My advice to new homeschoolers.
But I decided I did want to mention the 3 things I have found the most crucial to homeschooling.
1) Read, read, read, and then read some more. Research homeschooling like you were about to have to give a five hour lecture to a crowd of people who have never heard of homeschooling. Read every single thing you can find and get your hands on. If you don't know where to start - google it. Your reading list will be enormous after just one simple web search.
2) Join a support group or co-op. There is a school of thought with some people to not do this as it sounds too "school like" and so they refuse to get involved. But a support group is invaluable to you as a resource where you can meet other homeschooling families, find a mentor in someone who's been at this for awhile now, and give your kids a chance to make new friends. It can also provide you with a chance for your kids to do some things that may be closed to them otherwise, like perform in a drama or group sports. To find a local group, try googling "homeschool support group" plus the name of your city or town. Or, google "homeschool" plus the name of your state, to find a state-wide association that can then point you in the right direction.
3) DON'T DON'T DON'T rush out and buy a pre-packaged curriculum until you have researched it THOROUGHLY. Try this site: HOMESCHOOL REVIEWS to find out what other parents think about anything you are considering buying. You can spend (and waste) a fortune on curricula that ends up being something you hardly, if ever, use. Even if you've pulled your child from school in the middle of the year and have no idea what to do next - do NOT rush out and buy something. Go to the library and check out some books and spend a little while de-schooling and de-toxing. Let your child read all and as much as he wants while you spend the time to research things and make an informed decision. A few weeks of de-schooling, or even a month or more if you and your child needs it, can easily be made up later.
(And remember, you don't HAVE to buy any curriculum at all! See the rest of my blog for more about that.)