If you’ve been around a minute, you know that my son is a bit advanced in his schooling. Chronologically, he should be a rising 8th grader with his age peers. That said, he continues on his own trajectory, which made titling this post a little harder than it had to be. LOL. Two years ago, I wrote about homeschooling middle school and last year I shared my 9th grade curriculum guide. He has 7 high school credits under his belt, but I’m just not comfortable calling my 13 year old a sophomore. We haven’t decided, yet, if we’ll allow him to graduate “early” or if he’ll just graduate with extra credits. With that in mind, I’m sharing our high school plans for 2021-2022. I’m just not sure whether I should call it his second freshman year, his sophomore year, or something different altogether.
High School Plans for 2021-2022
I’m not one of the “I’m going to homeschool all the way through” homeschool planners. Every year we spend a couple months praying, as a family, about what we’re going to do the following school year. So far, every year we’ve been led to continue homeschooling. This year, when I asked my kids if they wanted to consider other options or continue homeschooling, I received a resounding “keep homeschooling and keep doing co-op.” So, our 2021-2022 plans for homeschooling high school include continuing at our local co-op.
High School Core Curriculum
Last year we transitioned to using Gather Round Homeschool curriculum as our family core curriculum. Mister used the High School Student Notebooks, and they worked well for him. We will continue using Gather Round for our family style curriculum this year. Last year, I was ambitious and thought we’d complete a unit each month (we school year round). We took our time with several units, so we actually completed 7 full units and 2 mini units from the one’s I’d selected.
For the coming school year, I allowed each kiddo to pick two units they wanted to be sure to complete, and then I filled in from there. The units we’re hoping to complete for 2021-2022 include:
- Underground to Canada (a mini unit)
- Ancients (Mister’s choice)
- Christmas Around the World (a mini unit)
- South America (Mister’s choice)
Since Mister will also have core classes at co-op, I’ll be happy to finish 6 full units and two mini units. IF we have time, I *may* add in either Antarctica, which is the final unit in the Connecting Continents series, or US History. I’m not going to push it, though, because I want school to be enjoyable. 😉
We add a morning devotional, typically from Louie Giglio’s faith and science for kids devos.
High School Math
Mister will continue to use the Teaching Textbooks Online Math Curriculum curriculum. He’s completed Teaching Textbooks Algebra 1 and Geometry, so he’ll be working on Algebra 2. I love that he can use this program according to his ability and not his age!
Teaching Textbooks 4.0 is a totally self-directed homeschool math curriculum.
Check out a free trial of Teaching Textbooks 4.0 today and see for yourself how well it fits into your homeschool plans!
He’s doing really well already in Algebra 2, and is enjoying it. I did set the parental controls to limit how many lessons he can complete in a day, because I want him to work on other subjects as well. LOL
I’m really excited to be able to host a Teaching Textbooks 4.0 Giveaway for readers for one student for Teaching Textbooks 4.0. Check it out!
High School Science
Mister will be taking a high school biology lab at our local co-op. He’ll be using Apologia Biology for both home learning and the co-op labs. He was able to sit in on one of the biology labs in early 2020, when we did a day visit at this co-op, and he thoroughly enjoyed it.
The lab instructor is a great teacher, and Mister has actually taken Earth Science labs, Physics labs, and a Historically Artsy class with her. He enjoys her classes, so I think he’ll do well.
Save 15% when you purchase the Exploring Creation with Biology, 3rd Edition, Superset! This is the revised and updated edition of the first-year biology course for students in high school. This set contains Apologia’s Exploring Creation with Biology, 3rd Edition softcover textbook, Solutions & Test Manual (One test packet is shrink-wrapped with this manual), Student Notebook, MP3 Audio CD, and Video Instruction Thumb Drive.
I’ll share more about Apologia Biology in another article!
Because he wants to pursue electrical engineering, he’ll also work on a few projects from Creation Crate with my husband, who is an electrical engineer.
Everything you need to learn to build SIX different electronics projects, including curriculum!
He also wants to learn about aviation, so we’re checking out some free Young Eagle flights near us. He signed up for a Free Young Eagles Membership and he’ll be flying in August, so we’ll see how he likes it. The free membership gives him access to the free Sporty’s Learn to Fly Course.
High School Language Arts
Mister has previously completed both World Literature and American Literature courses. This year, he chose to take a Communications and Public Speaking class at co-op. He said he needs a break from literature. LOL. The class is essentially Speech 1. In this class, he’ll build skills in effective communication and public speaking. He will also prepare for job interviews and learn to know his audience and how to connect with them. The co-op class is a year long course. Between the class itself, and the homework assigned, it will be counted as 1/2 credit of a high school credit. He will earn his other half credit for language arts using our core curriculum and with reading.
High School Reading Books
While he may feel a need to take a break from a formal literature class, Mister will not be taking a free pass from reading. He actually reads voraciously, and I have a hard time keeping his shelves stocked.
With that in mind, he’ll make use of the vast colle3ction available on LightSail for Homeschoolers. He will have a few assigned books, but mostly he’ll read for enjoyment and then tell me about what he’s read.
LightSail for Homeschoolers is a platform with tens of thousands of books and multimedia resources from leading publishers such as World Book and Lerner Publishing, as well as trusted homeschool and faith-based publishers.
Read more about it in my LightSail for Homeschoolers article.
Books that he has on his physical shelves for fun this year include:
- Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret (Book 1)
- Explorer Academy: The Falcon’s Feather (Book 2)
- Explorer Academy: The Double Helix (Book 3)
- Explorer Academy: The Star Dunes (Book 4)
- Explorer Academy: The Tiger’s Nest (Book 5)
- Britfield and the Lost Crown – he’s read this one so many times it’s falling apart, but he keeps reading it.
- Britfield and the Rise of the Lion
I’ve added quite a few books to our general shelves that he’ll have access to, as well. I’ll share more about those in another post.
High School Social Studies
As I mentioned above, we’ll be using several Gather Round Homeschool units as our core family curriculum. They include social studies, history, and geography. One of the units we’re completing is Underground to Canada. For this unit, we’ll be using the following books:
- Underground to Canada – This book is HARD to find. We bought our copy on Thrift Books.
- No More!: Stories and Songs of Slave Resistance
- Free at Last!: Stories and Songs of Emancipation
- BOX: Henry Brown Mails Himself to Freedom
- Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer: The Spirit of the Civil Rights Movement
- Northbound: A Train Ride Out of Segregation
- Zora and Me
- Mozay of Pepperwick
Some of these titles will be read aloud together during class time, and the others will be read by the kiddos independently. We’re also watching a selection of videos on Amazon Prime and I’ve picked a few books on my Kindle Unlimited subscription that they can read if they want.
He’s also doing a Freedom Quilt activity that I purchased on TeachersPayTeachers.
Research the meaning behind various quilt patterns and create your own Freedom Quilt.
High School Electives
As I mentioned in my life skills class for teens article, I was a bit surprised when Mister asked to take a home ec class at co-op. The home economics class will go over the basics of house keeping, cleaning, cooking, organization and life skills. Between the class itself and assigned homework, it would qualify as a 1/2 credit of a high school credit. To make it a full credit, we are adding the Voyage life skills course for high school. We’re also plan to add the Dream Big & Take Action: Goal Conquering for Teens! course from Blog, She Wrote.
Dream Big & Take Action: Goal Conquering for Teens is a 6 step system to help your teen turn their great big dreams into goals they can take action on.
I’ll write more about this one in another article.
The Voyage life skills course, from Thrive Academics, is an online, self-paced life skills class for teens. It covers key subjects including personal development, career planning, college planning, financial responsibility, and everyday life skills.
Read more about it in my Life Skills Class for Teens article.
Fundamentals of Drawing
In a Fundamentals of Drawing class at co-op, Mister will learn the basics of drawing. He’ll learn to use perspective and the art of building shapes together to make larger figures. This class will utilize various online resources for instruction, such as Craftsy.com, drawing tutorials, and Circle Line Art School (a Youtube resource) tutorials.
He also debating whether he wants to do a homeschool high school fine arts membership this year, but wants to see what his load will be like once co-op starts before deciding. I may opt to do A Year of Charlotte Mason Music Lessons or the Great Hymns of Faith study for all the kiddos, instead of having him do something on his own. At the very least, we’ll be checking out the free sampler music appreciation course or the from Music in Our Homeschool.
Assigning High School Credits
A high school credit, where we live, is equivalent to at least 120 hours. Mister will be awarded high school credit accordingly, with a minimum of 0.25 credits for 30 recorded hours. He has the potential to earn at least the following:
- Language Arts – 1 credit (1/2 credit Speech/Communications, 1/2 credit LA/Reading)
- Biology – 1 credit
- Algebra 2 – 1 credit
- Social Studies – 1 credit (1/2 credit history, 1/2 credit geography)
- Life Skills – 1 credit
He does have to earn a good grade for it to be counted toward high school credit. Since he’s chronologically an 8th grader, I’ve got no problem keeping a class off his high school transcript if he doesn’t do well in it. So far, that hasn’t been a problem for him, but he knows that if he wants credit for it, he has to work for it.