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Big change for our family. We're not going to do CC again. I'm freaking out a little.


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We have been in CC since my oldest daughter was pre-k age. I have not loved it. Or I've had mixed feelings about it. I feel like it's over priced, and we don't do any of it at home. For us, it's been more for community. I always complain about it, and when someone asks me about it, I can't sell people on it, because I have not loved it at all. Friends will be like, "Oh!  That price isn't that bad, considering private school costs thousands per kid." And I'm like, "Yeah, but when you really think about it, private school is full time, and it's a drop off program. CC is only 3 hours a week, for 24 weeks. When you average it out, it's more expensive per hour."  Haha!  And I'm also like, "Yeah, and you still have to buy books, and look up your own fun stuff on pinterest. It sucks up a lot of your time if you want to make it more than just memory work."  Needless to say, when I talk to people about it, they are turned off.  LOL!  I've even been a tutor for the last 3 years, and I have felt so burned out. I have wanted to be free!  So here I am. CC for this year has ended. I've told my kids that we probably won't do it next year, and they are upset. I've even tried to make it sound great by telling them that if we don't do CC next year, it frees up our time so we can do more fun stuff!  But there's a part of me that is a little sad and scared about breaking off from CC next year. What if I suck at doing our own thing?

 

What is the point of my post? Maybe more of a vent, and maybe I just want someone to tell me that we'll be okay next year?  Because I sure can't talk about how I feel about CC in my local homeschool groups on facebook, because the CC people are EVERYWHERE!!!  LOL! 

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Your reasons are the reasons I was able to avoid getting sucked in when my kids were younger.   If you're already doing that much stuff on your own, you won't suck at doing your own thing - you've had lots of prep for it!  

 

When I researched where the money goes for CC, I was appalled - it almost seemed like an MLM to me.  

 

Enjoy your summer & be excited for your new adventure!!

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You know we're going to tell you to move on and that a 7 yo can't decide things like that, right?  :D  

 

The 7 yo *probably* has very specific things she's liking, like time with friends or memory work or art or something.  I'd ask her what it is she specifically likes so you can make sure you continue that aspect as you move on to new things.  Change the discussion from *whether* to what she'll miss that she'd like to make sure you continue to do.  And who knows, her answers may be surprising!  Sometimes it will be something silly, like she liked the Christmas party or the b-day treats or something.  You can't necessarily assume she liked the same things in CC that you're thinking she likes, kwim?  That's why they're kids, because they're immature and value and get fixated on odd things.  And that's why we're the parents, because we're experienced enough to know whether those things are important or can be gotten other ways.  ;)

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CC has been very big in some of my homeschool groups. The rest of the folks go to other large co-ops that we haven't joined because we like our freedom as well. I recommend setting some goals for what to do on those days that used to be CC, or things you can do throughout the week that take the same time commitment. Our kids participate in a gym and swim class at the Y when it is offered. Some Ys have HUGE homeschool groups; others not so much. They take music lessons--there are options in our area for private lessons, joining a private or public school band, and homeschool orchestra/band options. Some kids do sports through the Y or via the Upward program. We participate in an enrichment program 18 Saturdays per week. It's not for homeschool kids specifically--it's for anyone who meets the other criteria (it's for gifted students). 

 

We eventually found a 2-3 other families that preferred laid back co-ops that don't spill over into our own homeschool much during the rest of the week. We've banded together to do our own mini co-op, and it's been a really good experience. We are revamping next year with what we've learned works and does not. We structured our at home work to cover everything so that if co-op didn't fly, we'd all still be pretty much okay. Next year, we'll be a bit more dependent on being successful in co-op, but it's still pretty contained. In the afternoons after co-op (we end at lunch and then eat together), we are considering having a kids' club run by the kids the co-op. Parents will advise and help locate materials, but the kids will mostly run the show. They can do crafts, computer programming, chess, whatever strikes their fancy--maybe do one activity per month or rotate activities.

 

Whatever you do, don't make big decisions out of fear. Figure out what's bothering you, and see if you can work out why it's so. Come up with possible solutions. Run the ideas by others. Don't let other people's fears screw up your list ("but aren't you worried about....? fill in the blank). Decide what you want to do, why, or what you don't want to do and why, and then work it out.

 

You can do it!

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We did CC for one year and I felt much the same way that you felt.  I also felt that it was academically lacking and mostly just a way to have social time.  There are so many other options.  Do you own thing, set up a small co-op with just 1-2 other families, or find a bigger co-op.  Either way, your kids will be happy and you will have so much more time in your week!

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We have been in CC since my oldest daughter was pre-k age. I have not loved it. Or I've had mixed feelings about it. I feel like it's over priced, and we don't do any of it at home. For us, it's been more for community. I always complain about it, and when someone asks me about it, I can't sell people on it, because I have not loved it at all. Friends will be like, "Oh!  That price isn't that bad, considering private school costs thousands per kid." And I'm like, "Yeah, but when you really think about it, private school is full time, and it's a drop off program. CC is only 3 hours a week, for 24 weeks. When you average it out, it's more expensive per hour."  Haha!  And I'm also like, "Yeah, and you still have to buy books, and look up your own fun stuff on pinterest. It sucks up a lot of your time if you want to make it more than just memory work."  Needless to say, when I talk to people about it, they are turned off.  LOL!  I've even been a tutor for the last 3 years, and I have felt so burned out. I have wanted to be free!  So here I am. CC for this year has ended. I've told my kids that we probably won't do it next year, and they are upset. I've even tried to make it sound great by telling them that if we don't do CC next year, it frees up our time so we can do more fun stuff!  But there's a part of me that is a little sad and scared about breaking off from CC next year. What if I suck at doing our own thing?

 

What is the point of my post? Maybe more of a vent, and maybe I just want someone to tell me that we'll be okay next year?  Because I sure can't talk about how I feel about CC in my local homeschool groups on facebook, because the CC people are EVERYWHERE!!!  LOL! 

 

You will be just fine.  You can't mess up 2nd grade.  Find some friends and start a park day.  Your kids will be happy - they just want to see friends.  You'll save money, time, anxiety, and you can do school the way you would like. 

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I feel the same way. I spent years living overseas where there were no CC communities, hearing friends back in the States tell me how great CC is. When we came back here, I signed the kids up, and I have to say, I've not been terribly impressed. I think for some families it is fantastic. Their kids thrive and get really excited about what they're doing. And the people I met there were truly wonderful. And the Challenge III program that my 17yo did was amazing, mostly because he had an amazing tutor. But for my youngest two, I feel like we spent a lot of time there and really didn't get a whole lot out of it. My kids hated preparing for the presentations. And even when I tried to ease up, and not push them to make their presentations fantastic, I still felt like it was a battle. On the bright side, dd made progress with doing the presentations and feeling comfortable speaking in front of her group. But I felt like they did much better memorizing the material in previous years - we'd been doing the CC memory work for 2 years already - when we could work at our own pace. The science experiments were fine, but I didn't feel like it was enough science, so I still had to add a science program for each of them.

 

Anyway, you're not alone. CC is not for everyone. I agree with the other posters that you should ask dd what specifically she's going to miss and then make it a point to do that on your own. You will do fine without CC. There are so many fantastic materials available and the advice that you can get here will help you to choose things that will work for your family. I see from your siggy that you're using MFW and MUS. Both are great programs. Keep going with them if they're working for you and find a couple of other families that you can get together with. You'll do great!

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You will be just fine.  You can't mess up 2nd grade.  Find some friends and start a park day.  Your kids will be happy - they just want to see friends.  You'll save money, time, anxiety, and you can do school the way you would like. 

 Thank you! Except that we are finishing up 2nd grade. But there's no way you could have known that, because I haven't updated my signature. :)  Hopefully the same applies for 3rd grade. Haha!  Now....I really need to fix my signature. Especially since I've had a baby since the last time I updated it!

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We have been in CC for 7 years. We love it. The friendships we have made are closer than family to us. The fellowship has really added so much to our homeschooling. I honestly have no negatives to report other than the pain of getting out of the house dressed! with lunches! and shoes! on time.

 

But this year out family embarked on a new adventure and we had to say goodbye to our CC group. It was hard, we were sad, honestly I was scared to lose the accountability, but we are ok.

Change is tough, but we are stronger for expanding our horizons!

 

Hope this helps you some. Good luck!!

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Older kids, but we were involved for seven years, with one of mine going all the way through Challenge I.  I started with a 4th grader and a 1st grader.  Frankly I'm glad we didn't start any earlier than that because hauling them out and making sure they stayed focused all morning was hard enough.

 

We moved on because Challenge wasn't working for us.  The first year was hard because we all felt isolated and missed the weekly interaction.  But then the next year?  We didn't miss it at all.

 

 

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We have been in CC since my oldest daughter was pre-k age. I have not loved it. Or I've had mixed feelings about it. I feel like it's over priced, and we don't do any of it at home. For us, it's been more for community. I always complain about it, and when someone asks me about it, I can't sell people on it, because I have not loved it at all. Friends will be like, "Oh!  That price isn't that bad, considering private school costs thousands per kid." And I'm like, "Yeah, but when you really think about it, private school is full time, and it's a drop off program. CC is only 3 hours a week, for 24 weeks. When you average it out, it's more expensive per hour."  Haha!  And I'm also like, "Yeah, and you still have to buy books, and look up your own fun stuff on pinterest. It sucks up a lot of your time if you want to make it more than just memory work."  Needless to say, when I talk to people about it, they are turned off.  LOL!  I've even been a tutor for the last 3 years, and I have felt so burned out. I have wanted to be free!  So here I am. CC for this year has ended. I've told my kids that we probably won't do it next year, and they are upset. I've even tried to make it sound great by telling them that if we don't do CC next year, it frees up our time so we can do more fun stuff!  But there's a part of me that is a little sad and scared about breaking off from CC next year. What if I suck at doing our own thing?

 

What is the point of my post? Maybe more of a vent, and maybe I just want someone to tell me that we'll be okay next year?  Because I sure can't talk about how I feel about CC in my local homeschool groups on facebook, because the CC people are EVERYWHERE!!!  LOL! 

 

If you suck at doing your own thing, you can go back to CC the following year, can't you? And even if next year is THE WORST SCHOOL YEAR EVER (in the history of ever!) your kids won't lose much - it's just kindergarten and 3rd grade. You aren't messing up their SAT scores or pulling them out right before they present their doctoral theses. They'll be all right. Plan fun stuff to do. Study things that aren't in the 4 year history cycle or do the unthinkable and study more than one branch of science in the same year, or drop Latin vocabulary.  :svengo: Do more art. Go on field trips. Revel in your ability to stay home instead of getting everyone ready to leave the house on time 3 times a week. Tell them that leaves them more time to play.  ;)

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We have been in CC since my oldest daughter was pre-k age. I have not loved it. Or I've had mixed feelings about it. I feel like it's over priced, and we don't do any of it at home. For us, it's been more for community. I always complain about it, and when someone asks me about it, I can't sell people on it, because I have not loved it at all. Friends will be like, "Oh!  That price isn't that bad, considering private school costs thousands per kid." And I'm like, "Yeah, but when you really think about it, private school is full time, and it's a drop off program. CC is only 3 hours a week, for 24 weeks. When you average it out, it's more expensive per hour."  Haha!  And I'm also like, "Yeah, and you still have to buy books, and look up your own fun stuff on pinterest. It sucks up a lot of your time if you want to make it more than just memory work."  Needless to say, when I talk to people about it, they are turned off.  LOL!  I've even been a tutor for the last 3 years, and I have felt so burned out. I have wanted to be free!  So here I am. CC for this year has ended. I've told my kids that we probably won't do it next year, and they are upset. I've even tried to make it sound great by telling them that if we don't do CC next year, it frees up our time so we can do more fun stuff!  But there's a part of me that is a little sad and scared about breaking off from CC next year. What if I suck at doing our own thing?

 

What is the point of my post? Maybe more of a vent, and maybe I just want someone to tell me that we'll be okay next year?  Because I sure can't talk about how I feel about CC in my local homeschool groups on facebook, because the CC people are EVERYWHERE!!!  LOL! 

 

The overwhelmingly vast majority of homeschoolers don't do CC.

 

Thousands of people homeschooled before CC was invented.

 

I have no doubt that you will be just fine without it. And you're right: you *will* have more free time. That three hours a week was really more than three hours, and you get it all back. Yay you!

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I let CC last year. We've been out one year. No problem maintaining friends for my dd from there and two actually leaving CC (not thrilled with it either) and creating a tiny co-op with me. We still listen to songs and flip through cards at lunch time. My youngers will learn some of the subjects by we'll skip most of English grammar (there are better definitions) and make it serve us, not vice versa.

 

It'll be okay. And if it's not, you can alway join again mid-year. I'm sure they'd always be happy to take your money.

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When I first decided to homeschool my kids, I was so excited about CC, and I was sure we had to do it. I was worried about losing out on memory period at our classical school.

 

When I looked into it more thoroughly, I quickly became disillusioned with it and decided against it. I homeschool for flexibility, and CC took that away. I talked with some others who were in it to get a feel for it. They did a three year history cycle versus the four year cycle we wanted to do. They couldn't tell me how to work that. All it really came down to was memory work and socialization. I figured I could buy the $30 cd if I wanted that and save a bundle and join a local homeschool group for fun stuff.

 

I also like to do lots of field trips. I used to live near Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown, DC, etc. CC would take a full day out of my week that may or may not go with my curricula we use, and I would not have time for those field trips.

 

I will say that CC likely provides greater accountability. Memory work has not been as strong as it could have been, but we are getting better. However, memory work is great and all, but I felt CC memory work was out of context to what we were learning, and therefore not as valuable to me.

 

You will be fine and enjoy your freedom and flexibility more.

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You will do fine!!!!

 

We have done CC for 3 years. I never did it at home, just a nice extra. I enjoyed it...the friends, the presentation, the nice little timeline song... But as my son gets older and our schedule includes piano and art lessons, I am ready for a breather and the extra room in my schedule.

 

So this was our last year. I am so excited about having the extra time in my week!!!!!!

 

Lots of people homeschool without CC. You will be fine!!!

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You know we're going to tell you to move on and that a 7 yo can't decide things like that, right?   :D

 

The 7 yo *probably* has very specific things she's liking, like time with friends or memory work or art or something.  I'd ask her what it is she specifically likes so you can make sure you continue that aspect as you move on to new things.  Change the discussion from *whether* to what she'll miss that she'd like to make sure you continue to do.  And who knows, her answers may be surprising!  Sometimes it will be something silly, like she liked the Christmas party or the b-day treats or something.  You can't necessarily assume she liked the same things in CC that you're thinking she likes, kwim?  That's why they're kids, because they're immature and value and get fixated on odd things.  And that's why we're the parents, because we're experienced enough to know whether those things are important or can be gotten other ways.   ;)

 

Definitely second asking your dd. My oldest went to preschool, and the next year said he missed it. When I asked him what he missed, it was a hinged cabinet that opened to reveal bookcases inside. I'd have NEVER guessed that!

 

Enjoy your newfound freedom! We've homeschooled through high school without CC (I've looked into it several times but never quite thought it would work. And, for that kind of money, I want a drop-off class!) We did do an every-other week co-op this year, and even that felt constraining to me, though my dd enjoyed it. I enjoy independent homeschooling!

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We've done Foundations for 3 years and I do like it but I don't love it.  I have signed the kids up for next year but I have still not decided for sure.  I keep telling myself I'm only out the registration fee if I change my mind.  The kids would be upset if we didn't do it but the thought of sitting through Cycle 1 again is not exciting me.  

 

I do think it is expensive and yes I hear all the time at CC how it is cheaper than private school.  That is true but CC is only 24 weeks for 3 hours at a time and I have to sit and watch.  There are so many other homeschool co-ops out there that don't cost near as much as CC.  We are part of another group and while I have to teach a class each term it is very low cost.  Most of the cost is for the building (around $100 a family per year) and supply fees for classes.  I don't think I've ever paid more than $50-60 per child for the whole year in supply fees for that co-op.  For Foundations I figure it is $500 a child by the time I pay the tuition, registration, supply fee, and building fee.   I like a lot that Foundations does especially the presentations.  I've watched my very timid dyslexic dd go from having a hard time speaking to her class at all to her organizing her notes herself and planning her own presentations.  She no longer has any trouble doing presentations.  I like the memory work but we could do it at home.  

 

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 I've watched my very timid dyslexic dd go from having a hard time speaking to her class at all to her organizing her notes herself and planning her own presentations.  She no longer has any trouble doing presentations.  I like the memory work but we could do it at home.  

 

Presentations are pretty easy to do in a co-op format though. We belonged to one this year (mainly to get in a "speech" class for my kids), and had 3rd graders through highschool together. Each gave a presentation according to their age & school subjects (book reports, literary analysis of stories or poetry, research papers for history or science, personal essays, persuasive essays, creative writing--poetry, short stories etc....) It was really interesting to hear the variety of things kids thought about and studied. Sometimes kids did shorter presentations, sometimes longer--it worked out pretty well.

 

Anyway, just another option that can work. 

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Most areas have 4H clubs which are another excellent option for public speaking and fun interaction.

 

OP, like others have stated, you can do it.  It will probably require more effort on your part, more planning and organization, but that doesn't have to mean a negative. That can be a HUGE positive.  It means you have the freedom to create an educational vision that matches what you and your children want to achieve. 

 

I am not a coop type person.  I am actually the polar opposite of a coop type personality.  I homeschool precisely b/c I want the freedom to study what we want to study, how we want to study it, and when we want to study it.  Anything that interferes with that vision is a hindrance from my perspective.  ;)   And, honestly, what we accomplish at home is better than anything I have found elsewhere.  Our academics are designed around my kids, their interests, and their abilities.  We don't have to conform to others expectations and pre-determined level classifications.  If my teen wants to spend 4 months reading War and Peace, we can.  If she wants to spend the year studying Russian history, we can.  If my little one wants to read every book we can find on ants, bees, and snakes for weeks on end, we can. :)

 

We love hanging out with friends and having a good time.  We just don't do it as part of school.  School is at home.  There is still plenty of time for socializing. 

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Oh my gosh. Right now, I'm having a moment where I'm so thankful that I'm getting out of CC. I was asked to volunteer for our local 3 day practicum. Volunteers have to pay for their kids to go to their "camps." I now have 3 kids, PLUS the cost of each camp has gone up by $6 since last year. It's $42 each. That would be $126!!!!!!  And this is just to help out.  I wouldn't do it otherwise.  No way!  I turned to my husband and said, "Do you realize how much curriculum I could buy for $126?"  He sees my point. I turned it down. I feel bad that I'm letting them down, but I feel so good about saving money! 

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 I was asked to volunteer for our local 3 day practicum. Volunteers have to pay for their kids to go to their "camps."... That would be $126!!!!!!  And this is just to help out.

 

Ugh. That's a little tacky. 

 

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Oh my gosh. Right now, I'm having a moment where I'm so thankful that I'm getting out of CC. I was asked to volunteer for our local 3 day practicum. Volunteers have to pay for their kids to go to their "camps." I now have 3 kids, PLUS the cost of each camp has gone up by $6 since last year. It's $42 each. That would be $126!!!!!!  And this is just to help out.  I wouldn't do it otherwise.  No way!  I turned to my husband and said, "Do you realize how much curriculum I could buy for $126?"  He sees my point. I turned it down. I feel bad that I'm letting them down, but I feel so good about saving money! 

 

I have 4 kids the camp is going to cost us $168. It's going to put us behind with school also so I will have to add on another 3 days of school for my kids when they should be on summer break. They aren't very happy about it. 

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My kids are sad we aren't going this year to camp or returning next year but they have also been very content at home and the freedom has been good for us. I think we will take a new path of self teaching for the most part but we are keeping a thirty minute memory work time after devotion, part of which is reviewing our CC memory work. I may make more of this time independent, but for now we are enjoying it together.

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It is cool to be able to share parts of homeschooling that you love, enjoy and are passionate about. But there are many people who don't do CC and who graduate smart, curious and well prepared kids.

 

One of my best friends did no AP level courses. She did minimal coops. Her oldest is headed off to a graduate program at a super selective university.

 

Maybe you could invite some folks over for something short term like reading a Shakespeare play and then watching a movie version. It might take a couple meetings to go through but it would not be an all year commitment.

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I agree that this upcoming year can be good for doing all the things you couldn't make time for last year.  But I also think you may have had CC burnout because of tutoring each year as well as your dc being so little.  I would consider the possibility of going back to CC in the future in order to do Essentials with your oldest, even if it's not for 2 or 3 years down the road.  And it looks like you have a baby in the mix, so that's a reason in itself to stay home and enjoy nap-time, etc. 

 

Blessings,

Brenda

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