Many homeschool parents today are intimidated by the thought of homeschooling through high school, overwhelmed by the thought of college applications, and unsure of how to plan for the final steps of their child’s education.
Stages, Ages, and Grade Levels
Generally, parents tend to react in one of two ways to this challenge. Some are stressed out; they need minimal information, because if they are given too much information, they are immobilized and can’t do anything. On the complete opposite end of the spectrum are parents who need increasingly more information to overcome these challenges. These are the parents who want all of the information at one time, as soon as humanly possible. When they don’t get it, they become incredibly stressed and frustrated.
Both kinds of parents need information in order to succeed at homeschooling high school, but one kind needs a ton, and the other kind needs to know when to plug their ears and sing, “La la la, I can’t hear you!” No matter which kind of homeschool parent you are, knowing the five stages of homeschooling high school will put you on the path to success, and protect you from becoming overwhelmed.
The first stage of homeschooling high school starts in middle school, in grades 7 and 8 (sometimes grades 6, 7, and 8), usually from about ages twelve to thirteen. This is a time when you’re just training your students in good study habits, grounding them in the basics, and helping them to explore subjects that are starting to interest them.
The second stage of homeschooling high school is freshman year, which is grade 9, beginning at about age fourteen or fifteen. This is when keeping records and transcripts becomes important, because you’ll be submitting them to colleges when your student applies in their senior year.
The next stage in homeschooling high school is sophomore year, which is grade 10, about ages fifteen or sixteen. This is a time when you need to work on some specific things to prepare for college, such as making sure you’re covering the courses that most colleges require for admittance.
The next stage is junior year, eleventh grade, beginning at age sixteen or seventeen. This is the time to work on finding colleges your student is interested in, and for making some campus visits.
The final stage of homeschooling high school is senior year, grade 12, at about ages seventeen to eighteen. Senior year is when your student applies to college and gets ready to graduate.
Focus on the stage you are in, and what’s coming up, and avoid the temptation to get overwhelmed by the big picture! Step by step, you can successfully homeschool high school!
What stage are you in? Do you have a favorite stage? Please share!
Please note: This post was originally published in November 2012 and has been revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
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