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Found 10 results

  1. My DS6 wants more hands-on science. I'm following WTM curriculum suggestions for 1st grade. We usually read a few pages and then he writes a one page summary, and sometimes draws a picture. It's ok. He doesn't fight me, but he's not super-pumped about it. I'm wondering how I can make biology more hands-on at this level. When I think of hands-on science, I go straight to baking soda volcanoes, and other simple chemical reactions which would be chemistry, and not used in WTM till later (3rd or 4th, I forget...) or physics topics like heat transfer and magnets, etc. I don't think he's ready for dissection and microscopes and other hands-on biology things that I did in high school. Does anyone have a suggestion?
  2. I don't usually post here, but I thought that some of you might like to see what a scientific investigation looks like. My older son is working on a 12-week long science-fair project studying how wind speed and direction and the orientation of the bay affect longshore transport of sand. I started writing about this project from its inception and really before the idea was even clear in his head, and I have been writing about the development of the question and the design of the experiment. We are currently collecting data intensively so he will have time to really mull over what he has found and write it up. If you have never seen an investigation in action, hopefully this will walk you through the steps and inspire you to try your own. :001_smile: http://www.welltrainedmind.com/forums/showthread.php?t=361740 Ruth in NZ
  3. If you're interested in exploring the topic of clean water, there are what look like interesting experiments available here. They did have a summer science kit giveaway going, but it looks like they have run out. If you click on the Activity Kit link you can see a list of materials for all of the downloadable experiments.
  4. We're looking to do some cool, fun science stuff. What are some of your coolest finds? Any subject area. thanks!
  5. This is a bit long. Sorry. I'm not sure you can answer my questions if I don't explain the whole thing, though. And I don't know how to structure this post so all my questions get answered instead of just one because they are all a muddle. Last year (9th), we followed MODG's natural history syllabus (with supplimentation). This year, my son is again doing natural history, but without someone else's curriculum. One of my goals for this year is to get him designing, doing, and properly writing up experiments. We did this last year, but it fell into the suppliment catagory and we only worked on it a bit. This is a major reason we are doing a second year of natural history, that and because it allows us to concentrate on skills without having to worry too much about covering content. He will do chem and physics at CC for the rest of high school. Taking biology at CC won't work for our family for a variety of reasons. My question is: Is there a better way of learning to do experiments than just coming up with an idea for an experiment yourself and carrying it out? We have run into several problems with this approach: 1. It takes oodles of time. 2. He has trouble finding things to try that he doesn't know the outcome of already (or can't easily look up) AND that don't require time or equipment we don't have AND about which he is at least mildly curious. 3. When he does have an idea, it usually is something that could/would be done in elementary school. Some things we managed to accomplish last year: A large part of my husband's job is designing experiments (or critiquing other people's designs) so between us all we worked out a writeup and review format that is working. My son has a good idea of what an experiment is (as opposed to an activity) from watching every episode of Myth Busters he could get his hands on. We live in a place rich with nature so that isn't a problem. He can draw and observes well. He has a good idea of what naturalists do from his reading. The whole thing would be easier if he (and we) weren't so averse to hurting anything living that we aren't going to eat. Would the standard labs for high school (or college) teach this better? My husband thinks not, because he keeps having to teach engineers who have had the standard number of years of lab science how to design and write up even a simple experiment. He sees nothing wrong with the simplicity of my son's experiment ideas, as long as he is truly testing what he thinks he is testing. He just keeps saying, "I would love to hire engineers who start out being able to do this." I keep reading offhand statements on these boards about separating DNA and things like that, and being worried that all my son is doing is seeing if dried yeast sinks. Not that separating out DNA is something I have my heart set on his doing, but I would feel less worried if he were doing more sophisticated natural history experiments. They have to be real experiments, though, not just super-sophisticated activities designed to reinforce the lesson. Is there a curriculum out there that teaches how to design an experiment, a real experiment about something that you don't know, not just an activity? What do I do about the statistics piece. He hasn't had any statistics other than the simple mode/medium/mean stuff. There are other pieces to his science this year, like reading. Is this a stupid approach? -Nan
  6. Experiments! Experiments! Experiments! Is there a curriculum that would offer alot of experiments using things you might have on hand? I would like some flow of things and teaching lessons to go with them...
  7. My 5 year-old son has become highly interested in "science experiments" lately. But I'm running out of (safe) ideas, and you can only do vinegar and baking-soda, and things with dyes so many time before the luster wears off. So is there a good resource for finding safe experiments for a young "mad-scientist"? No links to personal hot-air balloon building please :D Bill (who knows this hive is sitting on some great ideas)
  8. What are you using for science? My sons will be 7 and 9 next year (roughly grades 2 and 4, respectively), they are very science-minded kids and already know a lot about science. I have failed to get their attention this year with the WTM method, and I'm looking for alternatives. We are secular homeschoolers too. And they love hands-on projects/experiments. Please tell me what you are using, describe some of the topics covered, how do your kids like it, is it expensive/difficult, where do I find it?
  9. My dw has kindly agreed to take over some of the teaching next year as my work schedule changes. Best of all, she is willing to do hands-on science with dd, who will be in 2nd grade. What books can you recommend for science experiments that don't require a lot of specialized equipment or materials?
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