High School Electives ~ A More In-depth Look at Our Choices

In continuing with my informal theme of preparing for the high school years, today I want to share our list of high school electives we are compiling to consider for Chloe’s high school years.  In my last post I covered high school electives in general and included a long list of possibilities.

A More in Depth Look at Our High School Electives from Starts At Eight

Now that my brain has moved on to narrowing the field and nailing down our choices, I have a much smaller list that includes possible resources/materials for them.  My feeling is that by the end of high school we will have more electives than what we need (we need 3 credits which is the equivalent of 3 years).  Just given the fact that only 2 years of math are required and Chloe will do 4, and the same with science, if we used the extras as “electives” we would already have 4 credits of electives.

I know some people may use this as an option, but I strongly believe that electives should be outside the “typical” course of study.  This thought is aligned with the definition of electives that I gave in Exploring Possible Elective Courses for High School,

High school electives go beyond the core classes of English, math, science, and history. Electives supplement the educational years with classes that interest your child and prepare them for adult life.

Now if she were to do something like accounting, which is math, I would consider this an elective because it is above, beyond and outside the usual course of math (algebra, trig, geometry, precalculus, etc).


Digital Photography – Anyone who reads my blog at all, or knows us personally, knows that I usually have my camera in tow.  Throughout the last 10 years I have taken multiple photography and photo editing courses.  Photography is my hobby and quickly becoming a side job for me as well.  I say all of this to say that this is an area I can easily offer much knowledge and experience.  Chloe has expressed interest in photography in the past couple of years so she and I agreed this would be a great place to start with choosing her electives for high school.  The big hurdle is that I am not ready to put MY camera in her hands.  Thus we are considering buying a “back up” camera for me to not only have as a back up but for Chloe to use as she starts down this photography journey.   This will be at least a 1/2 credit if not a full 1 credit/year course.

Digital Photography Unit Study by Amanda Bennett

Digital Photography School  is a community of photographers of all experience levels who come together to learn, share and grow in their understanding of photography.

iheartfaces is an award winning photography website that hosts photo challenges that must include a face, photography tutorials, a free photography forum

Photo Editing – I started out calling this Photoshop with a bunch of addendums like, “Light Room, Picasa, etc.” and decided we should call it photo editing as not to be limited to just one piece of software.  I currently use both Photoshop and Picasa and am seriously considering Light Room as I have seen multiple tutorials of things I am interested in trying.  I have taken multiple courses locally for Photoshop and hope to take another in the near future.  My plan for Chloe is for me to offer up my knowledge and skills in this department, along with the endless amounts of videos and tutorials offered up on the web.  Once she has a good starting base she can/may choose to take an outside course to increase her skills.  This will be at least a 1/2 credit, if not full 1 credit/year course.

Psychology –  I remember taking both Psychology and Sociology in high school, as well as another Intro to Psychology in college.  Chloe is considering some sort of job in the medical field and I feel this will be a good base for her as most likely she will need to take a psychology course as a prerequisite early in her college years.  This will be a full 1 credit/year course.

7SistersHomeschool – Introduction to Psychology from a Christian Perspective

Latin –  Latin is a course that I sort of stumbled onto.  While perusing a magazine I saw an add that sparked my thoughts in the direction of Latin as an elective for Chloe.  When I was in high school Latin was offered as a foreign language and was typically taken by those who were considering a career in the medical field as many medical terms are based in Latin.  I think this could serve as a great way to show a foreign language in high school (which is not required for homeschoolers here in NY), and could be useful if she pursues a career in the medical field.  This will be at least a full 1 credit/year course and could continue as more if Chloe wants to pursue a more in-depth study into Latin.

Latin’s Not So Tough

Latin for Children was recommended to me as a very solid program. It is geared towards elementary aged students but I have read many reviews that say this is still a challenging enough program to start out with older students. This review of Latin Alive makes me think we should start with Latin for Children. Then if we like it and want to continue we could move in to Latin Alive which is done by the same company as Latin for Children only it is geared towards older students and moves at a faster pace.

 Getting Started with Latin: Beginning Latin for Homeschoolers and Self-Taught Students of Any Age  There are a couple of things that I like about this book.  One the price is right, at $9.99 for the Kindle edition, and with all the free audio located at GettingStartedWithLatin, it is a very affordable option.  Plus, The Amazon rating for it is very high as well.

My only real concerns are these:  First that it won’t be a comprehensive enough program.  The second concern I have is that not knowing Latin or how to go about teaching it, it is hard to know if this will be “correct” in its methods.  Then again, I won’t really know that about any of the programs!


Looking for help in planning high school electives for your student?

Check out my article: Planning Your High School Electives ~ FREE Printable Pack
Plan Your High School Electives: Free Printable Pack from Starts At Eight

For help with your 4 Year High School Plan: 4 Year High School Plan ~ FREE Spreadsheet Printable
4 Year High School Plan/Spreadsheet from Starts At Eight


The Big Book of Homeschooling

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The Big Book of Ideas Cover (iPad)