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Last year, my daughter surprised us by making Dean's List her first quarter in college. She is now a sophomore, and time sure does fly! I am so glad that we homeschooled all the way. We credit her homeschooling for helping her get into college, and also helping her to make Dean's List. And it kept our family relationships strong, too.
Homeschooling created an environment that nurtured and prepared my gifted 2e daughter well for college. It gave us the flexibility to not only challenge her intellectually, but also explore and find ways to accommodate for her learning issues, related to ADHD.
If she had been in public or private school, she would have been faced with learning most everything through listening to the teacher, in front of the class. That would not have worked for our daughter. And if she was tested, with only verbal directions, she would have failed. In homeschooling, we used visual and tactile (hands-on) approaches, and she loved learning and excelled in it.
As a homeschooler, she was able to learn in the way that she liked best. She struggles sometimes, but she is also thriving. She got to explore her interests, and have her learning needs met, 1 on 1. That is just the tip of the iceberg...
Here's six advantages of homeschooling high school:
1. Homeschooling provided a strong foundation, and a soft place to fall, so crucial for kids, during the teen years.
Nothing like knowing that a cozy home is a waiting our teens, when they just finished a difficult day at their part time job, a new activity, or just finished up with an ACT test. She was well rested and able to focus on her test prep. Later, in college, she is still taking advantage of this, as she commutes to campus.
2. The 1 on 1 focus that we can provide our kids, can catch most any gaps that we may worry about.
As homeschoolers, we can review, go back, switch up our curricula, or even add another year of high school, if that would help our teen.
My daughter benefited from the freedom to switch curricula or approaches when needed, gearing our homeschooling to her strengths. She was a visual learner, and we could set up her learning to focus on that, as opposed to auditory learning, and that made all the difference for her.
She could work ahead on some subjects, take extra time for others. It allowed us to accommodate for her sensory issues easily, day to day.
Following their interests motivates our teens so much, even for doing the less interesting work that would be required for their chosen field of study.
Helping our kids discover their inner-most gifts and interests, not only helps them grow, it also creates strong motivation for them to learn, study those things that will help them in the future.
And for my daughter, irish dance helped her to overcome her auditory processing difficulties.
My daughter had to learn to follow complex verbal directions for the steps in irish dance. But since it was dance, and she was so comfortable with physical skills, she began to process verbal directions much better in her irish dance class.
She loved stepdancing, and continued to study it, all the way through high school, and this benefited her so much, in more than one way. She became a pricewinning level stepdancer, enjoyed participating in competitions, which helped build up her self esteem.
And, as her verbal processing skills improved in irish dance, they began to transfer to other areas as well. She began to ask for online courses that included video instruction, and did well with that, which previously was a major struggle.
By the time she got to college, she had developed these skills so well, that she was able to follow her college lectures, and even gain dean's list grades.
Learning Leadership Skills
And when my daughter wanted to try her hand at becoming a leader, we had time for her to participate in activities that would foster those skills.
Homeschooling gave her the time, and the resources, to pursue her interests in leadership. And when my daughter applied to her college honors leadership program, her high school activities helped her get accepted. TeenPack is another great resource for learning leadership skills.
4. Since we can do interest-led learning from the get-go, our kids tend to become motivated, self-starters.
Encouraging their interests builds self starters! That is just what many colleges are looking for, and that is just what college students need, to succeed.
My daughter shared that she noticed a majority of the kids on campus, seemed to lack this important trait, and did not necessarily have the drive to work hard and succeed, that we hope all kids would have.
Homeschoolers, on the other hand, learn how to organize their studies, plan their days,and prioritize what needs to be done first, etc....... all skills that are essential to success in college or a new vocation.
My teen even took our workboxing organizational style with her to college! Organizational skills learned at home were key to her success in her freshman classes at college.
5. We get to build in nature study and family time in the high school day.
Especially in the teen years, we want to be the kind of parents that our kids come to with any problems or concerns.
Homeschooling can help with that, too. Isn't that why many of us chose this path?
In our family, we built in mom-daughter mini road trips when we could fit it in. This was key to my daughter feeling comfortable to share her thoughts and concerns about her day. I share some photos from our recent mini road trips at the bottom of this post.
And this is still happening as a college student. When my daughter has a concern about her college classes,etc, she still feels comfortable to come to me or my husband. What a joy that is. We are a big part of her college experience, as she enjoys sharing it with us. And we get the joy of watching her grow and learn in college.
6. Learning how to Find and Use Resources
Here was the key to my daughter's success in dealing with her precalculus class, which she was struggling with in college.
During homeschool, she had often seen me search for resources, as we chose curricula, searched for a dance class, or surfed the net for help in algebra, from Khan Academy.
So her first thought, when faced with this difficult college math class, was not how could she find a way to drop it. It was, instead, a question to answer - What resource would help me?
It's an adventure, and I can't wait to see what happens next.
Are you homeschooling teens? What advantages would you add to this list? I love reading your comments.
Have you seen my book on college yet?
Get my best tips on college from a homeschool perspective! Make your high school planning easier!
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"This book guides the reader step by step through the maze of requirements for college AND gives the gift of comparing requirements for various types of colleges. I am beyond grateful for this book, and highly suggest it to every homeschool family regardless of the stage one is at. Being able to see a long-term educational plan, laid out so effectively, is a gift.
.......Theresa Harmon, homeschool mom, WA state
.......Theresa Harmon, homeschool mom, WA state
What's included in the book?
Check out the review on The Curriculum Choice.
Thanks for stopping by,
Betsy is mom to her 20 year old daughter whom she homeschooled from day one. She blogs at BJ's Homeschool, about the early years, high school & college and wrote a new e-book on college.. She offers free homeschool help and messages at BJ's Consulting.