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You keep hearing about the fact that you must help your teen create a four year plan if you are planning on homeschooling high school and you don’t know heads or tails between a college-bound course and a Carnegie credit.
As my oldest is closing in on completing his college degree and my youngest nears high school graduation, I’m asked lots of questions about college planning. I certainly don’t know it all (at all!) but I’ve learned a lot about public high school classes, transcripts, graduation, and scholarships (with my oldest), and the homeschool (with my youngest) similarities and differences.
Oh yeah, and I’m a freak of nature because I absolutely love learning, teaching, planning, and talking curriculum.
Just ask my amazing friends that
get weary of adore my constant chatter about high school curriculum and school stuff. You can also ask my son’s public school counselor (a saint!) that surely grew weary of adored my emails asking about his course choices and college plan as each new high school semester neared. Over and over again!
Let’s get to it, shall we?!
I listed six hacks for homeschooling high school on my education page to help you make the most of the high school years with your teen and go for a customized and rigorous college-prep high school plan. Prepping for college can seem daunting but I’m breaking it down so that you can see the simplicity.
Hang with me here and don’t get overwhelmed. Just take one step at a time.
Here’s the list again if you missed it before we go into depth with hack #5: Making a flexible, four-year plan with your high school student. Before getting started I want to stress to look over your state’s laws and requirements and then look over them again! Many states fall under an umbrella and you will have to proceed accordingly.
- Hack 1: Read this from HSLDA to find out your state’s requirements and do it all.
- Hack 2: Check out a potential college’s homeschool admission requirements.
- Hack 3: Pray, then talk to your kid about career exploration. Then listen.
- Hack 4: Figure out your child’s learning style. Not yours. How they learn best.
- Hack 5: Make a flexible, 4-year high school plan on paper
- Hack 6: Choose curriculum for mandatory subjects & special interests
The Four Year Plan Plan
It’s imperative that before you move to hack #5, you have completed the other steps that come before it. For instance, making this four-year plan will hinge on what you find out in hacks 1, 2, 3, and 4.
Once you’ve completed 1-4, take a look at page one of this sample four year plan. This is from the amazing Christian curriculum, My Father’s World. Keep in mind that these are only examples. You and your student will go through the hacks one by one to figure out how to choose the courses that will be perfect for them. Starting to get shortness of breath just looking at this full transcript?
One step at a time, honey. One step at a time.
Your state requirements will determine which subjects have be completed in high school. In addition to that, college admission requirements will let you know exactly which courses must be required in order to be admitted into that college. I’ll show you how you find out this information below.
As an example, if you live in the state of Georgia (not in Georgia? keep reading), you would go through the hacks list like this:
- For Georgia high school courses, you look to the standard of high school curriculum requirements from the University System of Georgia. Which sciences must be covered? Which electives are accepted?
- Then, research your student’s potential colleges. Perhaps look at the closest college (like College of Coastal Georgia), a smaller four-year college (like Georgia Southern University), and a larger four-year college (like the University of Georgia), and check out their homeschool college admissions requirements. I’ve included links to all of these college’s homeschool admissions information pages. Make sure you know what other paperwork that each college wants to be included (SAT scores, immunization, etc) so you can work on this along and along.
- Spend time online researching career exploration and discussing what their real interests are. Listen to what gifts they believe God has gifted them with.
- Credits during high school can be received by choosing virtual classrooms, textbook courses, online classes, co-op classes, and more. You do not have to decide on the type of curriculum in order to make a four-year plan.
If you do not live in Georgia, simply google these words: high school curriculum requirements __________ (just add your state where the empty underline symbol is). Then google colleges in your state and look for their homeschool admissions page.
Print out the last page of transcripts from My Father’s World and pencil in the tentative four-year plan. You can adjust this as you go along but take it from me, having a partially filled-in transcript before high school classes get started up drops the stress levels by leaps and bounds.
The very last step is to pray, pray, pray for direction.
We’ve prayed at the end of every school year for God to direct our paths for the following school year so that our student is exactly where God wants her to be. Pray, discuss, and decide as a family these important choices in the life of your teen.