When it comes to preparing a Homeschool Portfolio, a lot of parents feel uncomfortable about it because they don’t know where to start or what to do about it.
Thus, if you need to keep a portfolio for homeschool, I will give an A-Z Guide on creating a Homeschool Portfolio, the benefits and the requirements of a Homeschool Portfolio.
The first thing you need to do when you start homeschooling is to find out if your state requires a Homeschool Portfolio. States like Montana, Alabama, South Carolina, and many others require that you keep records of all homeschooling activities. So, find out if your state encourages record keeping.
Nevertheless, even if your state doesn’t support a Homeschool Portfolio, it will be beneficial to keep one for future purposes like when you want to apply for college or going back to public school.
Creating a Homeschool Portfolio can be a tedious task for homeschooling in a situation where you don’t have the experience, some will feel like you have to put in every nook and cranny of Homeschool and create a big file of all you have done during the homeschool period, but not that way.
What is a Homeschool Portfolio?
In a lay man’s term, a Homeschool Portfolio is a record of all the major activities done during the period of homeschooling. It should include the curriculum, core subjects and electives, and the educational progress of the child during homeschool.
On the other hand, it is a document that includes the grades a child got during the course of homeschooling for a period of time.
Reasons for a Homeschool Portfolio:
A Homeschool Portfolio plays a vital role in helping the superintendent of the district which you homeschool understand how the homeschool process went, the curriculum used, subjects covered, and the extracurricular activities during the homeschool years.
The portfolio is one of the significant proofs of homeschooling, which shows you homeschooled your child.
How to create a Homeschool Portfolio:
Creating a Homeschool Portfolio is easy, the good news is that you don’t have to include every bit of the activities done during the homeschool, you pick the major things you did and compile it.
An easy way to go about this is to keep daily tracks of the tests and quizzes you give to your child so that it can be easier for you to create the portfolio.
What does your state say about Record Keeping:
Like I stated above, you need to understand the homeschool laws of our state when it comes to record-keeping and creating a Homeschool Portfolio.
For instance, a state like Montana requires a homeschool teacher to keep a record of the progress of homeschooling because it will be viewed by the superintendent to know how well your child is homeschooled.
Gather your records:
Bring together all the daily records you have been keeping all through the homeschool days even the ones you store in a Homeschool Tracker will serve. Use a 3 –ring binder, a file, and a page protector to customize the portfolio to suit your taste.
The portfolio should include the child’s name, the academic year of study, the grades covered during homeschooling, and the curriculum used for the study.
What is a Homeschool Tracker?
Homeschool Tracker is an improvement in keeping tracks, records of your child’s activities with pen and paper. These homeschool tracker Apps/Softwares run on Windows XP, 2000, 7, 8, and 10. Everything is done online and you get access to the planning software with the registration link once you pay.
Place the records in the Homeschool Portfolio:
Starting from grade one, you include the tests and quizzes you performed for each subject, daily and the teacher summary of each week for the entire grade one.
It should include the list of books read, the attendance records and the extra-curricular activities performed all through the period.
When the child gets into the second grade, the same process stated above is followed, till the end of the homeschool.
Note: In all these, check your state requirement for creating a Portfolio, they can have a format for you.
Major Requirements of a Homeschool Portfolio:
While you create a good portfolio for homeschool, you need to put these into consideration:
Organization: For a portfolio to be presentable, you need to keep it organized. All the tests and performance for grade two should be organized in the grade two folder.
That is why I recommend a three-ring binder that can help you organize all the documents easily. All awards and volunteer works done by the child can be added towards the end of the portfolio.
Keep it Simple and Straight forward(KISS):
Keep the portfolio simple and easy to understand to a layman. You don’t have to complicate it with a lot of writing; pictures will play a significant role in explaining how the entire homeschooling process.
Homeschool Portfolio Reactions for Moms:
MOM A: I home-schooled my child from the first grade to the third grade not knowing that I had to keep a record of homeschool (though my state laws don’t recommend).
When I got to the 3rd grade and realized my mistakes, I reviewed all I had taught my child in the 1st grade and gave him a test on it. The good news is that he came out successful. I did the same for the second grade too then compiled the records into a homeschool portfolio as proof of homeschooling. (Homeschool Mom in Mississippi)
MOM B: I used a Homeschool tracker for record-keeping, so when it was time to create a portfolio, I got all the data I needed from the Homeschool tracker and compiled it into a Homeschool Portfolio. (Homeschool Mom in South Carolina)
All the states do not require a Homeschool Portfolio, but it is essential you keep one for college references and as proof of homeschool. It should not include everything you did in the homeschool sessions.
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