So you have made the decision to start homeschooling your child/ children! Congratulations! If you are like many, if not all, other homeschooling parents, your next thoughts will be “what are the next steps to get started homeschooling?”
Next Steps to Get started homeschooling
You have already made the first right step and that is to decide you want to start! Sometimes that can be the hardest decision. Hopefully once you read this article you will agree that deciding to homeschool was the hardest part.
So now what?
1. Find out your provincial / state requirements
This is actually huge because it is different EVERYWHERE. So I can’t even really help you at all until you know what your location requires of you. For example, here in Alberta, once my child is 6 I need to be registered with a board. I can choose traditional (which is really open parent led) or aligned (which is basically school at home – it is aligned with provincial outcomes). I know this is not the case everywhere so please look into the options and regulations in your state or province. Google can help you with this if you don’t know other homeschoolers in your location.
This will be when you also find out if there is funding for homeschool in your province/state. This is important to know as it may influence your curriculum choices.
Here is a link you can click on if you are in Canada to help you find your provincial regulations.
2. Choose your board
If you are required to register with a board, that will be your next step. Again, not all boards are created equal. Some want to see a year plan, some just need your name to register. The internet can help you with searching for boards as can other homeschoolers in your area. If you know others who homeschool near you, chat with them and find out who they are registered with. This is your best tool for learning what is available to you.
For example, I am registered with a board here in Alberta as a traditional homeschooler. So I submit my year plan to them at the start of the year and I have a visit twice throughout the year.
3. Choose your curriculum
This can be step that can cause great confusion simply because there are SO MANY options out there. It can be so daunting that I decided to offer to do it FOR people! If that is something you are interested in click here to go to my homeschool consulting page and select that package that works for you. I also plan to write a whole post on this so stay tuned!
But for now just let me say just a couple of things:
- Less is more! – It can be so easy to get overwhelmed and sucked in to all the exciting curriculum options out there. My first advice would be try not to go overboard. It is easier to start with less and add on as you go then to spend a bunch of money of the get – go on things you wont use. Get the basics and give yourself a chance to get into the groove before adding things on.
- Know your crowd. – If your kids are hands on learners, don’t choose a full bookwork curriculum. If you have small space, dont choose something with a ton of bells and whistles. If they are behind, dont purchase the grade level they “should” be in.
- Know your budget. – be smart here people. Don’t put yourself into large debt to homeschool. It isn’t necessary. You can find good resources without breaking the bank. The library and second hand groups are a great place to look.
- Stop looking. – Once you have selected your curriculum, stop looking. Seriously! You will drive yourself CRAZY wondering if you should have chose something else. Give what you did get a chance to work. Stop looking and focus on what you have. If for some reason its not working or has gaps, then start researching again.
Where are you at?
So now that I have shared the next steps to get started homeschooling with you, let me know where you are at! Are you ready to start these steps, a seasoned vetern or somewhere in between?
What do you find the most daunting part about homeschool? Let me know in the comments!