Resources for Parents of College-Bound Students Challenges for the college-bound student



Not all online courses are created equal.

Our online classes are not "asynchronous" —
our instructors interact with students in real time.

Online Courses for 2023–24

Open for registration: Our live, interactive offerings

View our 2023–24 weekly schedule OR annual calendar


Honors Biology With Lab

Homeschooling Fundamentals - Getting startedMany biology courses are asynchronous or meet just one hour per week. Our Honors Biology With Lab, by contrast, meets live, in real time, three times per week. The reason: It is our conviction that in a science course, students should be able to interact with and ask questions of a live instructor — and do so frequently, on a regular basis. We consider live interactions with the instructor vital to deepening students' understanding, correcting confusion, and cultivating real engagement.

Honors Biology With Lab is quite different from an AP course, which must cover a vast number of topics at a rapid pace. In this course, the content is taught in a tiered fashion — laying foundational concepts, building up knowledge, delving deep into the facts. The instructor continually loops back to essential concepts covered earlier in the course and, as a result, reinforces students' understanding and builds real mastery of critical concepts. Her aim is threefold:

  • to train her students in real scientific thinking;
  • to impart deep understanding of the subject;
  • to foster a real love of science.

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Honors Chemistry With Lab

Homeschooling Fundamentals - Getting startedIn this year-long, honors-level class, each student acquires both a deep understanding of chemistry and an appreciation for its real-world applications. Each week comprises live lecture and live discussion enhanced by graphics and PowerPoint presentations. Students perform labs under the instructor's guidance and are provided with lab materials and worksheets to be completed at home.

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Science Intensives

Homeschooling the College-Bound StudentOur online science intensives are eight weeks long; each delivers in-depth, focused study of a particular topic in science, and they all include labs. Each is a standalone course that may complement nicely your at-home science curriculum. These courses are appropriate for late middle-school-level and early high-school-level students. In these courses, accordingly, study guides, tests, and note-taking sheets are provided to help students develop the study skills critical to science instruction.

Instructor Diane Speed will deliver intensives on the following topics:

  • Ecology: September 26 – November 17, 2023
  • Genetics: January 16 – March 15, 2024
  • Botany: March 26 – May 24, 2024

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Weekly schedule of online classes - BOTTOMView our schedule

To view our weekly schedule for 2023-24, click on the image at right.

Annual calendar of online classes - BOTTOMView our calendar

To view the annual calendar of our 2023-24 online classes, click on the image at right.





Corresponding anglesGeometry

Most people think of geometry as a study of shapes —  intersecting lines, triangles, angles — but what it's really about is logic. This geometry course helps students develop two forms of logic: 1) visual/spatial; 2) verbal. We use exercises, proofs, and puzzles to train minds in higher-order thinking.

Students develop a host of reasoning skills:

  • order & sequence — for instance, determining the proper sequence of statements in a proof (in the wrong sequence the proof may be invalid);
  • evaluating facts — those expressed as well as those not expressed;
  • synthesizing — combining two or more ideas to understand deeper insights, e.g., learning principles related to simple lines or angles, and then applying those principles to much more complex figures (cubes, pentagons, trapezoids, etc.);
  • multi-tasked information processing — holding ideas in short-term memory while processing new information, then retrieving the held ideas.

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Homeschooling the
College-Bound Student

Your one-stop-shopping resource of informationLive & online

Instructor: Diane Speed

This program addresses the principal concerns parents have about homeschooling through high school — everything you need to know about the high school curriculum and credits, standardized tests, transcripts and record-keeping, applying to college, pursuing scholarships, and much, much more.

The thing I liked best about this workshop: The workbook! Having all the information presented by Diane also on paper where notes can be added is so valuable! That's the true treasure from this workshop — it can be referred to repeatedly through high school years and when applying to colleges.

—Jacqueline B.
Homeschooling mom

Terrific. Full of information. The materials were so thorough. I now have a plan of action. Also, this workshop is inclusive: No matter what type of homeschooler you are, you will understand better how to prepare your student for college and present him or her in the best light.

—Homeschooling mom



History & Literature of the Middle Ages

Le Morte d'Arthur: GuinevereThis is a year-long online course in close reading of medieval texts. The emphasis is England and English literature, but a great deal of what the students learn about this period is by design applicable to other European societies and cultures.

The "Medieval Millennium" extended from roughly 500 to around 1500 ad, encompassing a huge swath of British history. English literature of the period spans everything from Anglo-Saxon poetry and the epic poem Beowulf to The Canterbury Tales and Malory's Morte Darthur. This course provides historical perspective, traces the development of the English language, and takes students on a deep dive into the most important literature of the period.

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The Writer's Guide to Grammar

Registration closed — Join our waitlist here.

The Writer's Guide to GrammarThis weekly online class is taught by the author of The Writer's Guide to Grammar. It provides complete training in English grammar, usage, and punctuation — but with a twist: Roy Speed emphasizes the topics that writers actually need to know. He teaches grammar principles not for their own sake, but as requisites for important writing tools — as keys to perceiving both:

  • how our language works;
  • what makes writing effective.

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Logical Communication

Logical Communication workbookAt the heart of effective writing is the ability to develop and sustain a clear train of thought. This acclaimed year-long writing course is designed to help students develop the missing skills — the writing tools and know-how needed to organize and express their ideas. To better understand the essay form, students they not only produce and revise their own essays; they read closely and analyze dozens of essays by really fine writers.
Please note: This course serves as a precursor to our course Essay Writing & Appreciation.

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Essay Writing & Appreciation

Advanced Writing ProgramThe emphasis of this course is writing essays that produce insight: those fleeting, intuitive leaps and connections we all make at some point — magic glimpses of understanding, and even wisdom.

Students in this course are trained, first, to notice and record their own observations and insights; second, to explore them in the form of essays. For inspiration, they not only read and analyze splendid essays by fine writers; they maintain a commonplace book of their own observations.

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Shakespeare Intensives

Romeo & Juliet — Ten online sessions

Romeo & Juliet (1968)These online sessions provide an in-depth study of this play as well as the historical, cultural, and literary background needed to bring the play to life. This course takes students to an advanced level of reading comprehension and analysis. It strengthens the skills needed to tackle sophisticated material across the curriculum and even dissect difficult passages included in standardized tests.

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Twelfth Night — Eight online sessions

Twelfth NightThis online series comprises eight sessions on one of Shakespeare's finest comedies. Twelfth Night satirizes unrequited love, mocks sanctimony and snobbery, and celebrates the simple pleasures of ordinary life. This course serves as an introduction to Shakespeare's comedy, and it is also a course in close reading — students become acquainted with Shakespeare's vocabulary and verse and get practice in important skills, like annotating the text.

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Hamlet — Ten online sessions

Shakespeare's HamletFor students, Hamlet can seem daunting — it's Shakespeare's longest play, with dark themes, complex ideas, and difficult verse. This course makes the play accessible and, in ten online sessions, reveals the play's deepest secrets. This course in close reading provides an in-depth study of the play some consider Shakespeare's greatest.

Prerequisites:  Students should already have some familiarity with Shakespeare. Our own College-Bound Intensive on Romeo & Juliet is ideal preparation for this course.

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Macbeth — Seven online sessions

Macbeth (1971)It may be his shortest tragedy, but Macbeth is packed with some of Shakespeare's most compelling imagery and finest verse. This series of seven sessions is for students who already have some familiarity with Shakespeare and seek greater depth. The emphasis is on close reading, and students also become familiar with 1) Shakespeare's sources for the play, and 2) the most interesting movie versions.

Prerequisites:  Students should already have considerable familiarity with Shakespeare. Our own College-Bound Intensive on Romeo & Juliet is ideal preparation for this course.

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