A Group of One

Because I am helping with some communications stuff for one of our co-ops, I have been sending notices out about the co-op on the various e-mail lists for homeschoolers in the metro area.

This was an eye-opener — there are even more groups than I had heard of previously. When I searched groups for homeschool in my region, I got a list of 110. That’s just yahoo e-lists!

Many lists purport to be general. Then there are of course several Christian, several Catholic, a Muslim, a politically liberal, a “socially and politically” conservative, general secular, a “night owl” for people who stay up late, Charlotte Mason, people who travel in RVs (which I think could be really fun if we all survived), Thomas Jefferson, chronic illness, part-time homeschool, parents of teens, parents of tweens — in Minnesota.

Also there is a group by a fan of the boy band Hanson especially for homeschooling Hanson fans.

Add to that multiple Yahoo groups for certain types of families, with a certain variation on a theme: natural, holistic, peaceful, gentle, earthy, crunchy. (Among these groups, one interested me because it wasn’t enough to *do* family bed, but you had to *love* doing it. Really? How many nights out of 7?) Out of curiosity, I started looking for other types of parenting: strict, rigid, firm, confrontational. I had a bit of luck with “old-fashioned,” which oddly led to one or two “pro-corporal punishment” groups. One group seemed to be entirely devoted to the defense of spanking!

But I digress.

I began to wonder — what would my group be? Were I seeking to create a group of like-minded travellers, how would I describe it?

The question was a nonstarter. Everything I could think of sounded too stifling or specific, or too general to be meaningful. All I could do is start a group for me and all my internet friends who have complained over the years that we don’t fit well anywhere.

In this vein, I tried “misfit homeschoolers” as a search term. I got exactly one result:

Well-Trained Mind Secular Homeschoolers. (?!)

If these guys are the misfits, you and I, my friends, inhabit an alternate reality.

Which, since it is a pretty good reality, is OK with me.


Filed under Socialization, Why Homeschool?

7 responses to “A Group of One

  1. Andrea

    Oh – that gave me a chuckle Shaun! “How many nights?” Funny how we all want to classify ourselves.

  2. lol!

    What about wide-open-minded homeschoolers? 😉 You could call yourselves woms.

  3. Mariposa


    Merry Christmas to you and your family.

  4. Do the misfit homeschoolers have a theme song? A piggyback of “Island of Misfit Toys” would be cool.

    I suddenly realized that my new goal is to find a local homeschooling group with a theme song.

  5. lapazfarm

    LOL! Can I join?

  6. I always thought “eclectic” was code for misfit. ;^)

    Anyhow, one of my fantasies for my website is to make one place that works for all these groups to get information and make announcements. The way things are now, either you get the same email 15 times, or you don’t hear about it at all. But change is hard.

  7. I’ve tried to define who we are homeschoolers several times and as soon as we place ourselves in a group of what I think we are, I quickly get disappointed.

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