In a rare moment of committed mommy self-care, I decided to take a solo vacation to rural Shepherdstown, West Virginia to attend the inaugural SEA Homeschoolers Conference. Alone time spent wandering rows of secular curriculum vendors? Two birds, one stone. If the conference sucked, I figured I could always eat donuts alone on a B&B’s porch while enjoying the mountain air.
Friends, it did NOT suck! For those of you who haven’t heard of SEA, SEA stands for “secular, eclectic, academic.” Um, can I have more of that, please? Great setting, talks, vendors, and people!
I was thrilled to encounter both familiar secular vendors like Pandia Press, Michael Clay Thompson, Build Your Library, and Right Start Math, as well as vendors I had never heard of before, like Tyto and Outschool. Tyto has developed an interactive online “World of Warcraft”-like game to teach a host of scientific concepts, including ecology, evolution, and genetics. I know my kids will be clamoring to sign up for that in a few years. Outschool is a wonderful online hub for online group classes for our students, and ALL the courses are secular.
It was wonderful to see so many secular homeschoolers and their children gathered in one place. I attended several fascinating workshops and talks on topics ranging from the science behind permaculture to the challenges of homeschooling gifted children, but what I valued most were the conversations I had with other secular homeschoolers. As a relatively new homeschooler myself, it was deeply inspiring to hear personal stories of other parents who had walked the sometimes lonely path of a secular homeschooler with integrity and pride.
In short, this conference was totally worth flying to – and I hope to meet some of you there next year (location TBD).
Visit Project Happy Home for conference video links and more!
Editor’s Note: Please refer to our Secular Rating List if you have questions or concerns about any of the material mentioned in the video, as some of it may be of neutral or non-secular nature. Always double-check before purchasing material. What works for one family may not work for another, and that’s okay.