Homeschooling was an amazing experience that prepared me for college and got me where I am today. Regardless of how long I've been in college, however, I still know that there are some dead giveaways about my high school experience.
1. You were a little overwhelmed by your first few days (or weeks) at college.
Regardless of how busy your social life was in high school (because yes, we all socialized), being suddenly and constantly surrounded by people at college can be overwhelming. From large lecture halls to dorms full of noisy, smelly students, you're surrounded by people 24/7. While it can be quite an adjustment, always take the time to find a quiet spot and take a deep breath in the middle of the chaos.
2. You're constantly getting slightly ridiculous questions.
While I always welcome curious questions about my homeschooling experience, there are certainly some questions that make me roll my eyes. Personally, my favorite question I've ever gotten has been "Do you do math?" There are certainly many approaches to homeschooling, but if you're now studying at a university, you clearly learned the basic subjects at least. So yes, I studied math.
3. You knew kids who couldn't read Harry Potter (or you yourself couldn't).
Harry Potter was a childhood staple of mine, re-read over and over, but I certainly had friends whose parents forbade any book or movie about witchcraft. I still have friends who don't want to read the books, and I have friends who immediately read the series as soon as they moved into college. Regardless of you or your family's outlook on the series, the Harry Potter controversy just continues to demonstrate the diversity of the homeschool community.
4. You're probably a lot closer to your parents than most other students.
I was homeschooled beginning in the third grade, which means nine years of nearly 24/7 contact with my mother. As your teacher and your parent, the bonds between homeschooled kids and their parents can be much stronger. For me, this meant it was bittersweet when I left for college, for I was filled equally with relief for the freedom and homesickness for the comfort. But the transition was also filled with the confidence that my parents will always have my back.
5. Your time management skills were developed long before college...
Homeschooling requires you to manage your time well regardless if you are taught online, by an instructor or by your parents. This makes the adjustment to college way easier since you're already used to balancing both your school and social life.
6. As is your ability to teach yourself the material.
One of the huge differences between college and high school is how much you're expected to teach yourself. Professors are there to explain the material in-depth, but in many classes you're expected to at least understand the basics. From quizzes on the first day of class to lectures that skip over entire chapters, the ability to teach yourself is a lifesaver.
7. The need to put on pants just to go to class is a little foreign.
Yes, the chance to study in bed and wear PJs is one of the best parts about homeschooling. While wearing pajamas to class is still somewhat socially acceptable in college, most people save it for 8 a.m. classes or finals week. Thank god for yoga pants.
8. You get some great comments when people find out you were homeschooled.
"Oh wow, you seem so normal!"
"Did you talk to people?"
9. The excitement around weekends might be a new concept, but you quickly understand just how great the weekend is.
While I certainly worked hard in high school, I rarely had to spend 7 hours a day doing schoolwork. While weekends were nice and relaxing, I never quite understood why everyone looked forward to them so much. That is until I got to college and spent 14 hours a day either in class, studying, working or attending club meetings and events. Weekends are a godsend.
10. You know that you'll do just fine.
With all of the work you put into high school, how could you not be prepared? Getting to college is stressful and overwhelming, but you have family, friends, and your own skills on your side, so don't be afraid to dive right into the chaos.