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How to Homeschool a 17 Year Old

How to Homeschool a 17 Year Old
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It’s hard to believe, isn’t it? It feels like your son or daughter started school just yesterday and yet, you find yourself now homeschooling a 17 year old! While we know this can be a daunting year, our hope is to remove some of your concerns by covering many of the common questions you have, such as:

Let’s look at each of these questions, one by one, in order to help you get the best start possible on this exciting homeschool year.

What Should a 17 Year Old Be Learning?

While your choice to educate your child from home is an exciting one, it’s natural to wonder how much correspondence there is between your son or daughter’s learning and that of  traditional school students of your child’s age. Age seventeen is a common year to learn about:

  • Advanced math courses such as trigonometry and pre-calculus (if they have completed two algebra courses and a geometry course already)
  • US government and/or economics
  • Comparing/contrasting similar literary texts
  • Writing arguments with clear supporting evidence and examples
  • Paraphrasing information without plagiarizing
  • How to fill out college and scholarship applications
  • Physics or chemistry
  • Fine arts electives such as art history

How do I Start Homeschooling a 17 Year Old?

Are you exploring home education for a 17 year old for the first time? Then in addition to understanding what types of things your child will be learning about, you also need an introduction to how to get started homeschooling high school. The steps are fairly simple, actually. You will want to

Homeschooling Planner

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What Should a Curriculum for a 17 Year Old Look Like?

If college is in your teen’s future, then this is a good year to take a close look at course requirements for several schools your homeschooler may be interested in attending. When you know what your chosen schools are looking for, you can align your curriculum accordingly. In general, though, a typical course of study for a 17 year old  includes an advanced math course (if algebra and geometry have already been taken), an English course, a United States history course, and either a chemistry, physics, or other science course. In addition, many students will take a foreign language and at least one elective course.

Other considerations when designing a curriculum for a 17 year old can include:

  • Whether or not your state homeschool laws outline specific subject requirements
  • What your teen’s specific interests and strengths are
  • Inclusion of vocational coursework that will help your student explore potential career paths
  • Opportunities for community service or internships
  • Preparation for standardized tests such as the ACT and SAT, typically taken this year

How Can Time4Learning Help Me Homeschool My 17 Year Old?

Many homeschooling parents report to us that they feel overwhelmed in trying to figure out how to homeschool a 17 year old. Time4Learning understands that home education is a responsibility you don’t take lightly, and that you want to make sure your child is progressing appropriately.  Our program takes the guesswork out of the homeschool day by providing multimedia lessons in all core subjects that are correlated to state standards.

Time4Learning courses are presented within an automated, student-paced system that teaches the lessons, reinforces concepts, time-stamps online activities (for attendance), tracks progress, and keeps printable reports that can be turned into student transcripts or included with homeschool portfolios. The lessons combine multimedia lessons, instructional videos, quizzes, tests and both online and offline projects that focus largely on developing higher order thinking and writing skills.

Some of the reasons why Time4Learning is so popular with families homeschooling high school include:

  • Parents have access to printable lesson plans, teaching tools, detailed reporting and parental support through our online Parent Forum.
  • The program is customizable for each student so that they can move through lessons sequentially from the beginning of a subject to the end or they can pick and choose lessons, dependent on any current gaps in their learning.
  • Students can repeat lessons and retake quizzes and tests to achieve mastery.
  • Curriculum includes extra practice and extension activities to target certain skills.
  • A wide choice of high school elective courses allows your student to customize their learning to their unique interests.
  • Activity planners and curriculum calculators help students work independently and stay organized.
  • Interactive tools, virtual labs, rich graphics, animations, and simulations to help students visualize abstract concepts and gain a deep understanding of the material.

Time4Learning isn’t the only online curriculum on the market for homeschooling a 13 year old.  That’s why we provided this information, so you can compare Time4Learning to other popular online curricula. If you can’t make up your mind about one certain option, you can always choose to mix the best parts of more than one curriculum (called an eclectic approach) to suit the needs of your student and your family dynamic.

Are There Tips for Homeschooling a 17 Year Old?

Parents of 17 year old homeschoolers can often second guess themselves. They wonder if they have done “enough” to prepare their homeschooled high schooler for life after graduation. But as long as you have researched course requirements from any colleges or universities your student is interested in and are staying on track with those and keeping an accurate homeschool transcript, you are probably right on target.

As you plan out the year, here are some additional helpful ideas for homeschooling a 17 year old:

  • Try to find a balance between giving your teen the support they need and the independence they crave; envision yourself as a partner in your child’s education.
  • If your high schooler has college plans, this is a great year to help them get their feet wet in college studies by signing them up for dual enrollment with a local community college.
  • Supplementing curriculum at home with interactive activities, such as volunteering, sports, and real-world experiences can create a well-rounded student. This is called hybrid homeschooling, and it provides readiness for college.
  • Homeschooling high school doesn’t have to break the bank. Many of the books and resources needed to homeschool a 17 year old  are available for free or at minimal cost online, at your local library, via used bookstores, or by trading off with other homeschool families.
  • Your teen is likely to need a listening ear this year. There are so many decisions to make and things for them to think through that sometimes what they want most is a sounding board for all their ponderings about the future.
  • Many homeschoolers take the SAT or ACT  in the spring of this year, so if you want to line up testing preparation courses or purchase test-prep materials, definitely do that early.
  • Increase your child’s vocabulary by playing games of “STOP”. Start by choosing a letter and then at least five categories. The goal is to write as many words as possible for each category that start with the chosen letter. Whoever fills out every column first says “STOP” and all writing must stop. Go over everyone’s words and assign points. The most common categories include: name, last name, thing/object, color, fruit/vegetable, animal, place, flower, gemstone, book and many more!

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