the best 12th grade curriculum
Nov 04 2021
Updated at: Feb 14 2022

10 Best 12th Grade Curriculum: A Complete Guide for Home & School

Positive Action Staff
Whether you’re homeschooling your twelfth grader or need lesson plans for your senior year class, you’re going to need a curriculum.

But picking a curriculum is difficult if you don’t know what the typical course for seniors looks like, what the average twelfth grader is taught, or what the American government mandates in twelfth-grade education to certify twelfth-grade students as having graduated.

All these factors are necessary because most colleges expect their applicants to be familiar with the typically required courses, such as advanced math and science.

And while it seems easier to just send your kid to a popular high school program, there are benefits to using a custom curriculum, such as letting the students advance at their own pace.

So let’s take a look at the ten best twelfth grade curricula.

Top 10 Twelfth Grade Curriculum & Resources

1. Positive Action High School Kit 1

4th grade kits

The first high school kit by Positive Action includes 132 lessons split into six units that teach students valuable skill lives through various practical topics, viable for homeschool and in-school use.

Also, each topic consists of three lessons, structured into “Positive Thoughts,” which teach the theoretical side of the topic; “Positive Actions,” which teach how to apply these concepts; and “Positive Feelings,” which allow the students to reflect on what they just learned.

Each unit also carries a different theme. For example, unit 1 focuses on teaching important thinkers in history, such as Socrates, Plato, Thomas Jefferson, Mark Twain, Helen Keller, and Martin Luther King Jr.

The kit includes an introduction, instructor’s manual, materials list, details about each lesson, and 15-minute scripted lessons. There are also activity sheets, visual aids, student booklets, posters, journals, and licenses for the Positive Action mobile app.

2. Positive Action High School Kit 2

4th grade kits

In addition to the same structure of three positive lessons in each topic, the second kit contains a 44-act play called “Lives on the Line” as part of each “Positive Actions” lesson, which teaches the effects of positive thoughts in a practical, storylike setting.

Lives on the Line is a story of how eight diverse teens enter a virtual reality survival game and have to work together to win it and a prize of $100,000.

The teens meet a range of different historical figures through the six units, such as Pythagoras, Michelangelo, and Florence Nightingale. Each of them helps the student with something relevant to the figure’s real-life historical contributions. By the last unit, they complete the game and get their prizes.

Similar to the first kit, the second kit contains manuals, lesson plans, details, and scripted lessons, activity sheets, booklets, journals, and licenses for the official mobile app.

Also, you can use the kit for homeschool or in-school use.

3. Positive Action High School Kit 3

4th grade kits

The Positive Action High School 3 Kit is the first high school kit to introduce projects intertwined with the familiarly themed units of the last two kits.

After each unit, there’s a project that a student can complete by him- or herself, or within a group. The aim is to illustrate what they learned by producing tangible objects.

Examples of the projects are:

  • Writing a newsletter.
  • A research paper.
  • Creating a mock health fair.
  • Volunteering for community service.
  • Creating a media campaign.

As you can see, most of these projects are things that a child needs to learn because they’ll be doing similar things throughout college.

Aside from the projects, each unit also teaches students essential skills that’ll help prepare them for college and life. For example, unit 3 teaches multi-tasking skills, unit 5 about the works of Confucius, and unit 6 allows them to define their future goals.

The third kit comes with the materials we’ve mentioned for kits 1 and 2.

4. Positive Action High School Kit 4

4th grade kits

Finally, we have the High School 4 Kit by Positive Action, which is primed for seniors by default but can be intertwined with the three previous kits, as we’ve said.

Positive Action offers two variants of the HS 4 kit, both of which are student-led courses designed to teach students behaviors they need for their adult life.

The first option is for 4-6 students to form a group together and work their way through the six units, with one student designated group leader for every unit, giving everyone a chance at leading the group.

The second option simulates an entire family, with each student role-playing a part of the family. The objective is for students to work together to solve the challenges within the family, with each student switching to a different role in each unit so they can experience different perspectives.

The kit comes with some manuals and lesson details as in the previous kits. Additionally, there are folders for each option, a game board, game cards, and certificates of completion.

5. Timberdoodle Twelfth Grade Curriculum Kit - Elite

This 12th grade kit by Timberdoodle somewhat resembles a traditional school curriculum, but with some adjustments to fit a schedule of 4-5 days a week, 3-5 hours a day, which is the amount of time it takes families to finish the curriculum on average.

If your schedule doesn’t match this kit’s schedule, then no problem because it’s a flexible curriculum that you can fit around your occupations.

Subjects include British literature, creative arts, world history, philosophy, and STEM subjects.

We’ve highlighted the elite kit because it has the most features and, in our opinion, the most value for money. However, there are two categories, classic and nonreligious, with three variants: basic, complete, and elite.

As you might expect, the basic kit contains just the required subjects in a typical high school, such as language arts and math. As for the complete and elite kits, they include additional useful subjects such as thinking skills, economics, bioloid STEM, and arts.

6. Time4Learning Online 12th Grade Curriculum

3rd grade kits

Time4Learning’s online 12th-grade homeschool curriculum focuses on preparing college-bound seniors for their college education by providing them with the typically-required courses and elective courses to help them decide what they want to study in the future.

This 12th-grade homeschool curriculum is excellent for students who aren’t up-to-date with what their public school peers study. Thus, it can help them avoid falling behind during college since most colleges expect their entrees to have studied specific subjects to certain extents.

For example, if your child is behind on Algebra 1 or 2, they’ll learn that in one semester, then precalculus or trigonometry in another semester.

They’ll also study any high school grade science, social studies, foreign language, or physical education subjects that they’ve missed out on previously.

Finally, they can pick from a wide selection of electives to study, including sociology, psychology, economics, personal finance, environmental science, and more.

7. Power Homeschool 12th Grade Program

Power Homeschool is a 12th grade homeschool curriculum that includes courses in language arts, math, twelfth grade science, social studies, fine arts, and more. The aim is to ensure students are up to date with non-homeschooled students.

In twelfth grade, students can take up to seven courses. Power Homeschool recommends these seven to be a mix of core subjects and electives.

There are also several course options under each subject. For instance, under math, students can choose algebra, geometry, precalculus, or calculus. There are also options for advanced placement and honors options.

Power Homeschool is an online homeschool, so your kid will be following the pre-recorded courses, practice problems, and reviews at their own pace. There’s also a mobile app called Acellus, which students can log into to track their progress and set goals.

Overall, Power Homeschool aims to prepare high school students for college or community college.

8. Sonlight 12th Grade Curriculum

Sonlight is a company that aims to provide religion-based homeschooling to students. So if instilling religious values in your kid’s education is essential to you, then check this out.

This 12th-grade homeschool curriculum includes core subjects like language arts, math, and science. In addition, there are Bible studies, geography, history, and literature.

This package also includes manuals to help you teach your kid for the entire year, which is excellent, especially if you’re new to homeschooling. Experts fully plan the manual, and you have to follow it step by step.

9. ACE Core Curriculum (4 Subjects) Grade 12 Kit

Advanced Christian Education (ACE) is another religious school brand, and although they don’t teach Bible studies in this kit, they follow Biblical principles.

Despite the name, this kit includes five courses: trigonometry, English language arts, U.S. civics, economics, and physics. However, civics and economics are categorized as “social studies,” which is one of the four core subjects at a high school level.

ACE forces students to depend on themselves more than on a teacher. For example, students have the self-instructional PACE books to study, and they have to take a practice self-test and a final test by the end to measure their understanding.

10. Forest Trail Academy Grade 12 Online High School Course Curriculum

Forest Trail Academy offers this twelfth-grade curriculum in full compliance with the American government common core standards. This interactive curriculum is a stepping stone for twelfth-grade students going into college and prepares them for their future through necessary academic courses and electives.

The twelfth-grade curriculum includes five core courses:

  • English (English IV)
  • Math (trigonometry, precalculus, or calculus)
  • Science (physics)
  • Social studies (geography)
  • Foreign language arts (French I/II or Spanish I/II)

Additionally, students can take two electives out of 25. Some of the electives offered include mass communication, astronomy, driver’s education, computer applications, photoshop, and stress management.

What Is Taught in 12th Grade?

Now let's take an overview of the five common core courses mandated by the American government and which each student should learn before they graduate.

Language Arts

Since college students often write essays and research papers, students should master English writing and comprehension skills by 12th grade. Their grammar should be near-perfect since they’ll be writing a ton, especially if they’re enrolling in a humanitarian school such as economics or political science.

Furthermore, language arts and literature should sharpen the student's comprehension skills because they'll be reading about new terms that they're not familiar with in college.

As for foreign languages, not everyone will indeed need them in their adult life, but it's still beneficial. Spanish is handy in many states, which is why it's so commonly taught in schools. French isn't uncommon to see in school settings either, and for a good reason.


Almost all high schoolers hate math at this point of their education because it often feels too complicated, and not everyone will need it in the future. And while that's true, we can't change the fact that it's mandatory.

Students planning to enroll in engineering or computer science fields will definitely need to brush up on their math. They should at least finish algebra 2 and geometry before they enroll in college.

If a 12th-grade student still hasn’t taken the SAT or ACT and plans on doing so, they should brush up on algebraic topics such as quadratic equations, rational functions, and inequalities. As for geometry, they should know most shapes and solids pretty well and how to get their dimensions.


During the four high school years, students traditionally learn biology, physics, and chemistry, in no particular order. And many colleges will require these courses to be accepted.

Students who haven't completed three years of science, one science course per year, should look to add up to their science repertoire before they apply to college. However, those with an appetite for science or who plan to enter scientific colleges would do well to take a fourth science course.

Social Studies

Just like science, only three years of social studies are required for college entry.

There's no standard core subject for social studies. Instead, students typically choose from several electives, including geography, history, finance, business, sociology, or theology.

Physical Education

In most high schools, physical education is an elective course rather than a mandatory one. Given the benefits it has for the student, though, we’d say it’s one of the most important electives to take up during your senior year.

Final Thoughts

That'll be it for our top 12th grade curricula, and an overview of the five core courses taught in high school.

To recap, each curriculum we listed has its pros and cons, but overall, we have to give credit to the Positive Action kit for the way each kit complements the next one and how they aim to teach students through novel, practical means. Besides, the amount of flexibility it gives instructors is commendable!