What to expect at OLGH
We are a homeschool co-op group that serves the greater Fort Wayne area of Northeastern Indiana. We are made up of families that follow many varying curriculums, but the one thing that ties us all together is that we are Catholics, brought together by a desire for community for ourselves and children, supporting each other in our homeschools however we can.
This means that you will not find leveled clases with a heavy workload in our group -- we try to make sure that the classes we offer do not require extra assignments and homework that would interfere with the schedule and curriculum that works best for your family at home (with exception for optional book clubs for all ages and reading assignments for 7-12 graders). Further, there are no prerequisites to our classes, as we want to make it as easy as possible for families to jump in and participate.
We are not a drop-off program. With community being our main focus, it's very important to us that parents stay on campus. We need all hands to help our co-op run smoothly. As such, role responsibilities are assigned to each parent on a rotating basis, except for those volunteers who are Tutors. More info on role responsibilities below.
Our main focus is Catholic homeschool community, with classes that can assist with what you are already doing in your own homeschool, whatever curriculum you have chosen to follow, hopefully providing the students with academic-level content that will spark their interest and carry that interest home to you, the teachers of your children.
We meet on the 2nd and 4th Fridays, August-November and January-April at St. Patrick's Catholic Church of Arcola, Indiana and offer classes for children ages PreK-12, from 8:45am-12:45pm, with the last forty-five minute set aside for lunch and fellowship.
An important part of our program is community. This means that our co-op is not a-la-carte. Students go with their classmates throughout the morning, taking all classes in their age group together throughout the year. We hope that in doing this, your student will develop closer friendships as they go from class to class with the same group of friends.
We currently offer the following classes:
- Unstructured Pre-grammar: Religion, Music, Story Time, Play/Craft Time
- Structured Pre-grammar: Religion, Music, Presentations/Play Time, Modified Science, Modified Art
- Elementary: Religion, Music, Presentations, Art, Science
- Middle School / High School: Religion, Art, Logic, Seminar
- OLGH does not offer catechism classes -- we believe that your local parish and you, as the homeschool parent and teacher, are best equipped to teach this to your child. Rather, we introduce students to the lives of the Saints throughout the year. Younger students will participate in crafts, listen to read-alouds, and participate in activities that help them learn about our Saint of the week. Older students go more-in-depth with the same Saint, reading literature the Saint may have written, and being led in discussion about their life.
- For example, Saints we have studied in the past:
- St Martin of Tours -- we talked about his life and learned how our own Thanksgiving traditions have roots in the legends of his life
- Bl. Sr. Mary of the Divine Heart -- we learned about the Sacred Heart of Jesus devotion and the history behind it
- St Theresa of Avila -- we talked about prayer life and the Interior Castle. As a fun craft, younger students made a small castle made from sugar cubes.
- St. Padre Pio -- we talked about the mysterious gifts granted Saints such as Padre Pio -- bilocation, being able to see one's guardian angel, being a discerning confessor, and more.
- This class is purely experiment-based. We follow general scientific areas per quarter, such as Physics, Botany, or Chemistry (and others). All that is required of your student is to be present and participate. Our hope is that these experiments spark interest in your child that you, as the teacher, can choose to follow up with at home as it suits your family.
- Science class for the 6-12 students will meet the first three weeks of each quarter, sharing the time slot with Presentation class the fourth week.
- We have chosen Art projects that correspond to Ancient, Medieval, Modern, and American. Students are learning the basic foundations of Art that corresponds best to their age group, PreK-5.
- At this time, our 6-12 students are studying Portraiture and other Artistic mediums, building on techniques they learn throughout the semester.
- In Music, our tutor Ms. Sherri Gordon instructs our PreK-5 students in foundational aspects of learning to read music, training their voices, and keeping rhythm. Students in grades 3-5 are learning how to sing music with multiple parts in harmony.
- This class will culminate in a short performance at the end of each semester for the children to show what they've learned.
- We provide parents with a list of Presentation topics at the beginning of each semester. In Presentation class, the students will work on specific techniques that help them to be better presenters and to be more comfortable speaking in front of a group.
- This class meets every Group Meeting for the PreK-5 students.
- Logic class is for 6-12 graders (middle and high school are separated). Each class, we use a combination of logical fallacy identification and formal logic study to help students learn to identify invalid arguments and logical fallacies in the world around them, as well as help them to form their own sound arguments.
- PreK-5 students will meet monthly in homes for book club, hosted by member families and as volunteers allow. These book clubs are purely optional and no sign-up is necessary (although RSVPs are appreciated!). Past titles have included:
- Paddington by Michael Bond
- The Sword in the Stone by T.H. White
- The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald
- My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George
- The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner
- 6-12 students will meet for Literature discussion 2-3 times a semester instead of Art to discuss a major classic work. Literature may shift to a book club format once a month if there are enough older students interested. Past titles have included:
- The Epic of Gilgamesh
- Antigone by Sophocles
- Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
- 20,000 League Under the Sea by Jules Verne
- Julius Caesar by Shakespeare
Monthly ExtraCurriculars for Kids AND Parents
- Nature Day
- On the first Thursday of each month we schedule one outdoor meetup day. These could be park meetups or trail hikes. This year we attended a monthly program hosted by the Little River Wetlands Project.
- Mother/Father/Family Rosary
- During the summer family rosary gatherings will be hosted one evening a month. We will share a potluck meal and say the rosary with the special intentions of our homeschool and our childrens' education / in reparation for sins against the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary if on a First Saturday. We will use the time afterwards for fellowship.
- During the academic year we are planning to host separate mother and father group rosaries as well.
- Catholic Schoolhouse Review Day
- Several families in our group utilize the Catholic Schoolhouse model and curriculum. Every third Friday, we open up our host facility to allow these families to get together to review their memory work for the previous weeks.
- Moms' Night Out
- Dads' Meetups
Field Trips and Special Events
On a more irregular basis, we schedule field trips as they coordinate with our class content or just because! We also try to schedule special events as they are celebrated throughout the liturgical year. For example:
- Annunciation Day -- gifting Mary with flowers
- Valentine's Day party
- Field Trip to Ball State Planetarium
- Advent Party
- May Crowning
- Field Trip to Aviation Museum
- Fort Wayne Zoo
- Candle-making Party for Candlemas
- Our group has allied with our host facility to regularly clean in order to give back for their generosity. We are currently looking for a Service Coordinator to help us organize and plan regular service opportunities for all ages in our community. Please contact us if you'd like to help in this!
- In order to keep costs as low as possible for our members, we all chose to adopt a Nursery managed by a couple assigned parents. Nursery constitutes children ages infant - 2yrs.
- Upon acceptance of membership, your family will be assigned a role for the duration of the academic year. These roles include (but are not limited to):
- Religion/Science/Art Classroom Helper
- Presentation Class Guide
- Substitute Tutor
- Cleaning Responsibiities (Wiping down lunch tables, bathroom check, floor sweeping, etc)
- Recess Monitor
- Membership in OLGH includes:
- Access to our online discussion forum that sends updates and notifications via email. Forum members have the ability to respond and post to the forum via email as well.
- An online directory
- Resources for Class information
- Note: our group does not utilize Facebook for updates.
- Registration Fee per family -- TBD
- Nursery -- No charge
- PreK-5 student -- TBD
- 6-12 student -- TBD
- Insurance Paid Once per Family Per Year -- TBD, divided amongst all families
- Additional fees for field trips will apply as the need arises.
- Note: Supply Fees are subject to change depending on the cost of the particular supplies needed in a given year.
- We understand that homeschooling can be daunting, and that you may be looking for help in specific subject areas or for a particular class to help fill a gap in your curriculum. You may also find that what OLGH offers just isn't the right fit for your family. Our members have utilized the following homeschooling supports in our area and found them to be helpful:
- Further, we encourage you, if you have not already, to join NICHE -- Northeastern Indiana Catholic Home Educators. Visit their website to find out more information on more homeschooling resources and events.
Thank you for your interest in Our Lady of Good Help Homeschool Co-Op!
To register, please click the "Login" button at the top right corner of the Home page and select "Request Membership in OLGH."
For questions or more information, please email us at [email protected].