Jump to content

Menu

Chemistry at say a 3rd/4th gr level?


Recommended Posts

What are your favorite chemistry options for middle elementary, say a 3rd/4th grade level? My ds12 is super bright (gifted actually) but has ASD2 and significant language issues. He was listening to the youth version of The Disappearing Spoon last night and totally engaged, wanted to tell me about it, but the language got all muddled. So we're talking about simple things like the parts of an atom, the words for things, naming stuff. This will be hard for him. Visualizing the complexity will be easy, lol. So real complex with real simple language would be perfect. (dream)

I'm sort of out of the loop of options, so I'm wanting to hear what ya'll are using this days. I know I have Ellen McHenry's chemistry somewhere (the print version in a notebook) and that's way too much language. Something lower than that. I think I used (now I can't remember the name) like maybe Real Science 4 Kids years ago, a super low level, with my dd. That's sort of the right idea but that might be TOO low, kwim? Something in the middle there, not too low and not too high. 

I have scads of chemistry supplies, so I guess I just need a spine, not even necessarily a kit. Like I was looking at the Mel chemistry kits and those would be fine. I just probably own most of the supplies already, having gone through high school with my dd. 

We did a DK Kitchen Chemistry book one year that worked well. I even thought about the Apologia General Science. The syntax is accessible for him and it definitely has the interest factor. I'm just not sure whether he'd come out able to talk about it at all or use any specific language. It could be really great and engaging, a good stretch, or it could be something that would be just as good a year from now. This is not a dc who does a ton of traditional academics. I'm still doing 2-3 hours a day of LANGUAGE work with him, just trying to get his language up. He's going to max out around 4th grade for language comprehension. I wish I could make the General Science accessible, but it's too hard. Maybe something that idea but half as hard? LOL

Any suggestions? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was thinking some of the books from Be Naturally Curious might fit the bill, but maybe another option is Brilliant.org ? BNC has low level reading/high number of projects, but it might feel young.  Brilliant uses interactive videos, but it's high level information.  Neither requires much reading, unlike some of the hi-lo programs I looked at.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Could using the book list from a guest Hollow work?  The spine is Apologia which would probably be too much but they use a lot of lit that may fit for learning. Then we added in a chem set from Home Science Tools which came with experiments.  You may be able to just buy the simple booklet from them for those ideas

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Instead of Apologia General Science, look at Apologia Exploring Creation with Chemistry and Physics. I used this and thought it was was written to a grade 4-7 level. 

 

Edited by calbear
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We're planning on Chemistry for the Grammar Stage this fall for my super science-y kid. We're also planning on reading The Wonder Book of Chemistry (Faber), and young reader versions of The Radium Girls (Moore) and The Disappearing Spoon. 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We did Chemistry 2nd and 4th grade, using Creek Edge Press cards as the spine and MEL Science kits. Finding books that covered chemistry for them use use for reading/research was the hardest part, but a few encyclopedias and a few other books gave enough depth to do the cards well. Online videos and a few apps, the kids really enjoyed it, got a lot out of it, and the cards were easily flexed to their grade levels.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm going through your responses with a fine tooth comb, looking up each thing. Some, like the CEP task cards, are really messing with my paradigm, lol. I didn't realize the apologia elem. had a chem/physics book so you're right that could be a sensible option. I just need to go through everything y'all have listed and see what makes sense. Thanks!!  

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

There is a fairly new curriculum out from Shepherd Science aimed at middle school level/introductory high school course. However, I can't speak to what it looks like. I've only done the original life science course. It may be suitable for you in the future as it had an accompanying video course.

https://scienceshepherd.com/collections/chemistry
 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/11/2021 at 10:37 AM, HomeAgain said:

Brilliant.org ? BNC has low level reading/high number of projects, but it might feel young.  Brilliant uses interactive videos, but it's high level information.

Whoa, have you used this? It's $105 a year. There's a 7 day trial. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

45 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

Whoa, have you used this? It's $105 a year. There's a 7 day trial. 

Not yet.  I've been waffling back and forth and want to give it a go this year with ds, if he agrees.  He's not a huge fan of computer-based learning but I think it would be a better fit than his other choice, Glencoe Physical Science.  He has only really gravitated to things online like Mystery Science, Prodigy, and.......yeah, that's it.  Even ST Math was a bomb.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't know if Adaptive Curriculum (formerly Uzzingo) is available, but it might work if so. It's middle school level, but is text reader friendly, and having the experiments be virtual helped a lot to mitigate motor skills and frustration. 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/11/2021 at 9:23 AM, PeterPan said:

What are your favorite chemistry options for middle elementary, say a 3rd/4th grade level? My ds12 is super bright (gifted actually) but has ASD2 and significant language issues. He was listening to the youth version of The Disappearing Spoon last night and totally engaged, wanted to tell me about it, but the language got all muddled. So we're talking about simple things like the parts of an atom, the words for things, naming stuff. This will be hard for him. Visualizing the complexity will be easy, lol. So real complex with real simple language would be perfect. (dream)

I'm sort of out of the loop of options, so I'm wanting to hear what ya'll are using this days. I know I have Ellen McHenry's chemistry somewhere (the print version in a notebook) and that's way too much language. Something lower than that. I think I used (now I can't remember the name) like maybe Real Science 4 Kids years ago, a super low level, with my dd. That's sort of the right idea but that might be TOO low, kwim? Something in the middle there, not too low and not too high. 

I have scads of chemistry supplies, so I guess I just need a spine, not even necessarily a kit. Like I was looking at the Mel chemistry kits and those would be fine. I just probably own most of the supplies already, having gone through high school with my dd. 

We did a DK Kitchen Chemistry book one year that worked well. I even thought about the Apologia General Science. The syntax is accessible for him and it definitely has the interest factor. I'm just not sure whether he'd come out able to talk about it at all or use any specific language. It could be really great and engaging, a good stretch, or it could be something that would be just as good a year from now. This is not a dc who does a ton of traditional academics. I'm still doing 2-3 hours a day of LANGUAGE work with him, just trying to get his language up. He's going to max out around 4th grade for language comprehension. I wish I could make the General Science accessible, but it's too hard. Maybe something that idea but half as hard? LOL

Any suggestions? 

My son is using a Chemistry High School level book from RS4Kids. They do not sell it anymore. It is easier than high school (but on par with a public school regular level high school chemistry) but definitely has excellent content.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/11/2021 at 9:23 AM, PeterPan said:

What are your favorite chemistry options for middle elementary, say a 3rd/4th grade level? My ds12 is super bright (gifted actually) but has ASD2 and significant language issues. He was listening to the youth version of The Disappearing Spoon last night and totally engaged, wanted to tell me about it, but the language got all muddled. So we're talking about simple things like the parts of an atom, the words for things, naming stuff. This will be hard for him. Visualizing the complexity will be easy, lol. So real complex with real simple language would be perfect. (dream)

I'm sort of out of the loop of options, so I'm wanting to hear what ya'll are using this days. I know I have Ellen McHenry's chemistry somewhere (the print version in a notebook) and that's way too much language. Something lower than that. I think I used (now I can't remember the name) like maybe Real Science 4 Kids years ago, a super low level, with my dd. That's sort of the right idea but that might be TOO low, kwim? Something in the middle there, not too low and not too high. 

I have scads of chemistry supplies, so I guess I just need a spine, not even necessarily a kit. Like I was looking at the Mel chemistry kits and those would be fine. I just probably own most of the supplies already, having gone through high school with my dd. 

We did a DK Kitchen Chemistry book one year that worked well. I even thought about the Apologia General Science. The syntax is accessible for him and it definitely has the interest factor. I'm just not sure whether he'd come out able to talk about it at all or use any specific language. It could be really great and engaging, a good stretch, or it could be something that would be just as good a year from now. This is not a dc who does a ton of traditional academics. I'm still doing 2-3 hours a day of LANGUAGE work with him, just trying to get his language up. He's going to max out around 4th grade for language comprehension. I wish I could make the General Science accessible, but it's too hard. Maybe something that idea but half as hard? LOL

Any suggestions? 

Actually, I looked and they seem to still sell it but call it grades 5-8, which is actually a good age level. And the actual concepts are advanced but taught in a way the middle schoolers can understand.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Janeway said:

Actually, I looked and they seem to still sell it but call it grades 5-8, which is actually a good age level. And the actual concepts are advanced but taught in a way the middle schoolers can understand.

Ok, that explains a lot, lol. I was looking at that sample and kind of had a jaw drop. That would pretty much be high school for my ds. 

I'm still looking at stuff. I sorta blew my mind with all the samples today so I just walked away, lol. I have some Dinah Zike type books lying around that I want to go look at. They may be that very visual, low language kind of format too. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guesthollow has a free chemistry schedule that uses lots of lower level books. You might find some pieces there you like. If I recall correctly I used it with 5th/6th graders, subbing out some of the easier books for more challenging options. 

Edited by SilverMoon
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Clickie said:

You could supplement with the multi-media from the American Chemical Society's Middle School curriculum (free). (You might already know about it, I'm just mentioning it for posterity-thread-reader....)

https://www.middleschoolchemistry.com/

 

Back when I used it the middle school chemistry was printed. You're right, I hadn't seen the multi-media version until just yesterday. It's amazing!!

So I've got several good ideas here. The thing I'm toying with (noncommital, just toying) is the Van Cleave books. I have a bunch of them, and they seem to correlate activities to vocabulary very nicely. I'm realizing that my biggest concerns were vocabulary and narrative, things you would do with a dc of 8 or 9. He functions around age 9-10 developmentally, so it makes sense. 

I'm thinking I could make a grid response form as sort of a dictionary and he draws in something to represent the word. He can narrate and draw a picture of the lab activities. He might really engage with this. And some of the upper stuff y'all are describing would probably be his high school. I do think I could get the Guesthollow to work.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

43 minutes ago, Janeway said:

On YouTube, there are crash course kids videos and crash course videos. My kids are loving the crash course kids videos.

I think he has used Crash Course for history videos. He has more prior knowledge, so it would be easier for him to jump in there. The Crash Course *kids* videos don't seem to lead well into the regular crash course. Huge jump. They need a CK middle/high school, lol. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As a suggestion, you could buy a middle school chemistry consumable and get him to cut out the interesting pictures, like this.  That way he can augment his dictionary/grid book. This type of book is meant to be used up in any case, and you could  just ignore the text in the places where it gets a bit at middle school grade level -- in general, it's not that challenging.  I own this book.  It's full color with interesting photos.

Amazon link, reasonable price:

Student Edition Module J Grades 6-8 2018: Chemistry (Science Dimensions): HOUGHTON MIFFLIN HARCOURT: 9780544861022

Here is the (now discontinued) full package on Rainbow Resource so you can see a sample photo, last preview page.   I'm just suggesting the student consumable book....

https://www.rainbowresource.com/product/045175/Science-Dimensions-Homeschool-Package-Module-J-Grades-6-8-Chemistry.html

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, Clickie said:

As a suggestion, you could buy a middle school chemistry consumable and get him to cut out the interesting pictures, like this.  That way he can augment his dictionary/grid book. This type of book is meant to be used up in any case, and you could  just ignore the text in the places where it gets a bit at middle school grade level -- in general, it's not that challenging.  I own this book.  It's full color with interesting photos.

Amazon link, reasonable price:

Student Edition Module J Grades 6-8 2018: Chemistry (Science Dimensions): HOUGHTON MIFFLIN HARCOURT: 9780544861022

Here is the (now discontinued) full package on Rainbow Resource so you can see a sample photo, last preview page.   I'm just suggesting the student consumable book....

https://www.rainbowresource.com/product/045175/Science-Dimensions-Homeschool-Package-Module-J-Grades-6-8-Chemistry.html

I'm liking your idea, but I'm also liking the curriculum itself! So you're saying you've used this? Ds is GREAT with workbooks. Like truly smashing, awesome, we rock them, we can do them in droves. So to have a picture at the top and two questions like that worksheet sample shows on Rainbow, we could totally do that. 

So did you like the whole curriculum? And is this part of a series and they have other science topics for gr6-8? This really could be a winner. Almost everything we do is a workbook. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, I said I "owned" it, which unfortunately doesn't mean we've done it (.... a different problem.....) My argument is that my son is a rising 6th grader, so it's part of my plan for this year.  I only own the workbook, not the software package, as far as I can tell software activation had to happen by end of 2020, Dimensions Science has been discontinued.  Science Fusion is what they have available now for K-8.

Rainbow Resource link to Science Dimension module A where it details activation date

I do have quite a substantial collection of middle school science interactive worktexts, however.

HMH Science Fusion covers chemistry in the "Matter and Energy" worktext, about 3/4 of the book is chemistry, so it's a bit misnamed IMO.  The Dimensions Chemistry is probably a bit clearer, photos are full color and pages are less cluttered.    You made me curious, so I've been looking, and the clearest, most accessible language for middle school chemistry would seem to be in the McDougal Littell Science Interactive Reader "Focus on Physical Sciences."  Font size is enlarged, the lexile rating is probably at or below a Basher book (fortunately without the humor....)  I've attached a scanned sample page from McDougal Littell, but if you have a topic your son is expressly interested in, I could scan a relevant page so you could see if it would work.

Here it is on Amazon, very reasonably priced:

https://www.amazon.com/McDougal-Littell-Science-Physical-InterActive/dp/0618908145

McDougall Littell Chem Page sample.pdf

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Clickie said:

Science Interactive Reader

That's quite the find! Turns out you can readily find pdfs of this series by googling, and like you're saying it has almost a worksheet style format (read and respond in the text) that works well for him. 

As I thought about it, it's just as easy to use google image to find images to paste into a journaling notebook (vs. cutting up a workbook). It's really a good suggestion, as it would go better than him drawing, lol.

Edited by PeterPan
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We really liked Pandia Press chemistry, though I used it only with my first child. It's scripted, which I find a bit annoying, but the lessons are short, well thought out, etc. If you don't want to do hands-on stuff though, you'll miss a lot of the instruction. We did sometimes modify the hands-on stuff, but a lot of instruction is scripted into the labs, so you have to at least pay attention to that.

They have (or at least used to have) extensive samples on their website.

Both kids also liked Ellen McHenry.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...