Since deciding to homeschool, we have immersed ourselves into the homeschool culture. In doing so, we have had to learn about the freedoms we have, the legalities of it all, and the lingo associated with homeschooling. My goal is to share as much about homeschooling as possible, which is why you will now be able to find posts that will be a guide for homeschool newbies.
Last year we joined our first homeschool co-op. It happened to be at our church, which is why we were extremely comfortable in enrolling our then three year old. The weekly co-op included a time for chapel, which included the gathering of all co-op students, Bible verse recitation, a chance to win prizes and recitation of the pledge of allegiance. Although many classes were offered for a wide range of ages and grade levels, only one was available for our three year old. She loved learning her ABCs and numbers with a class of nearly 20 and being taught by the mom of one of her peers. After her class, she was able to eat lunch with friends and then have time to socialize through playtime with her classmates. From the first day we knew this co-op would be perfect for our family.
What is a Co-op?
A homeschool co-op, simply put, is a community of educators and students coming together to provide educational instruction and social activities to homeschooled students. They often offer field trip opportunities, allowing students to discover and explore as a group.
How to Find a Homeschool Co-op
- Join local homeschool groups on Facebook and ask members if they are a part of a co-op.
- A simple Google search of “homeschool co-op in (the name of your city)” will generate good results.
- If all else fails, start your own! Get a group of local homeschoolers together, choose a location, topics you want taught, and work together to educate one another’s children!
What to Look for in a Co-op
- How much does it cost to enroll? Is it feasible for your family?
- Do you want to attend once or five times a week? Choose a co-op that offers classes on days that work best for your students.
- What supplemental education do you want your students to receive? Some co-ops focus on specific subjects only so choose classes that best fit your needs.
- What style of teaching do you want your child to experience? Do you desire heavy coursework or a homeschool co-op that will send your child home with a lot of homework? Do you want your student’s instructor to be a licensed teacher or is it ok for the instructor to be a volunteer parent?
Are you a part of a co-op or do you have plans to join/start a co-op?