Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Fun peek at Co-op, challenges and blessings Pt. #2

Our homeschool co-op has been rolling along, and 3 of the 7 weeks are behind us. We are finding there are certain challenges to face, and lots of fun to be had. There is must be a real choice to serve others to be involved in a co-op... as there will always be those extra miles to walk. See here for the first part of this post. Read below for part two!

Challenge #2: Absent Teachers
Because our co-op is made up of families offering classes and kids taking classes, we are all bearing the burden of teaching. Over half of the kids registered this semester are kids whose parents are also teaching. How do I know? Our teachers get the added perk of early registration, in hopes that more parents will offer to teach. Often times, this means that one parent is teaching 2-3 classes throughout the day. The parent in the above photo, Art D., is committed to teaching someone each and every class period. He's our PE teacher, runs opening exercises, helps his wife with several classes, and is also booked with private guitar lessons in every other free moment. We are so thankful for guys like Art! But what if Art gets sick? that's 6 class periods to fill! Then we end up with kids without a teacher, or with a substitute. I personally had to substitute in Origami one week and Boy's Bible Study the next. Each had a pretty tough crowd for me to keep up with! What an adventure this is!

What is the solution? It's hard to predict when someone will miss, and even the most devoted teacher has a surprise illness sometimes. We hope to encourage our teachers to have one "make and take" lesson pre-prepped for such a day, as well as to be thinking ahead about who can be their last minute sub. We are also going to plan for fewer parent-teachers, and more outside volunteer teachers. These non-parents are not going to have as high of a risk of sickness (admit it, our kids are the exponent on our risk factors!), and spread the teaching burden out a bit, so parents aren't teaching so many of the sessions. You can pray for us on that one, as we are still working it out!

Join me Friday for the conclusion of this group of posts!

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