1109 Home Schooling

Shiloh talks about not going to high school and being home schooled.


Adria: So, Shiloh, I hear you are home schooled. I didn't have that experience so can you tell me what it was like?

Shiloh: Yeah, Adria, I was home schooled during high school. I was home schooled for six years actually, my whole high school experience. It was good but it was bad. There are things that I liked and there are things that I didn't like. For instance, I didn't have quite as many friends as I could have. The reason I was home schooled was because I was always traveling with my family and I wasn't able to stay at home and go to school five days a week. But the classes were good. I had almost the same classes as everybody else did. I learned the same things, I just learned them in a different environment by myself.

Adria: So how did you make friends?

Shiloh: Well when you're home schooled, there are these things called home school groups which are kind of social organizations composed of other students who are home schooled and you get together once or twice a week and you might have a class together, maybe you are all taking the same subject and then they'll have a real teacher come and give you a class or sometimes it's just a social event and you just go hang out and play games. And I met a lot of people this way but sometimes the people were a little geeky and they never really became my good friends.

Adria: So during home schooling did your mom teach you or was it largely self study?

Shiloh: Well my mom actually didn't do very much work because we subscribed to a program where we ordered academic DVDs from a real high school in another part of the country. So I was sitting in a room watching a real class on a television screen. It was almost as if I was in the real class because there was somebody in the back of the room with a video camera. So my mom didn't have to do too much work because I was taught via television and when I did my homework and my tests and exams, my mother sent my work back to this school where they graded it and kept my grades.

Adria: That's interesting. Well how did you go about applying for college because in high school usually the counselor helps you apply for colleges. So how did you go about that?

Shiloh: That was difficult because I had to figure everything out by myself. Obviously my mom and my dad didn't know too much about applying to colleges because they hadn't done it in thirty years so it was a little difficult because first I had to figure out what schools I wanted to go to. I had to get all the information together by myself. I did take standardized tests like everybody else does when they are in high school. So I had the same type of test scores that other students would have and I had all the same information. The difference was it was just coming from a home school instead of a real school.

Adria: So what were some of the subjects that are required? Is it the same as a normal high school curriculum?

Shiloh: Yeah, the curriculum's the same. We study basically the same, maths and sciences and grammar and English, this sort of thing, but we are also able to study more what we wanted to. If I wanted to, it was more like college in this sense, if I was taking four classes and one of them I didn't like and I wanted to take a different class instead, well generally I could do that and I could go just get all the books for that class and switch classes.

Adria: That's very interesting.

Learn Vocabulary from the lesson


So during home schooling did your mom teach you or was it largely self study?

Here, the word 'largely' is similar in meaning to 'mostly'. Notice the following:

  1. It's largely my fault.
  2. Steve Jobs is largely responsible for the success of Apple.

as if

It was almost as if I was in the real class.

Here, we can replace the phrase 'as if' with the work 'like' and the meaning is the same. the Notice the following:

  1. The movie made me feel as if I were there.
  2. The movie made me feel like I was there

apply for

The counselor helps you apply for colleges.

Here, when we apply for a school, that means we request, in writing, to study there. In common usage, we often say 'apply to'. Notice the following:

  1. He applied to several colleges.
  2. You should seek advice from a counselor before applying for university,


I did take standardized tests like everybody else does when they are in high school.

A standardized test is specific to a subject, not a particular book, or program. Such tests are of the same format most anywhere in the world. Notice the following:

  1. In The US, the standardized test for English is TOEFL.
  2. I had to take a standardized test to enter the program.


If I wanted to I could switch classes.

To switch something means to change it. Notice the following:

  1. I wish I could switch jobs.
  2. You can switch classes up to one week after the term begins.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

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Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
largely • as if • apply for
standardized • switch
  1. at least two universities, if you're not too decided on one yet.
  2. It felt I were in a dream.
  3. I think I will have to courses next semester.
  4. She is responsible for promotions and correspondence.
  5. He has to take the English test next month.