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Ohio Homeschool Organizations and Support Groups
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ABLE (Achieving Bible Led Education)
111 N. Adams St. New Carlisle, Ohio Serving Clark, Greene, Miami, Montgomery, counties in Ohio
Contact: Heather Phipps
Phone: 937-831-4476
Email: able@hiac.net
http://able.hiac.net

Here is the text of an interview recently conducted with an ABLE leader.

What does your homeschool group offer?
ABLE offers students in homeschooling families the opportunity to learn in a group environment. Our classes include RCC, (Refining Christian Character), ASL (American Sign Language), Civics, Critical Thinking, Oral interpretation, Apologetics, Gym, Creative Writing, Art – Famous Artists, Hip Hop Dance, and High School Spanish. We hold classes every Monday, and some optional classes are on Fridays. In addition we have Missions at Home, which serves the community throughout the year, and encourages students to serve every day in their homes and other surroundings. We also offer the opportunity for two field trips each month, and opportunities for the students to present their talents and projects before a group, such as with our Geography Fair.

Why should homeschool families join a homeschool group?
In a homeschool group students are able to experience learning from people other than their parents in a class setting. There are more opportunities when groups come together, such as for field trips and events. Children will develop strong and lasting friendships with the students in the co-op, and Parents can meet other parents who understand the challenges of homeschooling. Many co-ops, like ABLE, are also support groups, where the leadership offers help and guidance. Many people struggle at first to make their homeschools work. Having a support network to stand with you, may be the difference between a successful homeschool experience, and a failing one.

Why do you homeschool personally?
I homeschool for religious reasons, as well as academic reasons. I want Christ to be the center of my children’s education, and I know that schools will not do an adequate job in achieving that goal. In addition I oppose the common core curriculum, as it neglects teaching our rich history and about important historical figures. It teaches a one-sided look at science, and values that I do not share. I can teach my children in depth history. We can study the historical figures left out of most text books. I can teach my children to use observation to study science, and to consider all possibilities. I can encourage my children to use critical thinking skills to make important decisions, and to determine truth by teaching them how to think for themselves, instead of simply teaching what to think.

Why do you think homeschooling is a good option for people to consider?
Statistically speaking students who are homeschooled excel far above their public schooled peers in testing. According to a study posted on BioMedSearch.com (http://www.biomedsearch.com/article/impact-homeschooling-adjustment-college-students/294895885.html) Homeschooled students who continue onto college fare better than those who have never been homeschooled in areas of academics, socially, and in mental health areas such as depression. It makes nearly no difference if the student’s parents spend a lot of money on their education or a little money on their education. Home education is a better option for the students. There are dozens of other studies that point to the same things. Such as this study posted by CBS News. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/can-homeschoolers-do-well-in-college/

What are the toughest parts of homeschooling?
It has to be the constant exposure to your children. It sounds heartless, but in reality it is difficult to never get a “break” from your kids. One of the things we are implementing at ABLE are Parent’s nights out. These activities with just parents are so important for giving parents a much needed break from their kids. It is important that moms and dads who homeschool find time for themselves to regroup. It is a large sacrifice to homeschool your children, but it doesn’t have to ruin your life. Balancing time is challenging, but once this is mastered your homeschool can run efficiently and with far less stress.

What are the best parts of homeschooling?
The best part of homeschooling is the same as the toughest part; it is the constant exposure to your children. You have the opportunity to watch the light click on inside their heads when they finally get something your teaching. You get to experience their struggles, and victories with them. You get to participate in your child’s development in a way that parents with children in school miss out on. I understand this too well. I have a nephew who lives with me, and he goes to a private school. Reading his papers and doing homework with him is not even close to the experience we shared when I taught him at home. Another thing I love about homeschooling is the flexibility. If we are studying something interesting in science, we can go right then and experiment with it. If we want to visit a historical site, we can just go. If my children have something special they want to learn about, we can study it. They are not confined to a desk, room, or even a building for that matter. They are not confined to a set curriculum either. In our homeschool once the core lessons, (Math, English, History, and Science) are done they can spend their remaining time learning about anything they want. This is called Eclectic homeschooling. You can learn more about it here: http://eclectichomeschool.org/

How long has your group been in existence?
Our group is relatively young. We are 2 years old. Each year we have improved with the input and influence of the other moms who participate. We are growing and changing, but our mission is consistent. To train up a generation of leaders with the hearts of servants.

When and why was it started?
Nearly three years ago, another co-op I was a part of ended, I felt a need to make a new group. At this same time, a friend of mine began encouraging me to start up a ministry that we once had called Missions at Home. After some collaboration we decided that we could combine these two visions and create a truly unique group. And that was the birth of ABLE. ABLE stands for Achieving Bible Led Education. The name ABLE is powerful, it is about making our children able to succeed, and making parents able to educate. Our mission is to teach the next generation how to become leaders in society and/or their churches while maintaining a heart of compassion and love towards those they lead. Our next generation is our future. When we turn over this world to their hands, will they be capable of caring for it? Will they have values and morals? Will they have the understanding of historical mistakes, so that those mistakes will not be repeated? I desperately want the answers to those questions to be “Yes”. This is why we started ABLE.

What does your group have planned this coming year?
As I have previously mentioned we have several classes and workshops prepared. We also are planning field trips to the Zoo, Idle Hour Ranch, a radio station, Cosi, the Creation Museum, Butterfly Garden, and to attend several musicals. We will be hosting a geography fair, and have opportunities for the Public Speaking students to perform. We also have numerous service projects planned for the year, as well as some nursing home visits. We plan fun theme days throughout the year, and some social events. For a small group, we do have a lot of fun!

What is the best way to find information on your group? Who should they contact?
You can find more information on our group at our website, http://able.hiac.net/
Or you may call Heather Phipps at 937-831-4476
You may email the group at able@hiac.net

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