View Poll Results: Do you participate in a local homeschool co-op?

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  • Yes, in a secular homeschool co-op.

    7 17.95%
  • Yes, in a faith-based co-op.

    1 2.56%
  • Yes, in an inclusive co-op.

    6 15.38%
  • No, there are no homeschool co-ops in our area.

    9 23.08%
  • No, we don't choose to participate in a co-op.

    16 41.03%
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  1. #1
    Site Admin Arrived Topsy's Avatar
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    Default Weekly Poll: Do you participate in a local homeschool co-op?

    When my sons were younger, the idea of a homeschool co-op kind of appealed to me. Even though the only co-op in our area was faith-based, I thought it might be good for the boys to see what it was like to learn with their "peers" and explore something new in a group setting. We made it through maybe two classes before I knew that between the scripture lessons (in a cooking co-op, no less) and the looks of absolute boredom on my kiddo's faces, that this wasn't going to work for us - - at least not right then.

    I am certainly not against co-ops, I just don't think that in our local area, there is one that is a good fit for us. So I wondered what your experiences are with cooperative learning? I'd love to hear about them this week!
    Topsy

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  2. #2
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    I think we'd probably welcome the help and the social interaction, but I won't accept religious indoctrination and the academic rigor would have to meet our insane standards.
    Eldest: 11, Middle: 8, Youngest: 4... Me: Old!

  3. #3
    Senior Member Arrived Busygoddess's Avatar
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    We choose not to participate in the local co-op. I don't like having my schedule determined by someone else, so having to meet for co-op each week on the same day just wouldn't work for me. Also, we currently only have one working vehicle, which means dh would need to find a ride to work on co-op day every week. There's also the fact that I want full control over the material choices & schedule for the classes I deem important. So, if we were to do a co-op, it would only be for extras. Even with extras, I would prefer to know that the person teaching my child how to do something is qualified to do it. By that I mean, if I'm signing my kid up for an Art class (and paying money for it), I expect that the 'teacher' has knowledge & experience in Art. "I like to draw" or "I'm better at Art than the other co-op moms" isn't what I consider qualified. If I'm going to disrupt my schedule & pay money for my kid to take a class, I don't want it to be something where I could do the same or better at home for less money.

    Our local museums have after-school and homeschool classes. We've had Dea do some of those & (now that he's a bit older) will likely have Jay do some, as well. With those, they get to work in a group setting and socialize with other kids. Plus, they're much cheaper than a co-op, the person teaching the class knows what they're talking about, and each class is offered at several different times over a week or so, which means it's more flexible.

    I'm not anti co-op, they just aren't for us.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Arrived dottieanna29's Avatar
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    Our local homeschool co-op actually meets about an hour away. They actually have stuff that both my kids could participate in and it kind of sounds like fun to teach a class.....but my kids are still really young and I don't see the money being worth it at this point in time.
    Dorothy
    Continuing to homeschool after returning to work.
    Mom to:
    Steph - sophomore (?!!) in college
    George - 8/2005
    Vicki - 7/2007
    Dottie's Homeschool Universe

  5. #5
    Senior Member Evolved inmom's Avatar
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    Our co-op is free (other than occasional extra materials), entirely run by the moms. They meet on the first 3 Wed of the month, Sept to April. We're very lucky that there is large building with a kitchen that the library owns and lets groups reserve for free and it's only 10 minutes from home.

    There are two co-ops for my age kids. The morning co-op is structured on The Story of the World, but the moms generally create our own activities to supplement each chapter.

    The afternoon co-op (1 - 3) is a teen co-op, and we have monthly topics. Topics will or have included manners and etiquette for teens, teen finance, language arts through Scrabble, Design Squad-based engineering, First Aid/teen hygiene, cooking basics, french cooking, Lord of the Rings. They also spend the month of May planning the yearly homeschool field day (50+ families, over 200 people).

    We've stopped going to the morning co-op for two reasons: we've already covered this year's period of history at home, and it's a huge time commitment. Now that the kids are in their teens, they spend more time on their studies and seeking/doing volunteer work, job shadowing, etc. But it's worked for us in the past.

    I think participation in all of these group activities, whether they be field trips, co-ops, etc all evolve as your kids age and mature. The family just develops different needs.
    Carol

    In our ninth year of homeschooling zanily creative dd (17) and programming-happy logical ds (16)

  6. #6
    Senior Member Arrived farrarwilliams's Avatar
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    First, I think the term "co-op" is one with a very wide range of meanings in the homeschool world. Some co-ops have a building and cost a lot of money and offer different classes for dozens and dozens of kids. Then there are the kind I have experience with - a very small number of families meeting regularly to share social time. No money involved unless we organize a field trip or something.

    We're involved in two different co-ops. I put that they're secular, but maybe inclusive would be a better term? They both include both atheists and religious families, but none of the families are homeschooling for religious reasons, so there's never any question of religious issues - all the families are pretty liberal politically and it's not the issue that it is in many regions of the country. We love our co-ops. One has 4 families in all and the other has 5. In one, the adults picked themes for the kids for the year and in the other, the kids suggested and chose what they wanted to learn about. We love our co-ops. I'm sure I'd be okay without them, but they really make my life better - especially in the social arena. My kids have stable, sustained friendships through both the co-ops that are given time to develop and grow. I think we're really lucky.
    Disclaimer: Everything I'm saying is just my own opinion, based on my own experiences teaching and with my own kids and my own life. You should just ignore me if I'm annoying you. I don't mind.

    But if I don't annoy you, feel free to visit my blog:
    http://farrarwilliams.wordpress.com
    Children's Books, Homeschooling and Random Musings...

  7. #7
    Senior Member Arrived Riceball_Mommy's Avatar
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    We participated in the Preschool co-op in the spring with our local secular/inclusive group. For the fall though we couldn't do it, it was on a day where we just couldn't make it and the location was too far out too.
    Mini Riceball - 8 years old, 3rd grade with an ecclectic mix

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  8. #8
    Senior Member Guru Kylie's Avatar
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    We do, but it is not a standard 'mums chip in and do the work'. We pay teachers/coaches/instructors and have covered things like art, science, crafts, gymnastics, sports and we are hoping to start to include music/drama/LOTE.

    Currently we meet weekly for 6 weeks at a time(4 terms a year) although we are taking the last term off this year. This gives us plenty of time away from the co-op environment......so far for us it has been the best of both worlds.
    Kylie

    Our Blog - Our Worldwide Classroom

    Eclectically Home Schooling 3 Kiddos Down Under ~ DS 9 ~ DD 6 ~ DS 2

    “Criticism is something you can easily avoid by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.” ~Aristotle

  9. #9
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    Our co-op meets 2x a month. The parents choose to teach a class OR pay $5 per class. There's 5 periods and about 8 classes a period for different ages. We really like our co-op, my husband teaches 4 classes and I teach 4 class. There are some subjects that I refuse to let my son take. There is some classes I would rather him not take.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Guru Wilma's Avatar
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    We participate in a co-op that meets monthly. I never found a co-op that met my needs so I started this one with some other moms. We have classes from elementary through high school.
    Ann

    Wife to my guy, mom to 3 lovely ladies, caretaker of one small zoo


    Harry, I have no idea where this will lead us, but I have a definite feeling it will be a place both wonderful and strange. - Special Agent Dale Cooper

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