Getting Out of the House is Easy for Homeschool Kids

Homeschooling is on the rise, and the greater Kalamazoo area redefines what it means to homeschool.

Whether you are a homeschooling veteran or just starting out, Kalamazoo has an astounding array of support groups, classes, and extracurricular options certain to fit your style of homeschooling and family dynamic.

Don’t forget that your kids can also take advantage of classes and groups anywhere such as Girl Scouts or classes at The Suzuki School, so this list is by no means exhaustive.

Homeschool

Tap into a Network of Options + Homeschool Support for Families

Community Groups, Co-ops, Partnerships, and Resources for Homeschoolers

One of the most important things a homeschooling parent can do is find with a friend to go through the journey with them.

There are many ways to find your tribe, and friends for your kids: Meetup groups, Co-ops, School Partnerships, support groups with local connections and online as well.

All-Inclusive

Early Elementary Kzoo Homeschoolers is a Meetup group open to all homeschoolers with early elementary-aged children. Activities include park days, poetry teatimes, art classes, field trips, and focus on making friends.

If you are looking for a group for parents already unschooling their families, or if you want more information about the unschooled lifestyle, visit Kalamazoo Unschoolers.

Out and About Homeschoolers is a spot for homeschool families to check-in and see where other homeschoolers are hanging out around Kalamazoo.

Secular

Find secular homeschoolers in the Kalamazoo area through the closed FaceBook group Kalamazoo Secular Homeschoolers. They regularly host group activities and field trips.

Battle Creek Young Homeschoolers members share resources, celebrate successes, and get together for playdates, field trips, and fun events.

For school partnerships, students enroll as part-time students with the school systems and can take elective classes, online and dual enrollment courses, and participate in established community partnerships. Partnerships homeschool kids can choose from in Southwest Michigan are Gull Lake PartnershipHamilton School District Partnership, and Niles Virtual Partnership.

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Religious

Kalamazoo HEART is a Christian homeschool co-op providing fun-filled enrichment classes. Kalamazoo HEART also opens many of their field trips to the entire homeschool community for a small fee.

Battle Creek HEART is a Christian homeschool group for homeschooling families in the greater Battle Creek area. They offer family field trips, park days, play dates, and mom support.

Offering core and elective homeschool courses for preschoolers through adults, The Learning Community (TLC) is a Christian co-op. They also send out a weekly digest to all homeschoolers in the community who are interested. Every year they run a homeschool prom.

With over 45 classes in a group setting and tutors for all aspects of spiritual and academic growth, Kalamazoo Area Tutoring is a Christian co-op.

Servants of the Immaculata Catholic Co-op provides enrichment opportunities for preschoolers through middle school and core classes for middle and high school.

A Catholic homeschool support group, JMJ provides mutual support, prayer, and offers educational and spiritual opportunities. They include field trips, book clubs, and park days.

Classical Conversations is an organization that supports homeschooling parents by cultivating the love of learning through a Christian worldview in fellowship with other families. There is a weekly meeting, and a curriculum to follow.

Take your Child’s Education Further with Extracurricular Classes and Activities

Secular

Design Street offers art classes for homeschoolers ages 5-18 using multiple art techniques and media.

Homeschoolers can contact the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts to arrange a tour or special class for a homeschool group, adapted for grade levels attending.

Once a month, the Kalamazoo Nature Center holds a homeschool science class for ages 4-12, beginning in the fall. Classes focus on exploring native Michigan habitats, studying and recognizing seasonal changes in plants and animals, and becoming a scientist.

Homeschoolers, six and up, can take a natural science class at Sarett Nature Center.

Pierce Cedar Creek Institute is a nature center that offers homeschool group field trips, classes, and lesson plans for elementary-aged kids.

Homeschool kids 5-14 can take a science class at the Air Zoo once a month. Subjects vary every month, and classes are divided by age.

Homeschooled students can apply to the Kalamazoo Area Math & Science Center (KAMSC) in eighth grade. Once accepted, students spend a half-day at KAMSC in intensive mathematics, science and/or computer courses.

Branch Gymnastics and Kids Gym offer homeschool gymnastics classes during the day.

The YMCA of Greater Kalamazoo homeschool classes at the Portage location for gym, yoga, and swimming. The YMCA can also schedule additional homeschool classes for groups.

Soccer classes for homeschoolers are offered at Kingdom Sports for kids 8 and up.

Swing away with the Kalamazoo Cougars middle school golf team that operates secularly through the Kalamazoo Parks and Recreation program.

Swiss Valley Ski & Snowboard Area offers a Homeschool Ski Special for Homeschool students and their families every winter.

Homeschooled kids can join the Gameschooling Group at the Plainwell Library on Thursdays for fun board games.

Religious

The Homeschooling Performing Arts (HPA) is a Christian organization in which students and parents work together to produce music, drama, and musical theatre productions.

West Michigan Homeschool Fine Arts (WMHFA) is a Christian non-profit organization who offers music classes, band, ensembles, and orchestra.

An independent Christian choir, the Kalamazoo Homeschool Choir is for homeschooled kids 7-12 in the Kalamazoo area.

The Southwest Michigan Homeschool Speech and Debate Club meets weekly at the Ransom District Library in Plainwell.

A non-profit organization ran under the Kalamazoo Homeschool Sports (KHSS), the Kalamazoo Cougars offers baseball, basketball, cross country, soccer and volleyball.

 

Sales, Discounts, and Rewards to Keep in Mind

If you’re looking to buy or sell used curriculum, consider the closed Facebook groups Kalamazoo Area Homeschool Curriculum Buy and Sell and Kalamazoo Area Homeschoolers Buy, Sell & Swap

Two used curriculum sales happen every spring, the TLC Annual Used Curriculum & More Sale and the KAHSA Used Curriculum Sale. Both have used curriculum, books, games, manipulatives, kits, and other resources.

Use your homeschooling educator discount card at Barnes & Noble on select days to receive up to 25% off books and other merchandise on Homeschool Educator Appreciation Days.

Six Flags Read to Succeed encourages students in grades K through 6th grade to read for fun, Students who complete six hours of recreational reading earn a FREE ticket to Six Flags. 

Pizza Hut Book It Program is a reading program for K through 6th Grade, including homeschoolers. Set the reading goal for a chance to earn a FREE personal-size pizza.

Participate in the annual INCH Conference held every May in Lansing. With keynote messages, vendors, and over 100 workshop choices, with a focus on Christian homeschooling.

View a list of discounts available with a valid homeschool educator ID card (one option available here). TLC Co-op also offers a free ID.

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