Some days the support system may simply be a good cup of tea and a chocolate truffle to help you get through the afternoon but in general I find it is essential for my home school to have multiple support systems.
We started investigating home schooling in August of 1996. Our oldest was a mere 14 months old. She was, at the time, our only child. But from that moment on I have had someone from the “real world” who home schooled. OK I wasn’t thinking much about home schooling and I may or may not have known real home schoolers from August 1997 until January 1998 when we were dealing with newborn twins, major open heart surgery, long hospital stay, and living someplace other than our home. I’d be surprised if home schooling even entered my mind during those months! Those months required their own set of support systems but that’s a topic for another time.
The internet with forums, email groups, and now social media has provided an enormous chunk of my support over the years. I have my e-maginary friends that live in my computer who love me, pray for me, and help me sort through everything from the best phonics program to how to create a transcript for my high school students. I love my e-friends. I wouldn’t even be blogging if it were not for the encouragement of some of my long time yahoo group (that started out as a onelist/e-group before Yahoo bought it out!) home school buddies.
I know that my virtual support is essential, but when we were first starting out it was real people: real moms with real kids who held my hand, guided me, encouraged me, influenced me. They taught me how to be a home school mom. They showed me that I could do it. Through our local home school group, I discovered that I could use my love of books and teach my children using a literature based approach. Those ladies also taught me what wouldn’t work for my family. They showed me some of the materials that they used and because I could look at them, read through the TM, look at the questions asked, I could determine that workbook, that approach, wouldn’t work for us.
When we moved to here to the Pacific Northwest I was grateful to find and attend a church comprised of mostly home schooling families. Though we no longer attend that church I am finding that I do have a support system through my current church.
My support system doesn’t just include my e-maginary internet based friends, my “in real life” home schooling friends or my church. I’m blessed to have family that supports us in our decision to home educate. Maybe they don’t agree with our choice but they’ve never said anything other than words of encouragement. I’m not sure who has been more supportive, my parents or my husband’s parents. I love that they love us enough to support us in our decision and even to help!
I’ve been home schooling “formally” for over 15 years. There is no way I could have done this with only the support of my husband. It is essential to my home school to have the support of friends and family and to have that support in a variety of ways.
Come read what other Schoolhouse Crew Team Members think are essential in their homeschools. Here are a few to get you started. Click on the image below to read even more!
Marcy @ Ben and Me
Lisa @ Golden Grasses
Victoria @ Homemaking with Heart
Kayla @ The Arrowood Zoo
Joelle @ Homeschooling for His Glory
Deanna @ His Treasure Seekers
Melissa @ Grace Christian Homeschool
Beth @ Ozark Ramblings
Rebecca @ Raventhreads