As the years have passed, we've been part of many different groups. Things change with the ages of kids and the seasons of life we're in. Sometimes a group will be a good fit for a few years, and then we find that we have different needs. But throughout all of the groups I've been a part of in all of my years homeschooling, I've made some great friendships. I've learned so much. There's nothing like learning from people who are doing the same thing I'm doing but who have children who are slightly older than mine. I know they've walked this path and that they can give me good information. If nothing else, I can cry on their shoulders because they've been there, and they understand.
So where can you find these groups, this support? If you're a new homeschooler who isn't so sure what you've gotten yourself into or a veteran homeschooler who has suddenly hit a new stage and doesn't know quite how to proceed, you'll find that we all need support and encouragement. Whether you're looking for a small group, a large group, a strictly social group, a co-op where you can share teaching responsibilities, or an online community that you can be a part of without changing out of your pjs today, here are some suggestions and resources for finding people who will understand and support you.
Large local support groups
Most communities have local support groups. There are areas throughout the world where there are more homeschoolers or fewer homeschoolers, and if you live in an area where there aren't many local homeschoolers, this may not work for you. But for many homeschoolers, a local community group is a great place to build friendships and find support.
- HSLDA has a great collection of local groups in the US. Groups are listed by state, and there is some information about each group available.
- Homeschool.com also has a collection of groups listed by US state.
- Homeschool World has, not only US groups, but also groups from other international locations.
- Local HS is only for the US, but it's unique in that it not only lists support groups, but it lists tutors, classes, and other homeschool activities in your area.
Small, personal groups
- CHF Web (Christian Homeschool Fellowship) is an awesome and supportive group of mostly women and mostly homeschoolers. But there are a few men here and there, and there are moms who don't homeschool who enjoy the fellowship. You can browse the forum without becoming a member, but to post you need to make a free account. I'm mostly a lurker here now, but as a young mom, I found invaluable advice and encouragement from the moms here.
- The Old Schoolhouse Magazine Facebook page is a great place to go for resources and encouragement. It's not an interactive group, but there is some good and encouraging stuff here.
- Hip Homeschool Moms Facebook group is an interactive community. Members can ask questions and respond to others.
- Last but not, least, you can now become a part of the Facebook group- As We Walk Along the Road Homeschool and Parenting Encouragement Group. I began a group, separate from my Facebook page, because it's a little easier to interact there. I'm hoping that we can share information, questions, and encouragement together. And if you're a homeschool blogger, come share your encouraging and informative posts and sign up on the blog roll.