This page is your Catholic homeschool books short cut! I have waited for years to update this page to be sure to have used these books so I can honestly recommend them to you.
You'll find excellent Catholic books and homeschool publishers. If you choose good books, your lesson plans will be so much easier. Simply turn the page.
I like to update this page so that you can find better books, too. For one thing, Catholic publishers are resurrecting good old books and publishing good new books. The most important thing, though is that they help your family to keep the Faith. Enjoy!
FTC Disclosure: I show products I think will help you. If you use my links, I may earn ad commissions at no extra cost to you.
My favorite of all Catholic homeschool books, especially as a "how to find and use manual" is Laura Berquist's Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum (Amazon).
She not only lists many homeschool books to use for academics, she also lists a great way for YOU the teaching parent to use them. This is a great way to start homeschooling or to stop "schooling" at home.
She shows how you can use "real books" rather than text books. This concept alone is worth the price of her book. Some people call this the Great Books method.
One thing I suggest if you want to use this method, do yourself a favor and and use "Catholic" books wherever you can. Simply replace the non-Catholic works with Catholic books.I have spent over twenty years improving our own list. You can do the same.
You will especially love Mrs. Berquist's books if you find that most text books have an agenda that you want to spare your children. Here she shows you how to use your own books whichever books you choose
Theoretically it's a "do not pass go" book.
It can give you ideas you'll use the rest of your life. You will also like her other book, The Harp and Laurel Wreath.
You can learn why I recommend them on my MODG page.
Maureen also has super great ideas in her book Catholic Homeschool Companion (Amazon). This book gets into the nitty gritty of how to include the spiritual life and training the will into every day: time savers, special children, Dads teaching, academic standards, and even diocesan requirements for sacramental preparation from parents have already fought these battles.
Not only does she have several great books with good ideas about other books, she's also got Homeschool Connections where your children can take Catholic Online Homeschool classes - even for writing class, Spanish, French, and Latin. Super handy.
Again, this is another beginner book for homeschooling parents - or not so beginner. Mrs. Clark shares such good ideas as the duty sure to provide room or a specific place to study.
She includes the Church Teachings, too, which are so important. See more on my Seton Home Study page.
The different homeschool companies have their own "out of the box" curriculum and I share several below, yet this section is for harder to find books or books you might not have thought of using.
It's religion, history, and literature where we need to be certain that we use good books and teach only the truth.
Religion? We HAVE to get that right. There's only "one thing necessary" and that's to get to Heaven.
I am so glad to share these good books with you and I cannot express how happy I am to have been able to find and use them.
The books on this page and the Douay Rheims New Testament are most of what we needed to teach the Faith to our children in high school: Bible (we have an audio on our website), Liturgy, Saints, Catechism (see our own helpful resources).
On thinking of it, the Fr. Lasance Roman Missal alone covers the first three pretty well. No white out necessary. :-)
I encourage you to use only good books with well written prayers, explanations and proper apologetics.
Seriously, how many pagans, protestants, and new theologians' books can one read without losing the Faith?
Anyway, I hope these lists are helpful to you. It is so hard to find discerning lists without the good recommendations of those you trust.
Long story short, here are some helpful ideas I've used to get around tainted "Catholic" textbooks by using "real" books.
Almost all Catholic homeschool programs choose or use the old Baltimore Catechism books or base their program on them. You can use the truths in them to discern whether other books are Catholic or not.
What are good catechism books for seventh and eighth grade?
You will like these next two treasures for middle school and high school catechism or religion class.
What are good Catholic homeschool books for high school?
Try these from TAN Books:
These two books are treasures from Mother of Our Savior company Traditional Catholic Publishing, perfect for 12th grade or graduation gifts:
Our Lady of Victory School puts such a premium on the Douay-Rheims Bible that they've even published their own reprint.
Learn about the Catholic Bible here.
You'll find that all the Catholic homeschools recommend daily Mass and the Rosary.
A book in which I rejoice:
A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture (Amazon), Most Rev. Frederick Justus Knecht, D.D.
This book really is a great read aloud for the children as well as a meditative book for you and hubby. It's rather accusative at wonderful times; for example, "How well do you listen to your mother?" :-) Very helpful without being condescending.
The other two Knecht books are subsets of this one. Include the whole family in a read-aloud. You'll love it!
I read it aloud at the dining room table or in the living room while the high school kids were using the little Knecht Bible History books and our youngest were simply listening. We've compared and found that the smaller book is basically a subset of the larger book, but it is so worth it to have the larger one above.
There's also another Bible History (Amazon), (Johnson) that is excellent and will fill out any Ancient History course especially from a culture and geographic perspective.
Improve your 11th and 12th grade Apologetics and catechetical studies with:
Our Lady of Guadalupe and the Conquest of Darkness (Amazon), Dr. Warren Carroll is for 10th grade and up due to the gruesome Aztec practice.
Garcia Moreno (Dolorosa Press, Fr. Kimball) Of course, our USA details are different, yet it was the same battle. It's the best "American" history book I've ever read.
There's a series of old Landmark Books that, by God's grace I bought from a lady on the CathSwap Yahoo group, a whole box full. Wonderful series, yet mostly secular.
I do not trust the series entirely, yet I was able to use the American history stories to good purpose. Older children and voracious readers will devour these.
I used an old Seton American history book (2006 no longer in print?) as the spline or back bone to the best history year we've ever had.
In a Laura Berquist/Great Books manner and as we progressed through the years covered in the book, I'd stop to read timely Landmark book. The children and I both remember so much better from the stories.
I had gone through the prefatory pages of each Landmark book to see what time frame it covered, and then wrote the date on the spline of the book.
I stacked the books next to my chair in order by date, oldest on top, and we simply read through the pile. These books are not in order on the shelf below, and I have not read the Audubon book. The book on Hitler was very useful.
It must be that we remember better because the books gave us more information about an event and more ideas to discuss through the day.
The Sinking of the Bismark and The Rise And Fall of Adolf Hitler, by William Shirer were very well done and great for World War II or European history.
You can find old Landmark Books on Amazon here.
A Heart for Europe (Amazon), Bogle (You can follow up with YouTube videos from Charles and Zita's reign. There are quite a few.)
These books are good for high school history and part of Our Lady of Victory School's Catholic Heroes literature series, meaning you could use them for literature books. I did:
Vienna 1683: Christian Europe Repels the Ottomans (Campaign) (Amazon), by Simon Millar. (reads like a high tech game plan, yet the video fleshes it out excellently)
This Battle of Vienna documentary YouTube video, based on eyewitness accounts was a HUGE help to understanding how the battle was won.
It seemed very good. It told a very similar story to the Vienna 1683 book that OLVS uses and really helped us make better sense of the battle.
On the other hand, it was very good that I had already read most of the book at the time we watched the video.
At the beginning the book reads like a war game instruction manual (Axis and Allies?) so it was an unfamiliar format for most of us, although it was an excellent format for laying out the lay of the land, describing the characters involved, and showing how hard it was to move troops.
1917 Red Banners White Mantle (Amazon), Dr. Warren Carroll (Beware some very bad moment at some points. Do read it yourself first before you assign it.) You can show the video of Our Lady of Fatima as she is the White Mantel part of the story.
AA-1025 The Memoirs of an Anti-Apostle Memoirs of a Communis (Amazon), Marie Carre - Excellent book! We refer to it frequently whenever we need to classify a situation that does not make sense.
Holding the Stirrup (Amazon), by Baroness Elisabeth von Guttenberg is very readable and gives a lovely perspective of what the ordinary people in Germany were like in World War II.
Books for little ones? That's SOOOO hard.
I hate the "little boy ran away from home, did something awful, then became a saint" stories as with so many Faith and Freedom readers, some of the Vision series, and Mary Fabyan Windeatt of the Columbia School. Why teach the children bad or warped stories?
On the other hand, I have read several from In The Footsteps of the Saints series and have found them to be good. I sure hope that all of the books are as good and would love to have every single one for our grandchildren if they are so good. God bless the family that is reprinting them. As with all books, read them to see if they suit your family before you give them to your children.
Our Lady of Victory (OLVS) and other Catholic sites are selling them.
These next are very good books for high school and for you to read ahead of time:
OLVS Heroes: Jim Fitzhenry and his excellent books:
All for the Love of Mothers: Memoirs of a Catholic Midwife (Amazon), by Lisbeth Burger - (Excellent for you now, and the girls as they "graduate". Read it before giving to your girls.)
Forty Dreams Of St. John Bosco: From St. John Bosco's Biographical Memoirs (Amazon), by Saint John Bosco - Excellent for both boys and girls seventh grade and up. Do read it yourself to see it's wonderful power to encourage children to love Jesus and Mary and to practice virtue.
Swords Around the Cross: The Nine Years War: Ireland's Defense of Faith and Fatherland, 1594-1603, (Amazon), by Dr. Timothy O'Donnell - This book tells a super important story about Ireland. Dr. O'Donnell is a descendant of the men and martyrs of the time and tells a very good history. Excellent book with hardly a modern suggestion (which would be odd since it was so long ago). Dr. O'Donnell is President of Christendom College. (It makes me think that Shakespeare could NOT have been both Catholic and in Elizabeth's court.)
The Scarlet and the Black: The True Story of Monsignor Hugh O'Flaherty, Hero of the Vatican Underground (Amazon), J.P. Gallagher - (About Msgr. Hugh O'Flaherty) like the movie the Scarlet and the Black but much better.
Saint Thomas à Becket, The Holy Blissful Martyr (Amazon), by Msgr. Robert Hugh Benson - Great life of St. Thomas of Canterbury.
Stories of Padre Pio (Amazon), by Madame Katharina Tangari - Wonderful descriptions of the advice Padre Pio gave, some miracles, and the towns in Italy and the surrounding areas where Padre Pio lived. My favorite was about the Monk in the air stopping the whole air squadron from bombing his Monastery. Big surprise for the General!
Blessed Miguel Pro: 20th Century Mexican Martyr (Amazon), by Ann Ball, July 1, 1996. - Fast action story of the life of Fr. Miguel Pro. Small book for light assignments. (NOTE Well: The old TAN book carries the good note that his Provincial warned the Jesuits not to participate in certain activities, page 54. It is a warning that shows the danger in some presentations of the Cristeros. Beware the freemasonic influence in some versions of the story.)
Another book that is excellent is To Quell the Terror: The Mystery of the Vocation of the Sixteen Carmelites of Compiegne Guillotined July 17, 1794 (Amazon), Bush - the real story of the Song at the Scaffold and covers the principles of the Revolution. It showed some of the same phrases that new catechisms use. (Very helpful!) To Quell is at a higher reading level, yet well worth the effort especially for you the teacher to understand the French Terror on an academic yet genuinely "real life" way.
I used many of Our Lady of Victory School's books for their literature program in our history courses. Either add these for your voracious readers or combine history and literature to lighten the load for reluctant readers.
I love what I've read of The Cure D'Ars: St. Jean-Marie-Baptiste Vianney (Amazon), by Trochu. It answers many education problems. Excellent book for parents, priests, and aspiring priests, 12th grade and above.
My favorite is Trochu's book on St. Bernadette Soubirous: 1844-1879 (Amazon). It's not hard to read except for the French names and locations. Also, it's like two different lives, the first being her early years surrounding the visions and the second being a very good look at her religious years. Excellent for those discerning a religious vocation. 11th and 12th grade and up.
Not high school, yet I think you'll like St. Bernard of Clairvaux: Oracle of the Twelfth Century, Abbe Ratisbonne. I'd often wondered some of the philosophy questions and Crusade questions that this book answers.
Generally, I have avoided using nearly all the socialist Anglican "converts": John Cardinal Newman, Bellock, GKC, Dickens, Benson (Yes, Robert Hugh Benson had an odd book on the priesthood - even Cardinal Wiseman's book Fabiola needs to be read with caution for new theology, rabble rousing, and civil disobedience elements), Doyle's Sherlock Holmes books (Doyle was into the occult and used a seance in Hound of the Baskervilles), and other Anglican and socialist convert writers and other "converts" (Maritain, et al) whose conversions did not seem entirely complete (whenever a theme confuses me, I choose another book).
You can find other Catholic literature to expand your literature program.
You can also expand your homeschool to the books your children read during the summer either to catch up, stay current, or just for fun.
For those of us who are new to homeschooling it is good to have a list of providers that have put together complete Catholic homeschool programs. At the beginning it is very good to use their boxed lesson plans.
Well, the lesson plans are like homework assignments.
They not only tell your children which assignments to finish in which time frame, they also, and importantly, tell them which pages to skip. Some warn you, the teacher or parent, of problematic information in the books.
Sometimes text books have odd exercises or too many exercises, and it is good to use the time tested wisdom and experience of the Catholic homeschooling companies to sort the good from the bad or the "too much" from the "too little".
Many homeschool lesson plans offer book lists for extra reading and activities to enhance learning certain subjects. These are hard to find if you do not know they exist ahead of time.
As you grow through homeschooling your first years, you will begin to have a feel for not only what is truly Catholic, but also what works for your family and your individual children.
You'll find lesson plans and many good Catholic books at:
What's truly exciting is to find unequivocally good Catholic books where the only lesson plan necessary is "to turn to the next page"! The purpose of this page is to show you where to find these treasures.
This page recommends many Catholic providers of homeschool books in a long list below. You'll appreciate the good advice and short cuts these providers offer.
Go to my favorite homeschool reading books per grade here.
If you're just beginning, Laura Berquist's lists can save you time and money through years of researching and buying books. "Get the idea" and input your own books.
You'll find that the most reliable Catholic homeschool books are based on the Roman Catholic beliefs as found in the Douay-Rheims Bible and the old Baltimore Catechism. You'll find that if a book passes this litmus test it's a good book
If a book uses quotes from the Douay-Rheims Bible it is likely to be a very good Catholic book - especially if it was written in the late twentieth century when authors knew to discern between the many Bibles that claim to be Catholic. My favorite sources are Lepanto Books at OLVS, TANBooks, and Baronius Press.
There are certain Bible quotes that stand out as helpful indicators. Double check the chapter and verse when it is given. See indicative Catholic Bible quotes here.
In general my favorite homeschool books are:
The question is, "Where do I find these good Catholic Homeschool books?" See my favorite book stores below.
Lepanto Press is a Catholic book publishing company that has been noted for using the old Baltimore Catechism and reprinting old Catholic books and textbooks.
They have published their own original copybooks with theme based content.
Their Catholic homeschool curriculum also has lesson plans available.
Here is what they say: "From the beginning, OLVS stressed Religion as the common thread throughout the curriculum, with an accent on the history of the Church. We have also emphasized the importance of good Catholic literature, and we are revising our Music program to teach young children the appreciation of Folk, Classical, and Sacred Music, including polyphony and chant."
OLVS bases their Catholic religion books on the 1885 Baltimore Catechism and has reprinted the Living My Religion series for elementary school. Your children will love the sweet drawings and you will love the good content. These can be used as a grade level reader series for the first few years.
My favorite books at OLVS are the new Catholic history and literature "real books". Start by seeing their El Cid and Saint Fernando III by James Fitzhenry. They have lesson plans for each of his books, too.
Their K-3 Math is now in excellent workbook form. All the best features of the old books they used to use are combined into handy and comprehensive Lepanto Math Workbooks. Our youngest child had better work than four other math books we tried.
Our Lady of Victory School still uses Saxon Math for 5th-12th grade. I want to mention that the homeschool Saxon math books are worth their weight in gold. They're so much easier to use than the old hard bound books, especially since the Lesson numbers are included next to each problem for easy reference.
They have lovely handwriting books that cover Catholic themes and coordinate with their spelling and other books, so that each year has complementary reinforcement.
OLVS uses many of the same science books as other Catholic homeschools. The main thing you'll want to know is that many of the companies have audio CDs of the text books. This is super handy for those students who find it hard to read an 8x11x2" book. There are also journals and lab related resources.
Find Lepanto at Our Lady of Victory School:
421 S. Lochsa Street
Post Falls, ID 83854
Our Lady of Guadalupe Monastery offers an excellent supply of unusual Catholic homeschool books highlighting Benedictine spirituality.
They have excellent selections for the study of Latin and calligraphy that we have not seen anywhere else. They are now also a Catholic book publishing company! Their website has a PDF of their catalog that is well worth the manual request. They are also happy to take your order by phone.
Their book list is well focused and has many rare finds.
Our Lady of Guadalupe Monastery
142 Joseph Blane Road
Silver City, New Mexico, 88061-9799
Catholic Vitality Publications is a Catholic family business where Jim Fitzhenry writes and sells great Catholic literature. Their family's original art tells the story in each of their Catholic Homeschool Books.
Here is what they say: "Catholic Vitality Publications is dedicated to bringing the Roman Catholic faith and traditions to children. Learning to Love God is a children's book with 49 beautiful color illustrations to inspire your child to a greater love of God!
See and order El Cid and Saint Fernando III, brilliant living history literature at Our Lady of Victory School. Breathtaking Catholic adventure in true historical settings teach the details like no textbook can!
El Camino Real has wonderful Catholic books, gifts, holy cards, and much more.
We found this company when we were searching for the The Catechism In Pictures (69 Large Full Color Plates).
El Camino's book publishing company has published the old De la Salle Readers, the crown in their book selection! I had not known that these were in print. They are excellent old Catholic books, a rare find! We love the pedagogy in the front of the books. A truly Catholic "McGuffy" reader set. We now have our own antique set!
They have many other good Catholic homeschool books as well like the incomparable New Missal Latin series of textbooks and teacher manuals.
Here is what they say: "El Camino Real is a Catholic book store dedicated to spreading and publishing classic traditional Catholic books for individuals, families, and home school families who want to learn more about the liturgy of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, Church doctrine, scripture, bible study, theology, apologetics, devotions, the saints, Catholic literature and the spiritual life."
El Camino Real
PO Box 84
Thompsons, TX 77481
Neumann Press is (was) a Catholic book publishing company that has excellent Catholic homeschool books, especially if you are using Laura Berquist's method or are unschooling.
They had a two book set for Homeschool advice in particular.
Some of the most precious books for children are at this site. They have republished Our Holy Faith Vol. 2, Jesus Comes which is the back bone of St. Anne's Audio First Communion Catechism and Catechism Copybook.
It is an excellent book with modest and delightful pictures to go along with some bible stories and the Baltimore Catechism. When Mr. Dennis McCoy died, TAN Books bought the company in 2013.
Here is what they said:
"The Neumann Press is named after Saint John Neumann, bishop of Philadelphia (1851 to 1860), the first man from the United States of America canonized by the Church. Our goal and primary purpose is to republish orthodox, traditional and classic Catholic books that have gone out of print."
21892 County 11
Long Prairie, MN 56347
Tan Books is another Catholic book publishing company that had made a phenomenal effort to republish truly excellent Catholic homeschool books, again, especially if you are using Laura Berquist's method or are unschooling.
My absolute favorite book on their whole list is A Practical Commentary On Holy Scripture. It combines the Bible and the catechism. Their Child's Bible History and Bible History book are very good too.
We have been grateful to use The Catechism of the Council of Trent with our high school children, it is plain spoken, easy to read, and one of our favorite Catholic Homeschool Books!
Read what they say: "TAN Books and Publishers was founded by Thomas A. Nelson in 1967, when the problems developing in the Church were clear and becoming more severe. Many Catholic publishers such as Benziger and Bruce were getting out of Catholic publishing. Mr. Nelson recalls that at age 30, after studying politics and world events, he concluded that the only way to turn around the political situation in the U.S. and the world was through spiritual means. He believed that if enough people were living in the state of grace and striving to do God's will, then, “for the sake of the elect,” God would “run interference” for the just in the social and political arena, according to Proverbs 21:1: “The heart of the king is in the hand of the Lord: whithersoever he will he shall turn it.”
We pray that his successors continue to glorify God in this way.
TAN Books & Publishers
PO Box 410487
Charlotte, NC 28241
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If you are not required to use the Baltimore, check out DeHarbe's Catechism at Amazon. The Small is for Communion preparation and the Large for the rest of us. No Wite-Out necessary. :-)
A Practical Commentary On Holy Scripture combines the Bible and the catechism. I wish all books were this good.
Many of the homeschool book sellers on this page will sell or rent their used homeschool books which can save you time and money.
Of course, Amazon is a great source for used books.
And Ebay often has more selection of older and newer used books.
Sometimes it is simply best to search the world wide web for the exact title you seek.
This way you can find the best price and perhaps even a better version or binding.
Abe Books, Biblio, and other used book sellers often have wonderful Catholic homeschool books.
There are different versions of the Baltimore Catechisms, so you do need to be aware of this; but in general most editions concur with each other.
Catholic Audiobooks and Catholic Worksheets Copybooks use the Baltimore Catechism for First Communion and Confirmation. These Catholic audio books help make the effort of teaching and the effort of learning much easier, especially if you want your students to memorize the answers.
Here is a list of my favorite Catholic books for summer reading.
Order St. Anne's Helper Catholic homeschool ebooks here!
Oh! When you want to check out old editions or copy and paste for research, Archive.org is a huge help finding ebooks that are helpful for homeschool.
You can also find old pages on websites if you use the Wayback Machine.
Tom at AdoremusBooks.com has taken down his website; yet in case he ever puts it back online and because he was good to carry our St. Anne's Helper First Communion and Confirmation Audio CDs, I'll keep this entry.
They offered a great variety of Catholic homeschooling books of art, games, movies, music, and other educational resources for children and families and for Catholic homeschooling.
My favorite from their selection is Andrew Pudewa's IEW - Teaching Writing Structure and Style. This will take your writing classes from K-12. A real treasure for any writer, not just school children.
Here is what they said: "Adoremus Books (Latin for "Let Us Adore!") carries a broad selection of top quality books and resources designed to enrich your Catholic home from the Fathers of the Church to the great writers of today, Adoremus Books has something for everyone."
The Tom Heldridge Family
Frederick Square Shopping Center
2992 S. 84th St.
Omaha, NE 68124
402-502-3162, or toll-free at 888-392-1973
Order Baltimore Catechism worksheets. Choose your favorite fonts, colors, and SIZES.
Use these printables in your Roman Catholic catechism class, Faith formation, Catholic homeschool, religious education, or Sunday school lesson. ~ Mary Fifer
Thank you for visiting our favorite Catholic homeschool books.