Where Do I Start?

February 12th, 2013 posted by Beverly Miller

If you are thinking about homeschooling you are probably wondering how on earth to get started. I know I did. It seemed overwhelming at first. The first thing I did was to start by looking at as many web sites from homeschooling families as I could find. This gave me an inside look at how other families fared, and what their successes and problems were.

Many of the questions that I had were covered in these pages. Things like “What about making friends?”, “How do I find materials to use?”, “What ways do other parents use to teach at home?”.

I also emailed a number of families who offered help, and asked questions. I found that most people involved in homeschooling were eager to share their experiences and helpful advice.

These sites will give you a good start on finding places to begin:

Homeschool World Homeschool Central

Is it legal to homeschool? The next area that concerns most people when they decide to homeschool is the legal issue. Yes, it most certainly is legal. There are different requirements in different states, and in some states it may be a bit more difficult. But it is legal and there are organizations and support groups available to help. You can find the requirements for any state here.

HSLDA – Home School By State


Once you have decided that homeschooling is for you and you have learned how to go about filing the necessary papers and fulfilling the requirements, you will need to decide just how you want to “structure” teaching your children at home. One of the biggest pluses of homeschooling is the freedom to decide what works best for you and your child. Because every situation is different and each child is different, what works for one family may not be right for someone else. We chose an “unstructured” method often referred to as “unschooling”. But there is no right or wrong way. Talk to your children on their feelings about learning. Find out what excites them, what their interests are.

Homeschooling Handbook : From Preschool to High School: A Parent This handbook shows parents everything they need to know about homeschooling .

Then read as much as you can about various techniques and adapt them to make a plan that works for you. If you are interested in the ideas behind unschooling, try looking at these sites:

Family Unschoolers Network Unschooling.com

Where can you find materials to use?

The list is practically endless. Your local library, bookstore, used bookstores, television programs, museums, and the Internet, are just a few places to start. Keep it simple. Don’t run out and buy a lot of books. Use materials readily available for free and find out what works and what materials are good. There are many rating services available for educational books and software. Lesson plans and materials are readily available for free online. Start with some of these sites and in future columns I will be adding many more.

The Homeschool Zone Homeschool Helper

Beverly Miller (1 Posts)

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