Group classes are a popular option for today’s homeschooling families because of the many benefits they provide to both students and parents. Also, there are a growing number of families that wish to pay teachers to conduct classes in group learning contexts.
We at Lampstand Press have long supported group teaching. For four years, we have offered excellent paid classes through our Lampstand Learning Center (LLC). We have also done our best to encourage all-volunteer co-ops that our customers have run on their own. We have not had the resources to support or supervise such local groups as much as we would have liked.
Having fully developed and vetted Tapestry of Grace and its related Supplements, Lampstand Press has the confidence, experience, and fiscal resources to strengthen our support of homeschooling parents by creating a network of sponsored Fellowship Groups, which will standardize and support groups of homeschooling parents who elect to use Tapestry of Grace as their centerpiece curriculum. To learn more about how to participate, go to Tapestry University. While you are there, feel free to peruse other tabbed pages to learn more about how to become an Advisor or Master Teacher.
Although co-ops aren't necessary for using Tapestry, they do present many benefits to a homeschooling family! Here are just a few.
Tapestry virtual co-ops typically consist of Tapestry families from across the country desiring to provide discussion classes for their dialectic and rhetoric students. Such groups typically meet in virtual classrooms in real time to work through the discussion scripts provided in the curriculum. Many co-ops will also add in review and game days.
There are email-based virtual co-ops that share the products of student assignments (like writing assignments or answers to Student Activity Page questions). These are not limited by time zones but seek peer or teacher reviews as their main means to distance learning. Similarly, there are Forum-based groups who post discussion questions and require students to answer these thoughtfully and thus have discussions, but not in real time. As with local co-ops, the number and types of virtual co-ops seem endless!
If you are interested in distance learning with Tapestry of Grace but a virtual co-op isn’t right for you, check out the Lampstand learning Center (LLC), where we offer history, literature, and writing classes for dialectic and rhetoric students.
The easiest way to make sure that everyone in your co-op is on the same page is for everyone to have the same version of your year-plan. We know that you may form or join groups with folks who already own either print-only plans or earlier editions of DE that are not identical in content to yours. The Major Variances Chart will show you how seriously divergent your members' year-plans are. The fix for tinkering is to determine the ruling version (coming to an established co-op book list for the year) and then asking members to use either archived pages or update pages from the Book Updates Chart to bring their content in line with the established norm. (While this may seem a bit cumbersome, we would like to remind you that no other homeschooling whole-book company provides as much support for reconciling dated versions of their product as we do!)
As we said above, however, the easiest way by far to get everyone in your group on the same page is to have everyone in your group update to DE, and then refresh to the currently offered DE at any time in the month or two before you start planning over the summer, and then not refresh their DE copies again before the following May, or whenever your co-op classes end. Updating currently owned printed Redesigned Tapestry copies is arguably cheaper (and certainly less time consuming) than reprinting pages book by book. Below, please find linked the four forms that correspond to the four year-plans that you'll need to access. Below, also, is a thumb-nail sketch of the process of upgrading from printed to DE copies:
We support the sales of used copies of Tapestry but, because there are different versions of Tapestry of Grace, we want to alert you as a co-op leader to some commonly experienced pitfalls that have in the past led to disappointment and hard feelings.
More and more families are using Tapestry of Grace in a group settings, with excellent results because combining at-home, parent-directed study with group discussion works. Because local groups have been so successful, many co-op leaders have received requests for a way to include students whose families don't use Tapestry to attend their classes. Such co-op leaders need a way to make Tapestry materials available to such students if they admit them, but are rightly concerned about copyright infringement, knowing that the authors of Tapestry of Grace should receive due consideration for their hard work in the form of remuneration.
In an effort to serve these students and simplify matters for co-op leaders, we have implemented a licensing arrangement for co-ops. Click here to read the details, or call us at 1-800-705-7487 for more information.