Tuesday, January 19, 2010

I'm a slow learner

In the twenty years that we've been homeschooling, I have to admit that science has not been one of my stronger subjects as a teacher.

We've managed to read through texts and go on a few field trips but on a week to week basis I wasn't terribly consistent with things like science notebooks or experiments.

One of the things I should expect from myself as a teacher with so much time (I hesitate to say "experience") under my belt as a homeschooler, is that I should be able to analyze my weaknesses and work for improvement, right? My older kids are doing very well despite my short-comings as a teacher but I have a new chance to do better with these little guys in the next ten years that we have ahead of us.

What was that? Tt..t..t...tt...tt...ttt....ten.... years?

Someone grab the smelling salts! I'm feeling woozy....

What was I saying?

Oh yes. Another chance. To learn from my mistakes. To make a stronger effort.

So I decided to find something better to use for science and I found this gem:

I am very pleased with it so far. This book has everything necessary for a nice elementary earth science program: explanatory text on many topics involving the structure of the earth, the atmosphere, weather and space. The layout of the book is simple and straightforward with lessons structured to include terms, review questions and keeping a science notebook. The book has reproducible charts, maps, and coloring pages. Best of all it has a hands-on project or experiment with each chapter. The lessons can be geared for ease or difficulty to suit a wide range of ages. I'm using it for seven and nine year old boys but it could be used through sixth grade. All of this is in one nifty package! I truly hit the jack-pot with this purchase (a deal at $24.50!)

We recently finished the chapter on caves. I hope in the spring to take the boys to some caves our family explored years ago across the ditch in Washington. Right now they are too icy to attempt any spelunking.

I'm so proud of myself. We have had consistent lessons-- with terms!

The boys are keeping a science notebook!
The science notebooks have more than one page in them!

We've made a clay model of the earth's layers!

We boiled and cracked eggs while talking about plate tectonics!

This week the boys are doing an experiment to show how stalagmites are formed!!

We are doing real elementary science!!!

I'm so proud, I could cry.


  1. wow, that's terrific! I wish I'd had that book when mine were younger. Like your older ones, mine are doing ok, but they don't really like high school science. I can't help but think that might have been different if I'd spent more time on it in the early years. Your boys are lucky!

  2. Good for you! I feel I've been slack in the science department also. (I actually found a fetal pig, sheep's heart, and cow's eyeball in a box this weekend while cleaning out my son's closet.) I'm using Apologia Astronomy this year and loving it. I'll have to check out that book. I'd love to have my son do more notebooking.

    And when he graduates in the year 2020, I will have had 27 years under my belt...enough to retire in the public school system. I think I might just do that.

  3. Okay, Southern Gal, I've found some nasty stuff in the closets but you win the Grand Prize!

    And I just can't do any more calculations about how long this is taking. Tralalalalala! Not thinking about it!


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