Homeschool Conventions Near the CSRA
Homeschool Conventions Near the CSRA
As a new or seasoned homeschool teacher, a homeschool convention is something that you should visit at least once. I personally wish that I could visit one every year because you get to learn from experienced homeschool teachers, look at new or preferred materials, and you get excited to teach another year.
What To Expect
Guest Lecturers and Classes
Nationally known homeschool advocates, active, and retired homeschool teachers give lectures on many topics that homeschoolers face in this endeavor. In addition to perusing the vendors and materials, I highly recommend that you attend as many of the lectures and classes that you can. These free classes are intentionally designed to help you become the best homeschool teacher that you can be. They address many concerns, questions, and offer plausible solutions like meal planning, time management, teaching multiple grade levels, how to better teach a difficult subject, decluttering, discipline, and so many more. Also, if you are homeschooling for the first time they have classes to help explain the differences in curriculums, the learning styles, and what might fit your family style the best. Granted, half of the classes are hosted by specific businesses (which may try to promote their product), but you can always learn something from each class that will be helpful without buying the product.
Check Out New Curriculums
At a convention, you also get to see and compare curriculums first hand. You get to look through the pages of books, see videos of how they are taught and if your child is there you may even ask them if it is something they may like. The down side is that it is impossible for all curriculums to be present at a convention, but it really does make a difference to look through some of your choices first hand. What I found beneficial, in a lot of cases, is that you get to meet the people who wrote or worked on the curriculums/books and being able to ask them questions first hand. You get to learn so much about the different choices while you are there.
Get Some Cool Event Swag!
Another plus is that there are usually several booths selling items and materials to help make your homeschooling easier. Think mobile school supply stores! Items like dry erase boards, construction paper, globes, math manipulatives, wall maps and other “schoolroom” supplies will make your homeschooling corner or room, look and feel like a real classroom. Be sure to bring some extra cash for this if you can! As an added benefit, most vendors also have free promotional school-related items. My children have returned home with more pencils than they could use in a year, and other cool things like calculators, rulers, etc. Sure.. they might have a certain logo on the super swoopy calculator but hey, it’s free and the kids love it!
A Perfect Family Event!
Don’t be afraid to take your kids. Remember it is “home” schooling, so they expect you to bring your kids with you. You will see full families, taking turns in the hallways, one parent in a class and another with a baby in a stroller. These events provide childcare, Lego® playing areas, and even teenage classes. All of this so that everyone has something to do and hopefully gain from. There are also opportunities for learning, like talks with people that survived the Holocaust, or Family Fun nights where you listen to stand-up comedy together. Remember, this is the perfect educational field trip and can count toward your 180-school day requirement. It is a win-win situation!
You can volunteer at most of these events and get a FREE family passes for the whole weekend conference or part of the weekend! Volunteer shifts are 4-6 hours long and you usually get to choose the time you want to volunteer. Remember to look through the convention class schedule, so you don’t schedule your volunteer shift during a class you don’t want to miss.
Homeschool Conventions By Date
Southeast Homeschool Convention/Great Homeschool Conventions
March 8-10, 2018
Teach Them Diligently
April 5-7, 2018
Lowcountry Homeschool Convention
May 31- June 1, 2018
Southeast Homeschool Expo
July 26-28, 2018
(If you sign up for their e-mail you may get a complimentary ticket.)
Attending a homeschool convention takes a bit of planning. You may have to book a hotel and plan for meals, but there are so many benefits. You get awesome lectures, you get to see top-rated curriculums, the whole family can take part and learn. Most of all you walk out of there feeling replenished and motivated to start a new school year.
Have I been able to convince you to visit a homeschool convention? Have you been to any of these conventions? Which one is your favorite and why?