Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Tomorrow is the second session of our 10-week long winter session of co-op. We had a fall 10-week session that ended right before Thanksgiving.

If you are unfamiliar with what a co-op is, it is where you can get together with other homeschooling families and have your children participate in classes with other homeschoolers, and you can be a teacher or teacher aid. It's helpful for subjects that you may not feel so confident to teach on your own.

Different co-ops have different focuses, ideas, and costs. In our area, the majority of co-ops that I know anything about meet in churches one day a week. Some focus on academics. Some focus on electives such as music, art and gym. Some hire teachers to teach certain subjects and those particular classes can be costly. Some strictly have parents voluntarily teach and classes may cost very little or nothing at all; usually the cost is simply for supplies provided; parent-teachers do not get paid for their time in order to make classes more affordable since the majority of homeschool families are one-income families. And, there are those who allow the parent-teacher volunteers to charge a higher price to include something for their time. There may be other types of co-ops as well, but these are the ones I am familiar with.

We used to be involved in a co-op where high school classes were quite pricey and met all year round. After two years of this, I was tired of the cost and the winter travel and sitting in a mostly cold building for the winter days.

We are now part of a co-op that is very Christ-centered, which is something I really appreciate. The leaders have such a heart for the Lord and what the Lord wants to do with the co-op and through the co-op, as well as what the Lord wants to do through them, personally. We have a devotion time each week for parents and students.

My oldest son is taking the following classes this semester: Historical Literature, Applied Engineering and a Co-Ed Home Ec class. My second son is taking: Environmental Science, Beginning Pencil Drawing and Power Mechanics: Small Engines. Our youngest is taking: Cooking around the World, Beginning Phonics and Sign Language and Thematic storytime and Calisthenics.

My boys love their classes and being able to spend some time with friends.

This semester I am teaching the Historical Literature class. We are reading the book The Boy in the Striped Pajamas and studying World War II and the Holocaust.

I, too, really enjoy the co-op as it gives me an opportunity to talk to other homeschooling moms and we share prayer requests and support one another in the homeschool journey that the Lord has called us to.

1 comment:

  1. Kelly,
    Your co-op experiences are pretty typical in my opinion. Sounds you have a great co-op now. What a cool list of classes for your high school age sons!

    I see that you are in PA. I'll be coming to PA for the CHAP convention in May and speaking about homeschool co-ops. Should be a great time.
    Maybe I'll meet you there!

    Carol Topp, CPA
    Author Homeschool Co-ops: How to Start THem, Run Them and Not Burn Out.