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... out of the box!
I have to admit: science has been one of those subjects I've struggled with in our homeschool.
Unfortunately, I didn't have very good science teachers growing up. As a matter of fact, I have a vivid memory of my 9th-grade biology teacher falling asleep during a lab class at one point!
But I realized that like it or not, as a responsible home educator, at some point I was gonna have to get on the bandwagon. And then I'll bet you can imagine how shocked I was to find that I even had a child that was a budding science-geek! Ah, the turns life makes...
Recently I wrote a post for the iHomeschoolNetwork blog about teaching science without a curriculum. There I outlined how to use two basic tools to prepare for an exciting year of science studies for you and your brood.
Here I'd like to add to that and share with you some more wonderful resources and amazing bloggers who can help enrich your homeschool curriculum-less sciences lessons.
Remember: the Typical Course of Study from WorldBook, and the Dewey Decimal system at your local library are your go-to basic "must-haves" when teaching science without the use of a particular curriculum.
But, thanks to the magic of modern technology, and the lure of exciting stuff happening on screens to grab our attention, there are also wonderful videos to help teach concepts and increase interest - both yours and your students':
- On YouTube, CrashCourse has playlists that cover topics from Study Skills to Film Making to US Government and Politics, but also check out their Computer Science, Physics, Biology, and Ecology. Also on YouTube, check out this short playlist of Science Experiments for Teens.
- Did you know that you can personalize the course presentations in Khan Academy? Choose from distinct grades in middle-and high-school, and from subjects including Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Engineering, and Health and Medicine.
And there are a few more resources worth mentioning!
- HomeScienceTools - Warning: Hanging out here can be dangerous. Visitors may experience intense feelings of curiosity and a need to purchase a bit too many super-interesting kits and supplies and develop an insatiable interest in experimentation! (Only slightly kidding!)
- DiscountSchoolSupply provides a wide variety of both general science and STEM-focused products that are appropriate through the middle school years.
Finally, incorporating some of these great science bloggers will help you find exciting ways to engage your kiddos, grow your own ability and confidence in teaching science, and yes, perhaps even develop a love for this subject in your own life. Hey, it
could does happen!
Homeschool Bloggers focusing on Science Education
As a fellow homeschool blogger, I've been very fortunate to have met some exceptional science-focused homeschoolers and benefitted from their experience and expertise. I'm pleased to recommend the following bloggers to you:
- Marci, as The Homeschool Scientist, offers recommended resources for biology, chemistry, and human anatomy/physiology, as well as a fun monthly science-related calendar if you need some inspiration. She also has a whole section of science experiments on topics that range from botany to physics that can be used by the whole family.
- Kim left a full-time career as a science teacher to become a full-time homeschooler. Her site, TheLearningHypotheses, focuses on science lessons and materials for middle to high-school learning. Her latest book, The Lab Bench, is a collection of science activities, with an emphasis on STEM. She also has just opened up a membership site that offers a growing range of planning tips, activities and ideas.
- In addition to middle school science topics, Eva travels the world with her family and writes about it at her blog EvaVarga.com. She has put together a great resource for middle schoolers (or for you classically-educating families, the dialectic or logic stage) with her ScienceLogic curriculum. Before you freak out, now, be aware that while this may have the appearance of a curriculum, this is more like a collection of units which can be used in whatever order appeals or applies to you, covering life-, earth- and physical science topics.
- Don't be fooled by the blog name! Cindy, at OurJourneyWestward, covers some interesting aspects of teaching/learning high school science such as in-depth nature studies for high schoolers, out-of-the-box chemistry, and crafting a science program for the horse-lover!
- Heather, at BlogSheWrote, outlines some middle school and high school science strategies and provides an outstanding list of resources in this discussion of teaching middle and high school science.
- Although Amanda, at RaisingDaVinci admittedly leans towards the arts, she also blogs about science, and has some free and easy science experiments, books and materials that can be used when you also have younger ones around wanting to get in on the science "action."
- In that same vein, SallieBorrink has a series of printables that are helpful for keeping younger sibs educationally and scientifically engaged. Karyn, a former-teacher-turned-homeschooler who writes at TeachBesideMe, also has some fun science activities, as does Colleen, an educational consultant, and mother of four gifted/exceptional children who blogs at RaisingLifelongLearners.
How to Grow Your Own Ability and Interest in the Sciences
Believe it or not, as you continue to work with your child in science and explore the wonder of the natural world around you, you'll find that your own interest grows as well.
What's important to remember is that your job as a homeschool science teacher is NOT to make your son or daughter the next Louie Pasteur or Madame Curie, but to awaken their interest and excitement in learning and discovery.
Along the way, each of you may become drawn to a particular field of science, or you may not! Either way, when you become excited about the journey, that excitement is contagious - and a lifestyle of learning grows.
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