43 episodes

Encouragement and support for homeschool families who are entering or currently in the high school years.

The Homeschool Highschool Podcast Ultimate Homeschool Podcast Network

    • Kids & Family
    • 4.7 • 59 Ratings

Encouragement and support for homeschool families who are entering or currently in the high school years.

    What Counts as Phys Ed

    What Counts as Phys Ed

    What Counts as Phys Ed

    What Counts as Phys Ed

    • 17 min
    What Counts as Phys Ed for Homeschool High School?

    What Counts as Phys Ed for Homeschool High School?

    This week on Homeschool Highschool Podcast: What Counts as Phys Ed for Homeschool High School?





    What Counts as Phys Ed for Homeschool High School?

    As you know, homeschool high schoolers need some physical education credit in order to meet graduation requirements in most states. They also need those PE credits to give them a well-balanced lifestyle (and transcript).



    You may also know that 7SistersHomeschool released a fitness/phys ed curriculum that is so useful that that it has become popular for many homeschooling high school families!



    While we are talking about what you already know: you already know that there's not ONE right way to homeschool high school OR to earn Phys Ed credits. So let's get creative and talk about ways to earn those credits.

    First: How many credits of Phys Ed does a homeschool high schooler need for graduation?

    Many states only require one credit of Physical Education for graduation. In our area, teens need two credits of PE for their transcripts. However, teens who are going into a sports or fitness related career will most likely benefit from earning a full Phys Ed credit of some kind each year.



    Graduation requirements are not the only factor in deciding how many credits of PE a teen needs. That is because every teen is different!



    * Some teens are "squeakers". They do not like physical activity, so will barely squeak by with what is required.

    * Other teens are "fitness feels good, but I'm not a nut about it".

    * Some teens are really into one or two sports and rack up hours practicing.

    * Other teens love the feeling of being fit but are not into sports!



    Next, what are the benefits of Phys Ed credits for homeschool high schoolers?

    Physical Education is not a core curriculum course like English/Language Arts, Math, Social Studies or Science, so it can be easy to make it a low priority. However, there are some important benefits of including in the homeschool schedule PE or fitness in some form.



    7SistersHomeschool's Fitness curriculum helps students understand the physical benefits of spending time on PE. When teens understand why PE is important, they are more likely to engage a healthy fitness program.



    Physical benefits of PE are not the only reasons to prioritize fitness. In Vicki's job as a counselor, she has learned that young people who get aerobic-type exercise. (This means that they have walked, played, danced, worked out, etc until their heart pumps harder. This, in turn, increases blood flow which helps the brain work better. That is because the more blood a teen's brain gets, the more oxygen and micronutrients go to the brain. These are the foundational elements that make a brain work!

    If the brain is working more efficiently, teens experience:



    * More efficient learning

    * Better recall

    * More use of logic systems



    Also increased oxygen from physical activity combats stress hormones. When stress hormones are reduced, teens feel less anxiety and depression! Not only that, the reduced stress hormone levels tend to help teens sleep better.





    So, what counts as Phys Ed for homeschool high school?

    There are lots of ways to earn PE credits! That is good news because there are lots of kinds of teens. Remember: there's not ONE right way to homeschool high school (or earn a PE credit). Here are a few:

    Use a fitness curriculum that includes exercise videos and instruction



    * A good example of this is 7Sisters' Foundations of Physical Fitness (which includes videos and logs). This curriculum was created by two personal trainers (7Sister Sara's sons) based on their experiences as homeschool graduate...

    • 17 min
    Special Replay: How to be Thankful-er

    Special Replay: How to be Thankful-er

    This week on Homeschool Highschool Podcast a special replay: How to be Thankful-er!





    How to be Thankful-er

    Gratitude is important, whether it is Thanksgiving time or not. In this episode, Sabrina, Vicki and Kym are together to talk about gratitude and how to be more thankful!



    Thankfulness is a healthy life skill for homeschool high schoolers (and their parents) to learn and practice. So let's get started:



    We are thankful to you, all our 7th Sisters and 7th Siblings. (Who are our 7th Sisters? Well, there are six of us 7Sisters: Sabrina, Vicki, Kym, Allison, Marilyn and Sara. That means YOU are our 7th Sisters...or 7th Siblings for you dads out there.)



    Max Lucado says in his book, Anxious for Nothing, that teenagers' average levels of anxiety are comparable to the anxiety of people who were in inpatient mental health programs in the 1950s. Did you catch that? That is shocking information- so much pain for folks in America these days.

    Why is life so stressful these days?

    Our fast-paced, photoshopped, achievement oriented culture has put a lot of pressure on teens, such as;



    * Social media shows a picture perfect world

    * Pressures from the digital sphere often push teens to feel they need to live as if everything is an "event" requiring:



    * preparation

    * presentation

    * planning





    * FOMO (in case you forgot: Fear of Missing Out

    * We live in a high performance world that expects teens to achieve, achieve, achieve

    * Also, these days, the covid pandemic and other crises



    What to to help our teens and ourselves feel less stress and anxiety?

    We need to learn gratitude! The University of California's Greater Good Science Center has studied things that make people feel better. They have found that people who practice written gratitude tend to improve in mood and health.



    One study that Greater Good Science Center did found that people who did a written gratitude list experienced:



    * Improvement in anxiety and depression levels

    * Fewer sick visits to the doctor

    * Observable change in one of the brain's calm-down centers



    Imagine that! Science and research catches up with Scripture. We know that Scripture has been reminding us to be thankful for thousands of years!



    * Ways to notice the good things in your world

    * Ways to model gratitude for your teens and youngers



    Kym recalled that being in seventh grade started a new school. It was a different setting than she was used to: from a school in the city to a suburban setting. On her first day there, she was feeling nervous. On her way back from gym class, she realized,

    "Wow! I could just be positive and it would make my life better. Not only that but it might make life better for someone else!"

    Kym is so grateful today that God wired her for gratitude. It has helped her through stressful times and struggles ever since that time. Here is a resource Kym finds inspiring:



    The books of Jon Gordon. He is a person who was naturally negative but learned to be positive after being challenged by his wife. One of the thankfulness practices that Kym learned from him is t...

    • 28 min
    Helping Teens Have Healthy Relationships with Food, Interview with Kassandra Baker

    Helping Teens Have Healthy Relationships with Food, Interview with Kassandra Baker

    This week on the Homeschool Highschool Podcast: Helping Teens Have Healthy Relationships with Food, Interview with Kassandra Baker.





    Helping Teens Have Healthy Relationships with Food, Interview with Kassandra Baker

    Note: The topic of food can be a trigger for some people. This episode contains an encouraging discussion with our friend Kassandra Baker in which she discusses healthy relationships for teens with the food they eat.



    Vicki was happy that she could tackle a tough topic with a new friend, Kassandra Baker. Kassandra and Vicki met at a conference a couple of years ago and have been discussing the importance for teens of healthy relationships with food, as well as healthy body image. They were finally able to connect and record this episode.

    Kassandra's Story

    Kassandra grew up in a Christian home. In that faith-filled family, she accepted Christ at the age of four while watching a Billy Graham crusade. From the outside looking in, things looked perfect. However, from the inside Kassandra experienced some struggles.



    Having a highly sensitive personality can be hard on young people, especially middle schoolers and high schoolers. Kassandra was one of those kids. This sensitivity is a gift but also challenging because she felt emotions and compassion so deeply.

    Kassandra, like many young people, was growing up in a culture that modeled for her that she had to look "a certain way" in order to be valuable and to be loved.

    She did not necessarily look "that certain way" in her eyes. Thus by the time she was in middle school she began to wrestle with body image. Then she started dieting.



    Soon this body image insecurity and dieting routines began to develop into a binge eating disorder. Then by the time Kassandra was in her early twenties, the struggles created a disorder called orthorexia: an unhealthy obsession with healthy eating. Interestingly, Kassandra's orthorexia developed out of her trying to eat healthily but then becoming overly attached to the affirmations she was receiving for her "healthy lifestyle".

    As Kassandra started to become aware of the unhealthiness of her trying to be healthy, she gave a name to her struggles to help her label and detach from them: Ed and the Gang.



    * Ed is the eating disorder

    * The Gang is those struggles that prime her to have an eating disorder:



    * Perfectionism

    * People pleasing

    * Legalism

    * Needing to be in control

    * Type A personality







    To Kassandra, Ed and the Gang felt like a huge rock on her, pushing her into the ground. It felt overwhelming to her.



    As a young teen, Kassandra's "Gang" led her to a very high performance, especially academically. She strove the be the valedictorian of her school and other high-achieving accomplishments. This was not hard for Kassandra to do...for a while. She could work, work, work. Then she would "hit a wall". By the time she would get home from school on those "hit a wall" days, she would crash on the couch, watch television and eat.



    Unfortunately for her, this was not simply "emotional eating" (which can still be dysfunctional), it was more uncontrollable eating. Binge eating is the kind of food intake that cannot be controlled. It feels like the need to eat is a compulsion.



    Next she would feel ashamed and so she would extremely food-restrict (eat very little). This would lead to her body feeling that it was facing famine or starvation because she was not taking in enough calories to survive.

    • 31 min
    Why Study CS Lewis in High School?

    Why Study CS Lewis in High School?

    This week on Homeschool Highschool Podcast: Why Study CS Lewis in High School?





    Why Study CS Lewis in High School?

    This week on HSHSP, Vicki talks about one of her favorite topics: the writings of C.S. Lewis! If you have not ever thought about Lewis for homeschool high schoolers, hang in there. Vicki will explain why studying his works is a good idea.

    Here are some reasons why study CS Lewis in high school?:

    There are tons of reasons why Why Study CS Lewis in High School. However, we only have time for a few:

    It is fun!

    Really! Did you read The Chronicles of Narnia to your kids when they were younger? You might have noticed that you were enjoying the stories also. That is because Lewis wrote these stories to be ageless. He said:

    A children's story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children's story in the slightest.

    The Narnia books really do not grow old. Teens in high school can revisit The Chronicles at a more adult level. Now, they can enjoy and learn from the symbolism and deeper concepts that Lewis embeds in those stories. Then, they can move onto his deeper fiction works, like The Screwtape Letters and The Space Trilogy.





    They can learn to think about theological concepts in a different way

    Many of our homeschool high schoolers are used to Bible studies with the family or in their Sunday school classes, youth groups or summer camps. However, they can gain a deeper understanding when they turn the theological perspective on its head.



    When they read The Screwtape Letters, that is exactly what Lewis does. This novel are the "letters" of an older demon trying to train his nephew on how to be a successful tormentor of his assigned human. In the book, readers learn a bit about the whiles of the devil and the undefeatableness (is that a word?) of God.



    While thinking about theological concepts in a different manner, teens can move on to literature studies in The Space Trilogy. This is a series of books:



    * Out of the Silent Planet

    * Perelandra

    * That Hideous Strength



    Each of the books takes a Science Fiction look at theology. No kidding! Lewis authored these books in the early days of Sci-Fi popularity (even before space exploration). With the popularity of this genre in mind, Lewis embeds theological and ethical concepts in some deep and compelling ways. (These books might be a little dense for younger teens, however, every reader is different- so do what is best for your students.)

    Teens learn to think wisely and to read deeply

    As high schoolers, teens can read The Chronicles of Narnia at a deeper level. Lewis embedded a lot of symbolism in his books. While reading, teens can learn to have fun looking for it. For instance:



    * It is obvious that Aslan is a symbol of Christ.

    * Aslan sacrifices himself for Edmond's betrayal. This, of course, is a symbol of Christ's sacrifice for our sins.

    * Prince Rilian in the cavern is a symbol of Plato's analogy of the cave. (You really need the study guide if you have not studied Plato's cave.)



    However, there are even more symbols that are not quite as obvious. For instance,

    • 20 min
    Strength in Adversity for Homeschool Families, Interview with Meredith Curtis

    Strength in Adversity for Homeschool Families, Interview with Meredith Curtis

    This week on Homeschool Highschool Podcast: Strength in Adversity for Homeschool Families, Interview with Meredith Curtis.





    Strength in Adversity for Homeschool Families, Interview with Meredith Curtis

    Sometimes life is tough and you need a little encouragement. These last couple of years have been tough for everyone. That's why Vicki was chatting with our friend and colleague at the Ultimate Homeschool Podcast Network, Meredith Curtis. She is also a curriculum writer (her website is PowerlineProd.com)



    Meredith is the host of the Finish Well Podcast. And she has finished raising a bunch of homeschool high schoolers well! She is the mother of five children: four daughters and a son.



    Vicki and Meredith started homeschooling back in the old days when homeschool moms all seemed to wear denim jumpers and drove huge vans. Both ladies kind of broke the mold because they never got around to doing either. However, both us us loved the time with our kids all the way through high school. For instance, we loved to help them develop their interests, skills, faith and character qualities.



    Meredith was busy homeschooling her family from 1991-2016, when she graduated her youngest. She was sad to finish up homeschooling. However, she found a renewed need for her experience in her local homeschool co-ops and helping out her oldest daughter who was married and had young children. Therefore, she became a supporter and mentor to those around her.



    Through her experiences homeschooling her own teens, Meredith developed curriculum that filled some holes in the material available to homeschoolers. She continues to share her materials and wisdom on her website and podcast.



    Both Vicki and Meredith have noticed that our kids were friends through their teen years and (what a blessing!) have remained friends as adults. We have noticed that they will go to each other for comfort or advice in tough times. They find in each other some strength in times of adversity.

    How to find strength in adversity for homeschool families

    Speaking of adversity...adversity has always been an irritation to Vicki that it happens. She freely admits that, as a young mom, she hoped that by homeschooling her kids in as safe and nurturing environment, they would be shielded from hardships. She quickly found out that, despite her best efforts, she was not in charge of the universe and that tough times happen to everyone.

    So how did we find strength in times of adversity? Let's give some examples:

    Some of the best ways to show how to survive adversity is to share specific stories from life. Vicki and Meredith hope you find some strength and encouragement for your tough times.

    Church planting

    Meredith and her husband are church planters. When they came to Florida to plant churches there, they experienced many times where the finances were low...of course, because building a tithing congregation takes time! There were many times that they prayed together as a family, "Lord, we don't know how to pay these bills and care  hospitably for these church members."



    She remembers feeling angry or fearful during some of these prayers. That is real. We can be authentic with God. In the end, she found that each month, something happened to get them through.

    Friends for our homeschool high schoolers

    Vicki's homeschool high schoolers were always active in homeschool co-ops, group classes, church youth group, choirs and other extracurriculars. Because they had so many experiences with their peers, they developed friendships. Unfortunately, occasionally those friendships would shift, leaving one or the other of her teens feeling sad and lonely.

    • 33 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
59 Ratings

59 Ratings

megan@podcastingyou ,

Valuable Content!

The Homeschool Highschool Podcast is packed with much needed information! Any homeschooled student or parent of a homeschooled student would benefit greatly from listening to this show!

WI Appraiser ,

Wonderful Conversations

I love this podcast and the wonderful conversations had in each episode. The podcast is inspiring, motivating, and a delightful resource for families who are homeschooling during their child’s high school years. Do yourself a favor and subscribe!

Peri457 ,

Tons of practical advice on homeschooling high school

Straight forward & full of useful practical advice. Love your podcasts. Was desperately looking for homeschool high school tips & I found it..yay!

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