We have been homeschooling for many years now and we are frequently asked for “tips and tricks” on getting started with homeschooling or making homeschooling more enjoyable/effective/efficient/etc. We plan to share many of our best tips and tricks on this site but we are super busy and it may be many months or years before much of that content makes its way online. So, in the meantime I wanted to share one of the most important tips – Get plugged in!
Many people who have never homeschooled before have no idea how big of a movement it is and how much local support is available. I don’t know if its the same everywhere in the country but here on the north side of Atlanta there are so many homeschooling organizations that are available to help you get started, to support your efforts at home, and to compliment the experience with activities and clubs previously only available in large private or government schools (such as dances, team sports, clubs, etc.).
Here are just a few examples available to us within 20 minutes of our home:
Timothy Ministries – a program hosted out Woodstock Baptist church that supplements our homeschool program by providing academic and enrichment classes. Our kids have learned guitar and violin, taken PE classes, manners and etiquette classes, drawing and painting classes, etc. at Timothy Ministries
The King’s Academy – a private school that supplements homeschool. Our kids don’t attend this school for academics but they have attended many homeschool events, including school dances, held by The King’s Academy
Crown Athletics – an organization that provides homeschoolers access to an awesome team sports program. Our kids have only participated in Crown’s Cross Country program but I’m sure the other sports are just as well organized and impressive. The Cross Country team this year has ~65 students actively participating. The kids run in events throughout the season that sometimes include public school and/or private school runners in addition to homeschool runners.
Dancing Grits – Our kids have only attended one or two Dancing Grits events but we were impressed with the number of participants and the kids had a ton of fun.
Georgia Cyber Academy (GCA) – The state of Georgia homeschool program – they frequently offer local activities and opportunities for our kids to meet in person the other students from their online classes.
Also, if you search your local area you will typically find that museums, theaters, amusement parks, etc. have homeschooler only events and special pricing. Here are just two examples:
There are many other examples of homeschooling support groups, clubs, events, etc. that you can get plugged into. The best way to get started is find one local group, talk with some of the parents and students and ask about what is available.
If you are an experienced homeschool family and I missed your favorite homeschool organization please feel free to leave a reply with a link and brief description. Thanks! Anthony