How to Select a Homeschooling Science Curriculum

There are many ways homeschoolers learn about science ranging from nature observation, reading science textbooks, performing scientific experiments, visiting science museums, watching science based documentaries and reading science story books. Due to the history of homeschooling over the past 50 years, homeschooling science curriculum is predominantly written from a Christian perspective. However, the homeschooling community has greatly expanded over the past 15 years and with the expansion has come an infusion of secular science homeschooling resources. So regardless of whether you believe in evolution, creationism or a combination of both, there are preassembled homeschooling science curriculum available.

In addition to your religious beliefs, you should consider your homeschooling philosophy and child's learning style when choosing a homeschooling science curriculum for your family. The traditional method of homeschooling which aligns with the predominate methods of teaching in public schools relies on textbooks for the basis of learning science. Science curriculum in the Charlotte Mason and Waldorf philosophies of education involves long periods of time for nature study. Children spend lots of time outdoors observing nature and then track their observations by creating a nature notebook. Charlotte Mason homeschoolers also read living science books which are books that contain advanced language, tend to be story based, and focus on a particular science topic.

There are many science experiment kits and books available that can serve as a science curriculum or supplement.

Many of those new to homeschooling believe they are required to follow a curriculum for each subject. While following a curriculum can definitely make the planning process easier, it is not required. There are many resources available at libraries, and on the internet. Kids can learn so much with a tree identification book and access to the outdoors. Before spending lots of money on a pre-prepaired curriculum, ask yourself what are your goals and what do you hope your children learn. There is a good chance you already have many of the resources available to achieve those goals.

Science at Highhill Education

When my kids were in the elementary grades, they played with many different engineering/science toys and I considered that a large part of their science curriculum. We spent time following the Discover and Do series of video/hands-on science experiments and lots of time observing nature and reading living science books. We were not successful keeping nature notebooks, although we tried several times. My kids spent time learning to computer program, growing seeds, and studying the human body. I have written a lot about our elementary science studies and you can find the posts by visiting my science page.

As high school students, we have used textbook resources similar to the public schools for science. Although I really enjoy the living book and nature observation approach to science, it just hasn't felt sufficient to me for high school students. In addition to our textbook studies, we have done dissection through a homeschool co-op and chemistry experiments with a high school chemistry kit. My daughter has taken several AP science classes through the high school as in our state classes not required for graduation are open to homeschoolers. This includes all AP classes. Lastly, my oldest child also took organic chemistry and anatomy and physiology at the community college before finishing highschool.

There are many science curriculum resources available to homeschooling families. Be sure to check out the companies that offer complete curriculum as most sell their science curriculum separately.

Science Curriculum Resources

Traditional Approach

  • Real Science 4 Kids - secular, K-8th, textbook, lab book, traditional approach
  • Mystery Science - videos, K-5th, common core, traditional approach
  • Science Fusion - Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, k-8th, online, video, textbook, traditional approach
  • McGraw-Hill - K-12th, secular, textbooks, lab books, traditional approach
  • Apologia - Christian, 6th-12th, textbook, online, teacher available 
  • Khan Academy - free, 9th-12th, secular, online, interactive, video, lecture, traditional approach

 Non-Traditional Approaches

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...