How to Choose Homeschool High School Courses

How to Choose High School Courses

Homeschooling high school requires a more concrete plan than the younger years, especially if your teen desires to go to college. In grade school certain milestones of course need to be met before proceeding to new goals and In high school it is similar with each year’s class building on previous years classes. What classes will a student need for their freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year? If you are new to homeschooling and especially if your student will be a freshman this year, now is the time to start planning!

How to Choose Subjects in High School

To start out you must know what is expected for homeschoolers in your state and what the requirements are. Take a look at your state’s Division of Non-Public Education websites for specifics on what classes your student needs to get a homeschool diploma and what potential colleges are looking for when your student applies to college or a technical school. Generally speaking though these are the general subjects you will be choosing each year. Check your state to find out how many credits of each will be needed.

  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • World Languages
  • Health/Physical Education
  • Electives

How to Choose High School Classes

After you figure out what subjects are needed for your student comes the fun part, picking out the classes to fulfil the credits in each subject. It will go a long way in compliance and cooperation if you let your high school student have input into what they would like to learn about and what curriculum they can accomplish it with. 


While your teen is in high school they will be expected to fulfill a variety of course requirements. Some will be needed to continue on to college, some will help with exploring creative writing, yet some will help develop the necessary skills to write in the workplace.

  • English I
  • English II
  • English III
  • English IV


The math your teen takes will depend a lot on if their future plans include college. Each math class builds upon the information attained in the class before. If your student plans on attending college it is a good idea to take a look at the requirements needed in math for potential colleges.

  • Algebra I
  • Algebra II
  • Geometry 
  •  Trigonometry 
  • Consumer math


High school science courses will most likely be the most challenging science classes your students will do unless the have a science major in college. A lab component should always be included in each science class chosen. It will help satisfy college entrance requirements as well as the many benefits of a hands-on experience.

  • Physical science 
  • Biology
  • Earth science
  • Environmental Science


What is included in homeschool high school social studies courses? A good start is to take a look at your state’s Department of Non-Public Education for guidelines. High school history is included in social studies coursework. After finding out the requirements make sure to get your teens input into what history courses interest them that would also fulfil what they need.

  • American History (1 and 2): The Founding Principles
  • Civics and Economics
  • World History
  • AP US History
  • IB History of the Americas 

Health/Physical Education

What about physical education? Many states require this for homeschool students but fortunately this is one of the easiest requirements for most homeschoolers to meet. Often this can be fulfilled with a health education class, a homeschool co-op P.E. class but if your student is involved in a team sport, it can also be included for requirements.

  • Health Education Class
  • Physical Education class

Making a Four year Plan

Before jumping into the depths of the high school experience it is a wise idea to come up with what is known as “a four-year plan”. This is a good way to plan out your teens’ high school years for preparing for college or whatever they dream of beyond high school. It will help you maximize these last four years of home education to include the coursework, get hands-on experience, and even include extracurriculars such as sports.

How to Choose Electives in High School

What exactly is an elective? An elective is any class or coursework that is done outside of the core curriculum for high school. Electives are a fun way for teens to explore their interests and explore possible career paths. They could include classes such as Journalism, Public Speaking, Marketing, Instrumental Music, Art, the possibilities are endless. These classes are usually picked out by the student.