Monday, 13 February 2017

Finding Support as a Homeschooling Parent.

Often as a homeschooler you are on your own, some people come from families who homeschool but most like us don't. When we started homeschooling I didn't know anyone else in our daily lives that homeschools, so when I started looking into homeschooling I was in need of any support, resources and people in similar circumstances to talk to and just hear what they has to say about homeschooling. Here are some of the places I find support as a homeschooler.
Local homeschooling groups- These are groups of homeschooling families who get together regularly or semi regularly. These get togethers can consist of co-operative learning experiences, trips, camps, Christmas parties, athletics days etc etc. They usually will put out a term by term activity list and you can decide what you want to be involved in. This is great for meeting homeschoolers in your area for a real life support network, they are also able to access school group activities and discounts in things like swimming lessons etc. Often there is a small fee to join these local groups (ours is $10 a term) but it gives us access to the homeschool library and all of the events.
Facebook Groups- This is where I found my first support system when it comes to homeschooling. There are so many groups out their and you can join the ones that apply to you. If you are in New Zealand and would like links to homeschooling Facebook groups feel free to send me a message on our Facebook page Crazy Mother Crafter and I can send them through to you.
National Council of Home Educators NZ (NCHENZ)- Here you can find everything from how to get started homeschooling, legal requirements, resources, support groups and really helpful articles. Membership is free and well worth joining if you are a homeschooler or considering it.
The Community- It surprised me, the more I talked about homeschooling the more I found other people with experience of homeschooling. We found some other homeschooling families in some of our activities that my daughter was already friends with! Yes sometimes you get funny looks from people who don't 'get it' but all in all our experience has been positive.
Family and Friends- I did say that we are the only ones in our family who homeschool, but we have found great support with our family and friends regardless of this. It could be them offering to take Abby on a trip somewhere, teaching her something they are passionate about or just being there and showing support for our family on this home education journey. My mum is a teacher and she has been a great sounding board for all of our ideas and concerns.
No matter where you find support it's so important to get it somewhere. I think it can be an isolating experience without some sort of support system or just other people who know what it's like to be in the same boat. It's also great to be able to hang out with other homeschoolers and gives your kids opportunities to form great friendships with other kids who also do school at home.
Tell me what you think!
Robin xx


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