Since 2001 OChomeschooling.com has been the clearinghouse of information for homeschoolers in Orange County California!
Thinking about homeschooling? Need help getting started?
Here is how you can do it!
Probably the #1 homeschooling question I get asked is, “how do I get started?” But the answer to that question is never simple. It depends on many things, including your reason for choosing to homeschool, your child’s learning style, your child’s learning abilities, and the dynamics of your family. Each family homeschools differently. If you are dedicated to your child’s education, you will find what works best for him or her.
Why do I want to homeschool?
The reasons that people choose to homeschool can vary greatly. Here are some of the main reasons why people choose to homeschool:
Way back in the ‘80s, when I decided I would homeschool the children I would eventually have, my reason for wanting to homeschool was so that my children could have individualized learning. I wanted them to have the opportunity to learn from more than one teacher and one textbook. In the end, almost all of these reasons to homeschool have come into play for us.
How will my children learn?
The curriculum that is used in your local school was created for a classroom of 30 children. This is how teachers are able to keep all children doing the same thing and how they make sure all the necessary topics are covered. These types of curriculums are not necessary when you are working at home, one-on-one with your child. There is a whole world of learning opportunities available to you. You can pick and choose the one(s) that work best for you and your child.
If you’re just getting into homeschooling for the first time, you might feel anxious about the approach you will use with your child. This is natural. But you actually don’t need to decide now. It’s a good idea to test out different approaches before you decide what’s best for your family. Even then, you can change your mind at any time. What works for you one day may not work the next. It’s important to be flexible and patient sometimes, knowing that if you keep your eyes open, you will find something that works.
Here are some of the most popular learning approaches:
I’ve used basically all of these approaches except boxed curriculum. My favorite is unit studies. As a family, we enjoyed studying many great topics over the years. We also did a fair amount of unschooling and from time to time I would pull in other resources when there was a need.
How can I homeschool legally?
By law, all children are required to attend school. The following options are the legal ways families can opt out of attending the local neighborhood school.
Personally, I have always liked the freedom of the Private School Affidavit and this is how I homeschooled my kids all the way through.
This was just a quick run-down of your homeschooling options. Now that you have this information, it is likely you have even more questions now than you did before. Don’t worry, you’ll get it! Homeschooling is probably not what you thought it is, but it can be way better than you expected!
- Heather Martinson
Heather Martinson, Founder
Heather started Celebration Education in 2006. Students in grades K-12 take up to two days of classes each week at Celebration Education’s Learning Bottega in Santa Ana. There are less than ten students in every class. Celebration’s approach is fun and interactive learning at the speed of kids and their interests. Classes can be paid for with charter school educational funds.
PS: Heather welcomes families’ questions about homeschooling and Celebration Education. She may be reached by phone, text, or email.
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