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Momto4inSoCal

Math or Science Olympiad as a homeschooler?

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Has anyone created a homeschool team? I would like my kids to try either the math or science Olympiad, if nothing else for the experience. Was it a lot of work? Were there more hoops to jump through as a homeschooler? I notice there was a fee to join, did you split the fee among the group? Thanks for any advice!!

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I made inquiries with both organizations and they said that if the school you would be attending allows your student to join their team that is a way as well. The rules permit it at the discretion of the school. I was able to get my son on the MOEMS team at our local elementary. They meet weekly, but I opted out of that. They were fine with me working with him at home and just bringing him to the contests.

I am hoping to get the same access when he reaches middle school age. I started the conversation with the organizers well a year and a half before he aged into the team. I did make sure that I volunteered and contributed to making it happen. I'm about to start making the inquiries for him for the junior high level soon as it is about a year and half away. Our local schools don't run elementary level Science Olympiad. 

Oops, I forgot to say that for MOEMS, you can have a team as small as one. You just have to organize it as your own school of whatever number. They just don't allow homeschoolers to compete under "homeschool." 

It's been awhile since I checked the SO rules, but I think the members just all have to reside in two bordering counties. You would only be competitive in individual events. I am pretty sure you can't have charter school students on a homeschool team. It would be challenging to muster enough to be competitive at the team level since there are events that are judged simultaneously. I do think it can be done. I just didn't have the bandwidth to organize something like this with a toddler in the mix now. SO is a lot of work. Lots more than MOEMS because for that you can be as simple as offering the contests and not creating a whole program around it. 

Edited by calbear

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The county rule knocked us out because our local homeschool community pulls from three STATES, let alone counties. In general, we’ve found that the easiest way to do a lot of things is to have the kids register as individuals (for things like MathCounts), but practice as a team-because in many cases, the TN kids had to compete separate from the MS kids from the AR kids -and we might only have 6 kids total 🙂

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We do Science Olympiad with a homeschool team - we won the State meet last year and went to Nationals.  At our regional last week, the top 3 teams qualified for State and all 3 were homeschool teams.  That being said, we do struggle with the 2-county rule.  It's really unfortunate, since we have kids who go to co-op together their whole lives but can't all compete for SO.  This year we registered 2 separate teams, so that let us include more counties.  Where we are, it is not unusual to cross into another county since several converge around our town.  The Knoxville Independent School League, is the league that the homeschool sports team and local private schools play in.  I know that we played ball in 4 counties, but no games were more than an hour from our house.  I know that private schools have students from more counties and wish that they could accommodate our unfortunate geography!  

At Nationals last year, there were 60ish teams each for middle and high school.  Of the 120 teams, there were 3-4 homeschool teams.  I'll see if I can get our main coach to message you.  She no longer had any kids at home and we're so glad that she continues to keep at it.  It's a fantastic learning opportunity for the kids.  

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I am the head coach of the teams @ClemsonDana is talking about. It is very doable as homeschoolers BUT as has been mentioned Science Olympiad has a rule that you can't have more than 2 counties on a team. We just had our regional competition and in the middle school division homeschool teams finished in the first 4 places. And in first and third in the high school division. 

A team can be up to 15 students. But you can manage with less. I belong to a homeschool coaches faceboook group and some of the teams have as few as 7 students. Also, we use students as young as 3rd and 4th grade on our middle school team (the little ones all went home with plenty of medals even though the school kids are much older)

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