by Janice Campbell
Here is an academically-oriented plan for homeschooling teens through high school, with an emphasis on preparing for life after high school. Even if your student isn’t planning to go to college, it’s a good idea to have the basics in place, just in case his or her plans change.
- Six courses—one unit of each core subject (English, Mathematics, History, Science, Foreign Language, Arts/Physical Education/Electives)
- Read for pleasure as much as possible.
- Learn Greek and Latin roots for vocabulary.
- Establish solid study habits.
- Practice note-taking skills.
- Begin developing test-taking skills (a PSAT skill book can be useful).
- Think about personal aptitudes and read up on career options.
- Same class balance as freshman year.
- Continue or develop extracurricular activities that fit interests.
- Schedule PSAT for the fall of junior year.
- Begin researching college, trade school, or apprenticeship options.
- Request info.
- Use test-prep books to get ready for the SAT or ACT.
- Take CLEP tests whenever ready.
- Begin classes at a community college, if desired.
- Six classes*
- Take the PSAT in the fall (optional, but there are benefits, such as qualifying for the National Merit Scholarship).
- Focus on time-management and study skills.
- Narrow down college and/or career options.
- Spring: Take SAT/ACT and visit colleges or alternatives.
- May/June: Apply to two or more colleges, tech schools, or apprenticeship programs
- Six classes*
- Scholarship search/essays/applications.
- Take SAT Subject Exams, AP, CLEP exams.
- Retake SAT I or ACT if desired.
- Continue good study habits and extracurricular activities.
Good planning and recordkeeping will help you and your student reach your goals. Take time to plan, and then have monthly meetings with your student to determine whether you’re on track to succeed. If you work as a team, homeschooling through high school can be a tremendous blessing, and you’ll be ready for whatever the next step turns out to be!
*Hands-on learning, college classes, entrepreneurship, or apprenticeship activities can fulfill some of the class requirements, so don’t feel that you have to have six traditional, text-book-based classes. Mix and match as needed!