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8th Grade Science - What are you doing?

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I am trying to decide what to do for 8th grade science next year. I am leaning towards physical science/physics. What are you doing? Inspire me!

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What you can do for science in 8th grade depends on the student's math preparation.

A real physics class requires completion of algebra and a bit of trig. One of my kids took an algebra/trig based physics in 8th grade.

The other did astronomy.

 

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I like the idea of a conceptual physics or conceptual physics/chemistry even better. It would be nice to have that foundation before biology.

 

I found a text to try to do conceptual physics for 7th/8th and decided it was going to be more work to plan and adjust for my then 7th graders (it was a college text) than I had the time and energy to devote. I still like the idea, though.

 

I then decided to do an earth/space science instead for middle school, as I assume we won't have time to do much of that in high school. I'm glad we did. It was fun and we learned a lot. 

 

After that, eventually anyway, I found Science Maters (Hazen/Trefil), and we're working through that book together in 8th. I think it's going to give us a decent overview of the science branches (includes physics, chemistry, earth/space, and biology basics) before we hit high school. The kids seem to be retaining well, though I'm putting effort into making sure they understand what we study and hold on to that understanding. 

 

 

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I am considering doing Sonlight's new Technology Science core with mine.  Otherwise I will use Science Explorer Physical Science, I guess.  I want something creative for this one, though. 

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Interest led. I had zero interest in pushing my kids to take a high school level science at this point. Plenty of that next year and beyond.

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Physical Science. I would LOVE to do Conceptual Physical Science Explorations, but DD likes to do things by herself, so she's working through Acellus. I don't love it, but it keeps her accountable.

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I've been debating this, but like Farrar, I think I'm going to keep it fun and relaxed for our last year before high school.  They read a ton of science books and curriculum on their own for fun.  I think we'll do Bite-Sized Physics and some Ellen McHenry stuff that I already have.  

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I had a request for biology, so we are doing a no frills online bio class. After that, who knows, we'll see how math is progressing.

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For G8 this year, my dd wanted to focus on birds and the science fair. She took courses through The Cornell Lab Bird Academy, participated in their citizen science projects, and volunteered with two bird banding programs. She'll wrap up the year by going to the International Ornithological Congress in August. For the science fair, she used remote cameras to monitor ungulate and canid interactions at a mineral lick that is within walking distance of our home. Cornell's bird anatomy course led to a six-week investigation of how UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C impact animal vision. We'll postpone textbook science for as long as possible!

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One of mine did BJU Life Science in 8th.  Very good preparation for more textbook based science study in high school.  Science up to that point had been half mom-designed, half NOVA watching and interest led reading.  This low key approach worked very well for my non-STEM kid--but I felt he needed practice in learning how to read a science text, study terms, take quizzes and tests that were more demanding.  The BJU text was good for that.  He finished most of the book in one year. 

 

Second 8th grader did about 2/3 of the BJU Life Science text at a slower pace in 7th, finished the remainder of the text for the first half of 8th, and then did interest led technology/inventor stuff for the rest of his year (in other words, he played around a lot watching documentaries and building things.)  Good year for him.  :)

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Interest led. I had zero interest in pushing my kids to take a high school level science at this point. Plenty of that next year and beyond.

Same! We did culinary science (nearing the end of 8th now).

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For G8 this year, my dd wanted to focus on birds and the science fair. She took courses through The Cornell Lab Bird Academy, participated in their citizen science projects, and volunteered with two bird banding programs. She'll wrap up the year by going to the International Ornithological Congress in August. For the science fair, she used remote cameras to monitor ungulate and canid interactions at a mineral lick that is within walking distance of our home. Cornell's bird anatomy course led to a six-week investigation of how UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C impact animal vision. We'll postpone textbook science for as long as possible!

This is amazing--I had no idea they had these courses. Thank you!

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For G8 this year, my dd wanted to focus on birds and the science fair. She took courses through The Cornell Lab Bird Academy, participated in their citizen science projects, and volunteered with two bird banding programs. She'll wrap up the year by going to the International Ornithological Congress in August. For the science fair, she used remote cameras to monitor ungulate and canid interactions at a mineral lick that is within walking distance of our home. Cornell's bird anatomy course led to a six-week investigation of how UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C impact animal vision. We'll postpone textbook science for as long as possible!

 

What an awesome experience!!!

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My 8th grader is doing a co-op class. The teacher had us purchase two different Prentice Hall used texts (less than $10 apiece used online,) that are a 6th and a 7th grade public school texts. She has pulled from those two books the lessons for this year, just telling us each week which chapter from which book to read. She has put together the labs in co-op each week and sometimes makes worksheets that she sends home with us for the week or assigns the work from the book that week. She has covered a kind of general science this way. We have done some basic chemistry (to which we added reading Exploring the World of Chemistry as a read aloud at home,) some Earth Science, and some biology topics. They have done all kinds of hands on in classtime. She is an amazing teacher. 

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Thanks, everyone! I have enjoyed reading all of your replies ðŸ˜

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One of mine did an integrated science year using both high school and a college integrated scinece text.

The other is doing Biology with an emphasis on botany.

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Building foundations for Scientific understanding. I like the way it makes my kids think and make connections between what they know to what they don't know. We are on vol.2 this year and will be doing middle school next year. I am very relaxed with it. It genuinely peaks my interest along with my kids so we learn the lesson and investigate together.

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My daughter wanted to do the Apologia Anatomy book that is red and geared toward upper grade school/middle school. I wanted her to do Conceptual Physics. So she has done both. With Conceptual Physics she reads and sometimes watches videos and then she answers the review questions aloud with me every few sections. 

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My son really wants to take a 6-8th grade forensic science and an astronomy course. Probably will end up doing that. Still debating.

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My son is in 8th grade and is finishing up Apologia General Science through our co-op. He has really loved it and learned a ton. Next year he will take Apologia Physical Science with our co-op, which lines up with our public high school scope & sequence. 

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I’m doing BJU streaming. My kids really enjoy the BJU science and I enjoy facilitating rather than teaching. I just have not felt inspired with science. 

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What about DIVE Integrated Physics and Chemistry? Has anyone tried it? When my dd was in 8th we did a mix of the Science Explorer books with some homemade labs. The textbooks are good, but I think she found them a little dull. We've had good experience with the DIVE math and I wish we had tried DIVE science earlier.

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1 minute ago, CAJinBE said:

What about DIVE Integrated Physics and Chemistry? Has anyone tried it? When my dd was in 8th we did a mix of the Science Explorer books with some homemade labs. The textbooks are good, but I think she found them a little dull. We've had good experience with the DIVE math and I wish we had tried DIVE science earlier.

I'm considering the Earth Science for my 8th grader next year. 

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My oldest did Derek Owens Physical Science in 8th - it’s a well done class and I liked how his notes are set up for students to take notes on during lecture - executive skills training bonus. Also we liked the self-paced style so she could move faster.

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Summer Science (2018) = [with me] The Elements [Ellen McHenry]

Summer Science (2018) = [with Dad] Snap Circuits

Semester 1: Group Work = Botany [Ellen McHenry] + How Food Grows website + Hands-On Work

Semester 1: Independent Work = Botany [Apologia] + Science Bookshelf (botany books) + Exploring the World of Chemistry [Tiner] + Exploring the World of Physics [Tiner; reading for review]

Semester 2: Group Work = Microscope Skills + Cells [Ellen McHenry] + Hands-On Work

Semester 2: Independent Work = Human Anatomy & Physiology [Apologia] + Science Bookshelf (cells; microscope; A & P) + Exploring the World of Chemistry [Tiner] + Exploring the World of Physics [Tiner; reading for review]

Summer Science (2019) = [with me] Protozoa [Ellen McHenry]

Summer Science (2019) = [with Dad] more Snap Circuits

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Both of mine did biology in 6th and physical science in 7th, so I let them choose something fun for 8th. Older dd did oceanography & marine biology. Younger ds is going to do a forensic science class for this coming fall.

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We do a semester of health and a "free choice" semester that is a hands-on project of some kind: turtle pond, Minecraft mods (coding), a Marian garden, and one volunteered at the zoo. My upcoming 8th grader is thinking about chickens.

I love the idea of a culinary or kitchen science, and will add that to my list of suggestions for the kids. 

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