JAN
26
2012

Keepers at Home Group Startup

Hi everyone! I’ve had several questions from readers on how to set up a Keepers at Home group, so I wanted to share a little bit of that today. I’ll try to blog when we do activities as well so I can continue to share ideas with you!

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So first off, what is Keepers at Home?

Keepers clubs are a "hands-on" type program that you, as a parent, can use to teach your child those practical skills not normally learned as academic endeavors. Designed for use in the privacy of your own home, your own group or association, or a church fellowship, these programs for boys and girls incorporate Christian principles as an integral part of the learning process.

These programs are Bible-based and Christ-centered. When you use them you, the parents and leaders, are in control. You join no organizations. You, as parents or leaders, are free to decide exactly how you will use the program to help your children.

Visit Keepers at Home for more information, supplies, and ideas!

So how do you organize a club?

Well, any way you want to! Here’s how I did ours just to give you an idea.

1. Form your group: First off you’ll want to get a group of girls, it is helpful if they’re approximately the same age. I currently lead a group of 14 girls ranging from ages 5-10. I think  somewhere 10 girls is a good amount, I wouldn’t go over what I have now. If you get too many girls, it can be difficult to find supplies, host homes, and just get overwhelming.

2. Assign Tasks: In our group, we have 3 positions: Leader, Treasurer, and Mom’s Night coordinator.

  • Leader: I am leading our group this year. That means I send out emails, organize the events, and remind everyone of who has signed up for what before each meeting.
  • Treasurer: Our treasurer mom is in charge of ordering supplies, and keeping track of our finances. This year we decided to have a moms night out once per month just for us moms to get out and socialize. (You know, we’re all homeschoolers ;o)
  • Moms Night Out: Our Moms Night Out Coordinator is in charge of finding a fun place for us to meet, and sending out reminder emails to everyone each month. This is nothing major, maybe a night at Starbucks, or dinner out with the girls, basically something that takes little to no planning on our part. We wanted it to be a relaxing, low-stress night since we’re all busy! (This is totally optional, and just something fun we decided to do this year.)

3. Planning Meeting: Prior to the start of each year, all of the moms get together for a planning meeting. We each come prepared to teach 1-2 topics, as well as host at least once, and sign up for snacks. We plan out our whole year at the meeting. I put together an excel spreadsheet to keep track of our group, you can download our copy here:

We each take turns teaching a topic and hosting so that it’s not a huge burden on any one mom. With our group size, I have 3 moms scheduled to bring snacks each meeting.

Our group meets once per month from 6:30-8:30pm, but your group can do whatever works for them!

4. Order supplies: It is helpful if each girl orders their own Keepers at Home book, t-shirt, and sash when the year starts. Mom’s can also order t-shirts if they choose. Strawberry Shortcake and Tinker bell are both in my group, so we all share one book.  We also found pink 3 ring binders for our girls that the use to keep any information, directions, etc. from their meetings in.

 

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5. Plan Your Activities: To help our moms plan their activities, I created this Activity Planning form, feel free to use it, it helps track supplies, expenses and make sure all of the pin requirements are met:

Start Meeting! Now that you have your group formed and organized, it’s time for your group meetings!

I start off each meeting calling on a girl to open us up in prayer. Then I lead them in reading over the Purpose, Goal, Verse, and Prayer. It is located in the front of the book and all the girls and moms read it together out loud. Then we either sing the song included in the book, or this year we’re having the girls learn “Jesus Loves Me” in sign language.

Next I hand the meeting over to our teacher for the night who introduces our topic, does the teaching, then we move onto the actual activity.

Once our activity time is done, we have snacks and play time until the end of our time frame. Then I gather them back together and we do a freeform discussion of how their new found skill can be used to glorify the Lord, and bless others around them. Then I usually call on one of the girls to close us in prayer.

And that’s it! It’s really quite simple, and you can really customize the group however works for you.

Here are some of the meetings we’ve done so far:

Beading:

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Knitting on a loom:

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Canning:

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Underwater Basket Weaving:

 

Farm Animals: Goats

View goat milking

 

Embroidery: My mom was kind enough to sew a bunch of bags for the girls, and then they put on the button, embroidered their pocket, and then added it to the bag. The girls use their bags to keep all of their Keepers stuff in for the meetings.

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Have boys? They also have a club called Contenders for the Faith which is for boys and their fathers!

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Comments

  1. We do Keepers of the Faith Little Contenders at church – my boys LOVE it!

    • Courtney Luhmann says:

      Hi Nicole,
      What is Keepers of the Faith LIttle Contenders and how is it different from Keepers from the heart? I have 3 three boys and live in a small community but would like to start something in the neighborhood. I need to make sure also that it is very gender friendly.
      Thanks
      Courtney

    • What church do you attend? I would love to find a church that has Keepers/Contenders club in our area. Do you know if there is a way to search for one?

  2. Thank you so much for sharing this Erica, those pdf’s are helpful. We are just starting with our club and haven’t had a meeting yet. I like your craft ideas!

  3. LOVE Contenders! I’ve planned some things into our homeschooling day (no dad around here to work with the boys). A few of my married friends have been thinking/talking/praying about asking their hubbies to lead a group. This post will be helpful for them! Thanks!

  4. wow! this couldn’t have come at a better time! my husband and i are planning to start up a keepers of the faith group this summer! thanks for all the info!

  5. Thanks so much for sharing this! I was just looking into this the other night and talking with some ladies from our church about starting this up! Perfect timing!

  6. A friend and I went through this book with our girls. We did it once a month and had a tea party each time. We would pick a skill to do together at our meeting and one to work on at home. Thanks for sharing your group ideas!

  7. I’ve never heard of this before. Can you blog some more about why you chose this? It sounds similar to girl scouts?
    Thanks!

    • It’s similar except that its faith based. The book really focuses on being a Godly woman when the child grows up, and also being a homemaker/mother, ect. Our group is very mom oriented also, each mom teaches a lesson of their choice each semester, helping to keep one mom from being leader and feeling overwhelmed by planning all the meetings herself. This is definitely a benefit, since we as homeschoolers seem to be stretched pretty thin most of the time!!

  8. I was homeschooled (graduated in ’05) and remember doing Keepers of the Faith when I was much younger. This brought back great memories. I’m glad it’s still going strong!

  9. Is there something like this boys?

  10. I absolutely love being a part of something that will be so beneficial to our girls in the long run. It’s also introduced me to lots of things I didn’t know how to do before! Thanks for the post, it was exciting to see that you also are a Keeper at Home!!

  11. Would love to do Keepers of the Faith. Currently I’m a Girl Scout leader and am not happy with the direction the program is taking this year. They’ve come out with new handbooks but are filled with fluff instead of real skills that children should learn that will help them in life.

  12. Thanks for this info! I am joining together with some other homeschooling moms with daughters to form a Keepers at Home group, and we have a few questions… First, we have seven girls, ranging in age from 5-10. Will the young ones be ok with the Keepers at Home Handbook, or will they be better off using the Little Keepers Handbook? We were hoping to have all the girls do the same thing, but I don’t want it to be over the little ones’ heads. And second question… do you recommend getting the companion notebook, or is that not necessary? Thanks again for your help!

    • We don’t use the companion notebook, but you absolutely can, it’s like worksheets that go with the studies.

      For the younger girls like ages 5, I just lighten their requirements to receive a pin. So like Strawberry Shortcake has to do her projects more on her own or at a different level of skill while Tinker Bell usually gets some help from me, and her stuff is obviously not quite as skillfully done due to her age.

      You can adapt to whatever works for your ages I think even in the main book. I haven’t used the little girls book, we’ve just always modified activities for our younger girls when needed.

  13. I would love to do something like this with my boys. I dont have a husband that is strong enough in his faith yet to lead a group like this however. Can it be done by a mom do you know or would you recommend me trying to find another strong Christain male figure?

  14. This looks awesome. I have never heard of it. My girls did American Heritage girls last year but it was every week and became a lot on our schedule. I looked at the website but it looked a bit overwhelming. I would like to start small with my girls and a few friends. How would you suggest I start? What is most important as far as what needs to be ordered. Thanks so much!!!
    Lindsay

    • We are just starting our Keepers Club for girls and there are some skills that are a bit more involved. I looked through the handbook for things that would be less intimidating. I made a list of them under each category and this was helpful. So don’t let it scare you off. I believe that we should be true to the goals and requirements of mastering the skill and earning the patch, while individualizing to our group’s needs and situations. Our group is focused towards girls who otherwise cannot participate in other Christian groups…..such as girls with extreme food allergies etc. We have gluten issues and most groups while they mean well, may not understand that some people cannot even be in the same room while someone is baking regular bread. We have a mom who would be sick for a week if she was even in the room. So, my goal is to have a group of girls who can grow up together, sharing the same Christian values, while adapting to the needs of the girls so everyone is included. In my limited experience I think you need the handbook at a minimum (for each girl eventually, but at least one for the leader to review), otherwise you will have a more difficult time deciding on the skill to focus on for that meeting. Just my 2 cents.

  15. Where does the money come from to order the supplies? Do the girls pay dues or do you have fundraisers? Or do the moms pay as they go per project?

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