First Year of High School done – Bring on 10th grade

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10gcDavid’s 9th grade has been finished for a while. Sort of. There are a couple of loose ends that I feel he needs to tie up. And I have a few revisions to make on the transcript. I’m sure that’s a work in progress anyway.

As I reflect on our first ever year of high school here, I think we’ve definitely learned a lot about how to do things (or maybe more how NOT to do things), and we have some new ideas to try.

One thing I’ve learned is that high school makes me a little bit nuts with deadlines. And some of that is good. But some of my hyper-stressing could be relaxed. I need to put more of the responsibility on David and less on me. He needs clear expectations at the beginning and some accountability during the year, but I’m not going to be continually reminding and pestering him. That’s the plan anyway.

This year we’re trying something new – outside classes! I’m already stressing about all the driving to and from classes, lessons, and cross country. But as I pointed out to my husband, I’m not happy unless I’m worried about something. (I say that jokingly… sort of.)

We’ve been talking about future education and career plans with David and at this point he’s leaning towards an advanced degree in science. One particular area of interest is Biophysics. So we’re trying to make sure his math and science background is solid. This is both so he can get a better idea if he wants to pursue further study and so that he can hopefully get college credit for some of his high school courses.

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10th grade Curriculum Choices

Math –

Teaching Textbooks Precalculus – This is a first for us. I’ve heard mixed reviews of Teaching Textbooks in general. David is using this only because it’s one of the outside classes he is taking and that is the chosen text. The class meets twice per week for 1 hour, so it still requires a lot of independent study, but there is a teacher to assist. Plus he’s going to grade the homework and the tests. I am really anxious to see how David does in a math classroom. He’s not been the best at showing his work. He also balks at large problem sets. But since he’s strongly considering a math or science career, we didn’t want his first math class to be in college.

Science –

Hill Petrucci General Chemistry – After using Apologia science for the last 3 years, we’re changing this year. There are a couple of reasons for the change. First, we want a book that will serve as an AP Level Chemistry course. Apologia is designed to do Chemistry for a whole school year, then advanced Chemistry in another school year. But the bigger reason we’re not using Apologia is that my husband taught high school chemistry for over a decade and we already own a lot of chemistry textbooks. (Seriously, I think we have 6 different chemistry texts.) It seemed really silly to purchase another one just because it was the science series we had been using. Honestly, I’m a little nervous about how I’m going to teach this. Hopefully I am not, but will come up with a suggested schedule and have David study independently with help from his dad when needed. I’m hoping anyway.

English –

Literature is not David’s favorite subject. It’s far from it. We’ve really struggled with literature over the years. So that’s the other class he’s going to taking outside the home. It’s a very introductory course where he’ll have an opportunity to participate in discussion. Hopefully it will help him to hear others discuss elements of literature. In addition, he’ll be continuing to work through the Student Writing Intensive Continuation course. (Pun intended.)

 Social Science –

This year is Government and Economics. We’ll be starting with economics using Economics for Everybody from Compass Classroom. (Read my review here.) We’re going to pair that with Whatever Happened to Penny Candy for a fun introductory economics course. I am undecided on what to use for the government portion, but I have time.

Electives –

Filmmaking – He will be completing Filmmaking from the First Directors…hopefully. This is a fabulous course, but very challenging. It is especially challenging for him to come up with ideas for films, especially with our very limited pool of actors.

Logic – He has started Material Logic from Memoria Press and will complete that this fall.

This completes my upcoming curriculum posts. The rest of the series is linked below.

Eighth Grade Curriculum

Fifth Grade Plans

Second Grade Plans



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3 thoughts on “First Year of High School done – Bring on 10th grade”

  1. You and I sound a lot alike! I always seem to be worrying about something too. I have strived to set a balanced schedule this year that allows for both outside classes and time to be home to do the things I like to do with my girls, like history and math. We are going outside for science, sign language and bible study. I am looking forward to starting but I still have work to do to get my binder prepared. Our first official day is the 28th.

  2. Hi Kristen, it’s Jackie from Let’s Homeschool High School. I wanted to drop by and personally thank you for linking up with us for our first ever high school blog hop.

    My daughter started high school last year I really let it intimidate me. We more or less muddled through. This year will be much different, hopefully. 🙂 We are going to use Time4Learning’s new high school courses ( as our core and supplement with other things she is interested in learning more about.

    It looks like you have it under control with David. We used TT one year and really liked it. It was a little easier than we anticipated so some people go up one year to make up for that. We have also used Apologia’s Botany and Astronomy and liked both.

    Best wishes this year. I look forward to linking up with you again next month.

    Let’s Homeschool High School Team

  3. I have a junior and freshman this year….my first time having TWO high school homeschoolers (the junior came home midway last year and my oldest is in college). I’d like to know how you liked the MP Logic materials. We are doing Traditional Logic this year and I’m hopeful. 🙂

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