If you’re part of a homeschool co-op, you will eventually find yourself handing out diplomas and launching teenagers from your co-op into young adulthood. Whether you’re equipping your own children or students you’ve grown to love like your own, you feel responsible for preparing them for their future success. And for many teens, that future includes attending a community college or university. Pursuing higher education is a big step, and we’ve put together some ways to set homeschooled teens up for college success. 

Guide Them to Join Clubs or Teams

One of the most important skills that college students need is the ability to collaborate with others. Thankfully, homeschooled children have more opportunities than ever to engage with their peers and children of all ages.

One way you can help your child get college-ready, starting at any age, is by getting them involved in clubs or teams. There are numerous options, including private classes like art, gymnastics, softball, or theatre. And depending on the school district where you live, some districts even allow homeschooled students to join sports teams and other extracurriculars at their local public schools. 

Clubs and teams offer homeschoolers rich opportunities to build the interpersonal skills they need for college and beyond.

Let Them Volunteer or Work in Their Preferred Field

One of the most significant advantages for homeschooled students when preparing for college is their flexible schedules. Use this flexibility to your teen’s advantage, and help them find real-world experience in a field of their interest through volunteerism or a paid job. 

Hospitals, non-profits, and many corporate offices offer volunteer opportunities for teens to gain valuable life and work experience that may help young adults narrow their career options. Some workplaces may even offer entry-level paid jobs perfect for high schoolers. 

Through volunteerism at a local vet clinic, your teen may affirm their love for animals and desire to be a veterinarian. Or conversely, while working at a marketing office, they may realize that while they love to create digital art, they would rather do it as a hobby and pursue a different career. Either way, real-life experience will ensure your teen won’t be choosing their college major without carefully considering their future. In fact, they’ll have more information and experience than many of their peers! 

Encourage Dual Enrollment Courses and Taking AP Tests

Your students may not attend a traditional school, but that doesn’t mean they can’t take the occasional course or test—especially if it will give them an advantage in college. Taking college-level courses and tests will help your child in two ways: 

  1. The rigorous coursework will prepare your teen so they know what to expect in college. By taking one or two college-level courses at a time, they can ease into the college experience so that they can easily take a full-time course load if they want. 
  2. Students can prove to prospective colleges that they’re ready for higher-level work by passing college-level courses and tests. Demonstrating academic readiness is especially important for homeschooled students, as their grades are not transcripted and are less standardized.

Encouraging your homeschooled teen to take college classes during high school can impact their college application competitiveness and overall college readiness. 

Get Academic Support When Needed

To ensure your homeschooled child is college-ready, closing any gaps in your child’s knowledge is crucial. If your teen struggles in a particular subject area, it doesn’t mean that homeschooling is to blame. Children who attend public and private schools often need support, too. 

Whenever you notice your child is struggling to understand a subject, or you know your child needs assistance beyond what you can offer or feel confident teaching, take steps towards support. There are several ways to supplement your child’s knowledge: 

  1. Recruit another parent in the co-op to teach that subject.
  2. Hire a tutor to instruct your student or group of students.
  3. Use a platform like Adaptively, an all-inclusive learning management system centered around personalized learning to accelerate growth.

Adaptively offers seamless integration with homeschool groups so students can get the knowledge they need for college success. Contact us today to learn more about our platform and programs that best fit your homeschool goals.