BJ's Guide to Homeschooling High School - It is Not that Hard!

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Summary:  Planning high school at home including assigning high school credit to homeschooled teens, finding your homeschool high school curriculum, core study requirements, making your teen's homeschool official transcripts, and tips for college, college entrance requirements.  

Are you homeschooling high school, or thinking about it for next year? 

We continued homeschooling our 2e teen through the high school years, as she was doing so well with it during middle school.  We wanted her to continue homeschooling as it allowed her to follow her interests while preparing for college at the same time.

But I was a little overwhelmed with all the new details that I needed to deal with during high school, such as: 

High school credits
Core studies

That’s a lot and seemed overwhelming to me at first. 

So looking back, I pulled together my best resources for planning the high school years...specifically to deal with: 

- high school credits
- curriculum searches
- core study requirements for homeschoolers
- homeschool transcripts would have saved us a lot of headaches.  Let’s take these items one at a time, starting with high school credits...

1.  Assigning High School Credit

You probably saw my post on 3 Ways to High School Credits, but in case you haven't click on the link above.

It was not hard for us to assign high school credit.  There are 3 ways to do that, including:

1.  the Textbook method
2.  the Hours method
3.  the Mastery method
This post explains each of them, and all of your teen's work counts.  That includes:
-courses that you made yourself
-plus volunteer
-and paid work hours
-time spent reading, etc.  

We did a lot of different kinds of learning, and all of it counted.  Secondly, let's talk about where to find high school curriculum.....

2.  Curriculum Search Resources  

First, we started with our favorites from middle school as I wanted to keep whatever was working  best for my daughter.  

For example, we used SOS for math in middle school, and just continued with it for most of high school.  That was a no-brainer.  

When we needed to source a new subject or two, we turned to the curriculum search tools below.

a. CURRICULUM DIRECTORY at Let's Homeschool High School

This curriculum directory for high school is the most complete one I have ever seen!  And it includes TONS of links, too! 


This site is full of curriculum reviews, written by a team of authors (me, too) who have used the curriculum, at home with their families.  There are reviews of curriculum such as Tapestry of Grace, IEW for literature and writing, Oak Meadow, a number of Charlotte Mason options, and tons and tons of many more reviews, too.  This site leans towards christian based resources, except mine are secular.

Browse through all the resource reviews offered by the Gifted Homeschoolers Forum here.   Each of these reviews was written by a homeschooler who has used them with their kids.  

You'll be surprised at how extensive this curriculum review list is, and this is not just for gifted kids or teens.

But before we ordered anything, we spent time talking about my teen's special interests. These influenced our choices for core studies and also her high school electives.

High School Electives

What is your teen passionate about?  How do they spend their time, when they have free time?  What are their strengths?

My daughter wanted to learn about film making, and also had an interest in political science.

 So we did some video making that one of her homemade electives. She learned how to make her own videos, and entered them in various contests.  Then we did a course in Government for one of her social studies requirements.

The beauty of homeschooling high school is that you get to build and nurture your teen's interests.  And these interests helped us build her core studies as well.  But what exactly are high school core studies.....

3. Core Studies Requirements

Core studies are usually referring to the basic high school courses in math, English, social studies, science and foreign language that are required for public school graduation. 

But did you know that homeschoolers do NOT need to follow the public school gradation requirements?

What you choose for your family's core studies requirements is usually left up the the homeschool family.

Most states do not list what is required for a homeschool diploma, and as I said above, we do not have to follow the public school graduation requirements.  

So as a homeschooling parent, you can set up your teen's high school years based on what is best for your student

COLLEGE BOUND:  Many families do dual credit and then their teens then go directly into college.  Others, like us, want their college bound kids to do high school first, and then follow their prospective college's entrance requirements while doing high school at home. 

CAREER BOUND:  Other set up a high school program that focuses on future careers, such as the trades.  

SPECIAL NEEDS:  And families with special needs teens who are not academically inclined, can set up a plan that meets their needs for independence in the activities of daily living. 

Now that we finished discussing core requirements, let's talk transcripts...

4.  Making your teen's High School Transcripts

NOTE - Volunteering is a great way to get work-related experience.  
Colleges look for this on their applications.

Compiling your transcripts is simply recording your teen's studies and classes on a transcript form.  There are many templates available online and also in this article below: 

The Ultimate Guide to Homeschool Transcripts includes a list of everything that needs to be on the homeschool transcript.  Also my book below includes planning forms, sample transcripts, an editable transcript form and other helps for putting together your teen’s transcripts.

Kindle is on Amazon on SALE this week!
In print on Amazon  
Heidi from Starts at Eight says: 

"If you are planning on homeschooling high school then Betsy Sproger's guide is the one you want on your shelf.  

 It is an affordable and manageable quick reference to help you plan and navigate homeschooling high school with college in mind."

High School was my favorite time, of all of our homeschooling years.  Yes, they can be the rebellion years, too. 

But watching our daughter blossom and grow during the teen years.  That was priceless.  And my husband and I survived, and lived to tell the story, lol.  We are SO glad that we homeschooled!

Click here to get yours. 

Thanks for stopping by,


Betsy is mom to her now college senior, whom she homeschooled through high school.  She blogs at BJ's Homeschool, about the early yearshigh schoolcollegegifted/2e and wrote - Homeschooling High School with College in Mind.   She offers free homeschool help through messages at BJ's Consulting,  and has had her articles picked up by the Huffington Post.

Want to stay in touch?  

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