Homeschooling in Montana

Today, I’m sharing about Homeschooling in Montana. Home education is a beautiful freedom we have here in America. While the laws for every state are different, any family can choose to homeschool whether it is for religious reasons or just giving children a more well balanced, individualized education. The range in what is required for each state is vast; some have very strict regulations while others are more relaxed and even requirement free. It’s been three years since moving and living in a state that is more relaxed than what was required in the past. This new found freedom for me was/is hard to get used to. At first, I felt like a rebel (I still do) for not giving achievement tests every three years and I still write my year-end progress report just so I can remember any changes in my son’s learning and any curriculum failures.
Homeschooling in Montana l frogslilypad.net

Homeschooling in Montana


The laws in Montana are simple
  •  File a letter of intent
  •  Keep attendance and immunization records
  •  Provide the required amount of hours during the year
  •  Teach the required subjects
  •  Follow health and safety regulations

Groups and Co-Ops:  Montana is a large state and we have many homeschool groups throughout. There are Facebook groups for many of them.

Field Trips: Depending on where you live in Montana, field trips are a ton of fun. If you’re like us and live in the middle of nowhere and away from all the exciting places Montana has to offer, some field trips become mini-vacations.

If you plan on visiting Yellowstone, you may want to check out the Complete Guide to Yellowstone from Live Once Live Wild. It's full of facts about the park and many of the trails and activities for families.

Of course, there are many local museums throughout our state. Our county museum is home to Steer Montana, once noted as the World’s LARGEST Steer.

Curriculum Shout-Out: I’ve been sharing our curriculum choices for several years now. But my most favorite program to use is Teaching Textbooks for math. The newer versions are all self-grading and they keep up with all the work, so my work is a little lighter and I don’t have to teach math.

Recommended Books: As a home educating mom, I would like to be able to share a list of books I would recommend to others. For some, what I am about to say is sad. In eleven years, I have only read ONE book written to the homeschool mom and while it was many years ago, I can’t remember anything from it. But I do remember it being a blessing to me. I’m sure there are some great books out there, but honestly, I don’t depend on other’s opinions and experiences. Every home is different, every mom is different, and every child is different. While we look for advice from others, we tend to forget where wisdom comes from. The Bible and prayer (James 1:5) are my recommendations to anyone. I honestly believe if you put your trust in God’s strength to give you wisdom on matters concerning your home and school, He will provide an answer. He will not fail you.

Advice: 
  • Pray and pray some more. I’ve mentioned many times this is a journey and a way of life. There will be sacrifices (many) to be made along the way with some bumps in the road. No, praying doesn’t stop the problems from happening, but it does help in smoothing the rough edges.
  •  One thing a parent can give their children that cannot be taken away from them is an EDUCATION. Do your BEST to make sure your children get a top notch education whether they attend college or not. Make sure they meet all the graduation requires for your state. Plan ahead and look at possible college’s requirements for admittance. More times than not, a child will want to attend college and if they don’t meet the requirements, they are going to feel horrible. Give them what they want and need, an EDUCATION.
  •  I had someone tell me they wanted to homeschool their two but just couldn’t do it; they were not ready for the commitment. I listened to what was said and I agreed with them. If you are not totally committed to giving your child an education, DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME. While I am probably one of the very few to not encourage someone to take this step, I’d rather see a child in a school getting an education than for them to spend all of their school years at home not learning, not being prepared for life.

Are you a blogger with a blog post about the homeschool laws in your state? Leave me a link I’d love to read about what your state requires.

Do you have advice that was given to you that has helped in your home education journey? I’d love to hear about.

4 comments

  1. Excellent advice, Lori!

    I went to a Homeschool Workshop a few months ago and heard several people speak. I took away several things including:

    When teaching, consider exposure vs. mastery. If the subject is applicable to their field of study, teach for mastery and go deep; if not, teach for exposure.

    That was kind of a paradigm shift for me because I have a tendency to want to teach/learn everything about a subject. There needs a balance.

    Tennessee law requires that homeschoolers register with the local education authority (i.e. the school board) or an umbrella school (which is more like attending a brick-and-mortar private school as far as the law goes - much more flexibility). The law says that the student must have school for 180 days with at least 4 hours each day. I think some of the middle school grades require standardized testing if you are registered with the LEA or attend a private school. Umbrella Schools each have their own requirements. My umbrella school requires me to report attendance and semester averages twice a year. Everything else is up to me. They request, but do not require, documentation of vaccinations.

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  2. Oh, and in regards to the exposure vs. mastery, I'm speaking of subjects such as advanced science (organic chemistery) or higher level math (calculus) if the student will not be utilizing those subjects in his chosen career. I'm not saying to gloss over the normal levels of those classes. Just thought I'd clarify.

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  3. I heard about the mastery/exposure thing when Jamie was in upper elementary. I could not for the life of me agree with it until I started planning for middle and high school and read more about it. I love it, because times have changed right along with everything else related to getting into college.

    The Tennessee laws are very similar to Georgia's except for the umbrella schools.

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  4. I know what you're saying, but a reader might not, I'm glad you clarified it.

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