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A review: Catholic homeschooling resources

When I was growing up, my parents considered whether to change their children’s schools every year. Each of the six of us took a slightly different path. Our parents sent us to Catholic, private, and public schools—and even homeschooled one of my sisters for a bit.

This summer, as we prepare for a school year that will be affected by the pandemic, I’m sure many of us have considered homeschooling. Maybe the emergency remote education of last spring went well for your family, but I’ve spoken to many people who limped their way to the finish line with us.

Imagine choosing your own curriculum, your own schedule, and your own approach to your children’s education. It’s tempting.

We can’t easily homeschool our children because we both work full-time jobs with unpredictable schedules. But I do like the idea of supplementing our schools’ online instruction with some homeschooling resources or identifying topics our boys can explore that they will enjoy.

My friend Kelly, who blogs at This Ain’t the Lyceum, is a Catholic homeschooling mom of five, and she has created some resources for homeschooling families. She gave me a sneak peek at “The Catholic Homeschool Audit Workbook” and “Using Google Classroom in the Homeschool.”

Kelly has an engaging writing style, and “Using Google Classroom in the Homeschool” is a clear, accessible piece that made me wonder whether I could actually try homeschooling myself one day. It sounds as if Google Classroom could make the process much more organized and straightforward.

I particularly like the idea “The Catholic Homeschool Audit Workbook,” because it offers a way to reflect on how homeschooling is going for your family and plan differently for the year ahead.

I found myself wanting to use it to reflect on our spring of emergency online learning as we try to figure out what we can do better to prepare for our children’s education this fall. We have been discussing how we can approach the next academic year a little more intentionally, with more structure and focus. I could see how this would be especially helpful if you were choosing your own curriculum and teaching your children yourself.

One of my favorite parts of the workbook was the section on creating an educational mission statement for your family. Determining and discussing a mission statement for your family’s school year is so appealing. Of course, the Buettner family was so far from a mission statement last spring that I would hardly know where to begin. We were just trying to survive, get passing grades, and eat as many Skittles as we could.

Still, I think these pieces could be valuable for a Catholic homeschooling family. You can find out more about “The Catholic Homeschool Audit Workbook” and “Using Google Classroom in the Homeschool” on Kelly’s blog, This Ain’t the Lyceum. You can also read her posts on How to Start Homeschooling Your Elementary School Student, How to Start Homeschooling Your Teenager, How to Start Homeschooling Your Special Needs Child, and How to Homeschool in Difficult Circumstances.

Whichever option you choose for your child’s education this year, I hope you feel good about it, and I hope it will work well for your family.

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