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Apologia General science experiments?


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I taught General Science in a co-op last year, and we did most (but not all) of the experiments.  One of my primary goals for the class was to teach the proper write-up of a lab report, so the experiments were key for that element.   (I did not keep track of grades or administer tests as part of the co-op class, as I left that up to the discretion of each student's mom.)


What are your goals for this student?   Is he likely headed toward a STEM related college major or career?  Which science courses are you planning for him for high school?   All of these questions would factor into my decision of whether to require experiments in 7th/8th grade.   IMO, General Science is a good transition course between elementary-level science and high school-level science courses.   If you plan to count Physical Science next year for high school credit, you'll need to do the labs and keep track of tests.   For Biology and Chemistry, labs will be even more important to the course.


Have you considered a compromise, by perhaps allowing him to pick a certain number (like 10-12) of the labs to do with the course, then skipping the rest?   Would a co-op class, where labs are done during class time, be a better fit for your DS?   I know that there were students (at least 3 out of my class of 12) who would not have done any labs had they been doing the course on their own at home.   But I think they got more out of the class because of the co-op environment, where we could discuss things like experimental error and interpreting results, than they would have on their own.

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Thank you both!


SebastianCat - As of right now, I don't believe he'll be a STEM student (I reserve the right to change that assessment at any time lol).  For HS, he'll probably do 1 Bio for sure, either Chem or Physical, and ??? after that.  He is not a motivated student at all.  He's basically suffering through school until he can graduate.  He's my get-r-done kid.  


I do like your idea of picking a certain number of experiments to do - that might make it less overwhelming for him and allow him to do the ones he's most interested in (if any - ha!).  Co-ops wouldn't do for him - not his style.

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