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The best time to start planning for high school is during the junior high years. Consider what you've observed about your student's interests, talents, and learning style. Take the time to listen to his hopes and dreams, ask him what he's interested in doing in the future, and whenever possible, invite him to participate in exploring and making decisions as you plan his high school courses.
If you're beginning 9th grade in a month, don't panic! You can jump in right where you are. If you are brand new at homeschooling, take time to learn the basics. Home Education 101 is a mentoring resource for new homeschoolers.
Break the planning process into simple steps with this basic list, and check out the helpful links below as you get started.
- Sit down with your student and list her interests and talents.
- Check to see what, if any, requirements your state may have for course work, number of hours, or record keeping for homeschooling through high school.
- Ask whether your state organization already has high school planning materials available that are customized to your state law. If not, you can use one of the many commercial resources available. (HSLDA members can download a free high school transcript form that can easily be customized in a word processor to serve as a basic four-year plan).
- You might want to review a couple of books that give an overview of high school curriculum and course options. Plan out your child's four years of high school in general, and then map out the basic courses needed adding electives wherever appropriate.
- If you use a correspondence program, the basic plan may already be set up for you and you simply need to select electives.
- As your student's interests or your family's circumstances change over the next few years, you may find that your plan needs to be adjusted. Just remember that flexibility is one of homeschooling's greatest benefits!