When it comes to homeschooling, it can feel incredibly overwhelming when you first start.
If you don’t have a background in teaching already, you might be wondering how to go about it, what you need, and what rules you have to follow.
But homeschooling doesn’t have to be complicated. Once you have a basic outline of what you need to do to prepare, you will find the whole process easier to deal with.
If you are planning on homeschooling your children, then you have come to the right place.
We have put together a guide to help you start homeschooling, so read on to find out everything you need to know.
Getting Started With Homeschooling
There are quite a few things you need to do when you start homeschooling your children, but these things can be broken down into smaller tasks.
Below, you will find everything you need to know about getting started so you can move on to the next stage with ease.
Check Your State’s Laws
Before you do anything else, you need to check your state’s laws regarding homeschooling.
Most states don’t require more than a high school diploma or a GED for the parent who is planning on homeschooling, but this does change from state to state.
Some states require you to homeschool under qualified supervision or to take part in some courses first. It really depends on which state you live in.
You cannot bypass these laws either, so it is incredibly important to learn what is legal within your state.
You can find plenty of information about homeschooling laws in your state online, and don’t be afraid to contact your school district for extra information or help.
Inform Your Children’s School
Once you have worked out and understood the law within your state regarding homeschooling, you then need to inform your children’s school of your plans.
This only really applies if your kids are already in school, but you will need to inform the school district either way.
In some cases, you will be able to request that your children stay on in school part-time, but be aware that the school can refuse this request.
It is very important that you inform your children’s school if you plan on withdrawing them. You cannot just take your kids out without alerting the proper authorities.
Choose Your Curriculum
Once you have sorted out all of the legal arrangements, the next thing you need to do is to choose the right curriculum for you and your children.
Lots of homeschooling parents will follow the National Curriculum, but that doesn’t mean that you have to.
There are plenty of options out there that will work for you and your children. It is also important to note that all children are different, so don’t be discouraged if your first curriculum choice doesn’t work out.
It’s important to try a few different kinds of curriculums to see which one your children mesh with the best.
You can find all sorts of curriculums online if you don’t know where to start, and you will eventually find the right one for your children to start learning.
Making The Homeschooling Space
No homeschooling setup is complete without the appropriate homeschooling space.
You will ideally need a room that is big enough for you and your children, and you want the space to emulate a classroom.
This doesn’t mean that you need desks and chairs in rows everywhere, but you do want to inspire your kids to learn when they are in this room.
Homeschooling is not a free pass to slack off, and this space really needs to encourage your children to be respectful and treat it as if it were traditional school.
You can set up in your living room or your kitchen if you need to, but if you are lucky enough to have a spare room, you should use this space as your classroom.
Don’t stress out too much if you don’t have a spare room though. As long as it’s a space that your kids don’t associate with downtime, you will be good to go.
Set Some Goals
It doesn’t hurt to set some goals for the first term when you start homeschooling. Having goals gives you and your children something to focus on and work towards, and you will both feel a sense of achievement when you finish them.
Make sure that the goals you set are small and realistic, especially if you are new to homeschooling.
It can be something like celebrating your children’s progress or celebrating a specific milestone; it doesn’t have to be something big and complicated.
When you and your children feel like you are making progress and achieving goals that are set in place, it will encourage you both to work harder and better. This will also create an environment where it is fun to learn.
Equipment Needed To Homeschool
Once you have everything in place, like choosing your curriculum and setting up the homeschooling space, you can then focus on what sort of equipment you will need.
Most of what you will need will be found in regular schools, and it isn’t hard to get hold of this equipment either.
The important thing to remember when it comes to stationary is not to go overboard!
You might feel like you need hundreds of pens and millions of textbooks but just go from semester to semester rather than from year to year. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with stationary, so keep it simple when you are first starting.
Some of the most common forms of stationery you will need include:
- Textbooks, be it lined paper, graph paper, or plain
- Pens and pencils to write with
- Exercise Books
Another important thing to note is that stationary changes depending on the age of your children and what grade level they are learning at. Keep this in mind when it comes to choosing the appropriate stationery.
You’d be surprised by how often people overlook storage when it comes to homeschooling, but it is arguably one of the most important parts.
You will need space to store all of your children’s equipment, textbooks, and learning materials when they are not being used, so make sure you look into appropriate storage space before you start teaching.
Things like storage boxes, shelves, caddies, and drawers are perfect when it comes to homeschooling storage. To make it easier for you and your child, organize by subject and semester, too.
In this day and age, technology is a must for homeschooling. Sure, you can try and work without it, but it is so much easier to have access to the internet and things like laptops and tablets, depending on what you and your children are learning about.
Some homeschooling parents will even invest in a small projector or interactive whiteboard, especially if they have the space.
No two homeschooling households ever learn the same way, though, so don’t think these things are a requirement if you don’t have the space or you don’t want to use them.
There are some essential pieces of technology you will need, though. Things like calculators, watches, and even hard drives can be incredibly useful in a homeschooling environment.
When you first make the transition into homeschooling, it can feel incredibly overwhelming. Knowing where to start is what catches most parents out, but once you break down all of the steps into smaller tasks, you will find it isn’t complicated to begin.
Use the guide we have provided here to help you and your child make the transition into homeschooling easier.
Remember to check the Homeschooling Laws in your state thoroughly before you begin and alert your child’s school before you pull them out.
Once this is done, you can begin your homeschooling journey.
Take a look at our guide on homeschooling for beginners.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Many Hours A Day Should I Homeschool?
It’s different for everyone, but the recommended amount of hours is that of a regular school day.
If your children were in public school before you homeschooled them, consider following the same routine they were originally in.
This will also help with the transition into homeschooling and make it feel more natural for them.
Do I Need A Teaching Degree In Order To Homeschool?
The answer to this question varies, but in most situations, the answer is no.
It really depends on the Homeschooling Laws in your specific state. Some states do require some level of teaching qualifications, while others don’t. This is why it’s important to look into the Homeschooling Laws in your state thoroughly.
Is It Expensive To Homeschool?
Yes and no. The amount of money you spend on homeschooling really depends on your own personal budget and how much money you want to put into it. It can be both expensive and not very costly.
Regardless of how much money you put into it, homeschooling does not have to be expensive, especially if you are on a tighter budget.