HURRICANE — A new Homeschool Running Club is welcoming all interested families to join them for a fun workout experience.
The club meets in Teays Valley at 9 a.m. on Wednesdays at Valley Park and in Charleston at 9:30 a.m. on Thursdays at Joplin Park. The participants — kids and parents of all ages and levels — are currently training for a Marshall University 5K race in November.
Krista Kirk, who founded the running club just a few weeks ago, is a homeschooling mother herself.
“My son said one day that he would like to run a race with his buddies,” said Kirk, and that is how the idea of starting a running club for homeschooling families in the area came to be. An experienced runner, she was glad to be able to share her passion with others, while helping the kids stay active.
Since homeschooled children aren’t able to join regular school teams, there is a need to create other ways for them to experience competitive team sports. Starting their own leagues and clubs is something that can help the homeschooling communities to tackle this challenge.
“Homeschool sports are growing, but we can’t join school teams so we have to do it on our own,” said Kirk, adding that she hopes to eventually have a team and be able to compete.
Mikki Larch is another homeschooling mom who has joined the running club with her children. She has been homeschooling her kids, who are 11 and 15, for five years now.
“We used to be a part of the YMCA’s homeschool PE program, but it is only for kids up to 14 years old, so eventually we aged out,” Larch said. “I am excited to have this great opportunity to get the kids outside and moving.”
She also mentioned that they attend the HEAT — Home Educated Archery Team — in Nitro.
Homeschooling in general is becoming more popular and advanced. For a while, many people questioned the “social” aspect of it. But the contemporary homeschool system has come a long way and nowadays offers plenty of activities
to help cover that. For one, the groups have formed that meet on weekly basis and provide a sound curriculum, structure and guidance to parents and children. Many zoos, museums and other establishments offer special times and rates for homeschooling groups. And a lot of parents emphasize the abundance of “field trips” and “hands-on experiences” as their favorite part of the process.
For more information about the Home-school Running Club, visit the club’s Face-book page at www.facebook.com/Home-school-Running-Club, or contact coach Krista Kirk at 304-545-9221.