The first step in any journey is to have a plan in place! The same is true (especially true) when you are planning to homeschool through high school!
I have met and talked with so many parents who have felt completely inadequate and overwhelmed by the thought of high school. Some of it was the scary part of teaching those hard subjects like Chemistry, but most of it was just the unknown of WHAT SUBJECTS to teach!
Which subjects are required? Are there “required” subjects?
How do I know if my kid has enough “credits?”
What is a “credit?”
The list of questions can go on and on… so let’s start with the 4 year plan.
I’ve created a great resource called the Homeschooling Through High School Planning Kit that you can read more about. One of the documents in that kit is the 4 year plan….and you can get it for FREE!
When creating your 4 year plan first you will want to consider what your child’s future will be like. Do they plan to attend college? Technical or Trade school? Or start a job/career right out of high school? If you are preparing to attend college, you’ll want to really pay attention to what colleges are looking for.
Check out the College Board website for some great information about schools, SAT, and other important college related issues.
The next step would be to search for your state’s website about preparing for college. Here in Georgia we have a website called “Staying on Course” and it contains all the high school graduation requirements and expectations from the state colleges and universities. I can pull up their 4 year plan and use it as a guide for our plan.
The easiest way to find the website in your state is to search something like “Preparing for College in (enter state name)” and then look for the STATE or GOVERNMENT website. Or you can try searching for “Graduation Requirements in _____ (enter state)”
Basically most colleges and universities require the following:
English 4 credits
Math 4 credits
History 3 credits
Science 4 credits (at least 2 labs)
Foreign Languages 3 credits (some substitutions apply)
Plus fine arts, electives, PE/Health, etc…
Once you have an idea about how many courses are expected, you can tailor your plan using the 4 Year Plan worksheet. Put in the class names and the curriculum or resources you plan to use. You can always make adjustments as you go.
If your child is not planning to attend a college after high school you could possibly follow an easier plan. Again, you can check with your state to see what the expectations are in your state.
**Also check with your state homeschool regulations. Some states might have their own requirements for homeschoolers before a high school transcript can be issued.
Make sure to also include your child in these plans! Offer choices on things like languages, sciences, and electives so they can not only take some ownership of their learning, but also feel like they can enjoy the subject content!
Hopefully these simple first steps will give you a great start as you look ahead to the high school years!