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s/o Outsourcing - How do you decide?


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DS, always homeschooled, would be going into 5th grade this fall. We have outsourced a fair amount over the years... Art, sports, music, nature classes, etc.

But he hasn't taken what I would consider a strong academic class (with homework and projects) outside the house since a 1st grade science class. Honestly, we loved that class, but the homework kicked our butts.

He took a science class in 2nd grade that was wonderful - semester project with class presentation, but no homework. Not what I would consider rigorous or terribly challenging, just a fun supplemental class.


So here we are at 5th grade. I strongly feel that DS needs to take an outside class that challenges him. I know what we do at home is challenging him, but I think he needs... I'm not sure really. Maybe it is being a part of a classroom environment? Maybe the independence it would foster? The requirement of a class presentation?


I don't really know what it is that I feel DS needs, but I just keep thinking that something is "missing" right now. I can't really put a finger on it, though. I just think he needs a bit of a "push" academically that I am not giving him.


DS has taken an academic camp at a local college the past three summers. He excels in that environment and just comes to life. I would like to find something that challenges him like that, but - as a homeschool class.


We live in an area with lots of outside activities for homeschoolers, but I keep coming up short on things that I think will give DS the classroom experience that I feel he needs.


The teacher that DS had for 1st grade science is offering a mixed science class for DS's age group.

Pros: Know and love the teacher, know it would be the rigorous classroom experience I want

Cons: Homework! And we have a heavy science focus in our home, so DS doesn't really need to an outsourced science class.


What I really want is a foreign language - either Latin, French or Greek - or an electronics course, but I can't find anything for DS's age. :glare:


I would love to hear how others decide what to outsource.

Did you reach a point where you needed to switch from "fun" outsourced classes to something more challenging?

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