know they worked to memorize them!



This Book List has been a FOUNDATIONAL part of our homeschool plan this year!  The books included on the list are ALL wonderful books you can truly trust to be safe for your children!  We have very much enjoyed reading books aloud off The Good & the Beautiful Book List, as well as reading alone during Quiet Reading Time.  Our favorite so far is a book we would have never found had it not been for this list… A Tree For Peter… What a beautiful inspiring read!  The Good and the Beautiful team puts out an ANNUAL update to this list, continually adding to the amount of beautiful books you can feel confident about!

Jenny is graciously offering a FREE book list download to my followers,
valid only from 11/8/17-11/11/17 … Check out the sample page below.
There are over 500 books listed and thoroughly reviewed on this book list!
Click on the image below to find the Book List!



Of course, there is also the question of time!  How much TIME does it take to get through the lessons, and school as a whole for the day.  That is another thing I love so much about The Good and the Beautiful !  It’s open and go so I’m not scurrying about during school hours wasting precious time gathering supplies, or printing a forgotten worksheet.  I’m homeschooling four children Level 2 and under, so all of our lessons in the Language Arts book and for History and Science are done with me there.  We start school at 8am, and we’re done between 11-12!  That’s 3-4 hours TOTAL!  I’m not even kidding!  And I spend at least 30-40 minutes with each child INDIVIDUALLY and then we do History together twice a week and Science and Nature together once a week.  I have the family lessons sprinkled throughout the week on different days so it’s not all clumped into one day.  Not only does this 3-4 hours include The Good and the Beautiful Language Arts, History, Science, and Nature… I’m also doing Math with all the kids and one is doing The Good and the Beautiful Typing!  We are ALWAYS done before lunch!  Isn’t that incredible!



As a homeschool mom on a very tight budget, I SOOO appreciate Jenny’s commitment to making The Good and the Beautiful AFFORDABLE!  Not only are the printed materials SUPER reasonably priced, there are also many FREE downloads if you just can’t scrap together the money to buy the printed version!  She STRIVES to make it possible for every homeschool family to have access to QUALITY curriculum!  This mission and purpose is something I can stand behind and support WHOLEHEARTEDLY!

Look here at a couple of the science units for an example.  You can print the Arthropods Unit at home for only $8.99!  Or you can buy it and have it shipped to you for only $16!  The Meteorology unit is the most expensive unit and still only costs $12.99 for the PDF or $22 for the printed + PDF!  These units are WELL worth that amount of money!

The Good & THe Beautiful-001

Also, look at the Language Arts Level 1 Course set.  You can get the whole thing for FREE if you just access the PDF download (look at the color portions on a Tablet or computer or print it in color at home or an office supply store).  Or, you can order the physical course set for only $58!  How many curriculum’s can you name where an entire year of Literature, Spelling, Phonics & Reading, Grammar & Punctuation, Art Appreciation & Writing (& Geography as well in Level 2 and up) are included for only $58!  Or, save yourself a couple bucks and print the phonics cards at home and spend only $51 for the physical course set!  This is AFFORDABLE!


Don’t want to buy the whole set… maybe you’ve bought it already and just need the coursebook again for another child?  Buy pieces separately.


That Level K Reader is so cute and fun to read.  Forget other primary readers and their repetitive “blah” style and unimaginative stories.  This reader is wonderfully written to inspire and teach!


If you’re still not convinced, to supplement your research, here are a few other reviews on this amazing curriculum:



Well, I think that about covers it!  I think you can tell that we LOVE The Good and the Beautiful!  Please hop on over to the website and explore the curriculum for yourself!  Download one or more of the FREE Language Arts courses and read the whole thing!  Take the guesswork out of ordering the printed copy by previewing the entire course for FREE!

Don’t forget to take advantage of that FREE Book List Download as well!



Have you tried any of The Good and the Beautiful Curriculum in your homeschool?
Comment below and let me know your thoughts as well!


27 responses »

  1. Oh my word!! YES!!!!! The Good and the Beautiful has transformed how we do homeschool!!

    My oldest also loves acedemics and has been thoroughly enjoying the Level K Language Arts, History Year 1, Handwriting Level 2 and the Nature Book! She unfortunately didn’t have a solid foundation for handwriting until this year (she found it to be quite tedious) but wow, her handwriting has improved so much and is beautiful now thanks to The Good and the Beautiful!! She asks to take her handwriting book to quiet time and for in the car when we go places!

    And my second oldest who wasn’t very excited about learning before (because she needed something beautiful and fun!) has also been loving school this year!!! She very much enjoys the Level 1 Handwriting book and I’m thrilled she’s getting off to such a great start. She loves all the games that come with the Language Arts Pre K and they have helped her learn in a way that she feels she’s good at and doesn’t make her feel discouraged. That’s a big deal when you have siblings who learn at very different speeds!

    And bonus, my two year old feels like he’s part of it and loves to repeat what my older two are learning while he colors at the table with us:).

    We couldn’t have asked for a better homeschool curriculum and are so excited to see our kids’ love of learning continue to grow. The Good and the Beautiful has given them such an amazing foundation in seriously the most beautiful way and for that, we are so grateful!!

  2. Thank you so much for writing this post! It has been super encouraging for me to read as we have just ordered our The Good and the Beautiful curriculum and are waiting for it to arrive. I am currently scared out of my mind with doubt over taking this step into the unknown of “Homeschooling” with our current 8th, K, & Pre-K babies. I’m hoping that all of the wonderful creative inspiration you spoke of will hit me soon! I have been experiencing negativity from our family over the choice we have made to pull our kids out of public school and homeschool them, which doesn’t help with feeling like I can do this. We will be starting this next week and am just praying that it will all be a smooth transition for us. I have loved what I have researched on the G&B but still have no clue on where to start with Math. Especially with my 8th grade daughter! What do you use for math?

    • My pleasure! I’m sorry you’re feeling judgment from family…that’s super sad. I encourage you to invest time in finding a support group…Facebook is a great easy place to start. Find some local groups and reach out to people. Homeschoolers are a friendly supportive lot! I hope it’s a smooth transition for you as well.

      I love that G&B is releasing a math program…unfortunately it’s a little too late for us. I have been using mathusee with my kiddos and will continue with that. It’s not pretty but it is effective. And if money is an obstacle… I’ve never bought it new…always trolling Facebook homeschool resale pages and finding it used. 😊 Good luck in your new adventure!

  3. I have a 5th, 7th, and 9th grader. We are looking to switch up our homeschool approach to a more charolette mason approach. We have never really found our love of learning, and I am desperate to find it. I always worry that if something is too easy, and we finish too quickly, that we haven’t done enough. You would think after nearly 6 years of homeschooling, I would have it figured out. Not yet! Do you think this curriculum would work for high school? We have never done much on formal writing, so I want to make sure that is covered. I really hope this is the answer to us all enjoying learning together. Also, to the mom’s question about a math program, we started using teaching textbooks this year, and we love it!

    • I couldn’t answer that as I haven’t even seen the HS curriculum. I am going to the convention in July though! I do love what I see about the lower elementary writing! The creative writing notebook is wonderful. I’m hoping it encourages good writing skills in my kids. But each kid is different, and some just don’t put thoughts onto paper like others. And that’s ok. I hope you find your groove! It does take time doesn’t it!?

  4. I just read your informative blog. Thank you.
    I am seeking input, as a nana raising a grandchild I am new to homeschool. I believe I am largely Charlotte Mason inspired with a bent toward unschool. I hate that term! I can best describe us as a lot of read aloud , great books are a priority. Lots of nature time. Living and working together with lots of childhood play.
    I planned to use Five in a Row because of the unit approach being a good fit. I was researching a solid math and reading program that we could add. Thus I found the Good and Beautiful. I would truly appreciate wise input. My grandchild appears to have dyslexia but we have not formally tested. He also has severe PTSD but is doing much better.

    • Thanks for reading. I’m so sorry to hear about your grandson… I hope he finds healing living with you. My son is also undiagnosed dyslexic (it runs in the family)…teaching him is hard and demands loooots of creativity and patience and understanding and trying new things…constantly! But he’s also my most rewarding student to teach. I suggest you get involved in a few Facebook homeschooling groups as specifically ask to be contacted by a VETERAN homeschooling mom… One who’s done it and completed it with a child successfully. Being that I’m still in the throws of it with all kids under nine, I wouldn’t feel right nor would I call my direction “wise” yet. You are wise seeking out help though! I hope you find someone who can give you wonderfully wise guidance.

      I will say that my MIL who schooled five dyslexic kiddos said that one of the most helpful tricks she found was to play classical music in one of his ears and lessons in the other. 🤪 I am going to try that soon!

      I also got color overlays off amazon. Just search in Amazon for color overlays… I think I paid $20. That helps him track better too.

  5. Thank you for this honest and thorough review. I also love the set up of their desk and board you created. Do you have more info on what you put on there and why? It seems like it would help you stay organized and the kids on track!

    • I had a few things… “bd” picture so they could see the difference between those letters since three of mine really struggle with that 😛 A Number/Alphabet line on the bottom. Magnets to hold things up (I use Power Magnets that I get on Amazon). Their daily assignments bookmark… has what things I want them to get done on a daily basis. Their poem to memorize. And I cut up one of those gazillion magnets you get from advertisers in the mail… Cut it into slices and put an assignment on each slice (math, spelling, LA, poem…etc) and then they get to arrange them each day in the order they want to do them. Gave them some control! 🙂 Hope that helps!

  6. It mentioned you are using TGTB math for one of your kiddos, how is that working for you guys? I need some major help and structure here for me. I don’t find it enjoyable so I find myself skipping way more than I should… We love TGTB LA stuff is their math just as great?

    • Hi Mama Hen 🙂 I don’t use TGTB math… unfortunately we are about 1 year ahead of them as my youngest son is starting Alpha level in September. Since they’ve only released K it’s a little late. 😦 But we do love MathUSee for math around here.

  7. Thank you so much for your review! A friend pointed us to Good and Beautiful as we are just about to start our homeschool endeavor! I am in my research phase, this has been most helpful! I have a 5 year old going into kindergarten a 4 year old and a baby on the way! I wanted a curriculum I could reuse, with little prep, that also focused on character and values as well as high academics. This seems perfect! Can I ask what you used for math though for you young kids?? I’m struggling to find a math program that covers enough and doesn’t cost an arm and a leg! Have you tried her math program?? Thank you!!

    • Hi Kayla! I’m glad it was helpful! I’m actually super excited about next year because of The Good and the Beautiful! ❤ I can't use TGTB math unfortunately because our youngest is already past the K level 😦 I'm so sad about that. We use MathUSee… which is pretty easy to find used if you surf the facebook homeschool and resale sites. I've found all of mine used and have up to Gamma (Level 4) with two block sets and I've only spent $60. I make my kids use a notebook for writing answers, so the workbooks are reusable.

  8. Hi! I’m trying to figure out how the list of extra books function each year. We’ve been using the level 2 curriculum and only now, in lesson 45, are we starting to read the first chapter book. Flipping ahead, I see no follow up on how to incorporate the book into the curriculum. The last chapter book is introduced with only 5 other lessons left in the year. So, I guess I’m wondering why we’d read these books over ones that my son may find more interesting? I had thought that maybe they were crucial to being able to do certain lessons, but I’m not seeing evidence for that. Can you shed light on this? TIA

    • Hi karen!
      My level 2 is in storage as I don’t have a level 2 user at the moment. But i’m pretty sure when She read Prairie School and Lumber Camp Library there was instructions on the page where it was Introduced and a few pages following as well as a page directing a discussion about how the two books were different. My daughter and I really enjoyed this lesson.

  9. Hi! Thanks for your review! I’m wondering your thoughts on History Year 1 for 1st grade? I have a K now using LA and math and we LOVE it! I’m really excited about what I’ve seen of their history, but I noticed on their website they recommend you consider waiting until 2nd grade to start history if you only have kids in 1st or younger. I’m wondering your thoughts on starting in 1st or waiting until 2nd since you’ve been through it. Did your kids get a lot our of it or was much of it over their heads? Thank you!!

    • Hi Denise! I used History Year 1 with my kids when one was in 3rd, two in 1st, and one in K. I started Year 2 this year and decided to wait till next year. While we did get a LOT out of it and really enjoyed Level 1 it last year, I think focusing on getting my younger kids reading and doing simple math should be my goal this year. We’ll do science as a family too. But I think they’ll retain more and understand more about history and how it relates to the world around them when they are a wee bit older. Because of that, I don’t think it’s super necessary to do it for another year or two even. So much about history can be learned just in the books I read aloud to them and I feel that is better for the ages I have currently. I hope that answers your question!

  10. I was recommended to look into The Good & the Beautiful but one review I found mentioned it was taking 6-8 hours a day to complete all of the work. I’m wondering if you had similar or different experience with it. I’m completely new to the idea of home schooling especially since I will still be working.

    • Oh my goodness no! Maybe they have like 12 kids under 10! Lol. I have four under 11, so one is basically independent the other three are one on one. I’m done in three hours. That’s with family read aloud, math, LA, spelling, sight words. Not including history and science. But i only do those twice a week.

  11. I love your input on the programs you are using! I would like to ask where you found your classroom tables and chairs? My daughter is in the process of setting up a homeschool classroom for her Kindergartner and Pre-K children.

    • 😅 well… It was a dining room table I cut in half long ways and used L brackets to attach to the wall. The chairs I got at a college liquidation sale. 🤣sooo… I’m afraid I’m no help at all. Sorry!

  12. You mentioned in your review that you were tearing up while writing it. Well, I was crying while reading it! I’ve heard from a few church friends that they love this curriculum, but I need something that will help my daughter with her dyslexia. I’m pretty sure these years are confirmation that TGTB is what my daughter needs. Thank you for writing such a thorough review, for including pictures, for sharing the money saving tips. You are an angel.

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