Let me start by emphasizing something–you do not need to log hours for classes if you are using standard textbooks or curriculum. However, if you are like me and plan on using a lot of not-standard-stuff, you can log hours to determine how much credit to give your student.
Here is another important tidbit: According to Lee Binz, high school transcript guru, 120-180 hours of work is equal to one credit or 60-90 hours for 1/2 credit which is typically one semester of work. (For those of us in Indiana it is 60-90 hours for 1 credit which is typically one semester of work.)
I will NOT be logging hours for Algebra I or Spanish because I am using standard curriculum for those classes, but I will be logging hours for classes like physical education and pottery.
Here are some scenarios that may help you understand when it would be appropriate to log hours:
Some of my friends have daughters in high school who are dancing, swimming, or participating in gymnastics. Logging hours helps the parent know when to give the child a credit for physical education.
Another friend has a daughter who participates in 1-2 drama productions each year. Mom can log the hours spent practicing for auditions, auditioning, rehersals, and shows. Field trips to plays, musicals, and operas could also be logged as hours for a drama credit.
Does your student take music lessons? Count the hours spent practicing as well as the time spent at classes and recitals.
I know a homeschool student who was a very gifted violinist and she played for an orchestra for a few years while she was in high school. All the hours spent practicing and performing could be added together and used for credit.
I know a homeschool student who spends every Wednesday morning helping at a local preschool. These hours can be logged and credit can be given for the time at the preschool.
Similarly, we have multiple high school students at our homeschool co-op who are now teaching classes! Mom can log the hours spent planning, preparing the syllabus, and teaching.
Classes Taken Outside the Home
My son is learning pottery from an amazing local artist. We log the hours each week. I have a friend and her son has taken countless classes at a studio. She can record all his dance hours and give him credits according to the hours he has spent dancing.
Elijah also takes classes at our homeschool co-op. He took 18 worldview classes at our local homeschool co-op (18 hours). He spent an additional 30 hours at home on the course work. He currently has 48 hours logged for worldview. His teacher gave the class an optional reading list. If Elijah would like to complete one wordview credit, he will need to spend at least 12 hours reading books from the list. The high school course record form can help us keep track.
If Elijah does not want to complete the worldview credit, I could possibly combine the hours with another similar class in order to read the credit. We hope to offer a world religions class at our co-op next fall, so Elijah and I could consider combining the worldview classes witih the world religions class credit.
I have a friend who has a daughter that sews. She is combining her 4-H hours with co-op classes and volunteer work to create a sewing credit for her.
Since our co-op hosts a geography fair every year, this is something for Elijah and I to consider. Over the course of four years, Elijah will be able to earn a semester’s worth of credit in geography by participating in the fair.
Now you know when and why to use the form, so let’s talk about the form. You can type directly on the form. There is room under the “course” section to add a brief description of the course. You can tally the hours on the form at the bottom of the form (before you print it and add it to your records). See the sample below for Elijah’s pottery class.
Save the form to your computer and rename it. I name each of mine to correspond with the class. Each time you need to log hours, open the form, log the hours, and SAVE it again.
Are you ready to grab your own form?
Let me know if you have any questions (in the comments), and I will do my best to help!