November 21, 2008

Secular homeschoolers- a list

 On the Meming of Life today is another great list.  This time it's secular homeschoolers.   I found a couple of gems that I am going to follow and I'll add to the list on the left there for future reference.  It's hard enough being a homeschooler, not being religious on top can be pretty uncomfortable in some situations.   I remember when I was laid off from my company and we made the decision that I would not try to go back to work for a few more years.  After a period of adjustment, I tried to reach out to other moms in the area that were, or would be soon, schooling at home.  I met a few nice ladies but they talked of nothing but their church and their god.  I wanted to be friendly for the kids' sake but it was awkward.  I didn't feel like I could boldly say, "Hey, I'm an atheist but I have the same goals and dreams for my children.  Let's not talk about church, let's talk about curriculum or field trips."  I never had the nerve and I let those relationships whither. 

 I was (and am) on couple of homeschooling email lists.  One is basically a Christian list and the other is basically secular, with a wide range of belief systems that rarely get mentioned.  A couple of years went by and we were again really hoping to find some like-minded individuals in our area.  I reached out on the secular list.  That time we hit the jackpot.  We now have regular playdates, coffee nights, and family get-togethers with amazing friends.  We don't all share the same beliefs, but we all accept each other's worldviews.  And our little group keeps growing!  I am infinitely grateful to Monique for first responding to my email and inviting us over.  

Any community, be it online or in real life, is worth having when you aren't in the mainstream.  I don't often blog here about our homeschool.  I mention it more in my other blog, but I am very happy to support homeschooling bloggers out there.  I hope a few more come out of the woodwork with the links to their blogs because I'd love to follow their journeys as well.  

If I had to nitpick at one thing (and I know I don't, but it bugged me a little), one comment about how some blogs were good and others were not, didn't sit right with me.  I'm not a great writer and I know this.  I don't pretend to be, although I do try to write well.  I don't think that is a good reason to write off a blog for future reading.  I agree, it has to catch your interest but a little support here and there is still nice, even if the blogger doesn't have the best material in the world.   I really appreciate everyone who took the time to comment here on my blog.  Thank you again.


  1. Your story reminded me a bit of when I 1st became a stay at home mom again. We're in UT. We had moved to this suburb 6 months prior, but I was still working at the time so I didn't have time to get to know many people. The neighborhood was brand new and initially people were pretty friendly. However, we noticed that as the neighborhood filled in, our Mormon neighbors became less and less friendly toward us. We hadn't changed our behavior toward them at all, it seemed more like they had only talked to us because they didn't have anyone else. Intertwined with that was likely the realization that they really weren't going to be able to re-activate me and/or convert DH.

    I had to consciously seek out other ways to meet people and make friends. I can be pretty reserved and shy in person until I get to know someone really well, so it's not an easy thing for me to do. I feel like I can relate to what you're talking about.

    I admire your patience and dedication to homeschool your kids. I couldn't do it. I really look forward to personal alone time. DH and I are both introverts - we don't need much in person socializing. If our kids didn't go to school, they'd possibly not ever be around other kids outside of gymnastics.

  2. Thank you. There are some days though when I wonder what on earth I got myself into to! :) I can honestly say I envy you a little bit.

    I used to be more introverted. I definitely still need some time to myself or I get a little wacko. I don't know how I ended up with three completely social children when B and I hardly ever left the house before they were born!

  3. I've had much the same experience. After we started homeschooling, the only people I met for the first year were very religious and either bent on converting Padawan Learner and me or would reject us out of hand as "a spiritual danger". Yes, that is an actual quote and heard more than once.

    Since that first year, we've found a few other secular homeschoolers and a few religious families that are homeschooling for academic reasons. It's so nice to find a group to part of and to discuss the needs, joys and trials of homeschooling.

  4. Excellent site I will be visiting often.

  5. Hi, I guess I'm the mom who wrote the comment that put you off -- I promise it wasn't a criticism of someone not writing well. It was about one specific blog only, where narrow-minded conservatism postures as founding American principles of liberty for all, and insult runs rampant. NOt thinking, no analysis, no original ideas. It's not the inartful way anything was being said, but the plain horror behind what was being said. How can such a blog be linked by thinkers as a homeschooling libertarian?? Nazis and Hitler and race prejudice and white complacency if not superiority . . . have. . .to . . .stop. . .now . . .

  6. Oh no, JJ! I know that blog you were talking about and I can totally agree. That's not what I was talking about. It was an actual comment on the post about a lot of blogs being boring. I know Dale has a way of making everything he writes sound good. My talents are far limited in that area. Not all bloggers can write well, but we have so few of us secular bloggers and homeschoolers, that I don't think we should be as picky. We all need support.

  7. Oh, good, thanks, that's a relief! :)

    Yes, we sure do all need the support of community, wherever we can find it . . .

  8. I just found your blog and, as a fellow secular ( eh hem..Atheist) homeschooler I can relate to where you are coming from :) I'm also a fellow blogger :) I plan to check out your homeschool blog :)

  9. Leigh are you on the TJED Secular list?