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Homeschooling science -HELP!

Posted: Tue Jun 16, 2009 7:19 am
by burby
Hello. :D I have been homeschooling my child for almost six months. Im aware that at this stage I shouldnt be stressing to much on what to teach or how to teach yet and just let us find our feet. Ive probably started still using a mainstream method and Im not sure if we are happy with this, so im trying to be a bit more flexible (but still organized!) What im really having trouble with is science. My child really loved science at school (it was the only time he was willing to learn there!!) but all the resources I have found online for science lesson plans mainly include loads of experiments with materials needed I simply cannot afford (or have the room for) Is there any way that I can still teach science that doesnt need mass materials for experiments, or is science about experimenting???
Any help would be gratfully appreciated :D

Posted: Tue Jun 16, 2009 7:27 am
by Lily
Science is about experimenting, at least in our house.

What are you looking for in science - new earth or secular? We've had pretty good success with Noeo's program (mostly secular). They use living books that can be mostly found at a library and offer experiment packages with everything included. It's been great for us because some easy to find items elsewhere are just nonexistent here (I'm on the hunt for posterboard for a project right now and it's so frustrating!). Having all the items right there ready to go is one of the things I like the best.

You can probably do the same sort of thing at home without even the Noeo guides. Just pick up books at the library to flip through and see what the experiments call for. Or, draw up a list of things your son wants to learn about and find inexpensive experiments to go with. I'm sure if you got a list together you could pick the brains of everyone on here to see what they've done with the same lessons. :D

Posted: Tue Jun 16, 2009 7:37 am
by burby
Im probably going to sound really dumb now, but what do you mean by new earth or secular?
I get what you mean that science does involve alot of experiments. Maybe i should make a list of different experiments that use the same sort of materials so it would be cheaper to buy in bulk. I took my child out of school suddenly I didnt have alot of time to prepare and collect martials up, so im teaching and perparing what to teach at the same time, and i suppose im feeling a bit bogged down!

Posted: Tue Jun 16, 2009 8:07 am
by Lily
New earth - creationism, age of earth around 6000 years.
Secular - evolution, age of earth around 4.5 billion years.

What does your ds want to learn about? How old is he? Most science experiments for elementary kids can use things you find around the house, I promise! It's only when you end up doing one field at a time that you might want to invest more. If he wants to jump around, you can do really cheap things.

Posted: Tue Jun 16, 2009 8:46 am
by burby
It would be secular then - we are not a religous family.
My child is 9, and he likes to learn everything!, but has a very short attention spam!. He is pretty interested in space, insects and dinosaurs.

Posted: Tue Jun 16, 2009 10:59 am
by burby
After reading a few topics on here ive decided i need to do de-schooling for a while which i never did when i took my son out of school. Then i may take the unschooling route (still needs more research for me before i decide) My son is so inquesitive and i think i need to have more faith in his abilty to want to learn. Thanks Lily for your responses thay have made me feel SOOOOO much better. Also thanks to other members on this forum who has helped me without knowing.

Posted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 6:46 am
by Lily
Deschooling is a great idea!

I thought about your son last night and his interests. Have you looked into Charlotte Mason style at all? It is very easy to do secular, uses living books (regular books instead of textbooks) and is very nature oriented. Amblesideonline has a free curriculum outline that might help you both find your way in the science dept. It relies more on observation and recording those thoughts/visuals in the form of creating one's own textbook. Lots of drawing and being involved in science.
It does have a bible study with it, but CM is very easy to do secular if you choose to go that route.

Posted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 12:20 pm
by Jill
Janice Van Cleave has some great experiement books you can usually find at the library...most are with materials that are readily available and not expensive.
Best wishes!

Posted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 4:57 am
by burby
That a great idea, thanks.
I also thought im going to take my son to the library more often so he can find some other stuff to get interested in. He is very creative so lots of art book should be great, and with the summer hols coming up soon we will have more time to go places.
After summer hols I will be homeschooling all my four children so maybe they can interest and encourage each other!

Posted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 9:55 pm
by millerfamilymayhem
Remember the old "Mr. Wizzard" Show, He did science with simple around the home items. Inspiration can also be found with Bill Nye (the science guy). I never cared for Beakmans world though. I am sure that there are clips of these shows online or videos to rent at the library. Also look at the National Audubon Societies' Field Guides.

RadioShack when I was a kid had wonderful electronic science kits and such.

When my oldest was 3 he started showing interest in dinosaurs. I had taken a large bovine bone and buried it in our backyard and suggested a "fossil dig" Six years later he brought up finding the bone. I told him that it was not a fossil, but a planted cow bone. I really don't like misleading people.It was really heartwarming that he remembered that day so long ago.