New homeschoolers read a lot of books touting a certain kind of homeschooler: the child with a passion for music, rockets, lambs, computer games, etc. We're often told to wait and watch for our child to find their "thing" and then the high school years and college unfold easily. I've seen a lot of homeschoolers fall naturally into that pattern and it is wonderful to see them blossom in that way.
But not all people fit that pattern. Some kids reach a certain age and they realize that high school is perfect for them. Supporting our child's choices can be very challenging when they've chosen school. (And you thought you'd be challenged by hang gliding or scuba camp!)
So I guess I'd like to say that we need to know that our children won't all find a "thing" (although some of them will). They won't all be the perfect SAT taker, the musical prodigy, or the nationally ranked gymnast (although some of them will). Or, maybe their thing will be something of dubious impressiveness: a makeup artist, a soap opera writer, a mechanic. Are you prepared to honor your child's dream to become a cosmetologist? Or a juggler? Most of them will be ordinary people doing ordinary things. We're here to be sure they're doing whatever they do with joy in their hearts, without the burden of other's expectations, with a sureness of their own selves. For years that looked like playing dress-up at our house. Now it looks like two days of MCC, a part-time job, trips to the thrift store, karaoke, skiing, and making SNL spoofs called Wednesday Night Dead; all with a group of friends we've known for many years who push us to become better people, not better resumes. I know my girls will be works of progress when they are my age. They don't have to have all of the answers by 18, 25 or 45. I have great faith that they have the self-esteem and confidence to know where they want to be today and how to plan for a meaningful future as they figure out what that looks like. They are so far ahead of where I was at their age because they have some idea of who they are, not who everyone wants them to be.
As for high school: Maggie tried it for eight weeks and came home disgusted and ready for MCC. Other kids try it and love it. I found it a very valuable experience for both of my kids to explore this alien world and choose for themselves the place where they felt they functioned best.