Our homeschool today looks very different than it did when my daughter started kindergarten! Gone are the days of playing with playdough and math counters. Now our days are filled with Algebra and essays. Each year required a slightly different approach as my daughter matured. High school required the biggest change of all.
Deciding To Homeschool High School
When we initially started homeschooling, we did not know where our homeschool journey would take us. We focused on establishing a positive learning environment and creating a love for learning during elementary school. During those years, we met many homeschool families who had graduated teens from their homeschool. We were impressed by how the teens presented themselves and interacted with adults as well as the breadth and depth of their understanding of a wide array of subjects. We were sold. We decided we were in this for the long haul and planned to homeschool through high school.
Fast forward a few years…my oldest daughter started middle school and I realized I should start thinking about high school. I decided I would not be overwhelmed. I knew that each stage of child development has its highs and lows and high school would be no different. If I took it one step at a time, we would navigate our way through the high school years. I was confident that if other homeschool families successfully navigated high school, we could too.
Preparing To Homeschool High School
That didn’t mean I wasn’t apprehensive. I was. But I was not afraid. I refused to give in to fear. Instead, I did what I usually do when confronted with a new problem or situation—I researched.
I talked with other homeschool moms who had already walked this journey. Some had graduated their children fifteen years ago while others had a recent graduate. Hearing their different perspectives was helpful. The veterans provided perspective about what they were glad they did and what they wished they had done. The moms with new graduates provided advice for navigating dual enrollment options and college admissions. And I read a lot of books.
How My Role Changed In Our Homeschool
I quickly realized that my role in our homeschool needed to change. I would no longer be my daughter’s primary teacher. Instead, I needed to be her mentor and guide. I didn’t need to be her primary instructor for every subject. What a relief!
My new role as homeschool facilitator includes:
- Helping my daughter set academic and personal goals
- Finding resources to help my daughter achieve her goals
- Providing guidance and accountability as needed
The main difference in my role now as a facilitator compared to my previous role as a teacher is who has primary responsibility.
We began transferring responsibility for school lessons, behavior, time management, money management, and other life skills in elementary school. Using Responsibilities and Privileges Lists, my daughter learned many life skills and assumed responsibility for many aspects of her life. During her high school years, she will complete the transition from childhood to adulthood and assume full responsibility for herself.
My daughter isn’t the only one who faced changes with the transition into high school. I had to embrace my new role as her mentor instead of her teacher. Even though I knew I needed to transition to being her mentor, it is a skill I need to develop. That’s one of the aspects of the Homeschooling High School by Design eCourse that I appreciated so much. Multiple lessons provided reminders and practical suggestions of how to transfer responsibility to our teenagers as well as how to be their mentor. I especially appreciated the lessons that focused on how to do this with teens who are reluctant to assume responsibility!
Transitioning to high school hasn’t always been a smooth and easy process, but it has been rewarding. It is a privilege to watch my daughters grow and mature into a responsible and capable young ladies.