Through our Self-Directed High School Program, Willow Home Ed students are invited to incorporate their own interests into their plan to achieve credits in combination with the content and learning outcomes established by Alberta Education. We support and encourage students to take charge of their learning, develop ways to exercise self-determination and agency, and express their personal creativity and passions.
The first step is to let your Home Education Manager (HEM) know which high school course you want to do. She or he will send you a Course Proposal Outline which summarizes the learning outcomes and helps guide you in creating a Self-Directed Student Course Proposal. We have course outlines for the four core academic areas (ELA, Math, Science, and Social) as well as other popular courses, such as Physical Education, Work Experience, CALM, and Special Projects. For other courses, such as in the arts, or CTS courses like Foods or Computer Science, your HEM will direct you to where the learning outcomes from Alberta Education can be found.
With the Proposal documents, parents, and students create detailed plans for high school learning which meet the learning outcomes of Alberta Education—using whatever resources and activities suit the student best. In the core courses in Grade 12, where students will write diploma exams, we recommend that students use at least some “Alberta Education approved” resources. Within these parameters, students are free to structure and pace their learning to meet their own needs and life demands. For example:
- English Language Arts: students are free to choose novels, short stories, essays, film, and drama that match their grade level and interest, and need not come solely from Alberta Education’s Authorized Novels and Nonfiction Annotated List from Alberta Education. However, we strongly recommend familiarity with works on this list for the grade 12 diploma exam. Students passionate about science fiction can choose science fiction novels, plays, or films. The specific novels, plays and so on should be listed on Proposal Part A. Your HEM will look over your Proposal, make suggestions if particular learning outcomes are missing, and then submit it to our principal, Joe Smith, for approval.
- Science or Mathematics: students are free to continue using the resources and programs they have in younger years, such as Crash Course, Khan Academy, or Math U See, supplementing where necessary to meet learning outcomes. They need not make a radical switch away from programs they have had success with for years.
With Physical Education, students already deeply involved in particular team sports or individual pursuits are free to continue and earn credit for these activities, supplementing to meet other requirements as described in the Willow Home Ed course outline.
- Fine Arts: students can pursue their interests in music, drama, painting, and so on through classes, lessons, and performances, again receiving credit.
- Special Projects are often the vehicle for students to develop and present their learning in a variety of pursuits. Our students have done projects in everything from Game Theory to Creative Writing, Show Jumping to Paleontology, and Religious Ministry to American Sign Language. At Willow Home Ed, the sky is the limit!
Self-Directed High School Forms
Contact your Home Education Manager for assistance.