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Getting Started

A NEWBIE'S GUIDE TO ANYSCHOOLERS

AnySchoolers is not a typical homeschool co-op. A co-op ("cooperative") usually involves a membership fee  and required volunteering/teaching for participation in educational opportunities. AnySchoolers is bigger than a co-op. We do not have membership fees for educational opportunities (classes, field trips). Our subscription (which is a 501-c-3 tax-deductible donation) provides access to extra benefits, localized social pods, and supports our cause. We are  a volunteer-run nonprofit organization, recognized by the IRS and State of MO, working on changing the face of homeschooling by:

  • Creating a culture of warmth and emotional safety, non-religiously driven learning where families find each other. We are especially here for the isolated. We are especially here for vulnerable communities (BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, those with religious or educational institutional trauma, those who have neurodiverse, special needs family members, single parents, parents of singletons/many, etc)

  • Organizing multi-age open-access classes and field trips (and campouts and festivals and workshops and meetups and recesses and holiday celebrations and equinox/solstice fire pits and coffee shops and book clubs and all the things!)

  • Providing special place with the sole purpose of socializing with other kids and adults (social pods, both multi-age and same-age to meet lifespan development needs). When you join our social pod system, you not only gain connection, you also become the landing zone for isolated homeschoolers who need you. You'll be enjoyed! 

  • Giving homeschooling parents and other educators a venue to write and create educational materials to either donate or make an income (online self-paced downloadable curriculums, live in-person/virtual classes on any secular subject, blog contributions from you for the rest of the homeschooling world)

  • Sharing vetted, credible information about secular, inclusive, academic homeschooling educational philosophy by bringing voices to our podcast and adult events

  • Offering adult education about family mental health, child development, neuroscience, attachment and how families learn together. We cite peer-reviewed, empirically based studies when we provide psychoeducation for families

  • Supporting parents thru the fatigue and stress of raising a family in modern society. Connecting them to one another for authentic , real life, warts-and-all, dirty dishes friendship

  • Expanding the AnySchoolers vision and operational model around the United States or abroad to  enable secular homeschoolers worldwide with support, opportunities, and most of all, connection

  • Providing financial help in the form of scholarships forAnySchoolers subscriptions, events, and eventually, colleges and trade schools

  • Publicly presenting home education as a schooling option for families that's free of stereotypes, old norms, and preconceived notions - making it an attractive, feasible, accessible option for anyone who wants to give it a go

What first? 

COME SIT AROUND THE FIRE WITH US.
IT'S WARM AND FRIENDLY HERE.

Let us know you're here! We want to know that you're interested in playing with us. Make personal contact! When we founded AnySchoolers, our number one priority was relationships, and it always will be. If we know you, we can enjoy you and your family - just for being YOU. AnySchoolers is a gift economy, and your presence is a gift to others.

Come hang with us at Weekly Starters on Mondays that are year-round, season-appropriate,  free open meetups.  Starters are for starting your weeks and starting with AnySchoolers. They are mixed-age play, and they are a combination of adult-led activities and child-led free play. If you're going to be new at an activity, RSVP on the calendar and let us know it's your first AnySchoolers event, so we can give you SPECIAL connection and make sure you feel settled in. We want you give you a warm welcome!

Join the AnySchoolers website as a free site member. You don't have to be a Supporter (paid donor/subscriber) to join the app! You'll have access to our Calendar, Forms, self-paced online classes,  class listings and registrations.

Become a Supporter by making a donation in the form of a website subscription. You'll have access to our Supporter Social Calendar, Matches Directory, discounts on various events and classes, early access to popular activities that fill quickly, and access to our private and safe online community space in Discord. Our private Discord Supporter Server is where the magic happens: online chatter without the Facebook algorithm, audio/video calls to other homeschoolers, online gaming for kids and teens, coupons, support groups for parents, meetup planning for clubs and neighborhoods, private messaging with other homeschoolers (eventually around the world!) that you can find connections with in the Matches Directory.

Stalk us. Explore your options. AnySchoolers has social and educational activities for preschool, elementary, tweens (10-13) and teens (13-18), as well as support and education for adults (18+). Our KC open activities calendar has a filtering map that helps with finding activities in each area of the metro (North, East, South, West, Central). We are a brand-spankin-new nonprofit, so if we don't have your heart's desire, we can work together to get it! We want to collaborate with you! 

Sign up, sign up, sign up. Participation is where the magic happens!​ New activities are added to the calendar almost daily. 

Volunteer and share your brilliant ideas! We don't have any volunteer requirements of caregivers for family members to take AnySchoolers classes.  We want you to volunteer because you want to, love homeschooling, have a topic you're passionate about, or want to see an activity happen for homeschooling children and teens. Anyone can volunteer, and we are waiting for your help and input! Here's more information about what's going on behind the scenes if you're curious.

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Subscriber/Supporter Options

WE'RE A GIFT ECONOMY OF POOLED RESOURCES AND COMMUNITY.

Supporters, also referred to as our "website subscribers" are donors to our organization who contribute to the mission and operational costs of the org. The organization has no paid staff. It is completely volunteer-run and grassroots. Volunteers gift their time, labor, emotional energy and creativity. The minimum donation for subscribers is $60/year, and all Supporters receive the same benefits, regardless of the size of their donation. A la carte classes and most educational field trips are open to anyone who homeschools, regardless of Supporter status: education is for everyone. Donating more than $60/family/year enables us to operate our nonprofit behind the scenes, subsidize program costs, and provide financial assistance, scholarships, and resourcing to other homeschool families.

All Subscribers receive these benefits with our gratitude:

  • Subscriber-only social events

  • Access to and a family profile in the private, twice password-protected Matches Directory that has multiple search filters. keywords and tags

  • Discounts of various percentages/amounts on classes and events

  • Early enrollment access to educational field trips/classes (comes in handy for popular events)

  • Most importantly, access to our private Discord Supporter Server (online chatter without the Facebook algorithm, audio/video calls to other homeschoolers, online gaming for kids and teens, coupons, support groups for parents, meetup planning for clubs and neighborhoods, private messaging with other homeschoolers (eventually around the world!) that you can find connections with in the Matches Directory.)

Image by Gabe Pierce

Adult-Led and Child-Led

CHANGING THE FACE OF HOMESCHOOLING

Attachment science confirms our innate drive to stay connected to our children, show them the world, and affirms the importance of security in the parent-child relationship in a human child's exploration and engagement in the world at large. When mammal youngsters feel safe and connected, the curiosity circuitry in the brain activates and adaptive learning happens! 

Neuropsychology, anthropology and sociology research also suggests that parents need to get out of the way when it comes to play, freedom, and children's innate sense of fairness that they navigate amongst themselves. All we need to do is create the spaces for them to spend time together, unfettered by curriculum, adult plans, dreams, and expectations. 

In our organization, you will find both adult-led and child-led concepts. Our calendar will include free-play opportunities where children are given the space to connect on their own terms, in their own way without adult interference  and adult-guided introductions to ideas, equipment, supplies, and activities that children might not otherwise get exposure to.

Image by MI PHAM
Image by Markus Spiske

Multi-Age and Same-Age

CHANGING THE FACE OF HOMESCHOOLING

Developmental professionals agree that multi-age classrooms and social settings give children a zone of proximal development that allows them to influence one another and share adaptations. Younger ones are exposed to scaffolding and suggestions that older children teach. Older ones have an opportunity to practice caregiving, empathy and self-regulation. This is particularly true for infant, preschool and elementary aged children. 

As kids enter the tween and teen years, transitioning to adulthood, they enter a new stage of lifespan development. The new stages are about building industry, identity in relationship to society, peers, career, the environment, and intimacy with other young adults. They move into their adult lives. While homeschooled teens enjoy hanging out with younger children, they also prefer to have serious conversation and connection with their peers. 

In order to set tweens and teens up with groups who have shared experiences by the time they reach the teen years, we begin when they are young, giving them opportunities to connect with similarly-aged kids in informal pod gatherings, while also connecting with a multi-aged community in recesses, classes, field trips and other AnySchoolers programs. 

Image by Sammie Chaffin
Image by Javardh
Image by DNK.PHOTO

Fan the Flames

Image by Kevin Wolf
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