By Raylene Hunt Kane, B.S., Ed.
While working with Homeschoolers of Maine over the years, I’ve spoken to many parents who were feeling stressed about portfolio reviews. There is so much uncertainty about the process, and there are so many questions, especially from those just starting out. I always assure them, and I want to assure you, that it really isn’t that complicated. It’s as Easy
as 1 – 2 – 3!
1. Prepare in Advance – When it comes time to order your curriculum and buy school supplies, visit the HOME website and print out the Portfolio Review Packet, too. It is downloadable from the HOME website here: https://www.homeschoolersofmaine.org/events/home-portfolio-evaluations/home-portfolio-reviews-by-mail/
Purchase the items you’ll need to create the portfolio when you do your school shopping. For each child, you’ll want to consider buying:
1 large, three-ring binder
1 – 2 packages of divider tabs – you’ll need 8 – 10, depending on the subjects that you’re covering with the student. The subjects required by law include: English/Language Arts, math, science, social studies, physical education, health, fine arts, library skills and in at least one grade between 6th – 12th grade Maine Studies, and in at least one grade between 7th – 12th computer proficiency. You may have other tabs for foreign language, Bible or other topics of specific interest to the student.
Plastic sleeves for work samples – you’ll want a minimum of 4 per subject or 40 sleeves. HOME requires that there are two work samples per subject, per quarter, or 8 progressive samples for the year.
Once you have all your supplies, assemble your portfolio and put your attendance sheet in the front.
Now you’re ready for step 2.
2. Add Work Samples – At the end of each quarter (mark your calendar in advance as a reminder), take two work samples from each subject and insert them into the portfolio you’ve assembled. At the beginning, use work samples that are less than perfect. Remember the goal is to show the progress that has been achieved through the year. During the middle two quarters, choose work samples that show some improvement and put them in the portfolio. During the last quarter, choose the very best samples. This will give the evaluating teacher a good perspective of the progress that has been made by the student throughout the year. Once you’ve completed 175 days of instruction, you’re ready to submit your portfolio.
3. Submit Your Portfolio for Review – Mail it in to HOME, and a qualified HOME reviewer will evaluate it for you. Instructions on submitting the portfolio are included in the HOME Portfolio Review Packet. Remember that is available on the HOME website here: https://www.homeschoolersofmaine.org/events/home-portfolio-evaluations/home-portfolio-reviews-by-mail/
See, it’s as easy as 1 – 2- 3!
Hope to see your name among those who register for a HOME Portfolio Review in 2018. If you’d rather join us in person for a Group Portfolio Review, stay tuned! Another blog post is coming soon on how easy that process is. It’s even simpler!
Raylene Hunt Kane is a veteran homeschooling mom of 2, who has been part of the HOME Leadership team for many years. She often coaches families through the preparation of portfolios and facilitates Group Portfolio Reviews for HOME. She lives with her family in Camden, Maine.