Welcome to Home Schooling in the Burbs! This site is dedicated to discussion about homeschooling.

Why I Created Home Schooling in the Burbs

I wanted to create a place where people can share their ideas. I have written articles about some of the curriculum I use on other sites and decided that it was a lot of fun sharing what I am passionate about. So, I decided to start blogging about it.

Homeschooling isn’t just a cut and dry experience, it’s an adventure. My goal to inspire others by sharing my unique, as well as my common, experiences. I’d love to learn from your experiences, too.

There are a lot of home school blogs available on the web because there are so many different ways people teach their kids at home. We each have our own unique ideas. Some of us, myself included, gathered those ideas from multiple places. I hope that Homeschooling in the Burbs will help you to add some spice to your home school life.

Our Homeschool

At this time, my kids are 100% homeschooled, at least as far as my school district is concerned. We are currently using a little of this and a little of that while following the Thomas Jefferson Education model. We incorporate scripture studies from the perspective of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

My kids do attend a homeschool enrichment program that leans toward the mentor based learning model and is provided at no charge via our local school district. Everything from the topics, teachers, and more is approved by the parents in a committee setting. The program also offers curriculum lending that allows us borrow materials for the year.

However, this is not how we started our journey. We started off with the virtual academy model. The beginning of our homeschooling experience is found in my post called “Why I Homeschool.”

Homeschooling comes in many shapes and sizes.

I have met people who defined homeschooling very strictly. In my opinion, homeschooling, by definition, means that children are taught primarily in the home often by parents or other family members. My posts generally focus on my experiences in traditional homeschooling and cyber schools.

Many people consider traditional home schooling as a situation where families are 100% on their own, no government influence whatsoever (though the government is trying to gain control over what is taught even in our homes). These families may buy their curriculum, use the library and/or create it themselves. Some do a little of both. They must submit an intent to home school form to their local school district and are not compelled to take state mandated tests in most states.

There are cyber schools, also referred to as virtual schools and/or academies. These families get their curriculum from an online company such as k12.com or Connections Academy. Often, materials are on loan and consumables are paid for by the local school district. The materials are then sent back at the end of the school year. While these schools are somewhat influenced by school districts and must comply with local and state laws, students engage in most of their learning at home with a parent.

A new form of home schooling that just came out is kind of like a la carte homeschooling. Kids are still primarily taught at home, but can sign up for a class or two during the week and meet other kids in the area who are home schooled, too. Sometimes, tutoring is available. The school is often a brick and mortar leaning heavily toward the cyber school model. Students aren’t in the building more than a few hours a week.

Everyone is Welcome Here

Many of the people from all of the different models mentioned above find that home school co-ops are beneficial. Some offer lessons in whatever the parents are talented in, which changes from year to year. Others teach lessons such as art, music, PE, history, and science. Still others have a single activity that all the children participate in. No matter how the co-op is set up, some level of service is required by the parents and some learning is completed by the children. The benefits of co-ops is that parents have a venue to swap teaching methods, ideas for crafts, compare curriculum, and have someone besides children to talk to. Children grow from this experience by learning how to work in groups with their peers, talk about their experiences in home schooling, and often develop clubs based on mutual interest.

No matter which model you follow, plan to follow, or followed in the past, I welcome your comments. I simply ask that we critique thoughts and ideas, not people. I know that  rifts develop between people who use certain models because they are passionate about their choice. Use that passion to enlighten, not belittle. Aggressive, harsh, and demeaning comments will not be tolerated. Everything else is fair game!

Thank you again for coming!

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