So it’s time to prepare your homeschooler for college. Take a moment to breathe first. Anyone who has experienced this knows what a bittersweet time this is. You’re excited and proud of what your child has accomplished and where he or she is going. At the same time, it’s hard to imagine your child leaving the nest.
Not only that, but you’ll want to prepare yourself for the cost of college tuition (especially for out-of-state school). Even if you don’t have a college fund already in place, there are plenty of options available. You an visit Consumers Advocate to learn more about how student loans work and find out what the current rates are.
Had your breather? Good. Now it’s time for a few tips you can use to prepare your child for the next stage of life.
You may think you have plenty of time, but four years goes by in a flash. At the beginning of 9th grade, create a transcript to maintain for the college years and accept your new role as guidance counselor. In addition to teaching your child, you will need to talk with him or her about colleges, provide information about courses of study, speak with admission officers about specific requirements for homeschoolers, and set up standardized tests. You’ll also need to set up college tours. Many people do this during the junior year, but starting earlier might make it easier for you to tour more schools. Start your search for scholarships early as well.
Prepare Your Child to Learn Outside Your Home
Though not at all a requirement, taking a class or two outside the home can be a valuable experience for your child. It not only gives him experience learning from someone other than you but may also provide a grade or evaluation from an additional person. This further validates that he’s ready for college. Look to co-ops and community colleges for classes. Bonus points if you can find one that teaches by lecture. Additionally, you can help your child by giving him research projects and papers to write, teaching him how to take notes, and getting him used to learning from a textbook.
Prepare for Test Taking
Test taking is a fact of life both before and during college. If your child isn’t used to taking tests, now is the time to give him some experience. Likewise, he may benefit from taking SAT or ACT preparation classes and practice tests. Such resources can help reduce the anxiety that standardized tests can produce, showing kids what to expect.
The above tips are a good start for preparing your child for more, but of course, there are other steps you may want to take as well. An online group like Homeschool to College can prove a good source of information and ideas for these very important years.
What steps are you taking to prepare your homeschooler for college? Share with us in the comments.