Saturday, June 21, 2008

Plans for Fall- Science a work in progress

I am in the planning process. I am just a wee bit tempted by Sonlight again as I would love to just be able to open the curriculum pages and go to work. But we did try it in the past and it didn't work out so well and I don't think we are quite ready to go that route again. (And a secret...I enjoy planning and researching what to do.) I have not been happy with what we have done in the formal science area over the past years. We have oodles of experiment books- but the choice is too big. We tried Apologia Zoology and that didn't work. I thought it was content, so I moved to Apologia Astronomy- but that didn't work. Andrew just wasn't interested in the format and you can't force information into kids. That is, of course, one of the joys of homeschooling. You don't have to cram a certain format because that is all you are allowed to do. So I prayed, and researched and prayed.

Last week I happened upon AtHomeScience blogger. I believe I found it via the Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival. As I read her blog, and reviewed her LibraryThing I realized that we have done quite a bit of science as we have read many of the books she has on her LibraryThing. My first step in planning was to scoop up all my science books and put them in my own Librarything. I am still doing that but have around 50 books in there right now.

The next step was to decide what to do in the fall. Andrew has a large interest in Chemistry. Typically biology is the Elementary School subject of choice but I truly feel that I will be able to capture Andrew's attention better if I focus on chemistry- at least for fall. But it will be a bit more of a challenge since good living books are not written at that level for that topic. Below is what I am looking at using. I have requested most of them from the library so that I can take a peek at them myself and then I will probably buy 'a few.' I won't put links but you can find most of them on At Home Science's Librarything above.

Super Science concoctions: 50 Mysterious Mixtures for Fabulous Fun. by Jill Hauser (req from Library.)
How to Think LIke a Scientist (req from library.)
Fizz Bubble Flash (buy from Amazon)
A drop of Water (req from library)
What's smaller than a Pygmy Shrew (req from library)
Backyard Science Series 2- req from library
What is the World Made Of? All about Solids, Liquids and Gases (req from library)
Bubble-ology (req from library)
Picture book of Chemistry (not avail- look for used)
Eyewitness: Chemistry (buy from Amazon)
Magic School Bus Gets Baked in a Cake.
All about snow and ice (req from library)
Science in the Kitchen

As At Home Science notes, most elementary science living books seem to be toward nature. That is probably because nature is a natural science teacher and it also gels with Charlotte Mason nicely as that is part of her overall educational philosophy. Our nature study is still in the infancy stages. It is noted in various quotes throughout the Handbook of Nature Study that;

In nature study the work begins with any plant or creation which chances to interest the pupil.


As soon as nature- study becomes a task it should be dropped;

So we will continue with nature study as part of our science indirectly but I plan to have this be a self-directed activity so that he will keep with the enthusiasm. This was our first year of nature study and we are (both) still pre-schoolers in this area!

I will be updating a more concrete book and experiment book once I review the books from the library. (I books out right now and I think almost 30 requested. dollars at work!!)


Makita said...

I, too, very much enjoy researching & planning. I probably do a better job of that than I do of actually implementing my plans! :)

jamie in rose cottage said...

I enjoy the planning and researching, too. I will have to check out this library thing! Thanks!

Kris! said...

Funny you should mention the Picture Book of Chemistry since I pulled it off the shelf to review. Excellent chemistry material, makes a great spine, but I personally would skip the Chemistry is Nature's Magic intro. It really belabors the point and ends in a condescending tone. The rest is great, and it has a good bit of biochem, too, which is nice.

School for Us said...

I love researching/planning, too. :-) And, thanks for pointing out the At Home Science blog. It looks like she has some great ideas.

Barb-Harmony Art Mom said...

I enjoy planning but some years it is nice to have a plan as a base. We used Sonlight when the boys were younger and added in things as we found interest.

I think after having lived homeschool science for the past 12 years, that as long as you are keeping up their interest and exposing them to things...the rest will come over time. I always felt as if I needed to fit it all in but there really is a lot of time to cover everything.

Thanks for sharing the great blog entry with the carnival.

Barb-Harmony Art Mom

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