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View Full Version : New SHS Tagline: A Feedback Poll



Topsy
05-05-2015, 09:13 AM
3108We are looking forward to some exciting changes at SecularHomeschool.com during 2015. Our hope is to get a complete site "facelift", to create some new and exciting features, and to make the site even more mobile-friendly. But aside from all the externals, we'll be shifting some of our focus on the site as well (based on the feedback of our members). One of the things many, many of you have let us know is that you'd like to see "smarter" content on the site. Deeper-level discussions and articles about homeschooling, education, and parenting. One of the first shifts you'll see toward that focus is in some additional forum sections. But one of the biggest challenges? Honing in on a new tagline for the site makeover.

I'm putting forward a poll for you SHS'ers to help us narrow down the tagline options. Or you can put forward one of your own in the comments! If we end up choosing one of your submitted ones, we'll make sure there is something fun coming your way from one of our SHS sponsors!

So please help us by voting for your fave new SHS tagline in the poll! Thanks in advance, everyone!!

fastweedpuller
05-05-2015, 09:31 AM
Looking forward to the changes!

I am all for "thinking" but I would hate to think we secularists have a monopoly on it. (I would of course like to believe it though!) So I don't want to turn off any potential guests by being exclusionary with "right thinking" language. But that's just my opinion.

ikslo
05-05-2015, 09:53 AM
My first thought was the second option, but the "and" kind of says I have to be all three. Would rather it said "and/or." So I haven't voted yet because I'm still thinking.

Marmalade
05-05-2015, 10:08 AM
What about "In-depth conversations for secular homeschoolers" ?

I can see where ikslo is coming from. The "non-religious, eclectic and" part doesn't really seem as inclusive as just saying secular. Although personally Im non-religious and eclectic I know that not all of our members here are. Id think a religious person looking for a more secular atmosphere for their strictly school-at-home homeschool might be put off by a line like that. But maybe Im just nit-picking.


I should also say that I like the current tagline. I'm not opposed to change but I do think it is short and to the point.

jess
05-05-2015, 11:17 AM
I feel like "in-depth" and "thoughtful" are a little... superfluous? I don't think that's quite the word I'm looking for, but I can't think of a more accurate one. Saying "in-depth" isn't going to change people's posting habits - either the content can stand on its own, or the tagline is inaccurate.

I agree that attempting to define and label the intended audience in a short sound-bite is likely to come off as exclusionary, especially since you've said in the past that homeschoolers educating from a secular perspective who happen to be religious are part of the intended audience. I also agree "eclectic" doesn't make sense - there are plenty of secular homeschoolers who stick closely to a specific curriculum/method and don't fit under the eclectic umbrella, and plenty of religious homeschoolers who do.

alexsmom
05-05-2015, 11:29 AM
I think shifting the focus away from secular would just be encouragement for non-secular creeping into the site. Everyone thinks theyre thinking and thoughtful parents, especially if they have the moral guidance of relgion!

I love that this site is a haven for non-theists, where a joke can be made about *Zombie Jesus* without banning, where we can discuss how and when to teach world religions to our kids, where we are on the lookout for each other against Bible quotes in our math books and unsound ideas in science and history books are exposed.

I love that there are philosophical and accidental homeschoolers here. So people who arent necessarily non-religious, but homeschool because it meets their needs better. And want their curriculum free from religion.

As though *secular* doesnt say it enough, I like the current taglines. None of the poll options struck me as an improvement. (Although the catty part of me likes *thinking homeschoolers*.)

ElizabethK
05-05-2015, 11:33 AM
I like the current tag line. I think the new focus on in-depth conversations could still fall under the old tag line.

But, if it must change, I'm not sure that any of those are a good fit. Stating something like the 'home for thinking homeschoolers' implies that all other homeschoolers don't think. We are secular to the core but I'm not comfortable with something that might imply that.

I don't have any replacement ideas at the moment, but I'll brainstorm.

TFZ
05-05-2015, 11:55 AM
Starting with a tagline without first (re)defining the site is difficult because you're asking for us to define the site with a tagline without seeing the changes. Why change it now? Changing to change?

Some of the phrasing is a bit conflicting. What is the focus? Forum conversations? Resources? Information? Is the focus that there is a place on the Internet for secular HSers? Is it thoughtful parenting? Discussion of secular HSing topics?

FWIW I think saying thinking or thoughtful is a little.. What do you guys call it? Woo woo? And in-depth sounds like a local news station report. The top few are wordy. None are particularly catchy. I agree that none seem like an improvement.

The line, "Where secular homeschoolers ARE the majority," gave me a sigh of relief after visiting many sites that were religious or inclusive of a variety of religions but not inclusive to non-religious, secular HSers. It's catchy. Concise.

Why the change now? Didn't you guys just celebrate your most members ever?

Topsy
05-05-2015, 12:32 PM
Looking forward to the changes!

I am all for "thinking" but I would hate to think we secularists have a monopoly on it. (I would of course like to believe it though!) So I don't want to turn off any potential guests by being exclusionary with "right thinking" language. But that's just my opinion.

I've had the same feeling, fastweedpuller. We don't want to sound exclusionary at all.

jess
05-05-2015, 01:08 PM
A large part of the problem here is that, when it comes to homeschooling, it's pretty much homeschoolers with strong Christian motivations vs. Everyone Else. Atheists, agnostics, UUs, Jews, Muslims, Pagans, Scientologists, people who identify as Christian personally but want secular curriculum, etc. all tend to have similar struggles in finding curriculum and community.

HawaiiGeek
05-05-2015, 01:55 PM
I just want the site to be inclusive, so whoever wants to come and talk about secular homeschooling can come and talk about it. I get very turned off by people who are judgmental. And being judgmental is not exclusive to religious homeschoolers. So I don't really like any of the taglines, but I voted for the 1st because it was the most inclusive while reminding all that this is a secular site. I guess I want inclusive while still reminding everyone that the site is secular. I ended up on this site by specifically typing secular curriculum into the google engine.

alexsmom
05-05-2015, 01:59 PM
How do you politely and quickly say *the homeschooling site for everyone else*?

darkelf
05-05-2015, 02:01 PM
I like the 2 choice. If I were new that is the one that would have made me click.

I wanted non-religious choices. I was so tired of wading through religious curriculum to find stuff I could use.

Just my two cents.

Norm Deplume
05-05-2015, 02:17 PM
I like the second choice, "In-depth conversations for non-religious, eclectic, and secular homeschooling" but it feels long for a tagline, so I voted for "Resources and conversation for thinking homeschoolers" instead. But either one works for me.

Marmalade
05-05-2015, 02:17 PM
How do you politely and quickly say *the homeschooling site for everyone else*?

I actually kind of dig that statement.

muddylilly
05-05-2015, 02:45 PM
I suppose I'm confused as to why a change is needed. Are you attempting to redefine the site in order to bring your numbers up? Does this mean you are attempting to change the site away from secular majority. Because obviously bringing in the large numbers of xtian hsers will accomplish that. I get the whole "welcome everyone" idea....yes, I believe all should be welcome......including those that are secular not only in their homeschooling approach. This is not the case elsewhere.
Where Secular Homeschoolers ARE the Majority, I find to be very clear with what one can expect from the site, not exclusionary. It seems the word majority is what will be removed. Keep in mind that reducing secular hsers FROM the majority by flooding it with xtian hsers will make this just like one of the many other sites. And I fear you will end up losing numbers that will no longer feel welcome.
Your site, you do as you wish.
My option for None of the Above, was not seen.

jess
05-05-2015, 05:33 PM
How do you politely and quickly say *the homeschooling site for everyone else*?

Festivus - the homeschooling site for the rest of us?

Solong
05-05-2015, 06:26 PM
Three-ish. "Resources and conversations for secular homeschoolers" would be my vote. Short, direct, and not exclusionary. The more you define who the site is FOR, the more likely people are to feel that it isn't the place for them. I'm a devout atheist, but it doesn't bother me that religious folks hang out here. It's secularhomeschooling, not secular-in-all-things-or-no-discussion-for-you.com

CrazyMom
05-05-2015, 06:52 PM
This site has about three dozen regulars who participate.

Top ten topics MOSTLY discussed here:

1. Learning disability issues.
2. Moms with problems teaching their kids....who just want to vent.
3. Family problems.
4. "This is what we do: All about my favorite curriculum/strategy/noncurriculum"
5. "Help me find.....a pickle, with a dragon on it, that breaths fire and pees strawberry jam."
6. My terrible day. Talk me out of giving up.
7. I hate this....I love this....I hate this.....I love this.
8. Why homeschool is much cooler than public school.
9. Why grades/progress/academic achievement are unnecessary.
10. Random anti-homeschool news item (real and imagined).


Trying to think of a good description for this.

alexsmom
05-05-2015, 07:43 PM
5. "Help me find.....a pickle, with a dragon on it, that breaths fire and pees strawberry jam."


Oh this! Is there a word for it?

*It will be my first year homeschooling so I want something out of the box that I dont have to do any extra planning for, but is designed specifically for my unique kid. Whom you have never met. If you are lucky, I will have given you the age or gender of my child.*

Sorry for getting side-tracked.

BakedAk
05-05-2015, 07:45 PM
I like Anonyms's version the best.

dragonfly
05-05-2015, 08:00 PM
The way I feel about it here (most of the time, anyway): A safe haven for the secular homeschooler.

I'm not really enamored of any of the proposed taglines. They seem too...IDK...vague and impersonal? Or something. I guess I'd pick #4, if you replace "thinking" with "secular."

Topsy
05-06-2015, 07:45 AM
Great feedback, everyone! Keep it coming!

RTB
05-06-2015, 10:01 AM
So I agree with the "thinking" language sounding exclusive.

I kinda like something along the lines of Resources and conversation for secular homeschoolers.

I don't really think stuff about parenting should be mentioned in a tag line. Although that stuff does get discussed here, it generally seems related to homeschooling. There are other forums out there that just cover parenting, with a bit of homeschool thrown in here and there.

Accidental Homeschooler
05-06-2015, 12:56 PM
I kinda like something along the lines of Resources and conversation for secular homeschoolers.

I like this a lot.

alexsmom
05-06-2015, 01:21 PM
I like that best too. It accurately describes what goes on here. :)

muddylilly
05-06-2015, 01:52 PM
Secular Homeschool Community.

We homeschool; all with a secular approach (otherwise we'd check in with the ton of other sites), and our ideas, resources, support, and conversation come from the community we all create together. Not from some "service" or one style/method/curriculum.
If you recall, a lot of our support for each other is needed because it's so hard to homeschool without religion (definition of secular) and find community locally. This is what we are to each other.

I think "thoughtful" or "thinking" is very condescending. I would hope all parents are doing so thoughtfully.

I still believe the word majority is being removed deliberately. Which is a shame, because majority is what I think draws many in. How many introductions begin with the tone of Finally, A Place We Fit In.

ikslo
05-06-2015, 01:56 PM
I still believe the word majority is being removed deliberately. Which is a shame, because majority is what I think draws many in. How many introductions begin with the tone of Finally, A Place We Fit In.

I agree. [10 characters]

alexsmom
05-06-2015, 02:15 PM
I still believe the word majority is being removed deliberately. Which is a shame, because majority is what I think draws many in. How many introductions begin with the tone of Finally, A Place We Fit In.

Maybe how it says majority is a little redundant? The site is secular homeschool.com, perhaps it is implied that secular is the majority here?

I find it a comforting reminder on the site, but maybe its not needed? Or is it a worry that this site is going to be losing its secularness?

ikslo
05-06-2015, 02:26 PM
Here's my take on it.

I feel like recently there has been some insinuation (not from Topsy - I'm not saying that) that you can't be a secular homeschooler unless you are a non-religious secular person who unschools. :) Like, a religious person who has consciously decided to school in a secular manner should not be welcome, because they are not 100% secular.

And that people on this site should be allowed to bash religious folk (Christians, specifically).

And it makes me sad. Because this site used to be very inclusive. And also because not all religious folk are Christian.
So I hope I am wrong and this is not the direction this site is headed.

fastweedpuller
05-06-2015, 02:38 PM
I don't see anything nefarious in what the admins are doing at all; in the 4 years I have visited the site, the architecture has been the same. The internet moves on (hello, mobile apps) and most websites do too. So I would assume SHS is just overdue for an upgrade. And I would agree that it is needed; mostly I visit the Forums pages and miss out often on what's on the home page's splash site...there's good meaty stuff if you know where to look.

But ikslo! Exactly! There's been a whole lotta intolerance on here lately and it is SO UNFORTUNATE.

So my vote (double voting, but hey, I was born in Chicago, vote early and often!) is Rebecca's suggestion: Resources and Conversation for Secular Homeschoolers.

muddylilly
05-06-2015, 04:34 PM
I find it hard to sum it up into one nifty tag line....We are all of the above AND none of the above at the same time it seems. Choice F: Other I think that is how most of us describe ourselves and therefore our homeschooling approach.
I also agree that Secular is definitive enough on it's own.....but keep in mind some like to fit the term Secular to whatever suits them. Ask Mike Huckabee ;)

I don't wish to be exclusionary. I learn a lot from (and maybe the most from) those that approach hsing differently than me. And being rude and hurtful is not what, I hope, this place is for. Yep, a facelift for the site, I will agree, could be fun. But all the liposuction in the world won't remove negativity.

BTW: am I the only one that thinks "Resources" gives the impression that newcomers can search here for the "magic formula" or one product like BookShark or Time 4 Learning will make homeschooling simple? Not trying to discount Rebecca's suggestion.....but maybe Ideas, or Support, or nah....those aren't right either. IDK
maybe, Community and Conversation for Secular Homeschoolers?

Luv2HS
05-07-2015, 06:58 AM
I voted, but, I like the existing tagline. I actually think it's perfect. You don't need a new tagline to adjust the site. I also like the forum just as it is. People have all kinds of in-depth conversations already. Where the threads go are forum-directed. So, I hope you don't eliminate fluffy topics because I think that is how some us blow off homeschooling steam....just my thoughts...

Topsy
05-07-2015, 09:25 AM
I still believe the word majority is being removed deliberately. Which is a shame, because majority is what I think draws many in. How many introductions begin with the tone of Finally, A Place We Fit In.

Most definitely, definitely not. We're super cool with the previous tagline. Just that we are going to be adding some more in-depth stuff to our offerings here, and we were looking for a way to get that across, you know?

Marmalade
05-07-2015, 09:43 AM
Most definitely, definitely not. We're super cool with the previous tagline. Just that we are going to be adding some more in-depth stuff to our offerings here, and we were looking for a way to get that across, you know?

What are you referring to when you say "adding some more in-depth stuff"? The articles? Will the forum subjects change? I think this is one thing that is troubling us. The majority of this site seems to be the forums followed by the blogs followed by the groups. All three of those are community led...a tagline wouldn't change what we talk about. I think having a better understanding of what you plan to change would help us help you with the tagline.

Riceball_Mommy
05-07-2015, 01:04 PM
I haven't voted because I like the existing tag line and I haven't seen anything up there that I like more.

johnedelson
05-07-2015, 05:11 PM
I think the "indepth" and "thoughtful" are really jabs at Facebook- and Twitter-based discussions where people tend .... they tend not to be indepth and thoughtful. But it does read differently if those terms are used to distinguish us from non-secular and not-thinking homeschoolers.

Luv2HS
05-08-2015, 07:01 AM
"There's been a whole lotta intolerance on here lately and it is SO UNFORTUNATE."


Which thread is everyone referring to? What specifically was said that was deemed intolerant? I kind of liked that this wasn't an overly p.c. type atmosphere.. I am curious as to the offending remarks.

Topsy
05-08-2015, 07:28 AM
So, looking at the overall view of the comments, it's likely that our current tagline will stick. Change is hard. But sometimes fun! Stay tuned..........

Accidental Homeschooler
05-08-2015, 03:31 PM
So, looking at the overall view of the comments, it's likely that our current tagline will stick. Change is hard. But sometimes fun! Stay tuned..........

LOL I say this all the time to my family. They still don't get it, but I agree, sometimes it is lots of fun. And you have done an amazing job with this site so I say have fun and try some new things. Occasionally I rearrange the furniture or paint something a different color and in the end they all adjust.

aspiecat
05-11-2015, 06:39 AM
Been reading through the comments here. Fabulous topic, whether a change is made to the tagline or not! However, I wondered if this might be a tagline to consider at some point...?

"Secular Homeschool: Because I Want Some Intelligent Freaking Conversation Sometimes, Okay?"

I joke.

Maybe...