Two words that are likely to strike fear in the heart of a homeschooling mama "High School." For some reason we (and I am speaking of myself too) consider ourselves perfectly capable of teaching during the younger years, but start to get worried somewhere around the 8th grade that we will not be capable of teaching our children. Maybe it's because we just don't remember that much from when we went to school (like Algebra that I hadn't done in 15 years!) Or maybe our child has a talent/interest in something we know nothing about. Maybe it's because we have several younger children also and are worried about being able to spend the proper amount of time teaching High School, or that we won't prepare them properly for the college they want to attend. I remember the first year I started homeschooling and I asked a dear friend, "What am I going to do when her knowledge surpasses mine?" Whatever the reason that we get nervous about this time period in our child's life, it is entirely possible to homeschool successfully though the High School years, and your children will be much better off for it.
What I was told when I asked the question about what to do when her knowledge surpasses mine is that by the time she reaches High School she will be able to teach herself. This I have found to be true for a lot of things. One of the goals of homeschooling is to teach your child to think for themselves and be able to work and learn independently, and by High School they should be able to do this much of the time. Also, with the Internet and multiple courses and classes being offered online, the sky is the limit for exposing your child to any number of classes that you only wished you could have taken in High School. There are also numerous online school opportunities such as Bob Jones or the Abeka Academy that you could enroll your child in and have everything taught and graded by one of their teachers. Also, use the people around you that may have a skill in an area your child would like to learn more about. Other people can be a great resource in the education of your children.
I thought I would share how I got started and some great resources I have found for those who are getting ready to homeschool High Schoolers. First I think, you have to get a general idea of what your child might want to do. Do they want to go to college, learn a trade, go into business for themselves? This may help you to decide which path to take. My daughter wants to go to college so that is the direction we are heading. Next, I looked up our state's requirements for graduation. Arkansas has the Education Alliance which is a great resource for Homeschoolers. On their website http://www.arkansashomeschool.org/ there is a great article about homeschooling High School, preparing for College and suggested High School Credit requirements depending on the path your child wishes to take. You can find that article by clicking here. Also for a donation of any amount, they will prepare your High School Transcripts for you. I sat down with Chelsea and drew up a basic 4 year plan so we had an idea of what classes she would be taking when and to make sure we had all of the "required" courses covered.
I have found some great resources for homeschooling High School. We had the opportunity to review this planner from TOS which I thought was a great resource for any High Schooler. Donna Young also has some great information and planners on her website which you can find by clicking here. Lee Binz has a ton of information and advice for parents homeschooling High School. Go to her website by clicking here.
Don't let the thought of High School intimidate you. Many people successfully homeschool their children through High School and they get to go out into the world as intelligent, confident, prepared adults. You can do it! Enjoy the time you have with your children because before you know it, they will be heading out the door to college or a career.