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Getting started is sometimes scary, sometimes exciting, sometimes dreaded, but always rewarding when done with forethought. Start at the top of this list and get an idea of how to begin getting started homeschooling in Oregon with a purpose, with a vision, with a goal, and with peace of mind.
Catch the Vision
Why are you home schooling? Will you remember it when you need it? While it might be tempting to jump into homeschooling with both feet, you need to include your eyes and your heart. Like any other endeavor, you need to count the cost, determine where you’re going and consider whyyou are homeschooling. Having a clear vision and a heart-felt commitment will sustain you more than textbooks, lesson plans, science projects, and field trips.
Homeschooling has many advantages, but there will be days when you can’t remember a single one – guaranteed! Writing down your reasons, the commitment of your heart and what it means to be educated will help you during those difficult days and will help narrow some of your choices as you prepare to homeschool.Want a good place to start? Check out our encouraging blog posts or head over and get recordings from past conferences to listen to in the car!
Know the Law
Homeschooling is legal in all 50 states, but Oregon is the one you need to be interested in. Each family who decides to homeschool is responsible to know the homeschool law. The law is not difficult, but if you don’t follow it, you would be in violation of the compulsory attendance law and your child could be considered truant. It’s important to stay informed! Click here to find out what you need to know about homeschooling law in Oregon.
Nothing will sustain you more than your faith and other homeschoolers who share that faith. Don’t try to homeschool alone. Just as God told us to fellowship with one another to strengthen our faith, we should fellowship with other like-minded homeschoolers to sustain our commitment to our children’s education. Other homeschoolers can be a great source of information, encouragement and help as you begin homeschooling. Find out how OCEANetwork can get you connected.
Prepare to Homeschool
Every student is unique. How will you teach the unique characteristics of your children? When you homeschool, you are responsible for your child’s education. This should not be entered into lightly. It is a serious business. Are you prepared? There are methods of teaching, styles of learning, types of curriculum and long-term goals that need to be considered. OCEANetwork has several resources and articles to help you get started! Click here to find out more.
Some families made the commitment to raise their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord even before their children were born. They have an entire library of homeschool books. They have file cabinets filled with teaching aids and software. They can’t wait until “Emily” or “Johnny” turns two so they can teach them to read. Other families have a commitment born out of a Christian principle that may only be a few weeks old, but the Lord has revealed to them the necessity of godly education.
Both families will have to wade into the water slowly. They need to get off of the shore. No amount of sitting and watching the river flow by will provide the same experience as walking in and taking one step at a time by faith.
- Make a commitment with everyone in the family that the homeschool will last at least one year – no exceptions (short of the Lord’s return).
- Decide on three important subjects that will get attention everyday, for instance, Bible, reading and math.
- Decide on three more subjects which will get attention at least twice a week.
- Agree not to commit to outside classes (co ops, gym days, library story times, etc.) at the detriment of the “inside classes.” Count the cost before saying “yes.”
- Plan three (at least one week) breaks throughout the school year (your choice). Something for teacher and pupil to look forward to.
- In the “teacher’s schedule” hide one or two special events each month that can be used as a surprise to break up the schedule. They can be as simple as a special video, or as out of the ordinary as a trip to the zoo. These are at the teacher’s discretion and should not show up on the calendar until the day before.
- Schedule weekly time that both parents can discuss the schooling activities with the student and with each other. Review your reasons for homeschooling. Review God’s principles. Never make the teaching parent feel like they’re alone in this.
There is no teacher like experience. Make a commitment for 1 year and dive in. The water’s fine.