Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: In the middle of nowhere, at the centre of everything.
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My four kids haven't done this particular transition, but something rather similar: they switched from completely child-led unschooling to mainstream public high school somewhere between ages 12 and 15. I echo what Midwestmom2009 says above: your child will be prepared. The sense of self, the groundedness, those traits are secure in holistically-educated children.
Having watched my own kids leap into the deep end with mainstream schooling, I want to make a pitch for keeping support and preparation very low-key and casual. I'm convinced that my kids benefitted from the fact that my expectations were positive: I assumed that any gaps, glitches and adjustments, even those that were entirely unexpected, would be manageable for them and therefore didn't try to 'prepare them.' If I had got busy trying to address any potential issues and smoothing the way for them I think they would have worried that I thought they were likely to fail without that help, that the change was going to be stressful, difficult and anxiety-provoking... and that would have become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
There were a few things that were challenging for each of them, but their confidence was worth far more than any preparation I could have assisted them with. Essentially we looked on public high school as an interesting and exciting and at-times-weird new culture, like a foreign country they were about to visit, one that would be full of new experiences and new expectations which they would figure out as they went along. And they did.
Mountain mama to one great kid and three great grown-ups