I have spent the last two weeks pondering science for high school homeschoolers. As the vast majority of materials and advice on the internet stops at 8th grade, it took quite a bit of work and research for me to make my decisions. I scoured numerous websites and even spoke to former homeschoolers who have had their children go on to good colleges. Here is what I discovered.
Choose science courses for homeschoolers based on their future careers. There are many scientific disciplines to choose from. They can study astronomy, biology, botany, chemistry, earth or environmental science, physics, weather, zoology, and even computer science! Two of these sciences need to have a strong lab (experiment) component. While public school, students do not need to decide what they want to do until they are well into college, it is helpful for homeschoolers to have a good idea of the direction in which they plan to go so they can show strong interest and knowledge in that area. Having specific and advanced knowledge in a particular discipline will make them more valuable to colleges.
Choose science courses for homeschoolers based on their current interests. Even when students have no idea about what they want to do when they grow up, their current interests are very likely to lead to a future career. In addition, by exploring science disciplines that are of interest to them, they may make a decision toward one of those disciplines.
Choose practical science courses for homeschoolers heading toward non-scientific careers. If you know for a fact that your child is interested in fashion design, visual art, performing arts, or perhaps accounting, there are still science classes that will suit them. Every human being should have a working knowledge of the human body (Biology), and the environment (Earth science and Weather).
So what conclusion have I come to for my children? My future computer graphics and web designer who has taken physical science and computer science, is planning to take a calculus level physics class to finish off his studies in science. My future performer and designer who has taken environmental science, (and botany and astronomy in middle school) plans to take biology and chemistry just because she has always wanted to.