Getting Started

When a family is first considering homeschooling often their minds become flooded with countless questions - How do I get started? Can I even do this? How will my children learn? What about socialization and friends? - and these are just the tip of the iceburg. I get many emails a week from parents that range from asking casually about how to homeschool, to panicked letters from distraut parents who just don't know where to start. So I thought I'd put together a general guide to hopefully answer some of your questions, and put your mind at ease. You can do this! There is *so* much support on the Internet and locally that you don't ever have to feel alone in your journey. As always, feel free to email me any time with more specific questions or issues that may not be covered here. I've been home/unschooling for almost 20 years now, so I'd be happy to share my experiences and advice. :) Happy Home/Unschooling everyone!
UnSchoolers Online Owner

5 Essential Ingredients to Homeschooling Success
by Terri Johnson
With these 5 essential ingredients incorporated into your homeschool, you will experience successful learning in the lives of your children, because this is the measure of success – children that love to learn!

Advice for New Homeschooling Parents
by Alison McKee
For those of you who are new to homeschooling or simply considering its possibility I'd like to share the commonly asked questions that come my way when things are falling apart.

A Father's Guide to Successful Homeschooling
by HomeSchool Dad Magazine
Raising a child is hard work, but the decision to teach your children at home does not necessarily make your job any harder. In some ways, homeschooling is easier. Teaching a child about life is really very simple. The hard part is changing how we think.

A Game of Socialization
by Diana Waring
You probably have been asked, "Well, if you homeschool your children, how will they EVER be socialized?" I don't know about you, but if I had a nickel for every time I've heard that question, the Waring family would rival Bill Gates for annual income!!

Am I Really Qualified to Teach My Own Children?
By Richard J. Prystowsky
In this essay, I would like to address some of the “psychological” and “spiritual” concerns raised by this question, couching this discussion within the context of some crucial links between parent-child teaching and holistic family living.

Answers to Objections About Homeschooling
by Fred Worth
Answers to common objections to homeschooling, such as "You're not qualified to teach," "Your child's education will be inferior," and more.

Beginning to Homeschool
by Christine Webb
Deciding to homeschool can bring about a freeing, euphoric kind of feeling, which might be followed immediately by the panic of "Oh no, what do I do now?" Here are some tips for getting through the "Oh no!" stage.

Being a Cheerful Rebel
by Deborah Markus
As Deborah Markus reminds us, being a homeschooler is a rebellious act. She has some ideas on how to deal with the many ways homeschoolers can be different.

But What About the Prom?
by Jackie Orsi
Sure, we're all sick to death of that "What about socialization?" question, but at least there's some substance to the query, a genuine concern behind it. I want to talk about that other question, one that came up several times in the years I fielded questions about homeschooling at information nights.

Common Objections to Homeschooling
by John Holt
People, especially educators, who hear me talk about homeschooling, raise certain objections so often that it is worth answering them here.

Considering Methods and Styles of Homeschooling
by Lillian Jones
Thoughtful consideration of homeschooling methods and styles involves a whole lot more than just reading up on the popular choices.

Deschooling: The Mental Vacation You Didn't Expect
by Cindy Englan
Are your kids resisting all your attempts to start homeschooling? They're not trying to drive you nuts. Really. It's normal. They need to deschool. And you probably need to deschool as well.

Get Started with a Little Help from Your Friends
by Carol Narigon
Carol explains a new homeschoolers' five new best friends.

HELP! I Need to Start (or REstart) Homeschooling But I Have NO Idea Where to (Re)Start!
by Barbara Edtl Shelton
I want this experience of homeschooling to be the best that it can possibly be for your family. For this to happen, you will need to come with an open mind and heart, no matter where you're at right now, willing to have your view of education changed and broadened.

Homeschool FAQ's
from HEM's Homeschool Information Library
Frequently Asked Questions About Homeschooling.

Homeschooling Fathers
by Gary Wyatt
Gary Wyatt argues children need more of their fathers and fathers need more of their children.

Homeschooling and the Myth of Socialization
by Manfred B. Zysk
One of the silliest and most annoying comments made to homeschooling parents is, "Aren't you concerned about how your child will be able to socialize with others?".

How does homeschooling work?
from HowStuffWorks
If you have never done anything with "homeschooling," this is an extremely interesting question!

Leaving School and Learning at Home
by Isabel Shaw
This article outlines what you need to know if you're considering homeschooling your child.

My Homeschooling Mistakes
by Isabel Shaw
This article provides helpful advice to parents who are new to homeschooling. The author shares her past homeschooling mistakes so that other parents can avoid repeating them.

Questioning Socialization
by Sandy Keane
When we first went public with the idea of not sending our kids to school , the socialization question was the first one raised by most people. I used to try to answer but over the years have discovered that I didn't always necessarily understand the question.

Should parents be allowed to homeschool their kids?
by Resa Steindel Brown
I think the real question is: WHO should be responsible for raising our children? If it is not us, as parents, then WHO? And WHEN?

Socialization: A Great Reason Not to Go to School
by Karl M. Bunday
A summary of scientific research related to socialization or self-esteem of homeschooled children, with references to academic publications.

Social Skills and Homeschooling: Myths and Facts
by Isabel Shaw
This article debunks the myth that homeschooled children aren's as well socialized as their public school counterparts.

Unschooling and the Type A Dad
by Brad Beckerman
A type A guy wonders whether unschooling can work for him.

Waiting for a Bad Teacher
by Linda Dobson
Waiting for a bad teacher is akin to waiting for a known tumor to grow malignant.In their own ways, both acts of waiting are unhealthy, and create additional damage that never needed to exist and require longer time periods from which to recover.