What We Thought About Co-op

What we thought about co-opAt the beginning of the school year AJ and I joined a co-op for the first time. We were very lucky to find a group that meets really close to my grandma’s house. It offered a variety of classes and was open to kids from kindergarten through high school. AJ was excited from the beginning because she wanted to have the opportunity to be around kids her own age. I was anxious to see how it would go. Overall, we both enjoyed the people and the courses.

 

The Classes at Co-op

Since AJ is in high school, I wanted her to take classes that I could put on her transcript. But I also wanted her to enjoy herself. After looking at the different classes, she ended up with a well rounded day.

First Period – Recycled Art

This was a class she was very interested in. They made a lot of neat little projects and she got to explore her creative side. Lately she has been very interested in art, and  this course helped to develop that passion. One of her favorite projects was a candle holder that they made. She ended up giving it as a Christmas gift.

Second Period – Hula

There were a few classes that she wanted to take during second period. Finally we decided on Hula. I thought it would be a great way to get her active. And she would have the opportunity to learn about a different culture. The class was a huge hit! She loved the teacher, learned a lot, and performed beautifully on the night of their showcase.

Third Period – Science

AJ loves science, so this course was her obvious choice. They learned about hurricanes, weather, earthquakes, and other earth science related topics. Some of the information was review for AJ. But they conducted a lot of experiments and she had a blast.

Fourth Period – Mask Making

Mask from the Mask making class at co-op

This was the only class where she didn’t get her first choice. Her first choice was a cooking class. And while I know she would have loved cooking, mask making was a perfect fit. Over the twelve weeks they made a few different masks. They also learned about the history of the masks.

One of the issues I have had with AJ is that she doesn’t take her time and try with craft projects. She will get frustrated if things aren’t perfect and give up. I noticed a big difference this year. Her masks came out beautifully. She took her time, followed directions, and had a neat product in the end.

Fifth Period – Theater

Classes like theater were one of my main reasons for considering a co-op. You can’t exactly teach theater to one student. I loved my drama course in high school and I wanted her to have that option.

After the first day she came home and told me that she was going to do a scene from the musical Wicked. Now, I love her to death, but the child is not a good singer. I was worried. But she practiced, learned the song, and was brave enough to get up in front of everyone and perform the scene.

A musical would not have been my first pick. But she learned way more than memorizing lines. She learned to work as part of a team. She worked on responsibility, and she got out of her comfort zone.

 My Classes

I was assigned to help in three classes. The first was called Creepy Crawlies. In that class the kids learned all about bugs. They were even given the chance to handle some bugs. The second class was Hand Embroidery. I learned a few new skills, and even made a cute pillow. The last class was a games class. The kids played a variety of games to learn team work, strategy, and other skills.

The People

I had a nice time helping out. Even though I didn’t do very much,  it was nice to be out of the house. I enjoyed being around other homeschooling moms. I looked forward to co-op. One of the best parts was that I was around other people who understood homeschooling. One mom was talking about how her kids did school on the weekends because it worked with her work schedule. Another was worried because her child was going into high school next year and she was worried. Co-op made me feel like I wasn’t alone on this homeschooling journey.

Lunch at co-op

AJ loved being around the other kids. It was an amazing site to see a variety of ages playing and working together at lunch. Everyone we met was welcoming, kind, and pleasant to be around. We had a very positive experience at co-op! It will be starting up again soon and this time I will be teaching a few courses. I can’t wait to see how this semester works out.

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