Friday, July 20, 2007

How Networking Helps Homeschool Families

While it is generally accepted that homeschoolers are an independent lot, it is really a good thing when they get together and do some networking. You may have your own suggestions - but here are some benefits of networking with other homeschoolers and homeschool groups:

Networking can:

• Provide information about various curriculum and how to obtain it

• Provide information about how to get started if families are new to homeschooling

• Provide opportunities for children to socialize – field trips – classes – crafts – sports activities

• Provide help with problems encountered – families get valuable advice from each other on how to deal with different issues – and discuss different educational philosophies

• Provide an opportunity for families to share experiences – curriculum they have used - places they’ve visited – projects they have done

• Provide various resources like online services and forums to keep people informed of issues important to homeschooling families, both locally and nationally

• Provide people with listings of up to date web sites which list recommended reading lists, sites of interest to visit, information about the law, Frequently Asked Questions, message boards, articles about homeschooling and education in general and a myriad of other interesting educational web site links

• Provide written materials to keep people informed of events and items of interest

• Provide information about fairs and forums for homeschooling families to do workshops and purchase educational materials

• Provide families with Special Education issues have access to web link information and resources to aid them

• Provide Teens opportunities to get together for educational and social events – they usually plan their own programs or activities

• Provide many instances where community involvement or volunteering is included in networking activities – clothing swaps – work at senior centers – canned good collections for food pantries –etc.

• Provide opportunities for parents to organize classes, writing co-ops, language lessons, tours to special places like TV studios, etc.

Networking is healthy, beneficial, and fosters community among homeschoolers.
Weekly get-togethers, field trips, conferences, mom's night out and other events are great times to network and meet new families or connect with veteran homeschoolers.

We must all hang together,
or assuredly, we shall all hang separately. - Benjamin Franklin

"If I could solve all the problems myself, I would."
- Thomas Edison, when asked why he had a team of twenty-one assistants