Homeschooling in Canada, Interview with Teresa Wiedrick

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This week on Homeschool Highschool Podcast: Homeschooling in Canada, Interview with Teresa Wiedrick.

Homeschooling in Canada, Interview with Teresa Wiedrick

Homeschooling in Canada, Interview with Teresa Wiedrick

If you Google “homeschool life coach,” the person you come up with is Teresa Wiedrick with Capturing The Charmed Life. As a homeschool life coach Teresa helps homeschool mamas with their own self-care. Isn’t that the best? Isn’t this what we all need?

In addition to this, Teresa and her family live Canada. We love to hear about homeschooling in countries besides the US! (Have you heard the interview with Kat Patrick about homeschooling in the United Kingdom?)

About Teresa Wiedrick

Teresa has been homeschooling for about two decades now and she has four kids. Her oldest is now 21, and her youngest is going on 14. She lives in British Columbia, Canada, which is across the continent from the 7Sisters (we are in Maryland and Delaware)! In her before-homeschooling days, she was a nurse and then began officially life coaching.

In her non-homeschool years, when her two oldest were in private school, she came across a book called The Homeschool Option by Lisa Rivera. She did not pick up the book for the reason you probably think though. She really picked up the book to get her arguments against homeschooling. 

But by the end of the week, she was convinced to homeschool! Therefore, two years later they started homeschooling. 

Then she picked up Susan Wise Bauer’s Well Trained Mind book and decided to put all that she learned in the book into practice for the next three-to-four years. But that homeschooling practice was not a good fit for her family. In fact, she was ready to find any yellow bus to take her kids back to school.

The overwhelm of this time is the inspiration of her own book: Homeschool Mama Self-Care, Nurturing the Nurturer. The book addresses the overwhelm you can sometimes feel as a homeschool mom as well as boundary issues and all the big emotions that come with it. She literally lived the experiences and shares help for those tough times. 

As her family got busy homeschooling, Teresa got the opportunity to connect with moms from all different walks of life, with very many different kinds of homeschooling approaches and with different challenges. She loves this! For her, that’s the joy of homeschool and the joy of life coaching – walking with people through the different joys and challenges of life. 

What It’s Like Homeschooling In Canada

Although Canada is not far away across the sea, there are differences (and similarities) for homeschoolers there.

To put into perspective, the United States has about 332 million people. Canada, on the other hand, has 39 million, which is a lot fewer people. The general sense of the United States is that there is a lot more homeschooling going on, especially in certain zones. 

In contrast, homeschoolers in Canada are about 0.7% of the school-aged population. However, are many more homeschoolers in the last few years than there ever has been.

If you think about the size of the population and the population distribution is that people are more spread out over wider distances in Canada. There are thirteen provinces and territories in Canada. The prairie provinces, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba have the highest numbers of homeschool students.

The way that you go about homeschool enrollment is a bit different from province to province (similar to the United States’ varying rules from state to state). 

Homeschooling In Canada

To homeschool in Canada, you submit your child’s name and pin number to tell a public school you are homeschooling. Many schools will try to dissuade you from homeschooling. 

But you can legally homeschool (by section 1213). You are able to take your kids home, create an academic program for them that seems fit to them, and you do not have to have anyone overseeing your program. It is a lot of freedom with very little supervision. 

You can also participate in what is called a distributed learning program, which could possibly turn into an online learning program very soon. British Columbia is specifically changing to that type of oversight, meaning you will be under the auspices of the entire education system. A distributed learning program means that the British Columbian government can dictate what you use or what kind of learning outcomes you need to meet. So for a family that really likes that structure and oversight, that would be a choice.

Some homeschoolers are very dependent on the province, thereby very dependent on the government. The province determines how liberal or how conservative you can be in your homeschool. It very much depends on the culture of the government. 

Unfortunately, the homeschooling laws now seem to be about to shift. Many people are currently disappointed at how things are tightening up in the British Columbia (although each province is different). 

When we are self-aware, we really can transform challenges into charms. -Teresa Wiedrick

About Capturing The Charmed Life

Pretty much right from the beginning, Teresa knew she needed her separate time away to keep balance in her homeschooling. Therefore, every Wednesday night for two hours she would go to Starbucks and write about homeschooling. Within four or five months, she started a blog called Capturing the Charmed Life.

She has considered changing the name of the website because she did not want to give this impression that homeschooling is one large wonderful utopia…Because some days it is, but then some days it’s not. 

At the end of the day, Teresa kept the website name because at our core, that is what we really want. We want that charmed life. One which is filled with freedoms and sometimes requires ourselves to become self-aware and to show up on purpose in our lives. And not just in our homeschool, but in our everyday lives. Because when we do that, we really can transform those challenges into charms. 

Teresa’s website, book, and podcast are not about capturing the perfect life. They are about challenges being transformed to charms and looking for those beautiful things in your daily life. They are about showing up on purpose in your homeschool and life. There are moms who are having real challenges yet are being how they want to be in their homeschools without losing themselves in that homeschool role.

There are also moms with significant or mild boundary issues, where they are dealing with big emotions or are overwhelmed. They do not actually know how to get out of that overwhelming state. Teresa helps these moms find clarity on what’s going on. And that does not just mean finding the right curriculum. It means she helps moms feel encouraged and calibrated to do that calling of homeschooling, to help enhance who they are in the homeschool realm. Not just as the homeschool parent and showing up in that role, but also who they are beyond that. 

Teresa elaborates this in her book, which happens to be the origin of all the reasons why she discovered she had to figure out how to approach homeschooling in a different way. She helps other moms know how to show up on purpose in their life rather than just going with the flow of the present day.

Connect With Teresa Wiedrick

You can find Teresa on her website called Capturing The Charmed Life.

Check out our other interviews with Teresa: How to Engage Homeschool High Schoolers

Also, Teresa is one of our special Cousins at 7SistersHomeschool. Our Cousins are special friends we trust to share ideas and resources with our homeschool community.

Thank you to Richie Soares with Homeschool and Humor for writing this blog post!

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