About Susan Raber

Married for 25 years with four children, homeschooling since 1994.
Website: http://athomeandschool.com/
Susan Raber has written 21 articles so far, you can find them below.

Sinclair English Department reaches out to homeschoolers

Sinclair Community College’s English Department is hosting the second annual Jack Bennett Youth Writing Festival on Saturday, April 5, 2014, and homeschoolers are welcome to attend these fantastic workshops!

The first session begins at 10am, an the last session ends at 3pm. And it’s FREE.

Award-winning Sinclair faculty — poets, novelists, essayists, performance artists, and short story writers—will be facilitating sessions for 6-8 and 9-12 graders. They are offering an exciting array of sessions encompassing writing poetry to college-applications.

This year, special guest artists from Metaphorically Speaking will offer workshops for both age groups in writing and performance skills.

In addition, a session for high school teachers on preparing secondary students for writing in college will be presented from 10-1:30 that day.

You may register on the day of the event in the loggia of the Sinclair Library, Building 7.

This event is FREE and lunch will be provided. Last year lunch included pizza, fruit and bottled water and this year will probably be similar.

The session for High School teachers may be of interest for parents who are homeschooling teens who plan to attend college.

You can download the .pdf flyer for this event by clicking on this link - Youth Writing Festival Flyer.

Homeschoolers and Equal Access

In June of 2013, the Ohio Legislature passed House Bill 59, which grants homeschoolers equal access to extracurricular activities in their local public schools.

PEACH (Parents Educating at Christian Homes, Inc) was formed with a specific mission;  to provide support, encouragement and fellowship to Christian families who are home educating, and to provide information about home education. We do not attempt to act as mediators between parents who wish to use this access to extracurricular activities and officials in their public school district, nor do we in any way try to act as facilitators for parents who are choosing this option.

What PEACH can do is provide information from reliable sources to help parents make this decision for their family, as well as make a few recommendations:

  • When communicating with your local school district, always do so in writing. This provides you with proper documentation should questions ever arise.
  • If you need professional legal help, contact a law firm that specializes in homeschool regulations, such as HSLDA  (Homeschool Legal Defense Association) or NCLL (National Center for Life and  Liberty).
  • HSLDA has a couple of articles on their website for homeschooling parents who are considering this option for their children:

Sports and Public School Classes
Ohio Homeschoolers Granted Equal Access to Extra Curricular and PSEO Funding

Ultimately, parents are responsible for their children’s education, and should thoroughly research and prayerfully consider what is best for their own family.


Check out Home School Sports Net- a network of homeschool sports teams.
In this related article by Scott Woodruff at HSLDA, he lists the myths and the realities of homeschoolers participating on public school sports teams.

Homeschool Information Workshop – save the date

Come to our PEACH Meeting  on Thursday, August 8th, for an informative and encouraging start to your homeschool year.

We will be introducing the new PEACH leadership team, as well as the committee coordinators for our Care Groups, the Dad’s Care Group, Achievement Testing, Graduation, Homeschool Portraits,  Annual Spelling Bee, Family Picnic, and PEACH Newsletter.

A brief explanation of Ohio Homeschool Notification Procedures will help new homeschoolers feel confident that they are complying with Ohio regulations. We will also provide instructions about how to use various features on our private password protected forum, located on bigtent.com, which is made available to PEACH members.

Following these presentations, we will have PEACH mentors hosting Q&A sessions on notifications, and curriculum and learning methods. In the Fellowship Hall, there will be tables for folks to sign up for or get more information about PEACH activities.

We will also have plenty of time for fellowship, where new and veteran homeschoolers can meet and form lasting friendships.

There is something at this meeting for every homeschooler to learn and enjoy. All of our monthly meetings are free and open to the public, so all you have to do is save the date and be there!

When: Thursday, August 8th, 7pm-9pm (doors open at 6:45)
Where: Arrowbrook Baptist Church, 1124 Upper Bellbrook Road, Xenia

I’ve decided to homeschool, but what’s next?

Here are some basic questions answered for those beginning their homeschool journey:

  • Research the laws in your state. You can do this with a quick click on the HSLDA- The Homeschool Legal Defense Assocation website. There is information about how to homeschool in Ohio on our Notifications FAQs page.
  • Evaluate your motivations – Why do you want to homeschool? Are you excited about the opportunity to teach your children? Has something bad happened that caused you to consider homeschooling? Do you feel pressured by family, friends, or church to homeschool? Do your children have special needs – learning or physical – that need to be addressed?  Knowing why you want to homeschool can be a very important step in helping you prepare for the task. It may be a temporary fix, or an 18 year investment.
  • What is your family dynamic? Do you or your spouse have a work schedule that requires accommodation? Would you rather school in the morning or afternoons/evenings? Write down a schedule to serve as a framework for how you think your family might best function as homeschoolers. This may change as your family grows and their needs change, but knowing how to integrate schooling into your family life will make it a much more enjoyable experience.
  • Think about what kind of  resources your children would enjoy. Go with learning methods and curriculum that feel most comfortable to you and your kids. Maybe traditional textbooks and workbooks are familiar, or your kids are computer geeks who would love DVDs and computer programs. If you are lucky enough to have some voracious readers on your hands, the local library is going to be your home away from home.
  • Listen to and ask for advice, but keep your family dynamics, goals, and needs in mind, and filter all of what you read, see and hear through that. Accept all of  the help you will be offered graciously, then take what rings true for you and yours, and file the rest away for Future Reference.
  • Assemble your plan- organize all you have learned so far and begin to corral your scheduling needs, curriculum materials, and legal requirements. It is OK to start small, and start slow.
  • Remember that bad school days are as inevitable as bad hair days. The dog will throw up on the couch, the kids will wake up cranky and belligerent, your relatives will tell you that your are ruining any chance for your kids to go to college and be ‘normal’, and your neighbors may think you are strange. But- you will be an integral part of seeing your kids discover life and living. You will be the one they come to with questions, and you will be shaping their characters (and that is much scarier than critical relatives).

PEACH exists to offer information, encouragement, and fellowship to homeschoolers in the Miami Valley Area. If you live close enough to attend one of our monthly meetings, you are welcome to visit and meet other homeschooling families who are on the same journey you are. If not, it is of great benefit to connect with home educators in your area who can provide the kind of support that will help you meet your homeschooling goals.

(adapted from a blog post at At Home&School, reprinted with permission)

Reasons to homeschool

Folks often ask ‘why’ a family has chosen to home educate. Sometimes they ask because they are curious and want to understand, or they are considering homeschooling their own children. Of course, a few are suspicious as to why a parent would choose to take that responsibility upon themselves and reject traditional schooling.

There is never just one reason why families opt out of public or private schooling in favor of homeschooling. There may be a couple of overarching principles that compelled them to make that choice, but there are literally dozens of reasons that reflect the individuality of homeschooling families.

Here are some common reasons parents choose to homeschool:

Biblical principles-

  1. Parents are given the primary responsibility to teach and train their children in the Scripture and with a Biblical worldview. This is shown by commandment, principle, and example. (Deuteronomy 4:9-10, 6:7, 11:19, Proverbs 1:8, 4:1, 6:20,  22:6, 31:1, Ephesians 6:4, 1 Timothy 3:4, 12, 2 Timothy 3:15, Titus 1:6)
  2. Principles regarding companionship that apply to our children- (Psalm 1:1, Psalm 119:63, Proverbs 13:20, 28:7, Ephesians 5:11, James 4:4)

Providing a quality education-

  1. Individualized instruction
  2. Curriculum and methods tailored to fit the child’s strengths, weaknesses, and interests
  3. Opportunity to address character issues
  4. Preparing for future careers with options such as dual enrollment, early graduation, apprenticeships, and time to pursue hobbies. . .

 Nurtures the entire family-

  1. Creates bonds between parents and children as well as siblings with each other
  2. Allows for proper socialization
  3. Helps minimize divided loyalties and reinforces the proper chain of authority in and out of the home
  4. Learning is viewed as a lifestyle, not a specific activity that takes place during certain hours of the day
Other benefits-
  1. Efficient use of time
  2. Health issues that need constant attention
  3. Special needs children often thrive in the home
  4. Gifted children need to progress at their own pace
  5. Freedom to go on field trips and travel during the off season
  6. Flexibility to deal with life’s emergencies, both great and small
  7. Fun

If you are considering homeschooling, these reasons could possibly help you decide if home education is right for you.

(adapted from a blog post at At Home&School, reprinted with permission)

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Current Meeting Location: Arrowbrook Baptist Church, Xenia

Meetings are held the second Thursday of every month at 7:00.

Click here for a map.

All regular monthly PEACH meetings are FREE and

Contact Us

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PEACH provides general information about home education regulations and Ohio state requirements for homeschoolers. The information on this website is not a substitute for professional legal advice, and should not be treated as such.