Homeschool Resource Center

Photograph of Homeschool Resource Center

About the Homeschool Resource Center (HRC)

Questions, Answers and other Helpful Information about the
Homeschool Resource Center (HRC)

In 2001 the Johnsburg Public Library received a $55,000 grant to establish a Homeschool Resource Center, which today is located in the library's former Study Room. Funding for this grant was provided by the Illinois State Library, a Division of the Office of Secretary of State, using federal LSTA funding.

With the HRC's materials you can 'try before you buy' a wide variety of curriculum materials including Sonlight, Alpha Omega, Rosetta Stone, Singapore Math or Five in a Row and see if they are right for your family's unique needs before you start spending a lot of money on things that may or may not work.

Q: What exactly is in the HRC?

Q: Who can use the HRC?
A: Anyone at all! You do not need to homeschool. We do require children to be accompanied by an adult, however, because of the many small pieces and fragile items.

Q: May I check things out?
A. Anyone with a valid, full service, Illinois public library card may check out items. If you live out of state, you may purchase a Johnsburg Public Library card that is valid in Illinois only at the Johnsburg Library. Contact the library director for cost information.
We do remind you though that while book items may be returned to any Illinois library, they should be returned at least 2 weeks before they are due to allow for transit time.  All non-book items need to be returned directly to the Johnsburg Library.

It is also very important that you understand you are responsible for all of the pieces of any item you check out. Please count everything before you leave and again before you return it.

Q: How long may I keep the items?
A: All items in the HRC can be checked out for 6 weeks. You may renew the items for an additional 6 weeks as long as there are no holds on the item.

Q: How is the HRC collection arranged?
A: The materials are arranged according to the Dewey Decimal System. We cannot arrange books by grade level because too many materials are for multiple grade levels. Here is a quick guide:

000 Generalities
          020 Library & information sciences
100 Philosophy & psychology
200 Religion
300 Social sciences
          320 Political science
          330 Economics
          340 Law
          370 Education
          390 Customs, etiquette, folklore
400 Languages
          425 English grammar
500 Natural sciences & math
          510 Mathematics
                    512 Algebra
                    513 Arithmetic
                    516 Geometry
          530 Physics
          540 Chemistry & allied sciences
          550 Earth sciences
          570 Life sciences
600 Technology (Applied sciences)
700 The arts
800 Literature & rhetoric
          810 American literature in English
          811 Poetry
          812 Drama
          815 Speeches
900 Geography & history

Other Helpful Information

Children's Historical Fiction and Math Literature Lists
The library purchased a large number of Historical Fiction titles for children with grant funds. All of these books are shelved in the regular juvenile and young adult fiction collections. They have been marked with a green "Historical Fiction" label on the spine. Check the listing of Historical Fiction for Children (note: this item takes a while to load) for titles and time periods.

Also available is a listing of the Math Literature located in the library. Be sure to check out these wonderful resources!

Bulletin Board
There is a bulletin board in the HRC for anyone to post information about local homeschooling events or offers on. The Johnsburg Public Library in no way endorses or checks the information posted on the bulletin board, so please use the information on it with discretion.

Need Personal Assistance?
We have an educational consultant who is available for FREE one-on-one consultations at the library on Wednesday evenings from 7:00-9:00 p.m. Although she is there most Wednesday evenings for drop ins, if you have a long drive and you have not already made an appointment with her, please call the library at 815-344-0077 before you leave just to make sure she is available that day.

 

Accelerated Reader Books

 How to Find an AR (Accelerated Reader) Book at the Johnsburg Public Library

 1.  Go to the Johnsburg Public Library's Online Catalog at: www.johnsburglibrary.org

          2.  Click on the down arrow button after "Search Reading Programs" and select "Accelerated Reader".  Reading levels and point values will appear below and can be adjusted to fit the type of book that you are looking for.

          3.  Type in a subject, author, or theme into the "Find" box and press the appropriate icon to receive the results of your search.

 
 

 

Homeschool Internet Resources

How To Begin Homeschooling

If you are looking for information on how to begin homeschooling, background information and legal information is available at the following sites:
 
National
 
A to Z Home's Cool Homeschooling Web Site
http://a2zhomeschooling.com/
Ann Zeise has created this wonderful, informative and very well maintained site.  No matter where you live or what your personal philosophies toward homeschooling are, you will find useful information here.
 
Alternative Education Resource Organization
http://www.educationrevolution.org/
Provides support and resources to those who favor "learner-centered" education, including certain types of homeschooling.
 
Home Educators Resource Directory
http://www.HomeEdDirectory.com/
Comprehensive resources for the home educator.
 
Homeschooling Legal Defense Association
http://www.hslda.org/
Advocates for the rights of homeschoolers and the right of parents to direct their children's education. Though a Christian organization, it works on behalf of both secular and religious homeschoolers.
 
National Home Education Network
http://nhen.org/home.html
This information network for state and local homeschoolers has become very well respected in its short existence.  NHEN is known for keeping accurate information on their web site and for their support of all faiths and styles of homeschooling.
 
National Home Education Research Institute
http://nheri.org/
This Christian non-profit organization has done a great deal of research on and about  homeschooling over the past decade or so.  Some information is available on line.
 
Illinois Specific Information
 
Illinois Association of Roman Catholic Home Educators
http://ilarche.com/
 
Illinois Christian Home Educators
http://www.iche.org/
Information about IL law, conventions, support groups and more.
 
Illinois H.O.U.S.E
(Home Oriented Unique Schooling Experience)
http://www.illinoishouse.org
Statewide non-denominational site has very accurate state legal information (including samples of form letters and procedures), a field trip page of ideas of what to see and where to go near you, and the best homeschool supplier list I have seen on any state or national list to date.
 
Popcorn & Peanuts:ALL the Illinois Home Education Laws in One Place
http://homepage.bushnell.net/~peanuts/illaws.html
This independent site has a wealth of information on everything from removing a child from an Illinois school in the middle of the year to driver's education classes and graduation requirements.

 

How to Get a Catalog Listing of All HRC Items

1. From the library's website homepage (www.johnsburglibrary.org), select the CATALOG link in the black bar at the top of the page.

 
2. Once you are in the catalog, select the “Number” tab. You should see a box that says “Call Number” and an empty box to the right of it.
 
3. Type the search term “HRC” and then hit the Enter button
 
4. All items in the HRC will begin to list in Dewey call number order. First to appear will be all of the books for adults, followed by audiocassettes, kits in bags, catalogs, CD-ROMS, juvenile books, juvenile videos, kits, and adult videos.

 

Information Useful for Librarians

 

Who are Homeschoolers 
and What do They Want?
 
To Feel Welcomed: Homeschoolers want to be welcome to use the library during school hours. Many complain of librarians who frown at them and ask them why they are there during school hours. Yet, what better place to learn?
 
Late readers: There are many different educational philosophies, some of which encourage delaying teaching reading until after the age of 8 or 10 (ie: Waldorf and Moore Academy). Some homeschooled children also have difficulty with reading skills, just as some traditionally schooled children may. They are coming to the library looking for help. Please do not judge the parents to be neglectful if the children are 'behind'. There may be reasons you are unaware of. 
 
Grade Levels: Many home school children are at several different grade levels of curriculum. They may be in 4th grade math and 2nd grade grammar. The question "What grade are you in?" is often not an easy one or a comfortable one. Please ask instead what grade level book they are looking for.
 
Special Needs: Many homeschoolers have children that have special educational needs. In fact, many have left the school systems because of special needs and they are struggling to meet them at home instead.
The need could be for age appropriate yet high school level reading material for an 8 year old - or for books that don't look childish but are of a low level for an older student. Educators for decades have long sought such materials, and homeschoolers are no different. Knowing the books in your collection that fit these unique needs is a terrific boon to homeschoolers.
 

ConfidentialitySome homeschoolers fear losing their right to homeschool. They fear that they will be harassed or that laws will change and, if they are known in the community, they will lose their right to homeschool.

Please be aware that many homeschoolers will worry that if they give a library their name and phone number on a homeschool contact list that that information might be given to another governmental agency. Some even fear coming forth as a homeschooler for fear that the library staff will report them as truant. Trust is hard won in many cases, and takes time.


Eight Popular Homeschooling Philosophies
School-at-Home -
This is the most familiar style to those of us who attended schools ourselves. Generally it involves four or more subjects a day, taught during specific time periods. Generally this style uses prepackaged purchased curricula, but certainly not always.
 
Classical (Trivium) -
Classical Education organizes education into three Biblical categories. These three categories are Grammar, Logic & Rhetoric, otherwise known as knowledge (learning the facts), understanding (organizes the facts into rational order), and wisdom (taking that knowledge and understanding and uses it in practical ways). This is the original liberal arts education. Memorization, dialog, writing and languages are stressed.
 
Charlotte Mason -
A Christian-based philosophy of education that stresses good literature (rather than textbooks), copying of relevant materials, and dictation. Nature walks are stressed throughout. Structure is crucial and training of good habits begins in infancy.
 
Waldorf -
is a non-Christian spiritually based program featuring delayed academics and a rich variety of music, arts and literature. The aim of Waldorf education is to educate the whole child -- head, heart and hands. The curriculum is geared to the child's stages of development and brings together all elements -- intellectual, artistic, spiritual and movement. The goal is to produce individuals who are able, in and of themselves, to impart meaning to their lives. Rituals of daily and seasonal life are strongly emphasized.
 
Montessori -
The original works of Maria Montessori have been gravely distorted here in America by a lack of copyrights on her name, but the original concept was to respect the child's inner desire to learn and allow him/her to make spontaneous and free choices within a carefully prepared environment (structure the environment, not the child). The role of the adult is to observe and use brief teachable moments to introduce new concepts (usually by doing the activity quietly herself and waiting for a child to ask a question about it).
 
Unit Study Approach -
Unit studies can be as flexible or structured as a family wants. They allow for a great deal of individual choice in both the choice of units to be done and in the materials used. It is usually an in-depth study of one specific topic (baseball, the planets, trees, puffins) that takes into account many areas of the topic, such as geography, science, history, art, etc. It is a complete immersion into the topic so that the student will see things as a "whole" instead as isolated subject areas.
 
Unschooling -
Unschooling is not how something is done, but why. Unschooling is the belief that all people, no matter how old or young, have a built in desire to learn (unless that desire has been crushed by outside forces). It is a belief that if you allow a person of any age to pursue their own interests throughout life they will end up gaining the knowledge they will need in order to pursue the life they want. Unschoolers use textbooks, movies, classrooms and correspondence courses, museums and magazines, jobs and volunteer positions (and the rest of the world) to learn. Unschooling is not, however, never saying no and letting the wolves raise your children.
 
Eclectic -
Any combination of the styles listed above. This is really what most homeschooling families are.


How To Create a
Homeschool Friendly Library
(on the cheap!)
 
Answers to Questions:
Put links to popular sites on your web page to refer people to and/or compile a resource binder of information from a wide variety of current on-line sources such as:
 
A2Z Homeschooling Web Site

Ann Zeise has created this wonderful, informative and very well maintained site.  No matter who or where you are, you will find useful information here. Note, there are a lot of banner ads at this site. If that bothers you, check out the next site! 
 
Homeschool Diner
If the site above doesn't have it, this one certainly does! Terrific collection of information and articles. 
 
Home Educators Resource Directory

Comprehensive resources for the home educator.
 
 
 
Area Supervisory Teacherscontact list 
Some states require the use of supervisory teachers in order to homeschool. Having a local homeschooler create a list of local teachers (and their specialties?) can really make the life of a new homeschooler far easier. All you have to do is provide a space to post the information and try to make sure it is updated once or twice a year! 
 
Area Support Group contact list 
Having a local homeschooler create a list of regional support groups, cooperatives and businesses that offer homeschool specials (ie: weekly bowling or twice a week dance lessons are common in many areas) can really make the life of a new homeschooler far easier. All you have to do is provide a space to post the information and try to make sure it is updated once or twice a year. 
 
Be Welcoming: Homeschoolers want to be welcome to use the library during school hours. Many complain of librarians who frown at them and ask them why they are there during school hours. Yet, what better place to learn?
 
Book Classification Labels such as those for reading levels, historical fiction and math literature
 
Book Discussion Groups such as those with Junior Great Books
 
Cataloging with Homeschoolers in Mind:
Is your OPAC compatible with how most folks will conduct a search?
Most homeschoolers type it as one word. Does your search engine search for both "home school" and "homeschool"?
 
Are your homeschool specific books divided between 371s and the 649s? If so, get them together in the 371s please. 
 
J FIC vs. math or science (Many homeschoolers will never find the cool new math game books you bought if they are off in educational games (371.307) because they are looking for math materials and wouldn't think of looking outside of the 500s. They need to be in with the other math books at 519.2.)

 
Educator Cards with extended checkout periods and reduced/no fines
 
Find an Active Homeschool Volunteer
Those patrons who are requesting more services may very well be just the resource you need to get some of these ideas implemented!
 
Fliers and Pamphlets and Catalogs
While many suppliers only offer online catalogs and magazines, some are still available in print. If possible, get a collection of them and provide a vertical file of these wonderful resources. 
 
Free Use of Meeting Room(s) for classes, meetings and speakers
Yes, sometimes a homeschool group may hire a speaker or teacher. Does this mean they can't use your meeting room to hear their chosen speaker? If so, would you be willing to hire the speaker? 
 
Hi / Lo Readers for reluctant readers and tame YA and Adult fiction for advanced readers
 
Interlibrary Loan that is free and friendly
 
Reader's Advisory: lists of math literature, historical fiction, and/or popular literature based curricula (such as Sonlight, Veritas Press, or Five in a Row) materials that your library already owns and where to find the items.
 
Reading Level Assessment Tools: Microsoft Word, San Diego Quick Assessment, AR lists, Reading Counts lists, Lexiles, etc.
 
Understand Grade Levels: Many home school children are at several different grade levels of curriculum. They may be in 4th grade math and 2nd grade grammar. The question "What grade are you in?" is often not an easy one or a comfortable one. Please ask instead what grade level book they are looking for.
 
Unit Study Kits or backpacks for a variety of ages
 
The problems many
homeschoolers have with
Mr. Dewey's system:
 
'Homeschooling' vs. 'Home Schooling'
Is your OPAC compatible with how most folks will conduct a search? Are your homeschool specific books divided between 371s and the 649s?
 
J FIC vs. math or science
Many homeschoolers will never find the cool new math game books you bought if they are off in educational games (371.307) because they are looking for math materials and wouldn't think of looking outside of the 500s. They need to be in with the other math books at 519.2.
 
The same pre-planning works for the many wonderful math literature books such as the Sir Cumference series or The Librarian who Measured the Earth that are often shelved as J FIC (children's picture books).
 
You can help homeschoolers by using book classification labels or even by asking homeschool volunteers to help create a listing of all of these 'mixed uses' books in your library! (Please see the attached list of math literature books for a place to begin a search of your library's holdings.)
 
historical fiction from any specific time
Have you tried to find some decent historical fiction book about the Revolutionary War lately - without knowing any authors or titles to begin your search? It is almost impossible.
Many curriculum suppliers are great about listing a wide variety of recommended titles for specific eras. Posting a few of these lists will make everyone's lives much easier! We would recommend:
Veritas Press (catalog)
Greenleaf Press (catalog)
Five in a Row (catalog)
Sonlight (catalog)
Beautiful Feet (catalog)
The Well Trained Mind (book)
The Complete Home Learning Source Book
 
(The Johnsburg Public Library's historical fiction list is available at <http://www.johnsburglibrary.org>) 
Purchasing:
 
A homeschool volunteer (who is also a former teacher) gathered specific recommendations for items from a wide variety of homeschoolers (both on-line and those from area support groups), books, and catalogs. These lists were then compiled, sorted by subject area and then by appropriate age levels.
 
Purchases were then made based on the survey responses.
 
Purchases were made using a $55,000 grant. Funding for this grant was provided by the Illinois State Library, a division of the Office of Secretary of State, using federal LSTA funding.
 
 
We also gladly accept donated
materials in good condition.
Materials that are not used are sold by our Friends group at a 'Used Curriculum Fair" that is part of our annual Homeschool Open House.
 
Based on the Survey results we specifically targeted the following purchases:
 
Educational philosophy books (371.042)
 
Homeschool information books
 
Curriculum and unit study materials
 
Textbookscurrently used at the local public schools.
 
Homeschool magazines
 
Catalogs of homeschooling materials (free!)
 
Historical fiction and non-fiction books
 
Science and technology books
 
Math game books (cataloged in math rather than in games)
 
Educational board games and puzzles
 
Video and audiotapes
 
Microscopes and telescopes: (2 stereomicroscopes, 2 compound microscopes, astroscan telescope and Celestron with tripod telescope)
 
3-D anatomy and geology displays
 
3-D specimens of plants and animals
 
Physics and Chemistry equipment
 
Foreign Language tape and video systems
 
 
Christian vs. Secular Materials
 
Probably one of the most frequently asked questions we have been asked is in regards to how we found a balance in regards to religious materials. Admittedly this was one of the most difficult aspects of selecting materials. Every effort was made to find materials in every subject and in every grade level for every need.
 
There are some materials that are specifically Christian, but there are always non-religious materials to balance them. For instance, we do have books on both Creationism and Evolution.
 
So far, everyone we have had feedback from (including Atheists, Buddhist, Christian, Jewish, and Wiccan) has complemented us on the balanced job, so the added effort seems to have been worth it!
Free Ideas Every Library Can Afford:
 
 
Answers to Legal Questions:
Compile a binder of legal information from a wide variety of current on-line sources.
 
Scope and Sequence Charts: Compile a binder showing a typical course of study for each grade level available from Worldbook.com
 
Information Center: A bulletin board & more!
 
Fliers and Pamphlets often free from suppliers
 
Establish Educator Cards for public school teachers and homeschooling educators too
 
Extended check-outs
 
Book Classification Labels
 
Reading Level Assessment Tools: MicrosoftWord, San Diego Quick Assessment, AR lists, etc.
 
Free use of Meeting Room(s)
 
Interlibrary Loanthat is free and friendly
 
Area Support Group contact list
 
Library Staff Awareness (see below or link)
 
Catalog with homeschoolers in mind (see below or link)
 
 
 
 
Library Technology Homeschoolers Love:
 
Accessing the library OPAC from home
Searchable OPAC, reserving books on-line, etc.
 
Receipt Printers
these make record keeping so much faster!
 
If you have these available, be sure to advertise these to your home school families!
 
 
 
 
Library Staff Awareness:
 
 
Homeschoolers need to feel welcome: Homeschoolers want to be welcome to use the library during school hours. Many complain of librarians who frown at them and ask them why they are there during school hours. Yet, what better place to learn?
 
Late readers: There are many different educational philosophies, some of which like Waldorf, encourage delaying teaching reading until after the age of 8 or 10. Some homeschooled children also have difficulty with reading skills, just as some traditionally schooled children may. Please do not judge the parents to be neglectful or the children to be 'behind' for this.
 
Grade Levels: Many home school children are at several different grade levels of curriculum. The question "What grade are you in?" is not an easy one or a comfortable one for many homeschoolers.
 
Special Needs: Many homeschoolers have children that have special educational needs. The need could be for age appropriate yet high school level reading material for an 8 year old - or for books that don't look childish but are of a low level for an older student. Educators for decades have long sought such materials, and homeschoolers are no exception. Knowing the books in your collection that fit these unique needs is a terrific boon to homeschoolers.
 
Confidentiality: Many homeschoolers fear losing their privacy and right to homeschool. Please be aware that many homeschoolers will worry that if they give a library their name and phone number that that information might be given to another governmental agency. Some even fear coming forth as a homeschooler for fear that the library staff will report them as truant. Trust is hard won in many cases, and takes time.
 
 
 
Cataloging with homeschool
educators in mind:
 
Many homeschoolers will never find the cool new math game books you bought if they are off in educational games (371.307) because they are looking for math materials and wouldn't think of looking outside of the 500s. They need to be near the other math books at 519.2.
 
The same pre-planning works for the many wonderful math literature books such as the Sir Cumference series or The Librarian who Measured the Earth that are often shelved as J FIC (children's picture books).
 
Knowing you can't recatalog your entire library, know too that creating bibliographies featuring books you already own is a terrific way of helping home educators, as well as making the most of what you already have.
 
For instance, many home school patrons can't find appropriate historical fiction about specific topics like the Revolutionary War or Ancient Egypt because those books are listed by author's last name and they have no idea where to even begin. You can help by using "Historical Fiction" book classification labels or even by asking volunteers to help create a chronological listing of all historical literature in your library.
 
Many curriculum suppliers provide recommended titles for specific subjects. Posting a few of these lists may make everyone's lives a bit easier! We would recommend: Veritas Press (catalog)
Greenleaf Press (catalog)
Five in a Row (catalog)
Sonlight (catalog)
The Well Trained Mind (book)
 
The problem many new homeschoolers have with Mr. Dewey's System:
 
New homeschoolers may not know where to look in the library. They go to the OPAC and type in 'homeschooling' for a subject search and find nothing because the Library of Congress has it listed as 'home schooling'. They look in the education section (371.) and again find nothing because the LoC has it categorized as 'family life' and tucked away at 649.68. These new homeschoolers then decide you aren't catering to their needs!
 
However, many will never ask! If you can't recatalog materials get the word out using signs, posters, bibliographies or information centers!
 
How helpful are these
materials to homeschoolers?
 
Most families switch styles and/or curriculums an average of 7 times in the first 2 years of homeschooling! This switching around can cost tens of thousands of dollars to an already struggling single income family.
 
 
But What About Circulation?
 
What kind of circulation has Johnsburg's Homeschool Resource Center generated? In September, 12 months after our grand opening event, HRC materials were 6.5% of our total annual circulation and still rising.
 
In a recent snapshot we discovered 9 out of 10 HRC materials checked out were checked out by reciprocal borrowers!
 
Homeschool educators have driven in from several hours away (with picnic baskets!) to 'make a day of' visiting and making use of HRC materials.

 

 

Some pages for you to look at if you are considering adding a Homeschool Resource Center to your library.

AttachmentSize
Homeschool Resource Center grant.pdf221.07 KB
Homeschoolers Library Usage Interest Survey.pdf87.52 KB

Eight Styles of Homeschooling

School-at-Home -

This is the most familiar style to those of us who attended schools ourselves. Generally it involves four or more subjects a day, taught during specific time periods. Generally this style uses prepackaged purchased curricula, but certainly not always.  
 
Classical (Trivium)
Classical Education organizes education into three Biblical categories. These three categories are Grammar, Logic & Rhetoric, otherwise known as knowledge (learning the facts), understanding (organizes the facts into rational order), and wisdom (taking that knowledge and understanding and uses it in practical ways). This is the original liberal arts education. Memorization, dialogue, writing and languages are stressed.
 
Charlotte Mason - 
A Christian-based philosophy of education that stresses good literature (rather than textbooks), copying of relevant materials, and dictation. Nature walks are stressed throughout. Structure is crucial and training of good habits begins in infancy. 
 
Waldorf -
is a non-Christian spiritually based program featuring delayed academics and a rich variety of music, arts and literature. The aim of Waldorf education is to educate the whole child -- head, heart and hands. The curriculum is geared to the child's stages of development and brings together all elements -- intellectual, artistic, spiritual and movement. The goal is to produce individuals who are able, in and of themselves, to impart meaning to their lives. Rituals of daily and seasonal life are strongly emphasized. 
 
Montessori -
The original works of Maria Montessori have been gravely distorted here in America by a lack of copyrights on her name, but the original concept was to respect the child's inner desire to learn and allow him/her to make spontaneous and free choices within a carefully prepared environment (structure the environment, not the child). The role of the adult is to observe and use brief teachable moments to introduce new concepts (usually by doing the activity quietly herself and waiting for a child to ask a question about it). 
 
Unit Study Approach -
Unit studies can be as flexible or structured as a family wants. They allow for a great deal of individual choice in both the choice of units to be done and in the materials used.   It is usually an in-depth study of one specific topic (baseball, the planets, trees, puffins) that takes into account many areas of the topic, such as geography, science, history, art, etc. It is a complete immersion into the topic so that the student will see things as a "whole" instead as isolated subject areas. 
 
Unschooling -
Unschooling is not how something is done, but why. Unschooling is the belief that all people, no matter how old or young, have a built in desire to learn (unless that desire has been crushed by outside forces). It is a belief that if you allow a person of any age to pursue their own interests throughout life they will end up gaining the knowledge they will need in order to pursue the life they want.   Unschoolers use textbooks, movies, classrooms and correspondence courses, museums and magazines, jobs and volunteer positions (and the rest of the world) to learn. Unschooling is not, however, never saying no and letting the wolves raise your children. 
 
Eclectic -

A unique to each family combination of several of the styles listed above. This is really what most homeschooling families are. Home school educators tend to, after the first year or so, pick and choose from a wide variety of philosophies and curriculum that meet the unique needs of their children.

Who are Homeschoolers and What do They Want?

To Feel Welcomed: Homeschoolers want to be welcome to use the library during school hours. Many complain of librarians who frown at them and ask them why they are there during school hours. Yet, what better place to learn?

 
Late readers: There are many different educational philosophies, some of which encourage delaying teaching reading until after the age of 8 or 10. Some homeschooled children also have difficulty with reading skills, just as some traditionally schooled children may. They are coming to the library looking for help. Please do not judge the parents to be neglectful or the children to be 'behind' for this. 
 
Grade Levels: Many home school children are at several different grade levels of curriculum. They may be in 4th grade math and 2nd grade grammar. The question "What grade are you in?" is often not an easy one or a comfortable one. Please ask instead what grade level book they are looking for. 
 
Special Needs: Many homeschoolers have children that have special educational needs. In fact, many have left the school systems because of special needs and they are struggling to meet them at home instead. 
 
The need could be for age appropriate yet high school level reading material for an 8 year old - or for books that don't look childish but are of a low level for an older student. Educators for decades have long sought such materials, and homeschoolers are no different. Knowing the books in your collection that fit these unique needs is a terrific boon to homeschoolers.
 
Confidentiality: Many homeschoolers fear losing their right to homeschool. They fear that they will be harassed or that laws will change and if they are known in the community they will lose their right to homeschool. 
 
Please be aware that many homeschoolers will worry that if they give a library their name and phone number on a homeschool contact list that that information might be given to another governmental agency. Some even fear coming forth as a homeschooler for fear that the library staff will report them as truant. Trust is hard won in many cases, and takes time.

McHenry County Homeschooling Groups

 

MCHENRY COUNTY HOMESCHOOL GROUPS
CONTACT LIST
 
 
This contact list is for the exclusive purpose of helping homeschoolers to find the support group right for their family. This list is not to be used to promote sales, events, or any religious or political causes. Anyone found to use this list for a purpose other than intended will be publicly named and homeschoolers throughout the state will be asked to boycott your cause, service or other promotion.
 
If you have an event or service the specifically relates to homeschooling you may promote it by 1) sending it to the Johnsburg Library and 2) asking the list owner of: MCHENRY CO HOMESCHOOL HAPPENINGS to post it on her site.
List owner: McHenry_Co_Homeschool_Happenings-owner@yahoogroups.com
 
Statewide Support (and basic legal information):
 
Illinois Association of Roman Catholic Home Educators
http://ilarche.com/
 
 
Illinois Christian Home EducatorsWebsite: http://www.iche.org/
 
Illinois H.O.U.S.E.
(Home Oriented Unique Schooling Experience)
http://www.illinoishouse.org/index.html
 
 
SUPPORT GROUP (families get together for social time, activities and field trips),
COOPERATIVE(volunteer hours are required and parents teach each other's students)
OFFERS CLASSES (the group hires teachers for anything from piano to Calculus)
 
Active Homeschool
activehomeschool is an active group and we are looking for new members to join. We meet up weekly for lots of fun activities, park days, nature walks, holiday parties and more. We are located in Lake in the Hills, Huntley, Algonquin and Crystal Lake areas.
We are a secular supportive group, all ages, all educational methods and all religions welcome.
activehomeschool@yahoogroups.com
 
Apple Tree North (Cooperative)
Appletree is a Biblically-based cooperative learning enrichment program for homeschoolers pre-K through 12th grade. We provide hands-on supplements to your home curriculum including PE, drama, art, sports, music, accountability, fellowship and fun.
Meeting Schedule: We meet every Wednesday from September to April.
Meeting Location: Lake Villa, IL
Website: http://www.appletreenorth.com/
 
The Ark Schoolhouse & Ministry Center (Offers Classes)
The Ark is a total Family and Group Support Center offering Indoor and Outdoor Education Spaces and Opportunities.
Academic programs include Homeschool Partnerships, Live Teaching, Individual Courses and Tutoring.
Extra-curricular activities include Community Service Mission Opportunities, Field Trips, Drama/Musical Theatre, Chess Club, Art, Music, Parent Time-Out, Senior Citizen Mentoring Opportunities, and more. Bring your group activity, or participate in one of ours!
Serving Northern Illinois and Southern Wisconsin areas, located in Harvard / Capron, Illinois.
Laura Straus 815-569-2803 or info @ ArkHome.org Web site: www.ArkHome.org
 
Barrington Area Home Schoolers (Support Group)
Barrington Area Homeschoolers exist to strengthen Christian home school families by fostering relationships, providing activities and inspiring learning. We hold monthly support meetings for parents and offer a GREAT variety of field trips and enrichment and service opportunities for students. The monthly meetings are held in Crystal Lake. Through our email group and newsletters, members can find out about all kinds of opportunities (such as teen and pre-teen club events, special needs support) and have the opportunity to ask questions as they come up in life/school. Membership closes October 1st.  New families to home schooling and to the area are welcome to join at any time during the year.
Tammy Massey, Membership Coordinator (847) 836 - 2347 or godskd2 @ yahoo.com>,
Barb Olsson, BAHS Leader 847-658-0229 or barbolsson @ gmail.com
 
Classical Consortium Academy (Offers Classes)
C.C. is a one-day-a-week, comprehensive, academic program that follows a classical method in both the subjects taught and how those subjects are taught. Students are in C.C. classes on Mondays and are responsible to accomplish homework from those classes during the week under their parents' supervision. C.C. serves students in third through twelfth grades.
The Classical Consortium meets every Monday from mid-August until mid-May , except holidays, at the Village Church of Barrington. Students are in classes from 8:00 am to 3:45 pm.
Tuition for C.C. Grammar students is$1.300/year, Logic students is $1,400/year and Rhetoric students is$1,600/year. Tuition may be paid in monthly installments. Books must be purchased separately. A comprehensive booklist is provided by C.C.. No Statement of Faith is required for students families. Check out their web site at: www.ClassicalConsortiumAcademy.com
Jennifer Burns fourthdegree @ sbcglobal.net 847-713-2674
 
Crystal Lake Park District (Offers Classes)
Provides classes on Thursdays and Fridays for homeschoolers. Please visit http://www.crystallakeparks.org/ or see a current brochure for details.
 
Grace Community
Grace Community is a dynamic group. Grace changes yearly with the gifts and educational desires of the group�s member families. This year we would like to offer a preschool class to accommodate siblings.
If you would like to add your gifts and talents to our cooperative please contact Jennifer:
 grace @ skylineacademy . org  
  • Christian home school cooperative
  • Accepting new families
  • Meets Thursdays 9:30 to 2:10
  • In Crystal Lake
  • Kindergarten through high school
  • Academic and enrichment
  • Questions: grace @ skylineacademy . org

Grace Community is a community of Christian home school families cooperating to Educate, Stimulate, and Support one another in our calling to educate our children at home to "...bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord." (Eph. 6:4)

As a cooperative, Grace Community meets Thursdays, September through April.

Grace Community is not affiliated with any particular denomination. Our families attend a variety of area churches.

One of the purposes of Grace Community is to provide experiences that home educated children can only experience in a co-op situation.  Students experience being part of an academically oriented class in a classroom situation with a teacher other than their parent; they have a ready audience for their academic achievements; and practice group cooperation and appropriate competitive skills.

For more information concerning Grace Community and Registration details, contact Jennifer:
grace @ skylineacademy . org

H.E.A.R.T. (Homeschool Enrichment Achieved Respectfully Together) (Cooperative)
H.E.A.R.T. (Homeschool Enrichment Achieved Respectfully Together) is a nine-month, weekly program for homeschooled children from Kindergarten through 8th grade that supplements the teaching they receive at home through qualified instruction in the areas of art, science, Spanish, and physical education. In addition, students may choose between music, drama, and a bible study. Older students are able to take classes in speech, home economics, sewing, woodworking, sculpting, and strategic games. Also students are exposed to a wide variety of other subjects during month-long unit studies taught by parent volunteers.
The program is on Thursdays from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm at The Village Church of Barrington.
No Statement of Faith required. Yearly tuition for H.E.A.R.T. students in Kindergarten through Fourth Grades is $837. Students in Fifth through Eighth Grades are able to join us for the morning ($498/year), afternoon ($306/year) or all day ($882/year). Tuition may be paid in equal monthly installments. In addition, parents of Kindergarten through Fourth Grade students must volunteer roughly 15 hours per student enrolled. When parents are not volunteering they are not required to be on site.
Check out their web page at: www.HEARThsenrichment.com
Jennifer Burns fourthdegree @ sbcglobal.net847-713-2674
 
Heartland Homeschool Workshops (Cooperative)
The purpose of the workshops is to provide high quality, academically challenging, spiritually uplifting classes to supplement, support, encourage, but not to replace, what is being learned at home. Our workshops are a unique educational experience in that we combine a high level of commitment from parents, students, and teachers. Interview and SOF required.
Check out their web page at heartlandhomeschool.org
For more information or to apply for enrollment, please contact our new family coordinator:  Heartlandinfo@yahoo.com
 
Heritage Homeschool Group (Support Group)
HHG is a Christian mother's support group that meets once a month in Harvard. They offer occasional field trips for member children. Statement of Faith required.
Karen Savino 815-943-1934
 
Hope (Support Group)
We have been asked to keep all information about this Christian Woodstock group private.  This group is not accepting new members.
 
IL Teen Activities (Support Group)
Centered in and around McHenry, Lake, Kane and Cook Counties, this volunteer run group runs a wide variety of dances and other events throughout the year.
Contact: TeenActivities @ gmail.com or visit http://ilteenactivities.blogspot.com/
 
Indian Hill Homeschool Group (Cooperative)
IHHSG is a Christian co-op offering non-credit enrichment classes for preK through high school, and for-credit high school classes.  Non-credit classes meet on Tuesdays generally from early September to late March.  For-credit classes meet Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays (day depends on the class) from August to early May.  We take a substantial break in December 
Meeting location: Indian Hills Bible Church in Ingleside, IL
Contact: IndianHillsHomeSchoolGroup@gmail.com
 
MCCSG.org Christian and Catholic Christian Services:
MCCSG Academy at MCCSG.org. Christian and Catholic Christian services. 1, 2 and 3 day programs. After school programs - tutoring available. Programs include; Academic Days w/ Math, Science, History, Religion, Art, Writing, Reading, Spanish (traditional school year once per week) 3 weeks on and 1 week off. Report cards and parent grades incorporated. We are a charity servicing home educators, a non-profit 501c3. Drop off included. Basketball, flag football, lego club, sewing club and many other enrichment programs. Scholarships available. If you are looking for a solution to education struggles MCCSG has much to offer - making home education viable. Video: http://youtu.be/m0jyXUHq5Oc Site: mccsg.org. Contact 815-403-8027 or 847-909-9042 or 815-575-0642. Convenient location for McHenry, Lake, Kane and surrounding areas. We are not a Church and reside in a commercial location.
 
McHenry County Homeschool Happenings (Support Group)
The homeschooling community of McHenry County, IL is widespread and diverse. This on-line only group is designed to help all of us in McHenry County stay in touch with one another, share events, and help each other find the local resources we need to succeed beyond our wildest dreams. This group is for all McHenry County homeschoolers no matter your educational philosophy, curriculum, or religious background and is not intended to discuss those issues. Respect for all is mandatory.
Web Page: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/McHenry_Co_Homeschool_Happenings/
List Owner: McHenry_Co_Homeschool_Happenings-owner @ yahoogroups.com
 
McHenry County H.O.U.S.E. (Support Group)
McHenry County H.O.U.S.E. is a chapter if Illinois H.O.U.S.E., a non-religious based, all-inclusive group for child and parent peer support. They meet throughout the year in Crystal Lake and Woodstock. Please call for meeting time and location.
Lorri Kunz 815-568-4548 lkitkat4 @ gmail.com
 
McUnschooling (Support Group)
This is on-line and in real life support group is dedicated to the unschooling lifestyle.
Heather Taite 815-356-007 or jhtaite @ att.net or visit http://groups.yahoo.com/group/McUnschooling/
 
Roots Christian Home Educators 
Roots Christian Home Educators is a family run home school cooperative which meets in Crystal Lake two Fridays per month from September thru May. The goal of Roots is to provide enrichment activities and Christian fellowship for our children and ourselves at an affordable cost. In addition to our enrichment classes we offer Mom's night out and an optional field trip each month as well as a few special events throughout the year such as our annual art show and family fellowship night. As a not for profit group we strive to keep our materials fee to a minimum. Application and agreement with statement of faith is required. There is no application fee. If interested please contact Melissa via email at lovinglife26@comcast.net or by phone at 847-414-6471.
 
Society of St. Scholastica Homeschoolers (Support Group)
This Catholic support group offers mom meetings the third Friday of the month in private homes throughout the region. Support for the entire family in the form of field trips and activities such as spelling bees, recitals, rosary making sessions, and May Crowning ceremonies help to immerse the children in their Catholic culture.
Debbie Servi 847-540-6623 ldservi @ prodigy.net
 
Wauconda Area Christian Homeschoolers
Offers monthly enrichment activities such as field trips, opportunities for community service, and chances for students to share what they have learned.  We also offer mothers' encouragement meetings about every six weeks.  Children in our group range from babies to highschoolers.

For more information contact Andrea Weadick, 847-487-2870,  
jnaweadick@juno.com
 
 
This list was designed for McHenry County Libraries and their patrons. If you know of any additions or changes, please contact the Library at mzawacki @ johnsburglibrary.org

 

Reading Lists

Find reading lists of books in our library that are ideal for your child's education.

Not all of these books are in the Homeschool Resource Center.  Please ask a librarian if you need help locating any of these items.