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Homeschooling Courses - Aim for Nursing!

Homeschooling Courses - Aim for Nursing!
Wondering what homeschooling courses might help a student who wants to become a nurse?

The more biology, chemistry and physics the better!  General bio, and chem are required, physics is sometimes required as well.  Having an AP test in one or all areas will help significantly. course in each area is a BIG deal.


The more math the better.  Pre-Calculus is good, but having Calculus before graduation is even better.  I recommend a Teaching Company Course we loved called Calculus Made Clear.  My children loved it so much they watched it repeatedly.  If your child is ahead in math, consider a good Statistics course, or use the Teaching Company Course called Statistics Made Clear as a math supplement or elective.


Find work or a volunteer position in a nursing environment somehow. Anything from volunteering at a hospital to doing summer camps for kids with medical interests.

Take physical education seriously. Nursing is a physical job, and some strength and fitness is required.  There are some specific PE subjects that can help prospective nurses.  All of these things can be taught within your normal physical education courses.  These topics include:

  1. Nutrition: I would use the Teaching Company Course called Nutrition Made Clear.

  2. First Aid:  Take a day-long first aid class or first-responder course through your local fire department or Red Cross.

  3. General Health:  I used the Total Health textbook.

  4. Sleep hygiene: The importance of sleep is remarkably important for all college students, but particularly for nurses who will eventually work odd  hours and crazy shifts.  At some point the student can do a research project on sleep.




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Careers for Homeschoolers: Nursing

Careers for Homeschoolers: Nursing
Out of the blue, I was offered a job.  I'm not even looking for a job! Someone just called to asked me to come to work as a nurse.  I haven't worked as a nurse for about 15 years, but I still have my RN license, and they tracked me down.  I was offered $1100-$1400 per week - AFTER taxes, "free and clear money."  They told me I would receive a $1000 bonus for starting work with their company.



Nurses are in high demand.  With the population growing older, there are fewer nurses and the need is great.  There are a huge variety of careers within nursing, not just hospital care.  The hours can be long, but they don't have to be.  The job can be physically taxing, but not always.  It's an extremely flexible career that easily adapts for parents with young children.  It's a great field for missionaries, and a great "foot in the door" as a great skill that can benefit any country.

Nursing requires math and science.  I used algebra every day when I worked as a nurse, calculating medication and IV fluids.  One small math mistake could cause a serious medication error, so the pressure was intense.  In high school I completed pre-calculus, and calculus was required in college. As with any medical or science field, it's helpful to keep to the standard science courses:  biology, chemistry, and physics.

Teens who are interested in medical careers can search for volunteer opportunities to research careers.  I worked as a volunteer at a hospital from the age of 14.  Often called Candy Stripers, hospital volunteers provide a valuable function.  You can read an example in one hospital in Florida here.

While providing a service to the community, young people are also learning skills critical for medical fields.  They learn about the daily sights and smells, so they aren't shocked their first day of nursing practicum.  They learn basic skills, like bed-making.  They learn about caring for ill people, critical for determining a career in care-giving.  Finally, they can learn about the wide array of careers available in the medical field, so they can know which  specific medical field is right for them.

I loved being a nurse.  When my son was born I continued to work one  weekend a month.  That allowed my husband regular experience as a primary caregiver for our baby, which was great for our marriage.  When my son started little league, I couldn't bear to miss a single baseball game, so I quit working as a nurse.  I loved my job as a homeschooler as much as I had loved being a nurse. When my children graduated, it was difficult to decide what to do!

Ultimately, I loved my job as a home educator more, and my skills homeschooling high school were "fresh."  Still, I loved being a nurse, and I think it's a great career for young people who like taking care of others.



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Should My Child Become an Nurse or a Doctor?

Should My Child Become an Nurse or a Doctor?
There is a difference between being a nurse and being a doctor.  But please, don't base your decision on academic achievement, but on where your students heart lies.  It's the intangibles that are the deciding factor.
The person giving her assessment told my daughter to go ahead with her plan to get an RN, but not to stop there with her "educational potential" as he called it.
~Cam in Washington

As a nurse, I'm a little offended by the psychologist's perspective that an RN is for those with less educational potential!  (I'm not offended by your comments at all, just the psychologist's comments!)  Here is what I suggest.  If your daughter LOVES science and math, and ENJOYS taking care of people, then she might be a great doctor.  If your daughter LOVES taking care of people and ENJOYS math and science, then she might be a great nurse.  Because, in general, doctors TREAT patients - nurses take care of patients.  Doctors diagnose, write orders and then leave.  It's a completely different job - not related to educational potential at all.

One easy way to decide what you want to do is to work in a hospital.  For younger students, I often recommend being a hospital volunteer.  That's what I did!  You can volunteer usually from the age of 14.  For older students (18 years) you may be able to look into phlebotomy, or the drawing of blood.  That has the added benefit of being a paying job, and introducing you to actual physical intervention, all while getting you into the hospital setting.

I don't recommend is choosing to be a doctor "because" of academics, anymore than I recommend being a nurse "because" of gender.



Learn how to translate all those great homeschool high school experiences into the words and numbers that colleges will understand with my ebook,  ”The Easy Truth About Homeschool Transcripts.”
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