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Monday, June 23, 2008

Co-Op Classes

Co-Op Classes
(from HLSDA web site)

If you are feeling unsure about teaching a particular high school course because of the amount of preparation needed for daily teaching, you may want to join a co-op or form a new one.

As the name implies, co-ops involve cooperative teaching where two or more parents join together to teach a course. For example, four homeschooling moms might collaborate on a high school history course. Each mom would be responsible for preparing lesson plans, planning field trips, and leading discussions for a quarter. Your investment of preparation and instruction for one quarter would pay off in your child receiving instruction for the whole school year.

Alternatively, instead of dividing up teaching responsibilities in terms of quarters, each mom could focus on a particular time frame. For an American History course, a different mom might teach each of the following sections: the Revolutionary War through the Civil War; Reconstruction through World War I; World War II through Vietnam; and the 1970’s through the present. Yet another co-op option is to team up with one or two other moms and have each mom teach one subject that she feels comfortable teaching to everyone else’s children. You’ll cut down on the number of individual courses that you are preparing for, and your child will be taught by a mom who has had plenty of time to plan and research that subject.

Co-ops also provide networking time for moms. It’s fun to coordinate and plan out the year together. Just make sure at the outset that everyone is on board and has agreed on the responsibilities of each mom and students so that the group functions smoothly.
Finally, should you decide to end each quarter or semester with your student presenting a paper or other type of learning summary, co-ops provide ready-made audiences!