When you begin homeschooling for the first time, you can feel overwhelmed by the choices you have to make. Deciding on a schedule, choosing curriculum, and determining what style, or approach to use can weigh heavily on your mind. Often, the best way to lighten the load of the decisions you must make are to talk about them with other parents who have also decided to take their children’s education into their own hands. Finding either a local or virtual homeschool group to connect with will almost immediately relieve some of your anxieties.
On this page, we’ll share with you some of the local and regional homeschool groups in Michigan, introduce a unique outgrowth of support groups called a homeschool cooperative, and share with you some of the benefits of joining one of these types of support networks.
Michigan Homeschool Support Groups
Although it can be tempting to simply type “homeschool groups near me” into your smartphone and hope for the best, the truth is that you may want to go another route to discover nearby support. In recent years, most homeschool groups have moved the majority of their communications into the Facebook arena. Not only is the social network free to use, but because so many adults use it regularly, it makes sense to carry on conversations where parents are already spending their time.
To get you started in your search for local homeschool support in Michigan, we’ve put together a list of some of the most active Facebook communities for homeschoolers across the state. Don’t see a nearby group listed here, or can’t find one by searching? Don’t worry. You can still connect with a virtual support system such as Time4Learning’s Michigan forum for homeschool parents.
- Genesee County Homeschoolers
- GRAIN – Grand Rapids Area Inclusive Network for Homeschoolers
- Homeschoolers of Jackson Michigan
- Lansing Homeschoolers
- Lapeer County Homeschool Swap & Information
- Meetups for Homeschoolers in the Ann Arbor Area
- NRC Homeschool Connection (Plymouth)
- Oakland County Homeschool
- Southeast Michigan Homeschoolers
Co-op Homeschooling Groups in Michigan
While the upsides of homeschooling are enormous, there are drawbacks to any educational option. One of these is that there are specific academic subjects and extracurriculars that can be enjoyed more fully with a group. To overcome this hurdle, a unique type of support called a homeschool cooperative (or co-op) has emerged in many communities. The idea behind a co-op is to provide a regularly scheduled time for homeschoolers to meet together to participate in group learning and activities such as physical education, lab science, volunteer activities, and more.
In general, co-ops are usually organized and administrated by homeschooling parents. They will often share duties for planning and teaching in a community space such as a church or library meeting room. An example of a homeschool co-op in Michigan is the Adventurers Homeschool Association in Ypsilanti. This group meets on Thursday afternoons at a church in Ypsilanti for enrichment classes in subjects like Shakespeare, wilderness survival, or p.e. Social activities such as potlucks, picnics, and end-of-semester showcases are regularly scheduled for members as well.
Benefits of Joining a Homeschool Group or Co-op
For new homeschoolers, the benefits of having a support network are rather obvious: the ability to get information and advice from seasoned homeschooling families. But even for long-term home educators, a local support group or co-op can enhance your homeschooling experience by offering things like:
- group field trips
- park days and/or p.e. days
- organized clubs such as geography club, 4H, chess, robotics, etc.
- book and curriculum exchanges
- dedicated email loops or Facebook groups for sharing information
- organized athletic opportunities
- the opportunity to make new friends!!
Additional Resources for Homeschooling in Michigan
Have other questions about homeschooling in Michigan? You may find the following pages helpful.