Local & State Groups
Support groups offer a way for those interested in homeschooling or new to home education to get information and support. They also offer opportunities for social activities, group learning, and networking. Find a support group near you in Illinois.
Resources
Not Back to School Camp

Not Back to School Camp is a non-denominational, non-religious homeschool camp. The camp offers workshops, spontaneous events, and special evening gatherings, bringing together campers who are excited about life and willing to be themselves and to reach out and connect with the others. 

Local & State Support Groups
Lake County H.O.U.S.E.
Lake County H.O.U.S.E. (Home-Oriented Unique Schooling Experience) is located in and around Lake County, Illinois. Their mission is to provide non-sectarian and non-political support and information for homeschooling families as well as providing socialization and shared educational opportunities for their children. Lake County H.O.U.S.E. provides many clubs and field trip experiences organized by and for its members and others in the homeschool community, as well as a lively dialog concerning homeschool interests and educational opportunities in the Lake County and Chicagoland areas. New members are always welcome.
Grassroots Homeschoolers
This non-profit organization exists for the purpose of nurturing families in a non-denominatinal, non-sectarian capacity. They welcome all faiths, all abilities, and all educational styles. To the homeschooling community, they offer social opportunities, practical information, and learning adventures to be experienced by not only their members but the general public as well. This group is a member of Illinois HOUSE.
Evanston Home Educators
Evanston Home Educators provides support, ideas, information and opportunities for group classes and field trips for homeschooling families in the Evanston Area. As a member of the umbrella group Illinois H.O.U.S.E. (Home Oriented Unique Schooling Experience), this group is non-sectarian, and members have many different approaches to and reasons for homeschooling.
H.O.U.S.E. by the Lake
H.O.U.S.E. by the Lake, a local chapter of Illinois H.O.U.S.E., is a support and networking group for homeschooling families with children of all ages in and around the northeast Chicago and Cook County area. This group is non-sectarian and inclusive of all styles of homeschooling.
Illinois H.O.U.S.E.
Illinois H.O.U.S.E. (Home Oriented Unique Schooling Experience) is an umbrella organization of individual nonsectarian and inclusive support groups across the state of Illinois.
Northside Unschoolers of Chicago
The Northside Unschoolers is a support group for homeschooling families that practice child-led learning.
Off The Beaten Path
Off the Beaten Path is an inclusive support network of unschooling families based in Lake County, Illinois. OTBP’s mission is to provide a means for local unschoolers, and those wanting to learn more about interest-led learning, to connect and support one another.
Will County Unschoolers
This is an inclusive homeschooling group for Will, DuPage, and surrounding counties in Illinois. They meet every Wednesday, alternating each week between the Joliet area and Aurora/Naperville area.
Illiana Homeschool Cooperative
This is a group of homeschooling families in northwest Indiana and northeast Illinois who are providing socialization and educational opportunities for their children.
Local & State Online Groups
Unschooling in IL
Email list for Illinois families who are unschooling. This is for parents for have chosen the method of unschooling as the means to teach their children. Join the list of Illinois families who are unschooling.
Unschooling in the Midwest
This group is for unschoolers in the midwest to offer support to other life learning families and to organize activities.
IL Homeschoolers (homeschool-Illinois)
Email support group for the discussion of topics related to homeschooling in Illinois. This group is open-minded and discusses a variety of topics. You'll find information about local events, organizations, and homeschool websites.
PeoriaAreaHomeschoolers
A message board and email list for homeschoolers, or families who are thinking about homeschooling, in the Peoria, Illinois area.
Illinoishomeschool
This is a mailing list for people who home school or are thinking of homeschooling in Illinois, kids and parents alike. Here you can exchange ideas, support each other, and share resources and information.
ILHSannounce
Email list for Illinois homeschoolers, or those who are interested in homeschooling in Illinois, to announce area activities, field trips, speakers, group meetings, legal information, and legislation information.
Scott AFB Homeschoolers
Scott AFB Homeschoolers is an online email and discussion group for military Families (Active, Reserve, Retired) at or near Scott AFB, IL. This is not an official Scott AFB group or site and they are not sponsored by the base. They are a group of Christian homeschooling families living at or near Scott AFB.
Three Rivers Homeschool Network
The Three Rivers Homeschool list functions to connect homeschooling families and their support groups in western Kentucky, southern Illinois, and northwest Tennessee. Its purpose is to keep families aware of the opportunities for support and enrichment available within a roughly 60 mile radius of Paducah, KY.
Home-Schooling the Only Child
Homeschooling an only child can be quite challenging at times. This group is open to anyone for support, enrouragement and ideas for those who choose the home-schooling road for you and your child. Although they are based in NC, anyone can join for support. They have a database that you can access to see who is in your state to get together with.
ILHomeschools
A Christian email support list for Christian families who plan to or are currently homeschooling in the state of Illinois.
Lake County H.O.U.S.E.
Lake County H.O.U.S.E. (Home-Oriented Unique Schooling Experience) is located in and around Lake County, Illinois. Their mission is to provide non-sectarian and non-political support and information for homeschooling families as well as providing socialization and shared educational opportunities for their children. Lake County H.O.U.S.E. provides many clubs and field trip experiences organized by and for its members and others in the homeschool community, as well as a lively dialog concerning homeschool interests and educational opportunities in the Lake County and Chicagoland areas. New members are always welcome.
Off The Beaten Path
Off the Beaten Path is an inclusive support network of unschooling families based in Lake County, Illinois. OTBP’s mission is to provide a means for local unschoolers, and those wanting to learn more about interest-led learning, to connect and support one another.
Will County Unschoolers
This is an inclusive homeschooling group for Will, DuPage, and surrounding counties in Illinois. They meet every Wednesday, alternating each week between the Joliet area and Aurora/Naperville area.
National Forums
Military Homeschoolers Forum at vegsource.com
Connect with other military homeschooling families at this vegsource.com message board.
Homeschooling Humor Forum at vegsource.com
Got a funny story to share? Need a good chuckle? You'll find it here as homeschooling moms and dads share the joys and humor of homeschooling.
Religious Homeschooling Forum at vegsource.com
A vegsource.com message forum for homeschoolers who have religious reasons to homeschool.
Unschooling Forum at vegsource.com
Unschoolers meet to talk and share ideas at this vegsource.com message board.
Single Parent Homeschoolers Forum at vegsource.com
This is a message forum at vegsource.com especially for single parents who are home educating their children.
Encouragement Forum at vegsource.com
If you are feeling burned out or need encouragement, this forum is for you. Share your struggles and get help, ideas, and support from those who have walked in your shoes.
Black Homeschoolers' Network
Black Homeschoolers' Network is intended to facilitate a network among African American homeschoolers across the country. Here you will also find a message board for general communication as well as an email pal listing for homeschooled kids.
Charlotte Mason Forum at vegsource.com
Discuss Charlotte Mason's ideas and find new way to implement those ideas at the forum sponsored by vegsource.com.
Community Homeschooling Forum at vegsource.com
This is a general message forum at vegsource.com designed to discuss all general homeschooling topics.
Homeschool Christian Solo Homeschooling Parents Message Board
This message board is designed for single homeschooling parents to support each other and get ideas and information on homeschooling as a solo parent.
National Online Groups
Large Family Logistics
The purpose of Large Family Logistics is to help Christian homeschooling mothers with the daily tasks of home management.
Unschooling Families
This list is a friendly place for all to chat about anything you wish to explore. Parenting issues, schooling issues, political issues . . . as unschoolers, we know that nothing is off topic.
Unschooling Discussion
Large traffic email list whose stated purpose is to move out of comfort zones and critically examine beliefs, ideas, and viewpoints about learning, and seek a deeper understanding of unschooling and more respectful relationships with one's children.
Classical~Charlotte Mason Material Swap
The Classical Charlotte Mason Swap list is for home schooling families to exchange living books and curricula that are used with the classical (Trivium) method or the Charlotte Mason method. This list does not support one particular way of implementing classical education, but rather is open to methods and materials as recommended in the many books and websites on the subject. Curricula, books, manipulatives, videos, and audios may be posted.
HEM-Unschooling
This list is for the broad-ranging discussion of unschooling. It is sponsored by Home Education Magazine.
Unschoolers Coffee Talk
A place for unschoolers to come together to discuss our adventures and experiences,share resources and information.
Pregnant Again
This is a list for all who are pregnant for the third or more time and are having a large family by choice. Discussions include the difficulties of having several at home when dealing with sickness and fatigue, homeschooling, and more. This is a supportive list where people believe that large families are wonderful.
Homeschooling Creatively
This list is a place where parents can come to understand and give value to our creative children as we home/unschool with them. The focus will be on discussing alternative ways (versus public school methods) to help our creative children learn which best suits their learning style and respects their complex personality traits, taking a look at creating a success-based learning environment that draws on the strengths of our creative learners while providing support-based opportunities to gently guide their intense natures.
Homeschool Family Businesses
This group is for the discussion of all things related to running a business while homeschooling. This list is for you if you homeschool and run a business (from home or elsewhere) or are thinking of starting a business. You'll get ideas on businesses that the whole family can participate in. If you are single and homeschool, and are looking for ways to be the sole wage earner while homeschooling, this list will also be helpful.
CMSeries
This list is designed for anyone wishing to learn more about the Charlotte Mason method of education from reading her own books and engaging in discussions of a philosophical nature.
Catholic Robinson Curriculum Homeschool
This is a homeschool email group for Catholic families which will revolve around the Robinson Curriculum.
Afrocentric Homeschoolers Association (AHA) Yahoo Group
A discussion group for pro-Black African and/or African Diasporan, Black homeschoolers, unschoolers, deschoolers, home-based educators everywhere. It is also open to non-homeschoolers and non-Blacks who are trying to teach their children about Blacks.
Unschooling.com Email List
This discussion list is the companion communications forum for the Unschooling.com website.
Literature Alive
Literature Alive! is an email group list for the literary website of the same name. This list seeks to encourage and support parents who have a love for literature and a desire to share good wholesome books with their children. Its purpose is to develop the art and excitment of using great living literature in a learning lifestyle. This group will share information on how to turn a living book into a cherished book within the home. Different literature study methods enhanced by Charlotte Mason's writing will be discussed: lapbooks, notebooks, journals, book clubs, reading settings, etc.
Work and Homeschool
Do you have to (or have to return to) work or attend school but still want to educate your child(ren) at home? Have you been told that it's impossible to fit homeschooling your child(ren) into your life if you cannot make it your top priority due to your own work or school needs? Well, many of these list members are proving that work and homeschool can be done! This is a support group for working parents (or student parents) who have chosen to homeschool their children or are considering homeschooling, as well as for homeschooling parents who are thinking of returning to work. Whether you are working/attending school or thinking of doing so, whether inside or outside your home, and whether you are homeschooling or thinking of doing so, this list is for you.
CM Curricula
This list is for the buying and selling of resources (biographies,poetry and art books, teacher resources, etc.) that are in conformity with the Charlotte Mason "twaddle-free" philosophy. This is strictly a buying and selling list.
Secret Society of Unschooling Dads (SSUD)
This group is for Unschooling Dads, Granddads, and Dads-to-be who have attended one of the past 3 Live and Learn Conferences OR who have spouses who attended one of these conferences. Other unschooling fathers (et al.) can also join the group through invitation. Our intention is to keep a running dialog and passion for unschooling our children between conferences.
Always Learning
Discussion for homeschooling fans of John Holt, whose books Learning All the Time, Never Too Late, and Teach your Own have made unschooling an option for thousands of families.
Child-Led Christian Unschooling
This child-led learning group is for those unschoolers who are also Christians.
Basically Beechick
Ruth Beechick Style Homeschooling is an Eclectic approach which focuses on natural learning through Real Books and Real Life. Basically Beechick is a Christian homeschool support group to discuss the methods and ideas of Dr. Ruth Beechick. Other authors whose ideas mesh well with Beechick's are discussed as well. These authors include (but are not limited to) Susan C. Anthony, Rebecca Rupp, Jean Soyke, E.D. Hirsch, Jessie Wise and Susan Wise Bauer, Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn, Laura Berquist, Robin Scarlata, Jane Claire Lambert, Valerie Bendt, Clay and Sally Clarkson, Cindy Rushton, Mary Hood, Marilyn Howshall, and Charlotte Mason.
Chevra
Chevra was formed in September 1998 as an online support community for Jewish homeschoolers of all varieties. It tends to be a very chatty place where they discuss Jewish observance, homeschooling, family life, outside interests, and (the favorite topic) why the laundry never seems to get done. If you are looking for a group that discusses only homeschooling and Judaic resources, you may very well be disappointed in Chevra's free-wheeling discussions of everything under the sun, but there is lots of great information here.
CM Audiobooks
CM Audiobooks was created to allow homeschooling parents the ability to share MP3 files of personal book readings. These audiobooks are of Twaddle-free books per the Charlotte Mason method and specifically created for those using the Ambleside Online curriculum. Anyone using the Charlotte Mason method is welcome to join and participate by reading books.
CM for One
CM for One (CMfor1) is a message board for families home educating an only child and using the Charlotte Mason Method.
African American Homeschoolers
This group is for African American parents (or parents of African American children) who are homeschooling their children. It is also for parents looking to supplement their children's education with home study.
Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum Families
This list is for families using the classical approach to education as outlined in Laura Berquist's book Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum (DYOCC).
Sonlight Unschoolers
This email group is for those who use Sonlight curricula but also like the unschooling approach (and other compatable methods). Working out how to mix the two, curricula exchange/sales, and connecting with other eclectic Christian unschoolers is the object.
Homeschool Helper
Homeschool Helper is an email group that focuses on specific curriculum questions, needs, and concerns.
Christian Unschooling
Christians can and do unschool. Here you'll find support and more.
Homeschool Burnout
This is a Christian email group that can help you face those feelings of burnout.
Mater Amabilis Teacher Training Forum
Mater Amabilis is a free online homeschool curriculum, which takes the methods of Charlotte Mason and applies them for the 21st century Catholic family. Offering a detailed and flexible syllabus for each age level, Mater Amabilis can be used as a complete curriculum or simply as a springboard for learning. This online teacher training forum provides support in implementing the methods of Charlotte Mason and tips for adapting these methods to today's family.
K12 Large Families
This group is for large families using the K-12 curriculum created by Dr. William Bennett. Both homeschooling families and Virtual School families are welcome. It is particularly intended for families with more than 3 children in K-12 as well as additional teens, toddlers and babies. Discussions include both the curriculum and the challenges of implementing it in a large family.
Unschooling Dads
This list is a place for unschooling dads. Whether you're an advocate, long-time unschooler, novice, or somewhere in the middle, you're welcome here. This list is for dads only.
ABC Books by Ann
This group consists of two things: 1) a bi-weekly newsletter with articles about living books, book collecting, taking care of and organizing your home school library, using living books in your homeschool, notebooking, book and author reviews, and more; and 2.) a bi-weekly catalog of living books for sale on eBay, plus and some unit studies.
New Rising Homeschool Network
Are you working fulltime and feeling as though you and your children have been left out of the homeschool loop? Are you a single parent concerned you might not be able to meet the demands of homeschooling? Does your child have special needs? Dell's Place has established a network for working moms, single parents, and the rest of us who struggle to pull it all together. The purpose of this network is for support and encouragement, but it's also to offer real solutions from other parents who struggle with the same issues.
Single Parent Homeschoolers
This is a list for single parents homeschooling their children. The purpose of this list is to support single parents.
Mother of Divine Grace Families
This list is for families using the classical approach to education as outlined in Laura Berquist's independent study program, Mother of Divine Grace (MODG), and in her book Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum (DYOCC). The discussions on this loop primarily revolve around the implementation and use of resources which are recommended in the MODG syllabi and in DYOCC. Additionally, they always welcome conversations about the classical methodology of MODG/DYOCC.
LDS Classical Education
A list for LDS homeschoolers seeking a classical education.
Onlies-HS
This list is dedicated to families homeschooling only-children. These families have unique socialization issues and must often be super-creative in their solutions. Join this list if you are homeschooling a wonderful Only.
Always Unschooled
This is a list dedicated to achieving a deeper understanding of a Radical Unschooling lifestyle with young children. It is geared towards thoughtful discussion and exploration of what Radical Unschooling looks like in the early years, from toddlerhood to around age 8 or so. Experienced and new Unschoolers can discuss how they made the transition from peaceful parenting to Unschooling in daily practice, when that transition occurred and what benefits children gain by Unschooling from the beginning.
Large Families Home School
This list is to encourage and support those who homeschool many children. How many? To some 3 is a lot! If you have a large family (whether natural, adopted, foster or blended) and homeschool, you know that there are a lot of unique challenges ranging from orchestrating family harmony, dealing with multiple ages, trying to homeschool in a sometimes chaotic environment, keeping up with the never-ending laundry, transportation, cooking, chores, and more. This is a Christian list.
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Featured Resources

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Only Child: Writers on the Singular Joys and Solitary Sorrows of Growing Up Solo
Only children don’t have to share bedrooms, toys, or the backseat of a car. They don’t have to share allowances, inheritances, or their parents’ attention. But when they get into trouble, they can’t just blame their imaginary friends. In Only Child, twenty-one acclaimed writers tell the truth about life without siblings—the bliss of solitude, the ache of loneliness, and everything in between.In this unprecedented collection, writers like Judith Thurman, Kathryn Harrison, John Hodgman, and Peter ...
Alpha-Phonics
Alpha Phonics is a primer for beginning readers. It features 128 self-explanatory lessons, printed in large, clear calligraphy suitable for beginning readers. You'll find product information about Alpha-Phonics here.
Life in America
Life in America was designed by home schooling parents to meet the needs of families. Features unit studies in a box, with all resource material supplied.
Visual Brainstorms
Children who love word games, logic puzzles, secret codes, mazes, and math mysteries will stretch their mental muscles with Visual Brain Storms. This set of 100 cards, each of which includes a humorous, full-color drawing, promises "the world's best brainteaser questions." The characters in the questions often have funny names (Professor Pith Bugby pops up often) or faces or dilemmas to solve. The answers and explanations are on the back of each card, along with a related bonus question. Many of...
Homeschooling and Libraries: New Solutions and Opportunities
Homeschools are alwsy looking for alternative ways of schooling that do not necessarily reflect what a typical classroom looks like. Since homeschooling is so diverse across families, information institutions, including public, academic, school, and special libraries may find it challenging to meet all their needs and desires. This collection of essays offers approaches and strategies from library professionals and veteran homeschoolers on how to best serve the needs and experiences of homeschoo...