Saturday, June 2, 2007

Getting Started in Homeschooling

By Rachel Olsen

Homeschooling is an education option rapidly gaining in popularity, particularly in the Christian community. The reasons parents chose to homeschool are as varied as the families doing it. Also numerous are the resources available, and the methods one can use to home school. Most any family can find an approach to homeschooling that will meet its needs, provided they have the heart-level desire to make it work.

In the midst of round the clock feedings, diaper changes, and potty training, I often felt I was living for the day both my kids would be in school Monday through Friday. I couldn't wait for more time to myself in a quiet, more orderly home! That day has still not come. Instead I have been homeschooling for the past few years and I am quite pleased with the results and the lifestyle it has afforded our family.

If you are contemplating giving homeschooling a try, here are some well-ordered tips for getting started:
1. Pray and seek God's will for your family concerning your children and their schooling options. Ask the Lord to lead you in the path He desires for your family. Ask him to provide everything you need to successfully walk in that path.
2. Go to your local library or bookstore and get several books to read up on homeschooling so you can make an informed decision. You will learn about the many benefits of homeschooling and the various approaches to doing it.
3. Learn your state's homeschooling laws or requirements. These will vary from state to state.
One way to find out is to contact the Home School Legal Defense Association at (540) 338-5600 or at
4. Talk with the "experts" -- find some homeschooling families or support groups in your area. Try asking around your church, your local library, or watching the newspaper for homeschool support group meeting announcements. The chance to spend some time talking with and observing other homeschooling families will be invaluable as you decide if, and how you will embark on this wonderful journey.
5. Finally, if you are questioning your ability to teach your children well, know that all things are possible with God, including your ability to homeschool with excellence. Your confidence will grow as you follow the Lord's leading and learn about other families' experiences with this highly flexible and highly effective form of education.