How to Start Homeschooling in 5 Easy Steps
Thinking of homeschooling but have no idea where to begin?
Having helped many parents just like you make the transition, allow me to break down the process into the barest, most essential steps.
Step 1. Find out the rules for your state and prepare to follow them. HSLDA has a handy breakdown on their website that is kept up-to-date. With this information, you can delve more deeply into topics such as when to notify your school district and what sort of reporting may be required.
Step 2. Set a budget for your curriculum and activities. You can choose to spend as little or as much as your finances will allow. Be sure to factor in membership in cultural organizations such as museums as well as expenses related to extracurricular activities (sports, arts, music, dance, etcetera).
Step 3. Determine which approach to homeschooling is the best "fit" for you and your learners. What works for one person may not work for you or your children. (Here's one reason why.) I'm partial to the Click-O-Matic Quiz on The Homeschool Diner and frequently recommend it to my clients. It's a great way to get a grasp on one's options. (Be sure to see my favorite homeschool books in my online store, too.)
Step 4. Find online communities filled with people who are receptive to your approach to homeschooling, your reasons for homeschooling, and/or your geographic area. Most people are members of more than one group in order to meet different needs. Maybe you want to speak directly with secular homeschoolers or perhaps you're interested in learning how to homeschool your gifted kids? The online support component is invaluable because it's a chance to ask questions of seasoned homeschoolers and get to know other homeschool neophytes.
Note that I host a Facebook page and private Facebook discussion group for part-time and full-time working homeschool parents (both current and prospective!)--and as a companion to my new book by GHF Press. The Facebook page and group are diverse and inclusive. You are welcome to join us, too.
Step 5. Pick a target date to begin. Homeschooling involves a certain amount of trial and error. The mistakes are part of the process, so I encourage people to get going with the experimentation. Many people who are still "on the fence" about making the switch to homeschooling find experimenting during summer months or even dabbling in afterschooling is helpful for them.
Need more indepth assistance? I can help.