My friends will frequently ask, “What is your plan for next year? Do you really intend to homeschool high school?”
This question is often a disguise for their doubt or unfamiliarity. My answer is always, “Yes! We DO intend to continue along this journey. We discuss it a lot actually. Neither of my kids have any interest in going to school.”
I don’t generally elaborate unless they inquire further. I thought I would take some time now, however, to explain in more depth our decision to homeschool high school. At least that is the plan currently. It is always open for discussion.
Homeschool High School
As a substitute teacher in the same school district where my husband and I graduated and where I taught full time for six years, I love my local schools. I love the teachers with whom I work and who would be my children’s teachers if they were enrolled. I even use the district’s scope and sequence as a guideline to help me develop courses for my own kids.
In Oregon, we are fortunate to have the option to enroll part time. If my son wanted to take Jazz Band or Drama, he would simply need to fill out the registration form, talk with the instructor, and begin attending classes. The same is true if my daughter wanted to enroll in Art or Spanish.
Thus far, however, neither have expressed any interest in doing so. They have both explored their respective areas of interest via online tutorials and materials I have purchased on their behalf that they haven’t felt a classroom experience would benefit them. They have become quite adept at evaluating the syllabi. Homeschooling has provided many blessings – the least of which is instilling a love of learning.
Eighth Grade Test Run
My daughter is presently in eighth grade. We have looked upon this past year as a trial year – much the way we looked upon her Kinder year as a trial when we first began on our homeschool journey. Using an online homeschool planner provided me the tools to provide letter grades for the first time. I was able to stay focused on what lessons I expected to be completed.
We chose her coursework together and she even began earning a few high school credits. Our collaboration helped ensure she was personally invested and interested in the coursework, not just dragging through the material because it was a requirement.
Another exciting component we discovered in the midst of the year is that keeping a digital portfolio was a huge motivating factor for her. She loves it when here Mandarin teacher says, “You have done a remarkable job on this project. I recommend keeping this in your portfolio as a sample of your work.”
She has spent hours tweaking her digital portfolio to best represent her passions. I love how she has combined her interest in art with her love of nature. With her strong talents in math, science, and languages, I am confidant that she will be successful no matter what path she may choose to follow.
Resources & Help for Homeschooling High School
I am also confidant that she and I will find the resources we need to successfully homeschool through the high school years. There are so many resources available online today. I have already purchased some of the curriculum we will use – literature, biology, and personal finance.
The 2016 Omnibus is also full of resources for homeschooling the high school years. I’ve already downloaded the podcasts and am excited to pop in my ear buds on my run this afternoon. There is just so much wisdom and inspiration to glean from these seasoned homeschool moms. Here’s a few on my playlist:
- Advanced Placement or Dual Enrollment by Connie Albers
- College Admissions for the Homeschooler by Kendra Fletcher
- College Alternatives for Homeschool Graduates by T.K. Coleman
- College Prep – Is Writing on Track by Kim Kautzer
- Facing the Giant – Homeschooling Through High School by Terri Johnson
- Homeschool Transitions from Elementary to Middle to High School by Megan Zechman
- Homeschooling Your Teen the Charlotte Mason Way by Sheila Carroll
- Project-Based Learning in the Middle and High School Years by Cindy West
- Putting Together a Four Year Plan for High School by Dr. Marie-Claire Moreau
- Seven Secrets of High School Transcripts by Vicki Tillman
- Unschooling for High School by Joan Concilio
You can purchase all of these bundled with 79 additional courses, eBooks, and MP3s for just $25 (optional $9 DVD or $11 thumb drive add-on). It’s an amazing bundle valued at over $420! Take a look at the full catalog to get a better idea of all that is included.
Don’t delay! The sale runs only from April 29th through May 8th.
Others have already traversed the homeschool high school journey. I know I can reach out to my friends near and far for guidance along the way. My wonderful Finishing Strong co-hosts are always inspiring me with activities, lesson plans, and sharing their experience with curricula that may use in the near future.
“Once day at a time” has always been our motto. I will thereby continue to confer with my children individually. Together, we will make plans that are suited to their individual learning styles and personal interests. And I will enjoy each moment along the way.