adolescence / high school / homeschool planning / homeschooling

Having a high school homeschooler at home

What’s it like having a homeschooled high schooler in the home?

Everyone assumes I am teaching high school mathematics, physics, chemistry and biology. Having a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, I can handle biology. The rest is lost on me.

High school homeschool looks like college prep time in our home. (But that’s because our kiddos have been geared in that direction (we both went to university), but I wouldn’t expect that every teen would be. Our oldest is at Uni, our second daughter is certainly gearing that direction, and our two youngest? remains to be seen.)

How do our homeschool high schooler’s activities differ from her schooled peers or her younger siblings?

There’s not a lot of fluff. In fact, is there any? The only fluff in this teen’s life is waiting for a bus or travelling to and from town.

She started college classes a couple years earlier than her high school friends. She’s learning about college students, college profs, their expectations, how they engage, and how they’re different from one another. She’s learning to read a lot of college-level content quickly (and she actually does, unlike plenty of her college classmates). She’s learning to engage with other students in classroom discussions, to read in public, and make presentations. She’s learning to take prof-proctored tests and how to write college level essays and research papers. She’s learning how to use the college resource center for her writing projects. She’s learning confidence and accepting that she’s very capable at what she’s doing.

How her parent’s factor in to her education.

I get to be an essay development resource, reinforcing grammar and spelling, and helping her use outlining as a first step to writing development. I get to hone my essay writing skills right along with her…and even enjoy learning from her college profs from afar.

Her dad gets to teach her surgical stitching skills and introduces her to all things medicine, which she eats up like a third year medical student. They discuss all things current affairs and Canadian and American history. They play Stratego, Exploding Kittens, and games galore. They hit the tennis ball back and forth or play baseball soccer (a game they made up, cause that is what homeschoolers do: make up games.)

She still engages younger people.

Because she still hangs out with her eleven year old brother and fourteen year old sister. She shows her brother how to use the Rosetta Stone French program, she introduces him to high school level physics experiments, she quizzes him on Latin as they’re both studying it (but at different levels), and she plays trampoline games or builds snow forts with him outside. She joins us for jeopardy quizzing games and Professor Noggins games and Bananagrams on Friday mornings. She occasionally explains math concepts to her younger sister and they hang out like peers most of the time.

She still hangs out with me.

She cooks with me, but also cooks independently. Her pastry-making skills outstrip mine EVERY time, and she can cook as competently as me. (If you know her, you know her skills.) But when she’s not chatting in the evening with me or watching a weekend flick with me, she is working at her part-time job as restaurant hostess, attending ballet, jazz and contemporary dance classes, and hanging out with friends.

She does mature adult things.

Like working at part time jobs, practicing parallel parking, organizing her summer ballet school independent of me, and engaging her online and college teachers as an independent college student.

It is truly a pleasure having a homeschool high schooler.

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4 thoughts on “Having a high school homeschooler at home

  1. I love hearing this about older homeschooled children. Mine are all under 10 so it’s interesting for me to see with families like yours how this might play out in their teenage years. Sounds like a great vibe in your house.

    • Well not all days have a great vibe—that really is true. Teenagers in a pandemic. 😬 Pray for me 🙏🤣 But I know everyone has their challenges. I have incredibly capable interesting independent clever kids. (Said everyone I am sure 😆)

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