Homeschooling is a thing of the future with more families leaning toward their child’s education into their own hands. The traditional school system offers minimal ways of teaching as it is faced with the pressure of teaching large classes of students.
However, many children struggle in such a system and flourish in areas that may not be focused on in school. Hence, homeschool co-ops stand to be a solution for families who homeschool to create an expanded group of like-minded families to create a learning space that is centered around a common goal.
What Is A Homeschool Co-op?
A homeschool co-op is essentially the gathering of a small group of families who come together regularly to create a space for their children to learn.
These groups are centered around their children achieving a common goal whether that be socializing, academic development or service work, etc.
With the world significantly changing and with more children being required to either practice distance learning or be homeschooled, working from home for children can prove to be challenging especially when it comes to social development.
Homeschool co-ops stand to be an effective solution for many families as it enables concentrated learning time in a space that enables flexibility and stands to cater to your child’s needs. Homeschool co-ops are increasing in popularity as a solution to the problems of the traditional school system.
Broad in their structure, homeschool co-ops are designed to create a space for learning that is guided by your child’s needs.
Each homeschool co-op offers something unique, whether that be a distinctive extracurricular activity or a focus on outdoor learning.
What makes homeschool co-ops so popular is the ability for parents to create a space for their children to thrive and to socialize with children and families with similar interests.
The Benefits Of A Homeschool Co-op
A homeschool co-op is a great way for parents to decide how they wish for their child to be educated. Homeschool co-ops create a space for similar children to be grouped to learn a variety of academic topics and activities. It’s a space where the needs of your child can be met.
It allows for more concentrated learning as children are in small groups. Homeschool co-ops enable children to take part in extracurricular activities that they may not otherwise have access to at school and it provides an opportunity for parents to share their talents and experiences.
Homeschool co-ops also enable families to build a sense of community for both parents and children as children gain the opportunity to socialize with other homeschooled children.
How To Start A Homeschool Co-Op
1. Finding The Right People For You
The most significant part of starting a homeschool co-op is ensuring that it’s made up of like-minded families. The whole point of a homeschool co-op is to create a unique space for learning catered to your child’s needs.
Hence, it’s important that the other children attending your co-op will benefit from what you’re offering. For example, if your co-op is music-focused and is centered around practicing music and attending music-based field trips, you’ll want to include families who are also centered around musical developmental learning.
You may find like-minded families from existing peers or from other classes that your child may attend.
2. Creating A Mission Statement
Whether you’re starting a homeschool co-op alone or with a couple of other parents, it’s important to create a mission statement to have a set goal.
Whether the homeschool co-op is designed to create a space for socializing or for academic development, establishing the goals and objectives of the co-op is critical to offering a successful service.
3. Establish How The Co-op Will Run
Wherever you decide to run your homeschool co-op ensure that you clearly lay out the expectations of the group. This make includes:
- Having a set location such as a church, library, or community center
- Establish what children and parents need to bring with them
- Establish timing and the duration of lesson time
- Create a set curriculum
- Determine roles
- Agree on the group rules and codes of conduct
- Decide on an age range
- Establish whether there is going to be a fee
4. Spread The Word
If you have a small circle of friends or you’re unaware of other families that home-school, spread the word! Spread the word around your local community considering friends that may be interested.
Or, you can take it to the wider community and post an advert on social media or local homeschooling sites. Getting the word out there is a great way to expand your circle
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Should I Start A Homeschool Co-op?
Homeschool co-ops have long been a popular solution for many families looking to create a cooperative and concentrated learning environment for their children.
However, with increasing uncertainty around the way our children learn, homeschooling co-ops are increasing in popularity as they provide a space for other homeschool students to learn together and to practice socializing in a small group setting.
There are also different types of homeschool co-ops designed to suit the various needs of families. Some co-ops are part-time whilst others are full-time.
Some focus on extracurricular activities, some are centered around creating a space for socializing with other homeschooled children, others consist of parents working together to educate their children by each teaching different subjects, and some involve parents grouping together to pay for a teacher to teach their children.
Homeschool co-ops stand to be more popular amongst younger children as they benefit from smaller social circles.
Where Do Homeschool Co-ops Meet?
Homeschool co-ops can meet anywhere from your home or library to a community center or church.
Takeaway On How To Start A Homeschool Co-Op
Starting a homeschool co-op is a rewarding endeavor that will create a space for your child to grow. Though daunting, starting a homeschool co-op is a great way to open up new opportunities and expand your social circle.
With these steps, you’ll be able to begin planning to start a successful homeschool co-op for your child and learn how to start a homeschool co-op with no issues.