Making the decision to homeschool is a tough one, and joining an active support group is one of the best ways to connect and learn from others. It’s important to find a group that reflects your personal beliefs and teaching/learning style.
But if you don’t have a homeschool support group near you, maybe you’d like to consider starting one.
Planning Tips for Starting a Homeschool Support Group
Once you’ve made the decision to start a homeschool support group, you need to think about logistics. How often will you meet? Will you focus on one geographical area? Will you be all-inclusive or open only to specific ages, religions, or learning styles? Will kids be allowed at your meetings, or just parents? Once you have a good idea of the basics, you can begin planning in earnest. Here are the first steps you should take.
Set a time, place, and date for your first meeting. Evenings are great if the meeting is geared toward parents only, but a daytime event may be suitable if you want kids to be included.
If you don’t anticipate a large gathering, your house might be the best choice for a meeting. If you are uncomfortable hosting guests, or you expect a large crowd, considering renting a room at your local library, church, or community center for the event.
Spread the word. Once you have a date, place, and time for your meeting, it’s time to do a little advertising. Make flyers to hang around town, invite homeschoolers in your area, and post on relevant social media platforms. If you have a state homeschool association, ask them to post the event on their website or calendar of events.
Plan for refreshments. Coffee, tea, and a few munchies are all the food you will need for your first meeting — just enough to keep people engaged and happy.
Planning for Future Homeschool Support Group Meetings
Don’t be discouraged if you don’t get a large turnout at your first meeting. These things take time, and once the word gets out, your group will grow. At your first meeting, discuss with your group what they would like to see at future get-togethers.
Here are some suggestions for support group activities.
– Guest speakers
– Field trips
– Potluck lunches or dinners
– Curriculum swaps
– Teen nights
– Meetings based on one academic subject
– Discussion of state regulations
There is really no limit to what you can do at your homeschool support meetings. The best idea is to figure out what the group is most interested in, and go from there.
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