How to choose the best High School Homeschool Curriculum for your homeschool high school.
As we moved from one homeschooling year to another, I never dreamed I’d be looking for a high school curriculum. But those grade school years flew by and the time came for me to start looking for curriculum for high school. That was scary.
How could I handle teaching algebra and chemistry? What was required for graduation? Will my children ever be accepted into college?
Oh, the anxiety. I was not a straight A student in high school. I didn’t have a college education either. But I have managed to get my two eldest in college in the honors program and on the Dean’s List. Please understand I am not here to strut my feathers! But something worked!
How did I do it? Simple.
By first realizing high school is really no different than grade/middle school. Basically, you continue on from where you left off! Nothing magical about it.
And secondly, finding the right materials. The search was on for the perfect high school homeschool curriculum!
Well, there is none, they don't exist. Because no two children are the same! Over the course of a few years I changed our curriculum…somewhat. Not that the original one was bad. Laura and Emily are in the honors program in college, remember?
It’s just that our third daughter’s interests were somewhat different. She had covered some of the material already and was ready to move on. But hold on, I will share with you what worked.
You must be absolutely sure that your student has mastered the 3 R’s. That is so important. Without those basic skills, your child will have a difficult time in high school and beyond. Don’t leave them behind. If they cannot read efficiently or tackle some basic math problems, repeat it. They will struggle if you don’t. Believe me.
Our Simple High School Homeschool Curriculum
Mathematics for Everyday Living, Math-U-See, and MATC Mathematics Series for Algebra. - We had tried a number of math programs and found that these three worked well for us. A good friend used Saxon Homeschool Math and was very happy with it. Also, find out what other homeschoolers use by checking out the Home School Math Reviews.
Sonlight - We combined reading with writing using Sonlight for three of the four high school years. It comes with a book list and teacher's manual making it very easy to use. You can borrow the books from your local library if you’d like. And if your local library doesn’t have what you need, inter-library loan is a wonderful thing! Use your computer to order what you need and then pick them up at your library.
Gold Learning Language Arts Through Literature - The only year we did not use Sonlight was when we used this Gold Lit. book their Junior year. To be honest, both programs have so many excellent books, that we purchased them to add to our own library!
Apologia - The best homeschool science curriculum has got to be Dr. Wile’s. We used his Chemistry and Physics books with great success. Laura did me the honor of writing what Physics did for her in college.
Thinking Connections - Covers biology which we also used in the early high school years.
The Extra Stuff
You can easily enhance your learning experience with additional materials, or you can bog your child down! Tailor your high school homeschool curriculum for your child. Sit down and talk about what their interests are and go from there. You will discover their likes and dislikes making it easy for you to make a decision. So, make it easy on yourself!
We found the following to be helpful and fun. Hopefully you will, too!
English From the Roots Up - This is a great tool for learning the root meaning of our language. With the help of flash cards, the children quickly learned that many of our words come from the Greek or Latin root. It has helped them understand the meaning of many words, which prepared them for parts of the PSAT and ACT.
Wordly Wise Grades 9-12 - The children did these on Fridays. The books helped them to score well on their PSAT and ACT exams. They will definitely increase your child's vocabulary and test his reading comprehension.
Draw Today - Available through Sonlight. A video is available with this program that I recommend you get. It will show you how to see so that you can learn how to draw. It is amazing how well your child will be able to draw using charcoal. Just take a peek at what the girls drew as 4H Projects! You'll have to scroll down the page a bit.
You have been doing this all along, right? It will make putting a homeschool transcript together so much easier. Take a few minutes at the start of each school year to make a list of the high school homeschool curriculum you plan to use. Better yet, make a list by grade after a subject was completed. This will prove indispensable when it comes to preparing a high school transcript their senior year.
Remember when I said to make sure your child has a solid foundation in the 3 R’s? When they do, it also makes your job that much easier. Every high school homeschool curriculum we purchased had answer keys. We would not have survived without them! And since my children could already read and write well, they were pretty much on their own. May you have the pleasure of watching your teen expand their knowledge on their own, also!
For information on our other homeschool curriculums click below: