*Feature photo (above) by Sphinx The Geek via flickr.*

Most homeschoolers feel at least a small tinge of panic as their students approach high school. “What have we gotten ourselves into?” we wonder. “Can we really do this?” Here are a few tips to make the transition easier.

Before you move forward, it may help to take a look back. How has homeschooling worked for you and your children so far?

If your students hate math, they probably never got a good taste of the “Aha!” factor, that *Eureka!* thrill of solving a challenging puzzle. The early teen years may be your last chance to convince them that math can be fun, so consider putting aside your textbooks for a few months to:

- Subscribe to Games magazine.
- Read Brian Bolt books, or work through Raymond Smullyan’s What is the Name of This Book?
- Design your own tessellation T-shirts for Christmas gifts.
- Remodel the house. From financing to floor coverings, that is real math in action.

On the other hand, if you have delayed formal arithmetic, using your children’s elementary years to explore a wide variety of mathematical adventures, now is a good time to take stock of what these experiences have taught your students.

- How much of what society considers “the basics” have your children picked up along the way?
- Are there any gaps in their understanding of arithmetic, any concepts you want to add to their mental tool box?