Fox Valley Homeschool Teen Literature Group

Extracurricular, fun, and tie-in activities

We, the Fox Valley Homeschool Teen Literature Group, or "Lit Group" for short, are a group of homeschooled teens (plus one grownup chaperon/leader) who read literature and get together weekly to discuss it. However, that's just half of what we do. Just as important, teens get a chance to meet, hang out with, get to know, and enjoy the company of other smart, homeschooled teens, in a safe, positive, fun environment. We spend only the first hour of our weekly 2-hour meetings discussing literature; then comes the social hour, in which teens have a chance to enjoy snacks, chat, hang out, and just be teens. Social hour is almost completely unstructured except for when we celebrate birthdays or go out on a walk somewhere.

Besides our social hour, in Lit Group we also enjoy optional activities outside of and after Lit Group. Mostly these activities tie in to books we're currently reading, but some activities we do just for the fun of it, or to take advantage of opportunities. In the first half of the 2010/2011 "learning year," we:
Those last two activities didn't have anything to do with the books we read. They were just fun and/or educational things to do; opportunities that were easy to take advantage of, so we did.

Coming up in the remainder of the 2010/2011 "learning year":
You can see that our activities vary from simple, free or near-free things to activities which may cost money, including field trips which involve transportation. All these activities are optional. Most involve just Lit Group teens, but siblings and family members are welcome to many. Sometimes we join in activities with other homeschool Lit Groups &/or other homeschoolers.

The Fermilab events are targeted to an adult audience and generally have nothing to do with literature. But they're interesting and the presenters are leading experts in their field. Fermilab's near to where we meet, and the events happen right after Lit Group, so the logistics are easy and we often grab these easy opportunities. Lit Group teens that want to attend just stay late that evening, enjoy supper, good company, and an informative/interesting evening out. Similarly, walks to the art gallery, or to the local playhouse, may have little to do with literature. But they are both fun, and the kind of thing that "literate people" enjoy and do.

The goal and outcome of all this is, I suppose, obvious. Our activites are opportunities for homeschooled teens to have fun, learn stuff, socialize, and experience variety and new things.