With the Kids

5 Home Schooling Tips for Teens

With home school you have the option to tailor your child’s education to their needs. There is a lot of information available to parents who home school their younger children, but when kids reach the tween/teen years, blog posts, literature and information becomes a bit hard to find.

Starting Seeds

I am a home schooling parent of three tween/teens. I have a few tips for parents who are or are thinking about homeschooling an older child.


5 Home Schooling Tips for Teens

1 – Keep your kids engaged with hands on activities. Science, Home Economics, History, Music, Art and more can all be very interactive and fun. Making cookies can incorporate measurements, home economics skills and even cultural education. Now that they are older you can help them with more advanced recipes. Remember we all love to be actively engaged in a project at any age.


2 – Keep them on track with planning. Allow them to create a schedule and goals. Go with them to pick out a planner or make one. Have them create a schedule that fits their educational needs as well as their wants. They will learn life skills as well as feel more in control therefore will own their work and take pride in it.

3 – Celebrate their successes. Just because you home school doesn’t mean you can’t have a Jr High graduation party, end of year party or other school centered party. Create awards for achieving a certain level in their work. Think of how you can celebrate success at every level.

Playing a Game

4 – Make it social. These are the social years. Interacting and creating relationships with others helps them prepare for adult relationships. Being social can take place at church actives, or extra curricular events like soccer, dance, boy scouts. Pretty much anywhere else where they spend time with kids their age is a great social environment. Being social can also include people older and younger than them. Being active in your community creates many opportunities for social interactions.


5 – For some things you have to do the book work. Algebra is one of those things. Our favorite books for Algebra is the Key to Work books. They are simple and thoroughly explain each step of Algebra. These two things keep frustration at bay which means good learning experiences. Look for books that make it simple.

Best wishes to each of you as you strive to create a world of active learning for your tween-teens.

April, from Sweet Life in the Valley, shares some of her favorite “Sweet” things on her blog. As well as being a photographer, she’s also a Mom of 3 and home schools her tweens! Today she’s guest posting with 5 great tips to home schooling older kids.


  1. Thank you for this post – my daughter is becoming a tween and I can’t believe how much that means. We are going to do a bunch of review this summer and I want it to be a fun experience as well so this post is really helpful. I put a bunch of links together on algebra problems to get her prepared for next year. It’s a great list of sites that have free worksheets and tips for learning algebra concepts. I’ve added them to an online binder – at livebinder.com. I added this blog to the binder as a great reminder of how to keep our tweens motivated to learn. Feel free to use this binder with your kids – just click on the link below to launch the browser.


  2. My 11 yr old (hi func autistic) gets so mad when he is frustrated but put a cookbook in his hands and tell him to pick a recipe and he calms almost instantly.
    And it has led to so many google searches (history, info on ingredients etc) – more folks should add cooking to the curiculums!

  3. My kiddos are not of school age yet, but I keep going back and forth on whether to home school or not. I enjoy reading posts (and other articles) from those who do home school because it motivates me more in that direction. Thank you!

  4. As someone who was home schooled from 7th grade on, I can’t stress the social aspect enough! Kids NEED that socialization, and it’s important for them to be around people who aren’t just like themselves. While I’m sure many parents want to protect their children from all the bad things (and people!) out there, if they aren’t exposed to all sorts of people from different backgrounds, they will have a hard time of it as an adult. If I could only change one thing about my mother’s decision to home school me, it would be this one. She only let me socialize with people from our church, and I missed out on a lot because of that.

    I love these ideas, and I do have to say that I wish my own mother was nearly as inventive as this with my schooling! :)

  5. Hi everyone –
    There are several places you can buy the Key to works books. They cover measurements fractions, decimals, percentages, geometry and algebra. I buy mine here because I can go into their store or order online from them: Latter Day Resources
    I would love to hear about any other tips all of you may have about home schooling your tween-teens.

  6. Thanks for sharing your ideas. Although I don’t homeschool, I’m always looking for educational ideas for summer time to keep the learning going when school is out!

  7. we’re getting ready to home school our just-turned 4 and 5 year old. A good friend of mine here taught all three of her kids (including both boys) about math and fractions by having them make recipes…including doing double/triple batches as well as 1.5 batches of different things. Great way to tackle those fractions!

  8. I second the “Key To” workbook suggestion (Karen – the publisher’s website is keypress.com). I’ve been a math tutor for over ten years and have never come across anything as good as those books. They are great for teaching yourself concepts, too.

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