This is a great blog on what college professors really think of homeschool students.  It’s overwhelmingly positive.  Homeschooled graduates are highly sought out and are valued students.  Read this, it’s pretty great.

http://midlifeblogger.com/homeschool-graduates-in-college/

In our experience, these are pretty right on.  Connor has had a ton of success in college and has had several positive comments about him as a student and positive comments about homeschoolers in general. This surprised me a bit as he is in a large Secular University. 

I have several random try thoughts about homeschooling in high school and I thought I would share while I am waiting in the Ortho office for the twins.

1. Everyone worries about whether their kids are going to be prepared for college, even parents whose kids are more traditionally schooled. After church each Sunday we generally join 3-5 other families for lunch. The majority are traditionally schooled and are in elite and rigorous IB/AP/Honors programs  in highly rated private and public schools in our area. None of these kids or parents are slouches.  The majority of the parents have multiple degrees and are highly educated. However, a vast majority of our lunch conversations are centered around whether their kids are being prepared for college.  We also have a lot of conversations about how to help our kids when they are struggling or stuck on a problem.  To my surprise, I have the most resources.  I have three or four online resources like Khan Academy, MIT’s Open Courseware, Code Academy, and Crash Course to send my kids to when they are stuck.  Our curriculum is also designed to have more helps.  As a matter fact, I have shared many  of our homeschooling books to help the traditional students understand some of their AP/IB classes. Homeschooling allows me to help my kids learn how to learn. The rest of the parents are concerned and worried about the same things we are but they have no real control over their children’s learning. 

2.  Set a Schedule and have firm deadlines. Seriously, this is vitally important.  If your high school kids don’t get their work done, they don’t get to do anything else. No screen time, no extracurriculars, no sports – nothing.  If their paper has a due date on Friday, and it is turned in on Saturday then the paper should be graded an entire letter grade lower and again, there should be no extracurriculars until all their work is done. This is life training, a college or a job will not put up with pushing deadlines back. In my opinion, this is an absolute. No ifs, ands, or buts.  It might be ugly and your kids might not like it but it’s so important. Stick to your guns and be consistent. 

3. It’s good if your children are stretched academically. High School should be hard, it should be rigorous.  If your child is absolutely drowning then by all means change it, but if it just stretching them and they have to put more effort than normal into it, that’s a good thing. Don’t save them unless they really need it.

4. Teach them how to take notes. I love the Writing With Skill series for use in Middle and High School for this very reason. It teaches how to outline and how to take notes and summarize in Literature, Science and History.  Having kids do narrations and summaries in the younger years have given mine the ability to take notes from a lecture.  They have been doing it since they were little. If your child is in middle school or high school and haven’t done narrations or dictation, then find a language arts curriculum that teaches this.

5. Letting them follow their passions. I talk about this a lot, high school is where they should start following these. However, I want to mention that a student’s schoolwork should always be put first.  School should always be the priority.

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