Curious if BrainPOP is worth it? Read through my BrainPOP review and see if this online homeschool curriculum is right for your family.
I got lucky the first time around.
My oldest daughter loves reading, flashcards, and worksheets, which makes picking curriculums for her fairly easy. My second daughter, however… not so much.
She gets bored with curriculums pretty fast, so I’m always on the lookout for something engaging enough to keep her interest. BrainPOP is known for offering a more active and creative learning process, so I was excited to check it out.
In this post, I’m sharing our BrainPOP review and what we thought of this online homeschool curriculum for grades K-8.
Let’s get to it!
I was compensated for my time reviewing BrainPOP and writing this post. This post reflects my personal opinion about the information provided.
A Homeschoolers BrainPOP Review
BrainPOP is an online homeschool curriculum. They offer lessons for grades Kindergarten through 8th grade that you can access anywhere, anytime.
One of the things that makes BrainPOP so appealing is that they don’t just offer academic subjects like math and reading.
They also have science, social studies, health, engineering, arts & music, and even technology lessons! This makes BrainPOP a great option for kids who are interested in a variety of subjects.
BrainPOP is also known for its short, animated movies that teach concepts in a fun and engaging way. These movies are followed by interactive quizzes, games, and activities to reinforce the lesson.
What’s included with your purchase
Your purchase includes membership to the BrainPOP website. When you register, you will set up a parent account that allows you to create classes, assign lessons, and check on the work that your students submit.
You will also have access to BrainPOP Educators, which is a site just for teachers with additional resources, such as lesson plans and standards alignments.
Once you get your parent account and the classes for your students set up (I’ll go into more detail on how to do that later in the review) you can set up accounts for each of your students as well.
Your students will be able to log in and access all of the lessons that you assign to them.
For this BrainPOP review, I got access to the BrainPOP Homeschool Combo membership that includes access to BrainPOP Homeschool and BrainPOP Homeschool Jr.
BrainPOP Homeschool Jr. covers Kindergarten through 3rd grade. BrainPOP Homeschool covers 3rd grade through 8th grade.
Currently, my children are in Kindergarten, 2nd grade, and 6th grade, so I was able to check out a pretty broad range of topics.
BrainPOP is geared towards a more traditional homeschooling approach. They have put together a comprehensive curriculum that covers all of the core academic subjects, as well as some enrichment topics.
However, because BrainPOP allows you, the parent, to pick and choose which topics you cover and at what pace, it’s a curriculum that could be adapted and used for almost any homeschool philosophy.
It would be especially useful for families who roadschool or learn on the go because the curriculum is based online.
BrainPOP has three different homeschool options.
- BrainPOP Homeschool (Grades 3-8) for $39.95 a month
- BrainPOP Homeschool Jr. (Grades K-3) for $29.95 a month
- BrainPOP Homeschool Combo (Grades K-8) for $49.95 a month
BrainPOP offers a free 2-week trial to try it out before buying. The free trial gives you access to all of the features of the paid membership, so it’s a great way to decide if BrainPOP is right for your family.
Brainpop Review: Online Homeschool Curriculum Overview
Don’t want to read? Watch my review here! (video)
BrainPOP offers three different types of membership options for homeschoolers. They have BrainPOP Homeschool Jr. which is for kids in grades K-3.
BrainPOP Homeschool is for kids in grades 3-8. They also offer BrainPOP Homeschool combo, which covers all grades K-8.
Each membership is good for up to 4 child accounts. You can check out the breakdown of their membership options on the BrainPOP website.
The BrainPOP website is divided into different subject areas within each section of the website.
The main subjects for BrainPOP Homeschool Jr. are:
- Reading and Writing
- Social Studies
- Arts and Technology
The main subjects for BrainPOP Homeschool are:
- Social Studies
- Arts and Music
- Health and SEL
- Engineering and Tech
Within each subject, you can choose from different units or topics and assign lessons from there.
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How to Use BrainPOP
Now that we’ve covered the basics of this BrainPOP review, let’s talk about how to set up your account and actually use the curriculum.
Step 1: Set up your parent account
The first thing you need to do is set up your account. Create a username when you sign up for your free 2-week trial.
Step 2: Create a class for your child
Once you get your teacher account set up, you need to create a class for your child. Head to the dashboard section of your account and click ‘Create Class.’
I found it easiest to just create one class for each child. You can assign multiple topics or subjects to a class.
Step 3: Save the code for the class
After you create a class, you’ll get a unique code for that class. You’ll use that code to let your child get access to the class.
Step 4: Enter the code for the class
Next, you’ll need to log out of your account. Then click on the words ‘Enter Code’ at the top of the screen.
Type in the code from your child’s class. You will then be prompted to log in or create your child’s account.
Step 5: Set up your child’s account
If you haven’t yet, now would be the time to set up your child’s account. Once you sign in you’ll be taken to your child’s account.
Step 6A: Start assigning subjects
Once your child has their account set up and they have access to the class you’ve created, you’re ready to start assigning lessons.
Ways to assign subjects
There are two ways to assign lessons with BrainPOP Homeschool.
- Assign from the parent dashboard
- Search through the subjects offered
To assign lessons from the parent’s dashboard follow these steps:
The first thing you need to do is make sure you’re logged into your parent account. Then click on the ‘Dashboard.’
Scroll down and click on the button that says ‘+ New Assignment.’ Then you’ll title your assignment (you can call it whatever you want), pick the class that you want to assign lessons, then click ‘Next.’
You have the option to pick a due date or schedule the assignment for later, but you don’t have to do this part.
Next, you’ll click ‘+ Add Topic,’ click BrainPOP or BrainPOP Jr. depending on what grade you’re assigning for, and then search for the topics you want. You can’t do general searches like “Math” or “English.”
You will need to search for specific topics within the broader subjects.
Once you find a topic you want, simply click on it once it appears below the search bar.
After that, you can choose what types of lessons you want to assign your student from that topic. Click on which lessons you would like to assign your student.
You can continue to add topics and lessons for up to 15 lessons. If you wanted to add more than that, you would have to create another assignment.
Once you’ve added the lessons you want to assign, click the ‘Next’ button at the bottom. Glance over the next page that comes up, add any instructions you think your student will need, and click ‘Assign.’
Now your student is ready to complete assignments on their own.
Look through the subjects under the child’s account:
An alternative way to assign subjects is to browse through the subjects and topics listed. First, click on either BrainPOP or BrainPOP Jr. and go to the home page.
Make sure you’re logged into your parent account. Click on a subject you want to assign lessons from.
You can look through the units or topics listed. Once you find a topic you like, click on it and you’ll be taken to a list of more detailed topics. Click on the one you want to assign your student.
From there you will be taken to a page that has the Movie lesson for that topic as well as all the other activities for that topic. You can click the ‘Assign’ button at the top of the page and it will automatically take you to the Assignment Builder where you can choose which class you want to assign the topic to.
You can choose to assign just the movie, or you can click the button ‘Add more features.’ From there, you can choose to add more lessons from the same topic as the movie you are assigning.
Step 6B: Pick your lessons as you go along
If the idea of hunting through and assigning lessons is more work than you want to deal with, you always have the option of just picking a topic and working from there.
Have your child sign in to their account, and choose a subject from the ones listed on the homepage. Then choose a topic and then a sub-topic.
From there, your child simply completes the lessons and submits them to the teacher when they’re done.
Step 7: Complete the lessons
Once you’ve assigned lessons (if you decide to), your child is ready to complete them. To do so, they log in to their account.
They click on ‘Dashboard.’ There they will see their assignments listed. Once they click on an assignment, they will see a list of the individual lessons.
They will click on a lesson and go from there. Once they complete the lesson, they can move on to the next one.
Some lessons will ask them if they’re ready to submit their assignment to the teacher.
You can check all completed assignments and check their scores on their quizzes from the dashboard in your parent account.
Who Would BrainPOP Be a Good Fit For?
Time for the next part of this BrainPOP review: who would get the most out of this curriculum. I really enjoy using online homeschool curriculums because they are really convenient when we’re traveling and I don’t have to keep up with a bunch of different books or notebooks.
Here are some other families who would get a lot out of this curriculum:
If you want your children to be able to work independently and without you having to sit right next to them for their schoolwork, this is a good fit.
Homeschooling multiple students
You want something that can work for multiple children. Your BrainPOP Homeschool subscription is good for up to 4 students.
You want something open and go
If you’re looking for something that requires very little prep on your part, this is a good choice. You can just log in and start doing activities without having to worry about setting anything up.
If you do choose to assign subjects ahead of time, once you do, your student is good to go for quite a while on their own.
Homeschooling on the go
If your family does any traveling or roadschooling throughout the year, BrainPOP is a great choice. Because all of the work can be done online or printed out, it’s easy to use while traveling or out of the home.
Your child gets bored with traditional learning styles
If you have a child who gets easily bored with schoolwork, I think BrainPOP is a great choice. My younger daughter often gets distracted or bored with regular reading or writing activities.
BrainPOP uses very creative and interesting lessons that kept her engaged so she could stay on task and absorb the information.
Covers multiple subjects
BrainPOP would also be a good fit for anyone who wants something that covers multiple subjects. With all the topics offered, especially if you choose the BrainPOP Homeschool Combo option, you’ll have almost all of your subjects covered with 1 curriculum.
Which cuts down on the cost quite a bit.
What We Liked About BrainPOP
The next thing I want to talk about it in this BrainPOP review is what we liked about it. I tried it out with all 3 of my children, so we were able to really check out both BrainPOP Homeschool Jr. and BrainPOP Homeschool.
Here’s what we enjoyed the most:
Lots of subjects and activities to choose from
I really liked how many subjects are covered. It was nice to see things like Health and Technology as options alongside Math and Language Arts.
I loved how engaging the lessons were. I often struggle to find a curriculum that works with my younger daughter because she gets bored and distracted so easily. Which often makes it a fight to get her schoolwork done.
This curriculum is engaging enough that she had no problem staying focused and getting her lessons done.
Lots of different ways to show mastery of a subject
I love, love all the different ways that BrainPOP lets the students show how much they’ve learned. They’ve gone beyond the typical question-and-answer type assessments that you see in most curriculums.
Having the options to make movies, practice coding, write skits, and even draw allowed my children to show a deeper depth of knowledge and explore the topic even better.
My kids had a lot of fun using this curriculum. My son asked all on his own to get on BrainPOP and my daughter asked me if she could do more lessons than I assigned. Any curriculum that my kids actually ask me to do gets a big thumbs up from me.
Short, but informative videos
I really like how each topic starts off with a short but informative video. They clearly explained the information for each topic, but my kids felt like they were watching a fun movie.
They were long enough to cover the information, but not so long that my kids got bored.
Multiple ways to use the program
Another thing I liked about BrainPOP as the parent, is that there are different ways you can use the program. I can assign topics to make sure the information I want to be covered gets done, but my kids can also dive into other topics that catch their interest.
It’s nice to have the option to use the curriculum in whichever way works best for what we need at the time.
Can be used with multiple children
I loved that BrainPOP can be used with multiple children. To be able to have just one subscription that my whole family can use is huge.
A wide age range covered
The last thing we loved about BrainPOP is that they offer lessons for a wide age range. I loved that my youngest learner and my oldest can all use the lessons. This makes this curriculum a really affordable option for families compared to some of the other ones out there.
FAQ’s About BrainPOP Online Homeschool Curriculum
If after reading through this BrainPOP review you still have a few questions, don’t worry! I got you covered.
Here are the most common questions that come up about BrainPOP’s online homeschool curriculum.
What homeschooling philosophy does this work well with?
I think this curriculum works really well for many different homeschool philosophies. Here are the ones that I think it would fit well with the most:
- Virtual/Distance Learning (In fact, BrainPOP was used in over 70% of US schools during the pandemic.)
- Unit Studies
Is this a full curriculum?
I think BrainPOP could be used as a full curriculum. The BrainPOP Educators website (included with your subscription), offers lesson plans and guides to help you make sure you’re covering all the topics you need to.
Each subject also has lessons and activities that align with learning standards to help make sure your students are learning what they need to.
You can even look up what standards each lesson covers according to your state. This could be really useful for states that have higher reporting requirements.
How many kids can use the curriculum under 1 account?
Up to 4 students can use BrainPOP under 1 homeschool subscription.
How long will my child need to spend on this curriculum each day?
How long your child would spend on BrainPOP would really depend on how many subjects they were using for this curriculum and how many lessons you assigned each day. We only used the curriculum for a couple of topics per child, so they probably only spent about 30 or so minutes on it a day.
You could have your children spend as little or as much time on it as you feel they need depending on your homeschool schedule.
How much does BrainPOP cost?
BrainPOP has three different membership options for homeschoolers:
- BrainPOP Homeschool Jr. Grades K-3 – $29.95/month or $295/year (save 18%)
- BrainPOP Homeschool Grades 3-8 – $39.95/month or $350/year (save 27%)
- BrainPOP Homeschool Combo Grakes K-8 – $49.95/month or $430/year (save 27%)
When compared to how much it costs when you buy different subjects individually or pay for different curriculums for each child, I think this curriculum is a good choice for bigger families.
Plus, you can use their free trial and try it out for 2 weeks free. Click here to get see their current prices and get a free 2-week trial!
Is there a curriculum map or table of contents so I can see what is offered?
You can see all the topics and lessons offered on their website. They show their subjects listed on the homepage.
How do I know if my child is understanding the material?
To check if your child is understanding the content, you will need to go back and look through their submitted assignments.
BrainPOP automatically grades the quizzes, but the submitted work will need to be looked over by the teacher. You can check their assignments to see if they grasped the lesson well enough to move on.
Where can I sign up for BrainPOP?
Click the button below to get more information and sign up for BrainPOP Homeschool!
Final Thoughts on BrainPOP Review: Online Homeschool Curriculum Grades K-8
I hope this BrainPOP review has given you a good overview of how BrainPOP works and if it would be a good fit for your family. I found the curriculum to be fun, engaging, comprehensive, and a good fit for larger homeschool families.
What about you? Would you add anything to this BrainPOP review? Let me know in the comments or email me at email@example.com. Follow me on Pinterest for more homeschool tips and advice.
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Candice is a mom of 3 who has been homeschooling since 2013. She has an A.A.S. in Early Childhood Studies and cares deeply about helping other parents get the information and resources they need to help them homeschool their children with confidence.