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Homeschoolers, what is your best advice for someone who is starting out?

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Asked by Anonymous at 11:48 AM on Sep. 29, 2009 in

Answers (6)
  • First make sure you follow at state and local laws.

    Then find all of the local and not so local resources available to you. Homeschool groups, charter schools, school district programs. Then sort them out and decide which may be valuable to you.

    Next you need to decide what kind of homeschoolers you are. Why you are homeschooling, and what your goal is for your children. You will get so much advice, and so much criticism, not all from non-homeschoolers, so you want to be sure you know what you want to accomplish.

    Then breathe, it's a lot of work, but homeschooling my younger boys was the best thing I ever did. The youngest is 17, and a sophomore in college this year. Good Luck!!

    Answer by ohwrite at 11:53 AM on Sep. 29, 2009

  • Know your state laws inside and out.
    Find a homeschool group that you like for activities and support.
    Read plenty of books about homeschooling. There are many different styles and curriculum choices.
    Commit to a year, minimum. It takes a while to find what style works for you and your family.
    Don't try to replicate school at home.
    Take time off as needed. You don't have to follow the school schedule.
    Have FUN. Kids learn when they are interested and engaged. Make it fun and interesting.
    Feel free to toss any curriculum that isn't working for you or your kids.

    Good luck!

    Answer by mancosmomma at 3:30 PM on Sep. 29, 2009

  • P.S. Check out the Happy Homeschoolers group here on CM. Over 6000 supportive members, and plenty of good advice.

    Answer by mancosmomma at 11:32 PM on Sep. 29, 2009

  • All I can say is have fun with it- it is one of the best feelings when you teach something to your child and see their eyes light up with understanding- I love it!
    good luck!

    Answer by lovelyli217 at 1:55 AM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • Learn your state's rules. I live in IN so basically the only rule we have is a mandatory 180 day attendance record. I have read every homeschooling book I could find at the library from how-to guides to individual family's accounts of successfully homeschooling. I have researched lots of curriculums and lots of resources. There is a TON of info out there, don't get stressed about it. Just take a look around and then decide where YOU want to start. Homeschool is NOT traditional school. You have the freedom to adjust and adapt as you and your kids need to.

    Answer by tennisgal at 11:55 PM on Sep. 30, 2009

  • Know your state laws.
    Find a support group or at least another homeschooling family. You will need support at some point.
    Don't try to re-create school in your home. That's a recipe for disaster for most families.
    Read the book "The First Year of Homeschooling Your Child" by Linda Dobson.
    Do what works for YOU and YOUR family. Don't worry about how other homeschoolers or public schoolers do things.
    And last but most important: Relax and ENJOY this time with your children. Keep the focus on the fun and the learning will naturally follow.

    Answer by jessradtke at 11:05 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

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