The decision to homeschool usually means that the word “highschool” will induce fear and panic somewhere along the journey. It’s almost inevitable. The closer the child gets to 9th grade, the more of an existential crisis it becomes. Did I do enough? Does he/she know enough? What gaps are there? What about a transcript? It never ends. The endless options available for online high school curriculum doesn’t help. I mean, sure, selection is nice. Who doesn’t want to have options?
Curriculum Option Overload
Sometimes the problem can be too many options. It’s overwhelming. You can hand-pick each book and decide each topic yourself, buy a set of curriculum with each day laid out in detail, do unit studies, or anything in between. Or a mix of it all.
And it doesn’t stop there. Knowledge isn’t confined to books anymore. With the world of information at our fingertips, learning has never been easier. The internet opens up a hundred different ways homeschoolers can take advantage of this.
Much like the situation with books, it’s possible to find free courses and videos that can be pieced together, enroll in an online school, or use it as a supplement. However it’s done, there are numerous reasons to implement online learning in some capacity.
The Benefits Of Online Curriculum
Here are a few reasons to consider online highschool courses:
- Some are available for free
- Teacher support
- Options for pre-organized lessons
- Possible accreditation
Depending on the course, there may be some drawbacks, such as:
- Less flexibility
- Fewer choices
- No social interaction (….not always a bad thing says the introvert)
- Easier for students to take shortcuts
A Beginning Point
If you decide to use an online highschool curriculum for some or all of your highschooler’s classes, take the time to first ask a few questions. You’ll be more likely to find a school that fits your child’s needs if you know what those needs are.
ThoughtCo has a great list of things to consider before jumping into anything.
- What expenses can be expected?
- Be familiar with the different types of online schools
- Does accreditation matter? If so, who accredits the school?
- Does the curriculum meet your child’s needs?
- Are the teachers experienced and credentialed?
- What kind of learning format is used?
Don’t Forget The Free And Flexible Options
Online schools can be expensive and take away a lot of the flexibility homeschoolers love.
There are many colleges and universities, including MIT, Stanford, and Harvard, that offer free online classes. Of course, they are not accredited but if you want to learn something, there’s probably a class for it. Other websites have a variety of free options as well. Khan Academy is free and keeps track of the student’s work and progress. This information is useful for adults, too.
Homeschooling your highschool student doesn’t have to be stressful. Even if you decide to stick with textbooks, there’s plenty of information to help you and your child succeed, without the anxiety.