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Hooray for Homeschoolers!
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Hooray for Homeschoolers!


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Public libraries and homeschoolers are a perfect match. This presentation shares ways that public libraries can program for homeschoolers and ways that public libraries can support homeschoolers.

Public libraries and homeschoolers are a perfect match. This presentation shares ways that public libraries can program for homeschoolers and ways that public libraries can support homeschoolers.

Published in: Education, Spiritual
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  • 1. Homeschoolers! Suzanne Walker Indiana State Library Children’s Consultant Twitter: @suzieecw
  • 2. Today’s Session • • • • • Who am I? A little about homeschooling in general Public Library’s Role Programming What worked in Mooresville
  • 3. Why do people homeschool? • Religious reasons • Special education or special needs reasons • Bad experience at school either with other students, a teacher, a principal, etc. • Quality of education • Health reasons • Whole host of reasons (personal example…to get into the National Spelling Bee).
  • 4. Different ways to learn at home – Online curriculums – Book based curriculums – Unschooling – Education that come naturally through play, household duties, reading, travel, family, personal interests – Autodidactic approach (self taught) – Homeschooling Groups
  • 5. Difference Between Autodidactism and Unschooling “In my opinion, the two words are synonymous. Autodidactic is probably just the word you would use if you don't want to freak out everyone in the mainstream…” Person on the IndianaHomeschoolers Yahoo Group
  • 6. Difference Between Autodidactism and Unschooling • • • • They are similar They involve the child learning themselves Unschooling – no formal instruction Autodidactic – child focuses on topics of interested and seeks out methods to learn more about that topic…the parent will then help lead the instruction from there on out – Parent on the IndianaHomeschoolers Yahoo Group
  • 7. Keep in mind… • Just like any job, some people are great at homeschooling, some people just do enough to get by, and some people should probably find another career. • You might disagree with their choice to homeschool or how they are homeschooling, but, as with every reference interview you do, keep your judgments to yourself and do your best to help the patron.
  • 8. How many people in Indiana Homeschool? Data from the Indiana Department of Education from several years ago…
  • 9. How many people in Indiana Homeschool? The updated info from an email inquiry…
  • 10. What is the Public Library’s Role? • What we SHOULD do at the very least – Be knowledgeable about resources – Have good nonfiction and fiction collections – And…Get to know your community • Gee…that’s something I do every day!
  • 11. What is helpful • Know a little about Homeschooling law • Consider having a handout, packet, or section of your website talking about what you can offer • HANDOUT!
  • 12. The Law – DOE’s Website • RESEARCH HOME EDUCATION: Before you transfer your child from a traditional school, learn all you can. Talk to other home educators, read books about home education, learn about homeschool law in Indiana, "comparison shop" for a curriculum for your school.
  • 13. The Law – DOE’s Website • TRANSFER YOUR CHILD AND NOTIFY HIS OR HER CURRENT PRINCIPAL, IN WRITING, OF YOUR DECISION: While the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) issues school numbers to all private schools after they report their grade level enrollment data as required by Indiana law, you do not need a homeschool number prior to transferring your child and beginning home instruction. However, you do need to let the public school know why your child is no longer in attendance or he or she may be considered truant.
  • 14. The Law – DOE’s Website • REQUEST A COPY OF YOUR CHILD'S PUBLIC SCHOOL RECORDS: You are entitled to a copy of these public school records, both as a school administrator and as the parent of a minor child, under state law and the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Please note that this does not apply to private school records.
  • 15. The Law – DOE’s Website • 180 DAYS OF INSTRUCTION: You decide which days your school will be in session, and how long to teach each day. In the case of mid-year transfers, days attended at the first school count toward the 180 day total at the homeschool.
  • 16. The Law – DOE’s Website • ATTENDANCE RECORDS: There is no special form for these records, which are used to verify private school attendance. Please note that the law allows local public school superintendents to request copies of your child's attendance records to verify attendance.
  • 17. The Law – DOE’s Website • INSTRUCTION EQUIVALENT TO THAT GIVEN IN THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS: State law does not define equivalency of instruction for public or private schools. If there is ever a question of educational neglect, keeping good attendance records and other documentation regarding attendance and continuing educational activity is highly instrumental in addressing these concerns.
  • 18. The Law – DOE’s Website • CURRICULUM: State law exempts home schools from the curriculum and program requirements which public schools must follow.
  • 19. Get to know your community • Do you have a lot of people homeschooling? • Do you have just two families homeschooling but are they going to use your library everyday? • Just a few families but a lot of children? • How can you serve your families to the best of your ability?
  • 20. Things to do if you have an active homeschooling community • Consider subscribing to a homeschooling magazine or two • Keep a list of websites handy to refer folks to • Get to know your families who homeschool – Ask them what they need – Ask them if you can refer questions to them • Consider doing some programs for homeschoolers
  • 21. Things they want in a recent unscientific poll… • Area for children taking online classes (think Webinar set up…or Skyping, with microphones and headphones available) • Free Wifi • Books on CD particularly classics • One due date across the board
  • 22. Things to do if you have an active homeschooling community • You don’t have to be an expert • You don’t have to know how to homeschool – They are traditionally very good at finding and using resources • Just know where the experts are!
  • 23. Programming Logistics • You can do Homeschooling Programs during school hours • Many times there are more than one child to a family, so your programs may fill up quicker than you anticipate…you could just have 3-5 families and have a full program • Do what works for you, your library, and your patron base
  • 24. First programs… • Library Open House for Homeschooling families • Curriculum Swap Event • Programs during school hours for your homeschoolers
  • 25. Things I have noticed… • • • • Homeschoolers are usually good patrons. They are usually well behaved. Some do lack social skills They appreciate you and what you do
  • 26. Special Opportunities Chicks!
  • 27. Spelling Bee • See if your region participates in the Scripps Spelling Bee. • You can become a registered Homeschool Group. • Last I checked this was $115.00 • See if there is a need and see if your families are interested
  • 28. Our Flat Cauli • We have this cat who blogs at our library: • • We created a Flat Cauli who goes home with different families each week. The kids have to take pictures and write a report then do an oral report once they get back. • Great way to get them writing and speaking.
  • 29. Cauli has been… • • • • • • To Chicago To the Wonderlab in Bloomington Interviewed on our local radio station Climbing trees Riding miniature horses To Disney World!
  • 30. Quick Ideas for Easy Programs • • • • Show and Tell How to Use the Library Class Walking Tour of your neighborhood Arts and Crafts class…Leaf rubbings can be the basis for a great simple nature/art program • Ice Breakers – Go to Youtube and look for Ultimate Camp Resource videos…they are great!
  • 31. Benefits to serving homeschoolers • • • • • Develop special relationships Can be great for your program numbers Double Dipping on Programs Parent involvement is usually high You may be able to do more involved programs/projects • They tend to come back
  • 32. Questions? Thanks! Suzanne Walker Indiana State Library Twitter: @suzieecw