Homeschool Co-Op in Indian Wells

What is a “homeschool co-op”?

A homeschool coop is a group of homeschoolers coming together in cooperation to provide educational and social activities for their children. They are a private enterprise and can be very formal or informal depending on the leaders of the group and its membership. They can be as simple as a park day meet-up once a week where someone plans some sort of activity each week, to as complex as daily classes and projects. Some offer organized field trips. Some ask for a membership fee. And most involve some level of direct parent involvement.

For those in the Coachella Valley, there is a great co-op available called “Desert Valley Cooperative Learning Collaborative” or DVCLC.  Check out their site HERE for details!

If you don’t have something like this in your area, consider starting one! You can start by creating a weekly park day. It takes some time, but after awhile you will gather a group of like-minded people that might be ready to pool their resources and start offering some fun and educational meet-ups for all the kids. It doesn’t have to start out large and complicated!

Here are a few articles and websites that might help you get started!

“8 Questions to Ask When Starting a Homeschool Co-Op” from The Homeschool Mom

“Starting a Small Homeschool Co-Op” from American Home Education

“How to Start a Homeschool Co-Op” from Eva Varga

Singing Classes Offered in the Palm Springs Area

Gwen King teaches singing classes for homeschoolers in Palm Springs and surrounding areas (30-mile radius)!

Her six-week singing class, “Learn to Sing” which she has taught dozens of times, introduces children ages 6 to 11 to the basics of vocal technique. Each week children learn and apply different vocal techniques to a song the whole class is working on. Then they perform it in a workshop style performance for family and friends. She holds the classes at a homeschoolers home. The host gets discounted or free classes depending on the number of participants.

She also teaches a 12-week vocal performance class for ages 12-17 which includes a public performance. Feel free to call or text her at 805 204-1165 or email her at singinglessons4all@gmail.com. She’ll happily answer any questions about the classes and how you can host one.

Online Classes for Teens and Adults

Here’s an interesting site I found this past week. It’s called “Lynda”. For about $30 a month, you can find hundreds of online tutorials and classes mostly related to the tech industry. It’d be great for anyone trying to make their way in this world. I can see a young teenager taking these classes, creating a portfolio of work, and moving on to intern for a company as a young adult. I can see a parent taking one of these classes to help themselves create a business that will support their efforts to stay at home with their kids. Loads of great opportunity here. The best part? There’s a free trial!

Enrichment Club Schedule – Yucca Valley

Enrichment Club Update – Thanks to those who came and helped plan our next couple months of meetings! It’s so much fun to work with you guys and come up with exciting stuff to do with our kids. Here is the outline we came up with! Mark your calendars! Reminders will come out weekly on Tuesday on the Morongo Basin Homeschoolers Facebook Page and in the Friday Newsletters.

September 28 – No class – McCallum’s “Chinese Acrobats” is playing.

October 5 – 11am to 3pm “Little Free Library” project build!
This gathering is essentially free but donations will be accepted to cover building expenses. Annie and Tony will be leading the kids in building a small box for our little library. The box will be planted at the Yucca Mesa Community Center and listed on the “Little Free Library” website and app. We’ll be accepting donations of any books as well! If you’re interested in the details of the project please visit Little Free Library.

October 12 – 11am to 4pm
11am Cooking with Jordan
12:30pm Felting with Katie
1:30 Science with Ronda and Eli
2:30 Creative Movement with Tiffany

October 19 – No class – There is a free Homeschool Day at the La Brea Tar Pits! Get together and carpool! Details are on their website here.

October 26 – 11am to 4pm
11am Cooking with Jordan
12:30pm “Gratefulness” project with Christa
1:30 Science with Ronda and Eli
2:30 Creative Movement with Tiffany

October 27 – Halloween Potluck/Party 5:30pm to 8pm
Costume parade? Bobbing for apples? Bounce house? Everyone pitch in where they can on decorations, food, and games! Let’s have an old-fashioned (small child-friendly, read “not too scary and gory”, sorry) Halloween Party! An “Event” will be created to RSVP!

November 2 – 11am to 4pm
11am Cooking with Jordan
12:30 Fabric Art with Loisa
1:30 Science with Ronda and Eli
2:30 Creative Movement with Tiffany

November 9 – 11am to 4pm
11am Cooking with Jordan
12:30 Fabric Art with Loisa
1:30 Science with Ronda and Eli
2:30 Creative Movement with Tiffany

November 16 – 11am to 4pm
11am Cooking with Jordan & Fun Napkin Folding to show off at Thanksgiving!
12:30 “Thanksgiving History” with Christa
1:30 Science with Ronda and Eli
2:30 Creative Movement with Tiffany

December 7 – 12 to 4pm – Winter Holiday (politically correct to include everyone) Potluck and Crafting Party!
We’ll be building “gingerbread” houses so bring some candy decorations, graham crackers, gingerbread walls, and frosting to share.
Also, we’ll have crafting stations headed up by our awesome parents so that kids (and parents) can come around and learn how to make something cute for the holidays. If you’d like to have one of these tables to share at, chime in on the event page when it comes up!And then we’ll be taking a LONG break from each other until after New Year’s Day!

And then we’ll be taking a LONG break from each other until after New Year’s Day!

As per the Homeschooler Creed, all times are approximate AND the day will be generally free flowing and organic. The best thing to do is bring a lunch, some toys or games to share, and expect to be there all day. Kids flow in and out of activities as they have interest and are welcome to play in and around the property as they wish. You are responsible for your own children’s behavior and we all need to be aware of what our kids are up to so that we don’t damage anyone else’s person or property. This is not a “drop off” activity.

The  cost for these events is as follows.

$35 per family if you pay all at once, this includes all 7 days!

$6 per family if you just want to drop into a few of them.

This covers the cost of renting the room for the day but not the materials. There may be additional costs for each class or requests to bring supplies with you. Personally, I think it’s a pretty sweet deal!

Email info@californiadeserthomeschoolers.com with any questions, including the exact location. We hope to see you there!

Fall/Winter Activities in Yucca Valley

The city’s parks and recreation department has posted it’s Fall/Winter activity guide! There are lots of great things to do in town. Octoberfest, Gourd Festival, Halloween Party, and lots more.

Homeschool Activity Workshops Starting Soon in Yucca Valley

Our planning meeting this week went extremely well for a first meeting and we’ve got some pretty exciting things lined up!

There is a “Not Back to School” party being planned for the end of August! Details will come up soon as we confirm dates!

Activity Workshops will start on September 7th and run Wednesdays from 10am to 4pm, at the Yucca MESA Community Center on Balsa and Aberdeen. The cost will $30 per family (with one to two children) and $35 per family (with more than two children), per month if you pay in advance. If you’d like to pay each week as you come, the cost will be $6 per child, per day. The fee covers the cost of renting the building. If a parent is offering an activity that requires extra materials, they may ask for a couple dollars extra to help them cover the costs. We’ll be sure to let everyone know if there will be extra costs before you sign up.Parents that are leading an activity for the month will not be charged for their children that month.

Each month we’ll change what we’re offering as more parent offer their time and kids express interest in learning something new. This year we’re going to add a special time for families with preschool age children. I’ll post details each week but to get you excited about coming, I’ll give you September and October’s line-up!

In September, we’ll be offering the following schedule.

10am to 11am – Preschool Storytime & Craft (hopefully presented by some of our older kids)
11:30am to 1:30pm – Cooking with Jordan –  Back by popular demand2pm to 3pm – Fiber Arts with Katie
3pm to 4pm – Beginning Sketching with Michelle

In all of our workshops, parent participation is required. Parents are expected to be nearby and helping if they see a need. There are no drop-offs permitted.

In October, the tentative schedule will be,

10am to 11am – Preschool Storytime & Craft (hopefully presented by some of our older kids)
11:30am to 1:30pm – Cooking with Jordan –  Back by popular demand
2pm to 3pm – Creative Movement with Tiffany
3pm to 4pm – Outdoor Skills with Rhonda and Eli

Shoot me an email at info@californiadeserthomeschoolers.com if you have any questions. More information, as well as event postings that you can RSVP to, will be coming out in the coming week!

CrossFit Littles Summer 2016

Starts Monday, July 25th at CrossFit Yucca Valley!

13584649_916559371789630_1846157435309845539_o

It’s never too early to see if kids are interested in sports. And this has a double advantage. It may give you the chance to check out what CrossFit is and maybe give it a try yourself!

Duolingo For Foreign Language

My sons have been using Duolingo to learn French and German for about a year now, but a few days ago my oldest told me there was a new “dashboard” for teachers to use as a classroom. I looked it up and it’s also amazingly free! My sons have been using the totally free site for the past year and have found it to be very good at motivating them to continue learning every day. It plays a bit like a game, so there are points to get for completing lessons and translating articles. They showed it to me when they found it to learn German and have since started learning Norwegian, and Spanish as well. They tried Russian but found it too much to learn along with other languages.

You might try just putting your kids onto it and seeing where they go with it, but if you’d like to be able to assign work with a due date, you can log into Duolingo for Schools
and sign up your school and invite your kids as students. It’s very easy to use and completely free. Pick a language to learn together and speak to each other at the grocery store like it’s some kind of secret code!

29 Palms Art Gallery – Summer Camp

Summer 2016 – Clay Camp is coming up in July! It looks like there are morning and afternoon sessions. Check their website for details and registration.

29 Palms Art Gallery

13433092_10207591144390210_1014626793008466106_o