How Do I Get Started?
Getting started can feel like the hardest part! Here are some local resources and tips for the journey:
The Pikes' Peak Library District
The library has an excellent listing of homeschooling books. Many are Christian in orientation, a few are not. Reading several different books can help you identify your own personal philosophy. Look especially for books by Raymond and Dorothy Moore, Gregg Harris, Debra Bell, and Cathy Duffy. The 100 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum, by Cathy Duffy summarize the pros and cons of top curricula available to homeschoolers. Also very complete and helpful are the elementary and secondary versions of The Christian Home Educator's Curriculum Manual by Cathy Duffy, though these are older versions. These also summarize many different curricula on the market.
Mardel Christian Stores
A Mardel store is located at Barnes and Powers Boulevard in Colorado Springs. It is a Christian store with an educational department that includes lots of homeschooling resources. They also have sales periodically throughout the year and you can sign up to receive email notices about them if you'd like.
High Country Home Educators
The homeschooling families of New Life Church offer a three part program. High Country is, first of all, a support group. We offer a variety of services, group activities and events for support and fellowship to our member families. Please visit the Support Group section of our website for more information.
In addition, High Country, offers a variety of Enrichment Classes geared toward supplementing your home schooling program. Please visit the Enrichment Classes section of our website for more information on classes and to download a current semester registration handbook.
As mentioned earlier, we also operate an independent private umbrella school, High Country Christian Academy. HCCA offers record keeping, testing and other services. Please visit the Independent School section of our website for more information.
Christian Home Educators of Colorado
The Christian Home Educators of Colorado (CHEC) is our state group and offers an invaluable resource DVD, “A Guide to Home Education in Colorado,” complete with everything you need to know to begin and more. Every summer, CHEC holds its annual State Home Educators' Conference in Denver--a must if you can possibly go! They also offer a free quarterly magazine and many other great resources on their website.
Begin planning now!
Keep Attendance Records. The Colorado homeschooling law requires 172 school days averaging four hours per day. Get a lesson plan book, if you want, and schedule your school days. Many families like to allow a few extra days off during the busy holiday season; you may want to start your school year a little early to allow yourself some flexibility during the holidays.
Determine your personal philosophy. Why are you homeschooling? What do you hope to accomplish? Write down your goals and intentions and keep these in your homeschooling file. There will be times throughout the year when reviewing and reflecting on them will be helpful. It may also be helpful to read a good book on homeschooling to keep a fresh view and outlook on what you are doing and why.
Prepare your children. If they are leaving a traditional school setting, they will experience some adjustments. Begin reading to them, doing fun activities together, talking about school. Prepare them for the changes, and explain to them both why you are homeschooling, and what will be expected from them. Establish a routine in your home. Teach your children to help with household chores. Above all, be sure that your children exhibit an appropriate level of obedience for their age. Work with them patiently but firmly.
Again, if your children are leaving a traditional school setting, you must allow them some "down time," especially if there have been hurts or other problems. You must allow some time for healing from unhealthy experiences. Do not pressure your child, but lovingly establish guidelines and routines, and help them through this transition time.
Keep God as the center! Above all, immerse your children and your school in the Word of God. Read and pray with your children daily. Study the Word for yourself, and see what it has to say about education. God's Word is always our best resource! Educational fads will come and go, but God's Word remains true.
And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children. ~ Isaiah 54:13
Please call our phone line at (719) 278-9135 x3 or Email us at HCOffice@hche.org if you have more questions that we can help you with. We’d love to talk with you!