Homeschool Help


#1

Hello,

My wife and I are considering homeschooling our girls. Currently, the oldest two are in regular schools (a preschooler and a first grader). We are so excited about the possibility of beginning a program here at home next school year, however, we do not know where to begin. Could anyone here help us on our way?

In the Hearts of Jesus and Mary,

Jason


#2

There appears to be a local group with a fair amount of info: Homeschool Network of Greater Cincinnati, they can at the very least point you to appropriate local support groups (who usually have info nights for new homeschoolers).

HSLDA is invaluable for understanding your legal responsibilities (Ohio had a notification law, including a detailed syllabus when we were there a few years ago).

Otherwise a lot depends on how structured you want the program to be: Seton, Mother of Divine Grace, and similar programs offer a very structured format. My mom used a “build-your-own” approach after starting with Seton.


#3

I think you would really enjoy attending a Catholic Homeschool conference. The one in Indianapolis will be May 15, 2010. It’s free, but asks for a donation.

here’s some more:

setonhome.org/conferences.shtml

I know the Dayton conference is growing.

I like CHC better for the early grades because it seems more young kid friendly.

chcweb.com/catalog/index.html

I think you should try to hook up with a support group as soon as you can, even before you start homeschooling. Go to the social events and meet some families.

God bless. It’s a great life.


#4

Luckily, at their ages, homeschooling them isn’t nearly as complicated. You can be as structured or unstructured as you want – from buying a whole curriculum as people have suggested, to getting a few workbooks and plowing through them. You won’t necessarily have to have a “school day” as long as traditional school – it is quite likely that you will be able to get your small “class” through all the work by lunchtime if you want to.

I would suggest writing down your educational goals for the year. First off, why are you homeschooling? In what ways do you think they can develop this year? You can put in this category your social and behavioral goals: for instance, learning to sit still, to follow the daily schedule, to work well in groups, what-have-you. Then your goals for every subject – fluent reading, math up to X level in a book (or up to additon and subtraction, etc.), a lot of field trips for science and history …

When you know where you want to go and how much you want to achieve within a year, you’ll have an easier time making all the decisions that go along with that, like curricula or schedules.

Do you know any homeschooling families in your area? Do a little research and see if you can find some. Their advice and cooperation will be invaluable as you try to homeschool.

And, of course, know your laws. A Google search should tell you everything you need to know about state educational requirements. In many states, education is not compulsory until the age of eight – so you can homeschool with no extra requirements until then. This might not be the case, though, so do check.


#5

I suggest reading Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum by Laura Berquist. Also, get to a homeschool conference if you can :thumbsup:

We homeschooled for many years. Our youngest is now 18 and I am back to classroom teaching. Homeschooling was great fun and good for our family. I miss it :o


#6

As a parent that pulled her kids out of public school to homeschool them I understand your fears. My kids were in 1st grade and Kindergarten when we pulled them out. They now are 3rd and 2nd grade. We just started our second year of homeschooling.

My advice is really no different then what others have already posted.

1) Make sure you know YOUR state laws. HSLDA: State Laws is a good resource for that.
2) Have your goals and price in mind prior to looking for material-curriculum. Homeschooling can be done for little to no cost or it would cost $1,000s of dollars per child. So have an idea of what your willing to spend and what you want prior to looking at curriculum. Chances are you’ll be able to find something that fits your needs within your budget. You just have to have a general idea of what those are prior to shopping.

As for actual curriculum resources there are a few choices. Seeing this is a Catholic-Board I can assume you would want Catholic Resources, but instead of limiting you to just that, I’ll direct to my blog where I have several resources listed; Catholic and Non-Catholic Resources. The list on my site is NOT complete, there are a lot more resources out there, but perhaps it would be a good starting point.

And lastly, don’t be afraid of change. You’ll know in a short time if a curriculum, lesson plans, or scheduling is working for your family. The first year you can get a lot done, but it is also an year of figuring out what will work and what will not work. Honestly even though this is our second year, I’m still learning what works or does not work. :slight_smile: I have a better handle on it now then I did this time last year.


#7

Way to go on Home Schooling! I am a huge supporter-- even though I’m working on being a Post-Secondary Teacher I am home schooling my daughter. The biggest thing is make sure you have support! I can’t stress that enough. There is some type of Home Schooling group/network in just about any area, no matter how remote. The group can be an invaluable tool wether it be friendship networking for your kids or parenting/schooling advice for you!

Secondly don’t be supriesed if your children use different forms of education from each other. For example, one may be fairly independant and able to work through her assignments with little guidence while the other may be very demanding on your time. It was like that for us. (I was home schooled growing up!) I was the independant one while my brother was the taskmaster one. My mother would have the hardest time keeping him on task!

Good Luck! The rewards you’ll see are worth more than words!

P.S. Feel free to mesage me if you would like. I’ve been through it on all ends having been home schooled and being the teacher. :slight_smile:


#8

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