Category Archives: Classes for Homeschoolers

The Pro’s and Con’s of Homeschool Co-ops

Pros and Cons of Homeschool Co-ops

Now is the time of year when you begin seeing signs and hearing all about Homeschool Co-ops. Homeschool Co-ops can be a great thing! But, for some they are overwhelming, and another thing to “mark off” the schedule.

Before committing to a homeschool co-op it is important to weigh the pros and cons.

Pro’s of Homeschool co-ops

  • Socialization-This is a given and the reason many families choose to participate in co-ops. Homeschool co-ops allow your children to meet with the same kids week after week which encourage friendships to be built.
  • School like experience- One thing I hear often is “how will the kids operate in the real world”, while I don’t believe school is “real life” I know many parents want their children to experience a school like environment. Homeschool co-ops can offer this.
  • Takes care of the extras- Homeschool co-ops allow you to “mark off” the extras like music, art, and PE.
  • Allow children to learn new things-Homeschool co-ops allow children to learn from other parents, subjects that maybe you aren’t the most experienced at. Messy science experiments, calculus, finance and many other subjects can be taught at homeschool co-ops.

Con’s of Homeschool co-ops

  • Time- Time running to class, time coming home, time at class, time to prepare lessons (if you teach), are all things to consider. Especially if you are short on time BEFORE signing up for a homeschool co-op.
  • School like experience- Yes, this is a pro and a con. Many parents homeschool because they do not want their children to learn from others, or have the public school experience. If this is why you homeschool, then a homeschool co-op may not be the best choice.
  • Commitment- Homeschool co-ops require a commitment, this can be financial (co-ops often cost), a time commitment (you will often need to commit to the length of the co-op ranging from weeks to months), or a teaching commitment (many co-ops require parents to teach, help or work in another capacity during co-op).

In addition to evaluating the pros and cons, I also suggest you talk to the homeschool group leader, ask what will be required of you. Go over the classes with your children; make sure they WANT to make the commitment that a homeschool co-op requires. You do NOT want to be dragging them a few weeks in when they don’t even want to be there.

Before agreeing to a homeschool co-op it is important to know all the pros and cons. Hopefully this list will help you decide if a homeschool co-op is a good fit for your family.

Author Bio: Misty Bailey and her husband have been married for over a decade and have three beautiful children. She shares her struggles with time management, becoming unglued, homeschooling and finding joy in the everyday moments on her blog Joy in the Journey.

Extracurricular Activities for Homeschoolers

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One thing I was worried about when I first began homeschooling, was how my kids would make friends. I wasn’t worried about socialization, just what activities would be available to them since they were homeschooled. Within our first year of homeschooling I realized just how little I actually needed to worry ! There are tons of extracurricular activities for homeschoolers, here are just a few.

Scouts
Boy scouts, girl scouts, either one is open to homeschoolers. Some scouting groups are inclusive to a school district, but many will also take homeschooled children also. In order to get information for your homeschooled child contact your local office. You can find an office close to you by looking on their website.

Sports

Many school districts allow homeschoolers to participate in sporting events. Some have a cut off as to age and grade. Check with your local school district for more information. If you do not want to go through a school district check and see if a church near you offers Upward Sports. These are typically Christian based, and not as competitive. They are also open to anyone.

Theatre

If you have a little drama queen don’t despair! Many towns offer children’s theatre programs. These programs are all inclusive and have no district requirements.

Homeschool Groups

Many homeschool groups offer co-ops, field trips, etc. Some larger groups offer sports teams, scouting and more. Check with your homeschool group and see what they offer. If you don’t have a local homeschool group, consider starting one yourself!

Library

Book clubs, arts and crafts, computer classes, and even homeschool story times are available at many local libraries. Many of these activities are after school hours, so they are open to all!

These are just a few of many possible extracurricular activities for homeschoolers. Depending on where you live you may be able to utilize all or some of these options. Larger areas tend to have more opportunities than smaller towns, but as a homeschool mom in a small town myself, I have to say that small towns will still offer many of these extracurricular activities!

Misty Bailey is a wife to Roger and a homeschool mom to three beautiful blessings. She resides with her family in Southern Ohio. She loves helping new homeschoolers and has a free Homeschool 101 eBook for those getting started. She shares her struggles with time management, becoming unglued and finding joy in the everyday moments on her blog Joy in the Journey. You can also find her on Facebook and Pinterest.

 

 

 

Guide To Attending a Homeschool Expo

Have you stayed away from the Homeschool Expo just because of the magnitude of it all?  Looking at the listing of workshops or a peak into the exhibit hall can give you a deer in the headlights look!  Where do you start?

  • Plan ahead by reading about the available workshops and making a note of when it will be held.  If there are two you want to attend at the same time, consider which would be best to attend and get the other on CD.  If you go with a friend or a spouse, you can each attend one and share notes afterwards.
  • Have a list of curriculum you want to look over.  Plan on taking the time you need and ask the exhibitors your questions.
  • Know your prices.  If you buy at the conference it will save on shipping, but you will want to have some kind of luggage or cart on wheels to save your strength.
  • Do you have a budget?  If you do, don’t spend it all at once!  The school year is long and you will probably need something else before the year is out.

Attending the Homeschool Expo is educational and exciting.  The workshops and exhibitors are there for you.  You might also want to consider Homeschooling for Excellence, a one day conference for beginning homeschoolers.

http://www.southeasthomeschoolexpo.com/homeschooling-101