Figuring out which electives to do for your home school can sometimes be a daunting task. Even if you find one your child is interested in, can you manage it at home? Here is a list of 25 High School Elective Ideas you can do, and your child will love them!
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High school is the time to introduce your child to the many choices that are available to them.
It’s an opportunity to help them explore their interests and decide what they might like to do after high school.
I’m sure you have spent countless hours trying to come up with subjects and curriculum you believe your child will enjoy.
I know I have.
When it comes to high school planning, sometimes it can be difficult to find subjects your kids are interested in learning about.
Each year, you present them with a list of options only to have them make faces and say “Uh, no, that sounds boring!”
I’m here to help.
Everyone has different interests for sure.
I believe this list of high school elective ideas has something for even the most narrow of interests.
Plus, I have done the work for you and it’s all right here, ready and waiting for you to enjoy.
Let’s get started.
25 High School Elective Ideas
Technology is the future.
Learning how to code is a skill that will take your child into the world armed with a valuable aptitude that employers are seeking out.
Code.org offers free coding courses that are amazing. They have many different levels from beginner to advanced.
Check them out, you’ll be glad you did.
You can’t go wrong teaching technology to your kids.
Like it or not, it is the way of the future and skills that are necessary for success.
Web Design is a huge and ever-growing field and demand is high for skilled web designers.
Udemy.org offers many fantastic courses on web design – be sure to check them out.
Video Game Design
By now you’re probably thinking this is post is all about computer science, it’s not, I promise!
The reason I started with computer science is that it is such a prominent field in our world today.
Plus it’s very likely something your kids are interested in exploring.
Video Game Design is another one of those careers that are booming.
If your child loves video games and wants to learn more about how they are made, then this just might be the elective choice for them.
Udemy.org also offers video game programming courses and they are awesome.
I have one child who loves to write and showed an interest in starting a blog, so I figured, why not make it into a creative writing course.
Having started my own blog gives me an advantage when it comes to knowing the steps needed to get started, but really, there are so many good resources out there, anyone can do it.
Spend a little time getting the blog up and running, then all your student needs to do is get creative.
They will love writing and designing their posts, creating graphics and maintaining their web page.
This course might be a great follow up to a web design course.
You can get a free website on Wix, then just set-up an editorial calendar for your student. This will be one writing course your child will love.
Home Ec – Sewing, Cooking, Laundry, Car Maintenance, Gardening
Teach your kids important life skills to make them better humans.
As homeschoolers, we have a big advantage over other schools in that we can teach our kids important skills that are actually useful.
You will likely have to piece this curriculum together from resources around the web or just from your own knowledge.
We did this course a couple of years ago and it was so fun.
Youtube has great sewing tutorials by the way.
You may choose to teach this course at home or sign-up for a local course.
If you choose to do it at home, driversed.com offers the instructional portion of the course for a great low price.
All the instruction is done online and prepares your student to take the written DMV test to get their driver’s permit.
You can then help them with the behind the wheel portion by taking them out and teaching how to drive.
You can check them out here
Personal Finance teaches your high schoolers about budgeting, banking, loans, buying houses or renting, taxes, and more.
All of which are valuable skills to have when going out into the world.
I bought our curriculum from teachers pay teachers and used some resources from the IRS website.
I also included a unit on career exploration.
Teaching your kids about what nutrition is and how it affects their lives is a valuable lesson.
I found a great resource on teachers pay teachers that covered it all.
This is also a great opportunity to teach your kids about shopping – how to figure out the best prices on items and how to maneuver a grocery store.
Introduction to Psychology
We are doing Psychology this upcoming year and I have to say, I am pretty excited about it.
It seems that mental health and growth mindset are topics on everyone’s mind.
Ha! see what I did there?
My kids actually asked me if we could study Psychology this year because they know it is so important to practice self-care.
I found a fantastic resource for an introduction to psychology that gives us a taste of what the world of psychology has to offer.
I purchased the textbook – Psychology 5th Edition by Saundra K. Ciccarelli in PDF form – from etextbookguru.com for a fantastic price.
Then I went to pearson.com to get access to all the teacher resources that go along with the textbook, all for free. It takes a little bit of work to get access to the resources, but it’s totally worth it.
This course can be an extension of your Psychology course and could even include criminal justice and law enforcement.
Robots are cool.
Who wouldn’t want to build one and learn more about them?
Outschool.com offers robotics for beginners class where you student will actually build their own robot.
You can also check out a full robotics curriculum from roboterra.com.
Botany is the study of plants.
You could offer not only the scientific aspect of this course but also to start a garden.
Check out some courses through outschool.com for botany.
My other child loves all things mythology so I decided to take that interest and make it into a year-long elective course.
I used the full curriculum from mythologyteacher.com where you can download an outline and all the resources.
You can buy the textbooks as PDFs or if you want physical books, you have to buy them from Amazon.
These resources cover Greek, Roman, Norse, and Other Myths.
They are written as plays but can be easily adapted for home school.
The books include fun games too.
I have talked about photography quite often in the past, but just in case you missed it.
We used Foto Finch and we loved it.
You can read all about it in the review I wrote about them.
Video production was one of the best elective courses we have done.
We used a fantastic course from Film School 4 Teens. It is easy to use and very well put together.
If you have a child with an interest in film, this is definitely a great place to start learning about it.
Cooking – Culinary
Culinary arts cover a wide range of skills from cooking to restaurant operations.
You can choose to teach as much or a little as you want, but some basics should be followed.
- Food Safety
- Knife Skills
- Cooking Methods
- Fruits and Vegetables
Again, these are just some of the basics.
You can also teach cakes, pies, pasta, front of the house, back of the house, and more.
I found some great recipes and slides from Teachers Pay Teachers and some food safety tips from FightBac.org
Economics is an important subject for our high schoolers to learn and understand and it doesn’t have to be hard or boring.
I found this great curriculum from teachers pay teachers that we are using this year.
Fine Art – Music
Learn to Play an Instrument
Your budding rock star can learn to play just about any instrument right from home.
This year, my daughter is learning to play bass guitar using a course from Udemy.com.
If you prefer a more hands-on learning environment, you can always check around for local music teachers.
There are many online courses and resources for music appreciation.
Look on Outschool.com to find one starting soon.
Udemy.com offers courses on learning to write songs. We haven’t tried this yet, but Udemy has some great courses and runs sales all the time.
Fine Art – Art
Look for a local ceramics shop that offers classes or go to ceramic.school for online courses covering a wide variety of ceramics topics.
Elements of Drawing
This is an introductory course to drawing that teaches shapes, shading, perspective, and more.
Look on Outschool.com for many different art choices.
We have done painting a few times over the years and most recently we used YouTube for painting tutorials.
I recommend these tutorials, they are great for beginners and you don’t have to be an art teacher – let them teach for you.
There are also some great and free resources across the web for learning about color wheels and mixing paint, just search for them.
Check out JAM courses for kids if your student is interested in learning how to animate their drawings.
They offer a course that, if you are willing to buy some equipment and put in the time, looks amazing.
NOTE: Apparently Jam has merged with DIY.com – not sure if they still offer this course, but I know there are others out there.
Fine Arts – Performing Arts
Sign your student up for a class at your local dance studio.
Phew! That was a lot of information!
Don’t worry though.
Now you are armed with the tools and are prepared to ask your high school student which electives they want to take this coming year.
Won’t they be pleasantly surprised(or overwhelmed) when you have a list of 25 different options to try?
You’re sure to find a few they are truly interested in learning more about.
I hope this list of 25 High School Elective Ideas for your home school has been helpful.
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Which electives are you going to try out? Leave a comment below, I’d love to hear from you.