How Do I Get Started Homeschooling?
If you have decided to homeschool your children, knowing where to begin can feel overwhelming. This is especially true if you do not have a teaching background. And if you don't know any other homeschooling families.
So where do you start?
Start at the beginning.
Why have you chosen to homeschool? Write it down.
It is important to know why you are homeschooling so that you will have this as a motivational reminder if and when there are times that are challenging and you feel like giving up.
Find out what the homeschooling laws are in your state.
This can usually be found online with a simple Google search.
While it is best to read the law from the Department of Education’s actual legal document, this can be hard to understand.
But most states have homeschooling associations that can be very helpful in interpreting the law and will be able to tell you in plain English what is required.
To find your state's homeschooling association, just Google "(your state) homeschool association."
Network with other homeschooling families.
This can be done locally as well as virtually. There is a wealth of information out there from experienced homeschoolers, both in your community and online.
I cannot stress how important it is to use this resource.
Other homeschoolers can be a huge help with navigating your state's homeschooling requirements and laws.
They can share tips and resources with you.
They can also be a great source of emotional and motivational support for you as you begin to homeschool.
If you aren’t feeling brave enough to interact with other homeschoolers yet, you can read message boards, follow blogs (like this one!) and join social media groups about homeschooling. Just reading other homeschoolers' posts and comments can be extremely helpful.
Local homeschool groups often take part in activities together which can be a great experience for you children to meet other homeschooled children.
Choose curriculum resources that meet your needs.
This can take quite a while depending on how much research you want to do and how much time you have before schooling your child begins.
Networking with other homeschool families and visiting homeschooling forums can help with this as well.
Be sure to choose something that will meet your personal objectives for homeschooling, any legal requirements set forth by your state, and also your child’s learning style. There are literally hundreds of curriculum choices available.
Cost is also a factor that must be considered when choosing a curriculum. The cost of a year of homeschooling can range from free to $1,000 or more.
Also know that if a curriculum doesn’t work for you (and this may very will happen, as it does to most homeschoolers) you can change!
Best wishes as you begin your homeschooling journey!