A Basic Guide to Understanding a Big Homeschool Concern!
WHAT IS A HOMESCHOOL PORTFOLIO?
I hope you saved EVERYTHING your student did this year! You’re about to spread it all out on the floor and create a masterpiece!
A Portfolio is a compressed version of everything your student did to learn. Proof if you will, that you did in fact educate them.
If you live in a state that does evaluations, a portfolio is necessary! If you live in a country where this “proof” is required, a portfolio will be the passport for continued educational freedom! It shouldn't be stressful or time-consuming. The need is simply to show progress and/or show documentation that your child learned what the authorities deem necessary.
It's never too late to create that homeschool portfolio, even if you have to dig papers out of bins from two years past! Some of us unintentionally create portfolios when we want to keep amazing art or writings our children did. You can certainly use this article to accomplish that.
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF HOMESCHOOL PORTFOLIOS?
Many homeschoolers have a variety of choices to evaluate their child each year. Creating a portfolio is a popular choice throughout the US. Always make sure to check your state's requirements. It is a good way to keep some things for your child to look back on or in the case you move where one is required. There is always a possibility of needing that child to return to public school, and a portfolio will show what your child has accomplished. The purpose of a Portfolio is to show progress of your child's learning throughout that year. It can also become a keepsake. The idea here is to create something that can best convey what your child learned.
You need to decide what to keep your work samples in! A 3-ring binder, or an accordion file folder like the Mead Five-Star Organizer work well. Not everything has to fit. You can also take pictures of large works like lapbooks, posters, dioramas, etc. Then put them in the file with a small description or upload the images to a flash drive to insert into the portfolio! If you're super organized, you may want to create a Table of Contents, Book Lists, Curriculum Descriptions, Report Cards, & details of Course Studies.
You will need to possibly print these and use Page Protectors to keep them clean. You will also need your planner to document dates of field trips and the attendance dates your child did school.
BEST THINGS TO INCLUDE IN THE PORTFOLIO
Table of Contents
State/Country Homeschool Laws
Examples of a Weekly Schedule
Description of Curriculum and/or Study Area
Work Samples for each Subject (Labeled or Divided)
Certificates of Completion (Dance, PE, Music, Sports)
Extras like Artwork, or other documentation, and Report Cards
*You can visit HSLDA for a list of requirements for each state.
IDEAS TO SHOW PROGRESS
Here are ideas to show your child's progress for different subject areas. You'll want to show a few samples from the beginning of the year through the end. No, not all will be a shining example, but it WILL show progress!
For English/Language Arts:
quizzes & tests
quizzes and tests
nature journal pages
For Social Studies:
pictures of projects
For Fine Arts:
composer and artist studies
Competition Medals or Trophies
Pictures of Activities
ABOUT KIRA from WILLOW & OWL
I'm Kira; a mom of three amazing kids, homeschooler, jack of all trades creator, book lover, and Licensed Esthetician/Instructor. I began our homeschooling journey many years after having kids and used my prior experience in the teaching arena to further our studies. I'm fuelled by my desire to share everything I can with those I care about.