With so much uncertainty surrounding the reopening of schools, some Berks County parents are instead making the choice to homeschool their children.

A movement that has grown in popularity over the years, the number of families choosing to homeschool is growing even more quickly this year due to the pandemic.

While some parents are choosing to use their school’s online learning option with the assistance of private tutors/teachers to help their children learn at home this year, others are choosing their own curricula and teaching their children themselves.

Homeschooling can prove daunting for first-timers, but fortunately, Berks County is full of tremendous resources for those choosing this option this year.

A great place to start familiarizing yourself with the legality of homeschooling in Pennsylvania (regulations surrounding homeschooling vary widely state to state) is AskPauline.com. In addition to walking parents through any questions they may have, this website gives many others tips as well regarding curricula, social questions, and more.

Veteran homeschool mother Kara Snyder of Spring Township is particularly grateful to be homeschooling her son for the sixth consecutive year as the pandemic rages onwards.

A wealth of information, Snyder shared that she uses Easy Peasy, a complete 180-day free Christian homeschool curriculum created by a woman in Pennsylvania, allinonehomeschool.com, that meets all the requirements needed for a good home education.

So-called homeschool co-ops, educational groups where multiple homeschool families meet and share educational costs and experiences (such as Classical Conversations, classicalconversations.com, are popular choices for additional educational experiences as well as socialization.

Snyder also shared that the Reading Museum, Reading Library, and local fire stations are some wonderful resources for homeschool classes and field trips (pending Covid restrictions), while Berks Lanes and the Reading Recreation Center offer wonderful physical education opportunities for homeschooled students.

When asked what advice she would give a new homeschooling parent, Snyder replied, “Don’t try to recreate a school setting, don’t think that what you are doing is not enough. Your child is always learning, so be patient. You can do schoolwork anytime; do it when it’s best for your family. Find what fits your child(ren)’s learning style…that is the best part about homeschooling. Most importantly? Have fun with it!”

This article is also available in: Español (Spanish)