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Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to notify my child's school if I decide to homeschool?
Yes. If your child is already attends a Missouri public school and you would like to begin homeschooling then you must notify the school that you will be withdrawing your child.
Follow these simple steps to officially withdraw your child by letter.
- Copy and paste the sample Missouri Withdrawal Letter below in a new document to print.
- Enter your personal information in the brackets and print 2 copies (one for the school and one for your records).
- Mail a signed copy of your letter by Certified Mail.
How many hours are required during the school year?
The Missouri Home School law requires that you teach a minimum of 1,000 hours. To be specific, at least 600 of those hours in core subjects, reading, math, social studies, language arts, and science. The other 400 hours can be spent on extra curricular activities or other non core subjects. The school year begins on July 1st and ends on June 31th of the following year.
How do I track hours?
The law requires samples of the student’s work. A simple way to keep these would be to periodically insert samples of work into a pocket divider in a three ring binder that also holds the daily log of hours, diary, and record of evaluations. Each divider could house two- four subjects.
Am I really qualified as an educator? Can I really teach my child every subject?
The market is filled with great curricula for homeschoolers—curricula designed and tested by professional educators. There is curriculum to suit every style of learning and philosophy of education.
How can you successfully plan a homeschool day when life is so busy?
Create school schedule that is not intense. Start off by making sure your children are getting what they need to get from each important subject as well as experiencing life so that their days are full of joy and freedom to learn.
Will homeschooling prepare my kids academically? Will they be ready for college?
Yes, it will. Homeschoolers can attend college just like anyone else. Your parents or what’s called an umbrella school keep track of our transcripts. You can sign up to take the ACT or SAT at a testing facility (usually a public school) and your test scores are sent to the colleges to which you’re applying. Or, you may take admissions tests through the college you’ll be attending.
What resources are available for homeschooling a child with special needs?
Special needs children need more structure and they need to have an environment that is sensory rich and take into account your child’s learning style, their temperament, their interests, and their strengths and weaknesses. If necessary, find outside help. Such as, OTs (occupational therapists), speech therapists, therapists, and even tutors.
What educational philosophy or approach to homeschooling is best for my family?
Should I teach every subject personally or is there a benefit to using some video curriculum?
Visual messages from video are processed in the brain’s limbic system, a completely different part of the brain than that which processes, say, text on a page. The limbic system triggers an emotional response, which aids in both memory and motivation.
How can I homeschool my older kids while also taking care of my young children?
Teach the tougher, more teacher-needed subjects when the little ones are resting, reading, playing, and/or watching educational videos.
How often does homeschoolers engage in the outside world?
One of the great things about being homeschooled is that on pretty days, you can take your work outside and do it there if you want to.
How do you make friends?
The same way you do, just not at the same place. We make friends at church, homeschool groups, on our sports teams, etc.
Do you have homework?
It depends on how you look at it – it’s either all homework because it’s all done at home or we never have homework because we do all our schoolwork and we’re finished. Some homeschooled kids do go to co-op or other classes outside their home and they may have homework from there.
Will being homeschooled make me feel socially awkward?
Not for most. Some are awkward, but so are some public school kids. Being homeschooled doesn’t make you awkward; that’s just your personality.
Can I stay in my PJs all day?
Some do. Some kids like to get up and get dressed because it helps them wake up and feel ready for the day. And, some just like to hang out in sweats or yoga pants and t-shirts.
Will I have breaks?
Yes, you get breaks. Some homeschool families school year-round and take breaks when they need them. Others follow the public school year. You can take a six-week summer break and a six-week Christmas break. This can be aligned to be at the same time as public schools.
Will I develop bad sleeping schedules?
Some have unusual schedules. Some have normal schedules. One of the best things about homeschooling is being able to work when you’re most alert. For some of us that is late at night. For others, it’s early in the morning.
How do I keep myself focused on my school-work at home?
Traditional books and worksheets are great, but don’t underestimate things like field trips, science experiments, movies, and games, and music. Physical activity is an important part of any day. Run, skip, do jumping jacks—whatever it takes to get out the extra energy and get yourself ready to focus again.
How can I keep my homeschool supplies organized?
A bookshelf is always necessary. Bookshelves are important for holding books, obviously, but consider it for holding other things like bottles of paint, reams of paper, software, and science projects in progress. Also, plastic totes are convenient for holding supplies not yet opened, like boxes of pens or pencils, paintbrushes, and construction paper.
Will you be able to attend prom?
Your local homeschool groups holds prom for homeschoolers every year.
Will I have hard time transitioning back to public or private school if my homeschool journey stopped?
There will be a little adjustments that will take place. However, you are disciplined enough to get through it. Your tracking ledger will be enough to enter back into your local school of choice. Testing my be required during the enrollment process.
What will happen if I decided to go back to pubic or private school and I found out that I fell behind on a certain subject?
Determine the areas of need and request tutoring service.
Should I accumulate volunteer hours?
Yes. Community service is a great way to connect with the people of the community. The hours accumulated creates a great resume from your hard work.
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