When you first start thinking about homeschooling you probably wonder if you’ll be the only one in your area. However, with the ever increasing number of homeschooling families, that is not likely. Finding other homeschoolers, however, may not always be easy. Here are some ideas for where to look.
Finding Other Homeschoolers: Venturing out during school hours
1. The Public Library
One place for finding other homeschoolers might be the public library. Many homeschoolers use the library as a source for learning materials. Go to the library and see if you find children there during normal school hours. If you find children, most likely they are homeschooled and a parent is sure to be nearby. You could also ask the librarian if she knows of any homeschoolers. Most likely she will because they will be some of her best patrons.
2. The Park
If you take your kids to the park during school hours, you might run into a homeschooling family there enjoying the sunshine and fresh air. Or, they might be picking up leaves for a nature book, or finding other items to use in a school project. In any case, local parks are a good place for finding other homeschoolers.
3. The Grocery store
You might find a homeschooling family at the grocery store while you’re doing your own shopping. Many homeschoolers use real life circumstances to teach rather than just depending on books. So, if you see children standing around the meat freezer with calculators, it’s likely they’re doing comparison shopping for their math lesson.
4. Community groups
Is there a university or non-profit in your area offering classes to the community? Perhaps a gardening or other kind of club or organization? Community centers and other community groups sometimes have activities or classes for homeschoolers or the general public.
Finding other homeschoolers: Online and “traditional” advertising
5. Online Search engine
The Internet is another place to find homeschoolers in your area. Try doing a search on one of the common search engines for “homeschool groups (your city).” If that doesn’t work, expand your search to include your county and then your state. Since there are homeschoolers in every state of the union, surely you’ll find someone close by. On the outside chance that you don’t find anyone locally, don’t give up. You can still find support online through any number of Facebook homeschooling groups.
6. Facebook Groups
There are a plethora of Facebook groups for any type of personal or homeschool philosophy or geographic region. One group I highly recommend is Secular, Eclectic, Academic (SEA) Homeschoolers group.
7. Online Learning Platforms
While you may not find local families (although you just MIGHT) online platforms such as Outschool can be a surprising source of socialization. With thousands of online classes, Outschool is the largest marketplace for live online classes for kids (it started as a platform for homeschool kids). You can take traditional “core” classes or take unique, one-off “extra-curricular” classes such as Harry Potter conducting, Lego robotics and engineering, Escape Room Math. My son refers to the other kids as his “classmates” and parents can even connect with each other through their platform.
8. “Old-school” Advertising
If you’re really motivated to meet others, an old-school telephone pole sign is some outside-the-box thinking that might lead you to your next playdate.
When searching for homeschooling families locally, don’t be afraid to approach a family that you see out and about during school hours. Most homeschoolers are used to being asked why their children aren’t in school. They probably won’t be offended and asking questions is a great way to meet new acquaintances. Keep an eye out for them; you may find there are more homeschoolers in your area than you first thought.
Still stumped on where to meet other homeschoolers? Leave a message below or contact me! I may not be in your area but I’m always interested in connecting. You never know: perhaps I will be in your neck of the woods on day or, perhaps our children will become pen pals. Want to find out?
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