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What did you do to prepare to teach high school?


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I'm curious how other home educators went about preparing for the high school years. I'd love to know how everyone approached it. Did you read certain books? Establish certain routines in your household? That sort of thing. Also: Looking back, are there things you wish you'd done? Thanks!

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So much will depend on your specific students -- their needs, their working levels (gifted / accelerated; behind / struggling / remedial; average), their interest in academics (high, low, "just get 'er done), and what YOUR goals are that you want to see accomplished before the rapidly closing window of opportunity that is the 4 years of high school goes completely shut. 😉 

There are some GREAT past threads on this topic all linked on PAGE 1 of the big pinned thread "High School Motherlode #1" at the top of the High School Board. 😄 

Edited by Lori D.
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I found out what my state requirements were for graduation for homeschoolers.

I found out what the admission requirements were for most colleges (like 3 years of math, 4 years of English, 2-3 years of language etc).

I created a chart and plugged in those requirements (graduation and admission) so I’d get a sense of what I’d need to teach.

I found out how many study hours a 1 credit class would need, or a .5 credit class.  (1 credit = 2 semesters of high school) I used this article. Scroll to near the bottom for the big 1. 2. and 3 in green and click on those. I chose #2 to count hours.  https://hslda.org/post/3-ways-to-determine-my-teens-high-school-course-credit

That gave me a sense of how long each class ought to roughly take. Not everyone agrees with me to count the hours, but I thought it was very useful to get a sense of how long to spend on each class.

Basically, in order to get in all the requirements, a student studies 6 subjects a semester and generally each subject takes an hour a day.  With that said, I find that math and science take more like 1.5 hours a day in order to really understand the material for my students.

 

Otherwise, I searched here on the pinned threads on the high school board to get ideas for curriculum to use or started threads with specific questions. Unfortunately, this site isn’t as active in answering specific questions about curriculum anymore, so you’ll have to rely more on past threads. You can search for older threads that might answer your specific question.

Don’t forget to plan on at least one semester of prep for the SAT or ACT test, probably in the first semester of 11th grade. My son studied for the SAT for 45 minutes a day for 9 months, and I had to have that accounted for in his schedule.

 

I didn’t read any books about teaching high schoolers or anything like that. I just found curric that I thought was good for my students.

 

If I could do things differently, my answer is a little specific. I have a son who is terrible at essay writing. I was so worried about it, that all the writing he did in English class was focused on essays so that he’d be ready for college. I almost never had him write creative writing because he was pretty good at creative writing and he clearly wasn’t going to write for a living, so it was a “waste of time.”  If I could do it over, I’d have let him creative write because most likely, he’d have picked up techniques in his creative writing that could have translated to his essay writing. 

 

ETA: edited for horrible grammar/clarification. Was trying to type while helping a son with school and it was a tangled mess. I think I’ve fixed all the mistakes I made. 

Edited by Garga
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Also, my oldest is sooooo slow at his work. I finally got him tested in 11th grade, but I wish I’d had him tested much earlier (he has very slow processing speed.) 

So, if there are any issues at all that you’re suspicious about, get testing done early so you can grapple with the issue right away instead of spinning wheels.

Also, he slowly slipped into anxiety and depression. I thought it was just “being a teenager” for a long time, but it was something more. If any mental health type of issues crop up, don’t just write them off. Get it looked into right away. 

Edited by Garga
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8 minutes ago, Garga said:

I found out what my state requirements were for graduation for homeschoolers.

I found out what the admission requirements were for most colleges (like 3 years of math, 4 years of English, 2-3 years of language etc).

I created a chart and plugged in those requirements (graduation and admission) so I’d get a sense of what I’d need to teach.

I found out how many study hours a 1 credit class would need, or a .5 credit class.  (1 credit = 2 semesters of high school) I used this article. Scroll to near the bottom for the big 1. 2. and 3 in green and click on those. I chose #2 to count hours.  https://hslda.org/post/3-ways-to-determine-my-teens-high-school-course-credit

That gave me a sense of how long each class ought to roughly take. Not everyone agrees with me to count the hours, but I thought it was very useful to get a sense of how long to spend on each class.

Basically, in order to get in all the requirements a student studies 6 subjects a semester and generally each class takes an hour a day.  I find that math and science take more like 1.5 hours a day in order to really understand the material for my students.

 

Otherwise, I searched here on the pinned threads on the high school board to get ideas for curriculum to use or started threads with specific questions. Unfortunately, this site isn’t as active in answering specific questions about curriculum anymore, so you’ll have to rely more on past threads. You can search for older threads that might answer your specific question.

Don’t forget to plan on at least one semester of prep for the SAT or ACT test. My son studied for that test for 45 minutes a day for 9 months, so I had to have that accounted for in his schedule.

 

I didn’t read any books about teaching high schoolers or anything like that. I just found curric that I thought was good for my students.

 

If I could do things differently, my answer is a little specific. II have a son who is terrible at essay writing. I was so worried about it, that all the writing he did in English class was focused on essays so that he’d be ready for college. I almost never had him write creative writing because he was good enough at creative writing and he clearly wasn’t going to write for a living, so it was a “waste of time.”  If I could do it over, I’d have let him creative write because most likely, he’d have picked up techniques in his creative writing that could have translated to his essay writing.  

This is such a helpful response, thank you so much!

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16 minutes ago, Lori D. said:

So much will depend on your specific students -- their needs, their working levels (gifted/accelerated; behind/struggling/remedial; average), their interest in academics (high, low, "just get 'er done), and what YOUR goals are that you want to see accomplished before the rapidly closing window of opportunity that is the 4 years of high school goes completely shut. 😉 

There are some GREAT past threads on this topic all linked on PAGE 1 of the big pinned thread "High School Motherlode #1" at the top of the High School Board. 😄 

Thank you! Yes, I am slowly working my way through the all the Motherlode posts! They are SO helpful but also kind of overwhelming (just because there's so much info there!). But I love knowing they're there as I go along!

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I reread the Rhetoric Stage section of The Well-Trained Mind, and also read Rethinking School. I agree with the other posters that a lot of it is kid-specific, and it might not be worth it to do much detail work of planning more than 9th grade. I knew that I wanted my kids to have the option of college, so I followed TWTM's general outline of what kind of credits colleges are expecting to see. Then I actually had a couple sitdowns with the kid involved to find out where their head was at--was there something they wanted to study, or did they want to leave it all up to me? Kid 1 didn't/doesn't care and is fine with leaving it in my hands. Kid 2 has some requests/preferences.

Then I started thinking about what to outsource. I'm relatively hands-on/managerial, so I decided that I really only wanted to outsource science and foreign language. Eventually I added writing classes for both of them, just to get some outside criticism of their writing.

Wish I'd done differently? Well, I wish I'd come up with my work-checking system years earlier so I would have caught that Kid 1 wasn't doing any of his work. He just kept claiming to have lost it or "accidentally thrown it out," and I was maxed out from working a full-time job along with teaching them and didn't have the energy. Now we are catching up in Math, and I figured out how to keep track of his work better.

I also wish we didn't rely on my income so homeschooling could be my total focus. However, it has been way better since rearranging my schedule so that I don't ever see clients before noontime. At least I have the 4 hours in the AM to set them of track for the day.

I re-do the sitdown with each kid (and DH) each grading period and talk about what's working, what isn't, where they could improve, and what they hope to accomplish in the next 3-4 months. (Not just academically, but overall.) Expect their goals and priorities to change vastly. Kid 2 wanted to be a nurse practitioner when she grew up. Then she took a chemistry class. Now she wants to go to library school 😄 

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Oh! And I was terrified over creating the transcript and the course descriptions. I would get a terrible, scared, fluttery feeling in my heart whenever I thought about writing them.

If you’re willing to give me your email address, I can email you the course descriptions I wrote so that you can see an example of how to do them, along with information of how to write them. 

I would 100% say write those blasted course descriptions as you go along! Don’t be like me and wait until the summer between 11th and 12th grade and then have to write them based on your old notes. Urgh. 

If you write this stuff as you go, then you won’t be in terror every time you think about it. The best way to overcome those scared, fluttering feelings is to grab the bull by the horns and tackle it as soon as you can. Once you get those course descriptions and transcripts started, you won’t be scared of them anymore.  I don’t have a lick of fear about them anymore because they’re done. But when I put them off for 3 years, I’d feel the fear every time I thought of them. For three years!

(That’s a good life lesson for anything you’re scared about.)

Edited by Garga
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7 minutes ago, Garga said:

Oh! And I was terrified over creating the transcript and the course descriptions. I would get a terrible, scared, fluttery feeling in my heart whenever I thought about writing them.

If you’re willing to give me your email address, I can email you the course descriptions I wrote so that you can see an example of how to do them, along with information of how to write them. 

I would 100% say write those blasted course descriptions as you go along! Don’t be like me and wait until the summer between 11th and 12th grade and then have to write them based on your old notes. Urgh. 

If you write this stuff as you go, then you won’t be in terror every time you think about it. The best way to overcome those scared, fluttering feelings is to grab the bull by the horns and tackle it as soon as you can. Once you get those course descriptions and transcripts started, you won’t be scared of them anymore.  I don’t have a lick of fear about them anymore because they’re done. But when I put them off for 3 years, I’d feel the fear every time I thought of them. For three years!

(That’s a good life lesson for anything you’re scared about.)

I sent you a message. Thank you so much! 🙂

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I pretty much did exactly as @Garga did 🙂 I found it so helpful to start with the end in mind. I didn't know exactly what college my kids would go to, although I had a pretty good guess because we live very close to a great state U. So I started with that college's website about what they looked for in a prospective student (not just in hs'ed kids, but in applicants in general) and I worked backwards so that my kids would have those things by the end of 4 years.

I evaluated my own strengths and weaknesses and made curriculum decisions with those in mind. I knew I couldn't teach science to a college prep level, so I made the decision to use Dr. Wile's books and never deviated from that plan because while it may not be the most exciting program out there, it is solid and it prepares them well and it is very hands off for me. Knowing that was taken care of freed up my mental space to concentrate on what I am good at.

And I prayed a lot.

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I did a lot of what the others detailed above. That was when my oldest was in grade K-8. Planned high school courses. Read. Researched. The whole shebang.

Then my oldest started 9th grade & I feel like my whole plan went out the window & I spent the next three years on the longest, steepest downward hill of a roller coaster ride, holding on for dear life & screaming mostly in terror & partly in exhilaration.

Then senior year was like one of those roller coasters that goes in a loop or two or three. It takes you upside down for a bit, making you a bit nauseous but you are determined not to completely lose your nerve or the contents of your stomach because you know the ride is almost over at this point.

And then the ride coasts to a stop and you are left thinking, "Boy, that sure went fast."

"I don't ever want to do that again."

And as you step off and look back at all the twists & ups & downs (that you now remember since it really wasn't all one downward hill), you think, "That was terrifying. But fun."

Sooooo. I guess my point is that I'm glad I did my research but be prepared for nothing to end up like you plan.

Senior year for my first two ended up completely different than I expected/ planned for.

I am on the loopy, final part of the roller coaster for #2 & just started the ride for #3 (of 5). I haven't done any long-term planning for #3 or started writing course descriptions for her yet. I'm going to need a bit to recover from #2, I think.

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Well I'm a high school teacher by background so ... uh I did that? 

I did nothing to prepare because I had no plans to homeschool high school... then things went horribly wrong for my middle son at the high school and we yanked him out of there less than halfway through his first semester of Freshman year. I called a good friend who was homeschooling high schoolers and asked her 500 stupid questions.

She helped me a ton and I followed basically NONE of her advice in the long run (she was a structured, regimented, always homeschooler ... I was a crisis schooler with a quite reluctant student and no planned budget ... she was a strict early morning schooler, sleeping in was my kid's first buy in lol) 

I started lurking here. I started him with Government (the subject I had the most experience teaching), Saxon Algebra (on loan from my friend), biology (friend loaned us Apologia - terrible fit, someone here recommended something we could start with immediately), cobbled together English,  Ditched French for Russian, and got him into private clarinet lessons after three plus years in middle school band... and started some coop classes in the Spring.

I did reading and things later. 

By the Spring we decided to also pull out our younger son and do things differently..

We muddled our way through, got involved with a great DE program that was a good fit for him. It worked out. 

Edited by theelfqueen
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Like the others, I researched colleges in my area first and made a list of admission requirements for any I thought my DD might attend (side note- she didn't pick any of them, but still got into all she applied to).  Then I made a spreadsheet for all 4 years and started filling it in- in pencil!  I believe all kids should have the option to go to college, so I don't let them fall behind. That doesn't mean they have to go, it means that at 14 or 16 I'm not going to make the choice that they aren't going.  

I also checked into the DE options available near me (and there are lots online, too), since my kid was accelerated/gifted and I knew I would be beyond my math ability soon. We do not have reliable, unlimited internet, so I didn't look at online classes but I will for future kids once we have unlimited!  

I have had some programs flop-  pick a different text or approach and keep going,  just like I did in grade school.  I have had a few classes I planned all out- kid wasn't feeling it and we dropped it after 4-6 weeks.  

A lot depends on the kid and their learning style and goals-  my oldest is the super-academic kid- she would pick her classes, textbooks, tons of DE classes, high test scores.  Kid 2 is about polar opposite and prefers the easiest way to complete her school I will allow.  She is done with book work by noon so she can do her hobbies (which I'm turning into elective credits- it is educational).  She will grudgingly take a few standardized tests, but she isn't happy about it and any test prep will have to be incorporated into her regular school work- she just wants good enough to get in, maybe a lower tier scholarship.   

As another poster mentioned, if you are wondering about learning disabilities or issues, get tested again! I think some kids can compensate for a long time, but in high school those little issues can suddenly get too big to compensate for.  

Edited by BusyMom5
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I established a chart of what I wanted to accomplish in 4 years.  I knew both dc would go on to additional learning of some type post high school so I wanted to give them an academic/college bound track.  I looked at the state requirements to make sure those boxes were checked.  

Basically we did: 

4 English: grammar review, writing

4 social studies: geography, world history, us history, gov/econ

4 math: algebra 1, algebra 2, geometry, adv math (to include trig/analytical geometry/pre-calculus)

4 science: physical (which was actually done in 8th grade), biology, chemistry, physics, plus one other of dc's choosing (one did equine science, one did genetics)

3 literature (which was wrapped into english): us, british, world

2 foreign language (youngest dc wanted to do 4 and oldest did 2 spanish and 1 ASL)

1 fine arts

1 health

electives: drivers ed, violin, piano, voice/choir, calligraphy, logic, robotics, home ec, business math/personal finances, meteorology, astronomy,  latin, greek, MS Office

Once I got the skeleton listed above in place, dc and I looked at curriculum and chose programs for each year.  Some things fell into place on their own.  For example some of the sciences had math prerequisites so that order established itself.  I wanted literature and history to complement each other so that was easy to place too.  Many of the electives were based on what was offered at local co-ops or were based on prerequisites (had to be 15 to start drivers ed for example).  

Youngest dd said one of the best things we did to prepare for high school was learning how to learn.   Dc had to take notes now.  They had to organize their time differently.  They had to study and prepare for tests differently.  We did standardized testing (Iowa) but now the SAT/ACT was coming.  They had to learn how to research for papers.  Deadlines became more important.  Colleges have deadlines for papers and work to be turned in.  

One thing I wish I had done more was citations.  College requires MLA or APA.  We did a LOT of writing in high school, but I didn't do a lot of citations.  

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I only have a 9th grader this year so I'm not too far in, but I downloaded an excel transcript template and am using it to keep track of everything.  I entered semester 1 grades in it for each subject and have a separate tab for course descriptions.  I also created another tab with the 4 year plan on it.  We are a mix of online live or asynchronous classes and parent created so that is helping keep my workload down.  I do manage the schedule daily by having a quick discussion each morning on what needs to be accomplished.  From a planning perspective, I would recommend creating the 4 year plan as others have said and researching what is out there for online classes and the cost in case you find that you need to outsource a subject.  I also researched college requirements when she was in middle school, so I knew ahead of time what was needed for the 4 year plan.  One school wants a bibliography of literature for homeschool students applying so I added that to the transcript tabs.  My child doesn't have a major picked out yet so the standard 4 credits of each (math, science, English, language, social sciences) is making the planning easy.  I also have a super slow kid, so I have to make sure I don't overload.  Having a backup plan if the original is too much is helpful as it keeps my worrying down.

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Mostly I read on this forum. As a first generation immigrant, I was unfamiliar with the school system and the college admissions system and had never heard of the ACT.
Familiarized myself with admission requirements of selective colleges and made a plan for 4 years each of math, science, history, English, and foreign language to cover all bases, plus left time for electives.
Kept good records. I second the advice to write your course descriptions as you go along. I wrote up a long description for each semester, with the curriculum used and topics covered - for our own records. That made putting together the application super easy.
No "wish I had done", no regrets about stuff I did.

Edited by regentrude
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20 hours ago, Garga said:

And I was terrified over creating the transcript and the course descriptions. I would get a terrible, scared, fluttery feeling in my heart whenever I thought about writing them.

I am at this point with this.   I still haven't started creating the needed transcript and course descriptions because I am truly paralyzed with fear.

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2 minutes ago, Ditto said:

I am at this point with this.   I still haven't started creating the needed transcript and course descriptions because I am truly paralyzed with fear.

PM your email address and I’ll send you my course descriptions and a mini-lesson on how to write them.  

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3 minutes ago, Ditto said:

I am at this point with this.   I still haven't started creating the needed transcript and course descriptions because I am truly paralyzed with fear.

The transcript is trickier. There are a bunch of ways to do it. I can send you a copy of mine, but you probably should also search here for any threads you can find about transcripts. And I never did any weighting, so I can’t help with that. (Maybe there’s a pinned thread about transcripts in the high school board.)

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1 minute ago, Garga said:

The transcript is trickier. There are a bunch of ways to do it. I can send you a copy of mine, but you probably should also search here for any threads you can find about transcripts. And I never did any weighting, so I can’t help with that. (Maybe there’s a pinned thread about transcripts in the high school board.)

I am not weighting the classes either.   I will definitely start researching the transcripts here, as well as general research.   All of a sudden it dawned on me that we don't have many homeschool years left (2) and I better get on this soon!

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3 minutes ago, Ditto said:

I am not weighting the classes either.   I will definitely start researching the transcripts here, as well as general research.   All of a sudden it dawned on me that we don't have many homeschool years left (2) and I better get on this soon!

It took me a few hours to write up the course descriptions, but once I got going it wasn’t too hard. It just took a couple of Saturday afternoons to really focus on getting it done. 

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20 hours ago, Garga said:

Also, my oldest is sooooo slow at his work. I finally got him tested in 11th grade, but I wish I’d had him tested much earlier (he has very slow processing speed.) 

So, if there are any issues at all that you’re suspicious about, get testing done early so you can grapple with the issue right away instead of spinning wheels.

Also, he slowly slipped into anxiety and depression. I thought it was just “being a teenager” for a long time, but it was something more. If any mental health type of issues crop up, don’t just write them off. Get it looked into right away. 

Did he have any other factors like ADD-inattentive? I have a pokey one but I assume it is the ADD--inattentive. Thank you.

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I don't have much to add but just thankful for this forum and all the information that was here when I got started.  

It was mentioned upthread to get started on your transcript and course descriptions early, and that is also the advice in The Well Trained Mind. I started a binder where I put copies of the course descriptions (if it was outsourced), a copy of the table of contents of the book used (just in case) and a copy of my grade report (or the providers'), and our schedule of readings/work all together in a folder. I hope that if I have questions later about my course descriptions, or if I need to adjust them, that this will help jog my memory.  

Prior to doing high school courses, I did not give grades or track grades, so that was new for me.  A friend of mine sent me her spreadsheet and I use that.  

Other than that, I am learning that I need to pray a lot, and also that I need to hold my plans loosely.  This is my eldest's freshman year. I can't even tell you how many times the plan I had for him changed over the last two years.  I am sure with my youngest the mantra of each year will be "teach the kid in front of you."  

Best wishes to you!!

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4 hours ago, cintinative said:

Did he have any other factors like ADD-inattentive? I have a pokey one but I assume it is the ADD--inattentive. Thank you.

He has ADD, but not sure what type. It was never dx’d by a psych, but only by a pediatrician. 

In his 11th grade year, he was just so stinkin’ slow and I realized that that could be a problem when he hit college and had to take timed tests. So, the school evaluated him (even though he was a homeschooler) and found the slow processing speed. They didn’t test him for ADD, but did find the processing speed issue. They wrote up a 504 for him that carried over into his college and now the college has their own form indicating that he is allowed extra time on timed activities.

4 hours ago, cintinative said:

I don't have much to add but just thankful for this forum and all the information that was here when I got started.  

It was mentioned upthread to get started on your transcript and course descriptions early, and that is also the advice in The Well Trained Mind. I started a binder where I put copies of the course descriptions (if it was outsourced), a copy of the table of contents of the book used (just in case) and a copy of my grade report (or the providers'), and our schedule of readings/work all together in a folder. I hope that if I have questions later about my course descriptions, or if I need to adjust them, that this will help jog my memory.  

Prior to doing high school courses, I did not give grades or track grades, so that was new for me.  A friend of mine sent me her spreadsheet and I use that.  

Other than that, I am learning that I need to pray a lot, and also that I need to hold my plans loosely.  This is my eldest's freshman year. I can't even tell you how many times the plan I had for him changed over the last two years.  I am sure with my youngest the mantra of each year will be "teach the kid in front of you."  

Best wishes to you!!

Yes, yes, yes to the bolded!!!  My son took Calc I in high school and planned on taking it again in his first year of college as a way to ease himself into college. 

The college wanted him to take a placement test for the Calc I class, even though he had gotten straight As in Calc I. Well, with his slow processing speed and his ADD and his anxiety, taking placement tests are a huge source of misery for him. And honestly, it felt like such a stupid hoop to jump through.  It’s not like he was in Cacl I and wanted to take Calc II and needed to place. He was in Calc I (getting an A) and wanted to take Calc I again. 

I wrote to them and pressed them on the issue, and they said, ‘Ok ok. If you can prove what he learned in pre-calc and that it covered X, Y, and Z, then we’ll accept him into Calc I.” 

I had a copy of the table of contents of his pre-Calc book, thank goodness. I just send them the document and saved my son hours upon hours of misery prepping for a placement test.

He finished up Calc I at the college last semester and, of course, got an A in it, especially since it was his 2nd time around.

 

Edited by Garga
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4 hours ago, cintinative said:

Did he have any other factors like ADD-inattentive? I have a pokey one but I assume it is the ADD--inattentive. Thank you.

I meant to say that I’m not sure if the slow processing speed is automatically part of ADD-inattentive or not, so I’m not sure if it’s worth it for you to have your pokey one looked at or not.  

Maybe if it would open him/her to other treatments, it would be worth investigating? Or maybe it would help him/her at the college level to have extra time on timed tests, if you had results in hand about the slow processing speed. 

All I know is that I was extremely relieved that the school gave him a 504 stating that he should have extra time. I used that to also request extra time for the SAT and he was granted time and a half on the SAT. (I also had to create an extremely detailed document for CollegeBoard (the makers of the SAT)  proving he needed extra time on tests.)

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Teaching took a back seat to high school counselor for awhile,honestly.  Not that I stopped teaching.  I did most of high school hands on and with co-ops with my older, even more so with my next.  But I knew how to put together my curriculum, record it, work with my kiddos.  I did of course re read The Well Trained Mind and added the Well Educated Mind and at least the first few chapters of every book my kids would be using like the History of the Ancient World and so forth to understand how they worked and to set up my expectations. 

But like others, I needed to learn how to make sure my kids got everything they needed to get accepted in my state for college.  I had to learn how to get them registered for ACTs, PSATs, driver's ed, and signed up for our state's instate tuition program. I read other books aimed at homeschooling high schoolers into college like Debra Bell's and any others I came across.   They all assured me I could do it.  We did use the Well Planned Day's Four Year High School Planner which has a list for each semester of things to do as well outside of just classwork which helped keep me and my dd on track with to dos.  I put deadline dates on my calendar to keep in mind because there was just so much new information constantly.  

But the teaching? Honestly, it was just a carryover from what we had always been doing.  I didn't suddenly change how I assigned work. 

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On 2/23/2021 at 12:21 PM, Ditto said:

I am at this point with this.   I still haven't started creating the needed transcript and course descriptions because I am truly paralyzed with fear.

Transcripts are scary but not impossible.  HSLDA has a template that is very helpful.  I found the local CC required a different style transcript than the 4 year colleges.  Look at the requirements of the various colleges your dc might wish to attend.  Odds are their webpage has some information about transcriptions and/or homeshool.  If not, call and ask.  It is really not that hard once you get started.  I too remember feeling overwhelmed and scared.  But once I got started it was ok

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In addition to all of the things posted in the pinned threads, I found it really helpful to buy materials several months early and go through them myself to brush up.  While my oldest largely sailed through higher level math and other things on his own, I am very much knee deep in tutoring math and physics and spanish to another child this year and I'm grateful for the brush up I did a few years ago.  It makes it easier to explain materials now.

 

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