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Thursday, May 19, 2011

The High School Milestone

This past week I have had a number of opportunities to chat with moms and dads who are considering the monumental task of teaching a high school student. Many are already homeschooling, but the thought of tackling subjects such as Chemistry or Economics or Calculus has them seriously doubting their ability to continue.

I reassured each one that teaching high school was a milestone just like the many others they had already hurdled with their children. Those milestones always look daunting from a distance, and even more challenging as the time grows closer ... but many have paved the way ahead of them and demonstrated that it can be done successfully! I remember vividly when our oldest was beginning her 8th grade year, and wondering how I (who was a miserable math student) would ever be able to teach high school math, let alone get her ready for college or any other post-high school destination. She graduated from college two weeks ago and we thoroughly enjoy the journey getting there.

So perhaps a few practical suggestions as you consider the possibility of homeschooling a high school student ...
  • My first and most often repeated suggestion is to purchase the book The Homeschooler's College Admissions Handbook by Cafi Cohen. This book was a lifesaver for me as it is full of great ideas, sample transcripts, tips and pointers on the college admissions process, and testimonies from other homeschoolers who have "been there, done that".
  • Check out this Homeschooling High School video. This is a workshop that Kelly (homeschool veteran, three high school/college grads) presented to a group of folks interested in pursuing the possibility of homeschooling through high school.
  • Keep in mind that a diploma is just a piece of paper with a signature on it. It is not a demonstration of your child's achievements and knowledge base. Many colleges look primarily at SAT and ACT scores, as well as a high school transcript when they consider your student for admission.
  • Sonlight's Career Planning Guide is a great tool to begin using as early as junior high school. Whether college or the work world is your child's destination, this product is a valuable resource.
  • Finally ... keep in mind that homeschooling through high school will open the door to many opportunities for your student. The flexibility of your homeschool schedule will allow for job shadowing, volunteering, a part-time job, and much more. The chance to make college visits outside of those well-planned College Campus weekends is great for seeing your child's potential school without all the marketing hype.
Homeschooling high school may not ultimately be the best choice for your student, but don't let lack of confidence stand in your way. There are many resources out there to help with difficult subjects, offer suggestions for high school plans, and encourage you along the way. And you'll be amazed at what wonderful adults your students turn into.

Still walking the path ...
~Judy
Sonlight Customer Champion

1 comments:

The Reader said...

As I am in the beginning weeks of my oldest son's 8th grade year, this couldn't be a more timely post for me. Thank you, Judy, for sharing these tips & tidbits! Just the encouraging boost I needed today!


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