To Homeschool or Not To Homeschool?

That is the question I’ve heard from several people lately! I always like to ask why someone chooses to homeschool. The answers vary widely. From wanting a more flexible schedule to moral/religious reasons to a more personalized education for their child to steering free from Common Core to providing an educational method not found in schools…the whys are different for everyone.

One thing is for sure. More and more people are homeschooling.

I am also amazed at how this website is really reaching out to a lot of people in our community! Both homeschooling families and others who are just thinking of homeschooling. Just last week, I spoke with my daughter’s former gymnastics coach (from a homeschool gymnastics class), and now she is really thinking of homeschooling! Another friend of mine is making the plunge and she will be hiring a private teacher for her children. Pockets of homeschoolers gather as co ops, pay teachers for group classes, go on outings together, etc.

People often email me about how they can find a group that’s right for them. Since one size never fits all with homeschoolers, it’s important for you to look around to find what will work for you and your family. A good place to start is on the link above, HS Groups. Also, ask around. You may be surprised who homeschools at your church or on your child’s sports team or extra curricular activity. I’ve even been asked about homeschooling while shopping at Costco! (During a school day, of course, with all my little ducks in a messy row.) One surprising gathering place is homeschool gymnastics…all three gyms in the area offer homeschool gymnastics classes. Arizona Dreams Academy, YMCA, and Synergy Gymnastics (formerly Flip City in Prescott) And while your boys and girls (of all ages…so nice to do one extra curricular activity for everyone at the same place at the same time) have fun with their PE, you can chat with the other moms.

Also, I would love to have other regular/semi-regular writers and contributors on this blog. Maybe you’re in-the-know about things going on around here and want to share with others. Maybe you like to write about tips and tricks for homeschooling. Maybe you have a club/co-op/play group you want to grow. Just let me know. I also always appreciate the emails from the program directors of educational classes/opportunities that ask me to publicize their opportunity on this website.

prescotthshub at gmail.com

Project L.E.A.P. for 2014/15

LEAP is a local homeschool project-based co-op that meets once a week on Thursday afternoons to do project-based learning activities/opportunities in a group setting for kids 5-13. The co-op is operated by the moms involved in their own homes so it keeps the costs down–supplies only. The groups are split into ages: 5-7s, 8-10s, 11-13s. All kids who participate also have an actively participating parent (this is not a drop-off group). The parent alternates being responsible for a monthly project, teaching an age group as a group leader, or assisting a group leader. Babies and toddlers tag along, either staying close to their mom or playing in another room.

Each month, the groups focus on one unit study/theme for three weeks then have a culminating 4th week where they show off what they have learned or going on a field trip. Some of the upcoming themes for next year’s projects are art with an art exhibit, animals and habitats, meteorology, Spanish with a Spanish market, Crime Solvers, and archaeology. The group also picks out a book each month to read at home with their children that corresponds with the month’s theme. Then they have a book club conversation with the kids about the book they read.

This year, the group will also begin having a Mom’s Night where homeschooling moms can get together and discuss (or chat and laugh) about opportunities and challenges of homeschooling.

Homeschoolers who are interested in joining the LEAP group can try it out for a month to see if it’s a fit for them. The group will have those parents assist a group leader during that first month. After that, the group would like the new parents to take turns in being group leaders.

One thing about this co-op is that it doesn’t matter what methodology you use in teaching your kids. You can unschool, take a classical approach, a christian approach, or use K12. Since the teaching is project-based, it supplements any educational method.

For more information, email info@leaphomeschool.org. Or post a comment to this post.

LEAP Mom’s Night

In preparation for the upcoming school year, the moms in the LEAP co-op will be getting together to share tips (and frustrations!) for a better homeschooling experience. They are opening up the evening for other moms to join in the conversation and fun…whether or not you homeschool. In the interest of the host’s privacy, I am only posting her contact information, not her address. If you are interested in attending, call or text her for her address.

Host: Katie Nyman

(homeschooling mom for 4 years, with 3 kids ranging from 2-8 1/2 yrs old)

Call or text Katie at: 480-529-2876

Thursday, July 31 from 7:00 – 9:00 pm

“Creating the Peaceful Home”

With children home all day, there is PLENTY of opportunity for conflict to arise amongst our children and ourselves. Let’s start the school year off by discussing how we teach our children to get along, how we encourage them to work together, and how we control ourselves when things just don’t go our way.

Come prepared to share what works for you and your family and any ideas you have on the subject.