The topic today at The Homeschool Village is online communities and why we are thankful for them. I guess the biggest online community I am a part of is Facebook... I remember thinking my husband was silly for joining FB a few years ago - little did I know how much I would gain from joining, as well.
For me, the online community of Facebook allows me to keep in touch with siblings, nieces, nephews, old high school and college friends, former co-workers, church friends, and new friends as well. Yes, there are times when I've had to limit my time spent on Facebook, but for the most part I see it as a wonderful tool for me to keep in touch with people that have been or are a part of my life. (And, if you want to join "like" Homeschool Success just click on the link on my sideabar! ) ;-)
I am a part of Twitter, but I must say I haven't quite understood the whole concept - or rather I don't feel that I have the time to devote to figuring it all out! My Twitter link is also on my sidebar. I am "marymakesmusic" on Twitter.
When I was first researching homeschooling I stumbled upon the Ambleside Online community. I think delving into the community and joining the Yahoo Group sold me on homeschooling and helped me get my start. If you are looking for a completely free Charlotte Mason curriculum, this is the place to go!
More recently, I have been a part of The Homeschool Lounge and The Homeschool Village. At The Homeschool Lounge I made my initial online connections, learned the basic of blogging, and just felt moral and educational support when I first started homeschooling my children. Then, after hearing about The Homeschool Village, I found further support. The weekly link-ups have opened my eyes to new ideas, methods, and friends. It has been a blessing to sit on The Homeschool Village's panel for the past couple of months as well.
I appreciate that The Homeschool Village has recently gone to a day a week where they are post-free. I did find that my online activities were taking away from my jobs of mother, wife, and teacher. Yes, my online life does enrich me and provide me with wonderful ideas for our homeschool, but I can never let me get behind in my large tasks at this point in my life.
I don't quite know how to feel about our society's increasing reliance on social media. I clearly see the benefits, but there is always a little voice in my head which points out the pitfalls. For today, I am thankful for the online communities I am a part of, and thankful that many bloggers and leaders of these online communities are addressing ways to keep computer time in check.
If you want to see what other homeschoolers are saying about this topic, go to The Homeschool Village!