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13 Year Olds and Homeschooling

Homeschooling gives parents the ability to customize their own schedule, pick out the curriculum that best works for their children and delve into subjects that traditional schools don’t cover. As a family, you are empowered to build your own homeschooling programs, which means your thirteen year old will have an education that fits their personality and learning style.

You’re probably visiting this page because you want further assistance with homeschooling or you are new and looking for guidance. And you’re probably interested in finding out what other thirteen year olds are learning and what online programs are available to thirteen year olds.

The following guide is designed to help parents feel comfortable with their homeschooling decisions and give them an idea of how other thirteen year olds develop and learn. But remember, all children learn and develop at different rates. The learning process is complicated and milestones are reached at different times. With that in mind, use this information as a general guideline.   

General 13 Year Old Milestones

Your child just reached another milestone – the teenage years! And you probably heard all the horror stories about teenagers knowing everything. Some of that may be true, but these years aren’t always easy for the children either. They have hormonal changes, insecurity issues, and temperamental emotions. And they’re also looking to put a stamp on their own identity by stretching the boundaries that you set up for them.   

Other things that thirteen year olds share include:

  •         friends becoming more important in their lives
  • the search for privacy and “quiet time”
  • becoming easily frustrated by daily chores
  • fragile feelings
  • the knack for sarcasm and an expanded wit
  • the love of video games and their smart phone

 Homeschooling a 13 Year Old

Although your teenager is growing up, they sometimes seem more childish as a thirteen year old than some third graders. They often quickly lose interest in their studies and don’t show the effort that you’d expect. Parents get aggravated but keep focusing and encourage them as much as possible. Core subjects such as mathematics and history just aren’t cool for a teenager.

It’s not a lost cause, though. There are some proven methods for getting your stubborn teen back on track. Empower them. Let them choose the things they’ll learn about. This gives them the illusion of power – but it also develops their leadership qualities and provides a sense of responsibility. Once they realize that they’re responsible for their work and their future, start discussing what life will be like after high school. This helps them realize that they are truly entering adulthood and their decisions will impact not only the next few years, but many years beyond.   

With that in mind, make time to plan out their high school years. Let them discuss what they want out of high school. Maybe they would rather join a traditional school over homeschooling. If they continue homeschooling, start discussing what their curriculum choices might include. And don’t forget traditional high school events such as proms and graduation. Open it all up for discussion.   

What 13 Year Olds are Studying

Homeschoolers aren’t anchored down by the traditional subjects that other thirteen year olds study. The flexibility and out-of-the-box choices vary from homeschooler to homeschooler. But many parents are still interested in learning about what other thirteen year olds study. They generally are learning about:

  • persuasive and expository writing
  • deducing meaning and drawing deductions from reading material
  • using symbolic language in context
  • organizational skills
  • scale, proportion, and quantity
  • mid to recent American history
  • sex education and first aid

 Online Curriculum for 13 Year Olds

Computers and 13 year olds go hand in hand. So, as a parent, you have that going for you! And some online curriculum reminds teenagers of video games or their favorite apps. Many homeschooling parents have thanked their lucky stars after discovering online curriculum because it actually motivated their mostly lethargic teen.        

But parents really value web-based curriculum because some choices make their job easier. Some web-based programs track your child’s progress and help you monitor your 13 year olds learning pace and the material they’re studying. Many parents also choose online curriculum programs for skill building or as a full-time homeschooling tool.

Homeschooling a thirteen year old is challenging. But once you find the right curriculum mix and settle on the subjects they’re most interested in, the school year becomes easier. Find your magic mix and keeping reaching for a successful school year.