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Homeschool Curriculum Tips

Read these 61 Homeschool Curriculum Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Home School tips and hundreds of other topics.

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Homeschool History And Literature

Sonlight Curriculum Tip: Homeschool history would not be complete without reading biographies. When you have your child read a biography he gets to see history from the perspective of someone who actually lived it. Having your children read biographies (or reading them to your children) is the quickest and easiest way they can learn and become intimate with history.

What is a fun way to supplement homeschool history?

Homeschool History And Community Events

One of the best ways to supplement homeschool history is through Living History Days. Take your children to reenactments of popular battles, speeches and parties. Let them be an eyewitness to history and it will most certainly make an impact on their minds. Living History Days can be found in most communities. Check your local newspaper and library for postings of the next event in your area. Pack a picnic and go learn!

How can I make the American Civil War an interesting subject to study?

How To Liven Up Civil War Homeschool History

The American Civil War is often studied in homeschool history. To make the subject more lively and interesting for your students teach them all about “Civil War Slang.” Find a listing of slang terms at Find out if “goober grabbers” was an offensive or polite term for Georgia troops, or if you would want to eat “ginned cotton.” These slang terms are quite funny and will make studying the American Civil War more interesting to homeschoolers.

Is there a good website to use when we study the human body or anatomy

Yucky, Gross, and Cool Body

Trying to homeschool yourself or your child about the human body? Discover Kids has a website about your "Yucky, Gross, and Cool Body" that has everything you wanted to know and more about things like bad breath, the brain, ankle sprains, skin, and so much more!

The web site can be found at:

How do I start homeschooling?

Rethink Your Concept of Schooling

Homeschooling a child who has been in regular school may seem like an extended summer vacation; in some ways it is. Too much of "regular" school time is spent on nonacademic activities. Now your can devote 100% of his study time to cover in only two to three hours per day what would take at least a full day of "regular" school.

Ask Your Child's Opinion - Ask what she wants to know, not just what she wants to learn. What puzzles her? Combine academics and real-life knowledge. Let kids pick their "electives" - things that they want to know about, not just subjects that you think you are supposed to teach.

Typical course of study, science, first grade

1st Grade Science

First Grade Science

*Grouping and classification
*Living and nonliving things
*Farm animals
*Zoo and circus animals
*Woodland animals
*Common birds
*Plant and animal habitats
*Seeds, bulbs, plants, flowers
*Weather and seasons
*Day and night
*Solids, liquids, gases
*Air and water
*Fire and temperature
*Sun, moon, stars, planets
*Simple machines
*Beginning experimentation
*Scientific method and scientific inquiry

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How Stuff Works

How Stuff Works!

This site will tell you... well... how stuff works!!
And, when they say stuff, they mean stuff!
In the "Super categories" you will find links to find out how just about anything works!


How do I set up a schedule?

The Day After The First Day

Most parents feel most comfortable using a prepackaged home school curriculum for the first year or so. Then, they switch to a more customized approach. A prepackaged curriculum comes with virtually everything that you need to begin work immediately - a textbook for each subject, workbooks, supplemental books, and any materials referred to in the year's lesson plans. Each package includes a detailed teacher's manual that tells you exactly what to do and how and when to do it. Some even tell you what to say! The texts, however, are often written for classes of 20-30 students, so beware. As you get more comfortable, you may want to begin searching for materials that are better suited to your children.

During your week(s) of transition, get a spiral notebook to be used exclusively for your home schooling. On scratch paper, begin arranging your week. Figure out what you want to teach and when you want to teach it. Look at the lesson plans in the prepackaged curriculum; you need not follow it to the letter if you would like to do something different. Once you have roughed out a week's schedule, copy it in pencil into your notebook. This will help you keep attendance and daily progress records. If your child is in high school, this type of record will serve as the basis for your homemade transcripts when the time comes.

A typical day is generally based on the schedule that you and your child find most comfortable. For example, my youngest son is an early riser and chomping at the bit to go at about 6:00 A.M. However, my older son likes to get up and take time to wake up before he gets going. This really can be a strain when we try to begin with taxing work first thing. Instead, to give my younger son something to do and to give my older one time to wake up, we begin simply by copying the memory Bible verse for the week and doing a simple devotion (from Patch the Pirate). This way, both are engaged, which gives me time to get showered and dressed and do a little housekeeping before they begin work that needs my direct supervision.

Do homeschool curriculum packages provide a well rounded education?

Out-of-the-Box Thinking on Homeschool Curriculums

A well-rounded homeschool curriculum does not only cover the courses and subjects that come in a box. A quality education requires us to give our children more.

Some examples of how you can round out your student's education are music lessons, civic or church volunteerism, sports involvement, computer science, and woodworking. Don't be afraid to act on your child's passions. It will keep that student an enthusiastic learner.

Typical course of study, science, fifth grade

5th Grade Science

Fifth Grade Science

*Biological adaptations
*Biotic communities
*Animal and plant classification
*Plants and their food
*Human body
*Properties of air and water
*Time and seasons
*Temperature and thermometers
*Magnetic fields
*Use and control of electricity
*Conduction and convection
*Light and optics
*Force systems
*Chemical systems
*Sun and solar system
*Space and space exploration
*Scientific method and scientific inquiry

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making butter, preschool

Making Butter

Making Butter
Young kids love trying to figure out "what happened" to the whipping cream!
Fill baby food jars half full of whipping cream and screw the lids on tightly. Let kids take turns shaking each jar.

After about 5 minuntes the cream will be whipped, and after another minute or so, lumps of yellow butter will form. Rinse off the liquid whey and add a little salt, if desired. Then spread on crackers to taste!

Garden Kits

Garden Kits!

One year, we had a "Welcome Spring" party. As party favors, we gave garden kits. To make the garden kits, I used colored lunch bags (you could also use brown lunch bags and have the kids decorate them) and filled the bag with the supplies to make a *storybook garden*.

Supplies include:

• seeds
• small pots (you could use terra cotta, peat pots or even the peat disks available!)
• a plant label (we use popsicle sticks) and the storybook of choice
• also add any small garden items you can find (like stickers)

Themes can include:

• Peter Piper (pepper seeds)
• Mary, Mary, quite contrary (Wildflowers)
• Jack and the Beanstalk (Pole Beans)
• The Princess and the Pea (Sweet Peas)
• Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater (Mini Pumpkins)
• The Enormous Watermelon (Giant Watermelon)

Stanford Solar Center, astronomy

Stanford Solar Center

This site presents a collection of fun educational activities based on Solar Oscillations Investigation (SOI) and Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) data. Students can explore the Sun's tangled magnetic field, its turbulent surface motions, the dramatic sunspot cycle, and even what magic happens in the solar interior where instrumental eyes cannot penetrate.


What can I use to help teach about the environment?

Free Planet Protector Kit

Your Planet Protectors Club kit includes:

* Two pocket guides (one for adults and one for children) and an order form
* An official membership certificate
* An official Planet Protectors Club badge
* Activity guides for grades K-3 and 4-6
* A Planet Protectors Club poster
* A board game about recycling
* Great adventures on the Web


Is there a benefit to developing lesson plans ahead of time?

Planning Ahead in Your Homeschool Lesson Plans

If you are creating your own lesson plans, try to plan them on a weekly basis. That way, if you fall behind on time, you don't have to worry about the next day's lessons.

Doing lesson plans in blocks helps you see a fuller picture and allows you to set goals that are a bit more well-rounded than when you make them one day at a time.

I want to homeschool. What should I do first?

Choosing a Curriculum

1 - Set your educational goals. Decide what you want to accomplish this school year.

2 - Make a careful homeschool curriculum match. Not only to your child's needs, but also to your goals.

3 - Feel free to customize your curriculum. Your child doesn't have to fill out every page in every book. Supplement and strengthen your purchased curriculum.

4 - Evaluate your curriculum carefully. Make sure that it has those components needed to reach your goals. If it doesn't, see #3.

5 - Get a clue from your kids. Kids crying at the kitchen table are a great indicator of the need for a change.

6 - Don't write your lesson plans in ink. Schedules can change abruptly because of illness or other distractions.

Is there a way to combine subjects so you do not have so many books?

Homeschool History Can Encompass Other Subjects

Not only can you do homeschool history using literature, but you can also use the literature for other subjects, too. Take words your child may stumble over during reading and make those this week's spelling words. Make words your child does not know the meaning to and make those this week's vocabulary words. Prepare a food dish from the time period your child is reading about and call it home economics. Make a map of the area your child is reading about for geography. Literature based programs can go far in encompassing many subjects.

Can I find organized science activities near home?

Neighborhood Schience Programs

Often, our neighborhood parks and recreation facilities might have nature or science programs that homeschool kids can participate in. And, even in summer, any nature or camping experience can be turned into a science experience.

Don't overlook those organized hikes, bird watches, or astronomy club events being held right in your own backyard.

Typical course of study, science, kindergarten


Kindergarten Science

*Observation of everyday, familiar things
*Common animals and plants
*Interrelationships of animals and plants
*Classification of living things
*Farm animals
*Care of pets
*Like and unlike plants
*Indoor plants
*The sun: our principal source of energy
*Weather and seasons
*Earth, moon, stars, planets
*Simple measurement
*Beginning experimentation

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I want to homeschool. What should I do first?

The Steps To Homeschooling

Step One: Ask yourself why you are considering keeping your children at home.
Answering this question will steer you in the right direction when you consider a method. Your answer will also guide you if and when you decide a homeschooling support group for field trips and social and other activities. Beyond that, every relative you've ever had will ask you why you homeschool, so if you know the answer in advance, you can ward off many of the ensuing arguments that will come your way.

Step Twp: Find out how to homeschool legally in your state. - In the state-by-state information section, look up the state in which you intend to homeschool. You'll find information you need to know about your locale - laws, procedures regarding homeschooling, as well as descriptions and contact information for resource centers, support groups, conferences and other organizations. Homeschooling is currently legal in all states. Do the research and make a general decision about how you will go about it. This is especially helpful if you are removing your children from a "regular" school. Summaries of each state's homeschooling laws are provided in the State-by-State section, however, be aware that these laws can change. You need to check with your local association every few months to be sure you know your precise legal standing. Note: Do not construe anything you read in these tips as legal advice.

Step Three: Talk to homeschoolers. Go to a local association meeting and talk with some parents. Make sure that you talk with some that have been homeschooling for a few years as well as with some newbies.

Step Four: Roughly define your family's educational goals. Keep in mind that you are an individual that your family is an individual family. A great strength of homeschooling is that you can customize everything to fit your family and your children's personalities, tastes and interests. Once you define your initial outlook and goals, then choose which books, materials, or tools, if any, that you wish to use.

Step Five: Find other parents who are homeschooling for the same reason you are. In the beginning stages, surround yourself with those of like of mind. For example, if you are homeschooling for religious reasons, find other homeschoolers of the same background. After you become more experienced and comfortable, branch out and meet other homeschoolers.

Science, weather

Weather: NASA Lightning Detection from Space

Searching for ways to make your home school science environment more fun? The Internet has a wide variety of resources on just about any topic that you can use to supplement your teaching. For instance, if you were studying weather with your child it would be cool to show them images and videos relating to weather research on the computer.

NASA has investigated the phenomena of lightning from aircraft and the Space Shuttle. This "Lightning Primer" explores the characteristics, the history, and the on-going research about nature's most capricious and deadly member. While you are here, make sure you check out the picture of lightning taken from Columbian crew cabin!

This web site is available at:

how do I teach the Scientific Method?

How To Use The Scientific Method

The Scientific Method is a systematic way to find answers to questions that interest you. The following five steps will make the documentation of your home science experiments easier.

1. Question: Make observations and develop your question. The question should be about what you are interested in learning or what you want to know.

2. Hypothesis: State your hypothesis. Your hypothesis is your educated guess about what you think will happen.

3. Method: The method is the process or steps of your experiment. This should be very detailed and include materials needed.

4. Results: The results are the facts or data that you collect from your experiment.

5. Conclusion: In the conclusion, you explain why you think the experiment happened the way it did. Include whether the results supported your hypothesis or not.

How can I locate free documentaries to teach homeschool history?

Homeschool History And The History Channel

The History Channel Classroom is a great place for you to find educational material for your homeschool history program. This classroom is a service that The History Channel provides for teachers and they welcome feedback. If you are studying a particular historical figure or event in history, check out the calendar to see when your subject will be documented on The History Channel. This classroom program gives permission for video taping and they also provide study guides to their documentaries which can be found at The History Channel Classroom website. Download their calendar today so you can plan to tape the shows for your homeschoolers.

Typical course of study, science, ninth grade

9th Grade Science

Ninth Grade Science

*Earth's history
*Earth science
*Ecology and environment
*Weather and climate
*Air and air pressure
*Air masses and fronts
*Water and its uses
*Air and water pollution
*Heats and fuels
*Electricity and electronics
*Solar and nuclear energy
*Nature and uses of light
*Simple and complex machines
*Atomic structure
*Chemistry of matter
*Molecular theory
*Nature and use of chemicals
*Metals and plastics
*Space and astronomy
*Space travel
*Nature and causes of disease

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Typical course of study, science, second grade

2nd Grade Science

Second Grade Science:

*Useful and harmful animals
*Life cycle
*Birds and insects in winter
*Animal babies
*Animal defense of themselves and their young
*Plant and animal food
*Dinosaurs and other extinct animals
*Food chain
*Plant reproduction and growth
*Habitats and homes
*Weather and its effects on earth
*Effects of the seasons on the lives of people,
animals, and plants
*Water cycle
*Air and atmosphere
*Magnets and forces
*Earth and sky
*Sun, moon, planets
*Simple constellations
*Exploring space
*Scientific method and scientific inquiry

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What´s a creative way to make science ´real´ to my kids?


Mobiles - We have made mobiles during units on Flight (unusual inventions), Weather (water cycle), Insects (complete and incomplete metamorphosis) and the Seasons (the four seasons).

Mobiles incorporate problem-solving skills, small muscle control, and basic physical science (finding fulcrum, balance, etc). If starting from scratch seems like too much effort, Dinah Zike's Cross Curricular Thematic Manipulatives series has some wonderful activity masters for creating educational mobiles.

How can I teach diversity?

Homeschool History of People

While history is often relegated to the study of events and dates, wars and upheaval, you can bring richness to the study of history by taking a close look at the people that inhabit our Earth.

Looking at history from a human perspective, we can celebrate the diversity, courage, compassion, brilliant, and inventive aspects of mankind. A recommended book for your homeschool history library, ‘People' – written and illustrated by Peter Weir, makes a good starting point.

Is there a good beginning curriculum package?

Curriculum Choices

If you're a beginning homeschool family, even the thought of creating a curriculum from scratch could make you change your mind. Sonlight offers a comprehensive homeschooling curriculum called their First Time Core Package that includes a Pre-K through Level 5 home schooling program.

Aside from the fact that it's an excellent curriculum, the best part of this is that it lets you concentrate on teaching instead of planning lessons. And, because it's so complete, you don't have to worry about leaving anything out during the course of a year. The whole year is laid out in easy to understand plans.

Typical course of study, science, sixth grade

6th Grade Science

Sixth Grade Science

*Classification of living things
*Ecology and the environment
*Algae and fungi
*Human body
*Food for growth and energy
*Climate and weather
*Recycling of resources
*Elementary geology
*Electric and magnetic interactions
*Electricity and its uses
*Sound, light, and heat
*Nuclear energy and radioactivity
*Solar and geothermal energy
*Elements and compounds
*Simple astronomy
*Space and space travel
*Scientific theory
*Inventions and discoveries

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Typical course of study, science, eighth grade

8th Grade Science

Eighth Grade Science

*Scientific method
*Scientific nomenclature
*Scientific measurement
*Ecology and environment
*Composition of the earth
*Ocean, atmosphere
*Water and its uses
*Weathering and erosion
*Recycling of resources
*Magnetism and electricity
*Heat and light
*Forces in liquids and gases
*Wave, mechanical, electrical, and nuclear energy
*The earth's movement
*Newton's three laws of motion
*The atom
*Periodic table of elements
*Compounds and mixtures
*Chemical changes
*The universe and Milky Way
*Space and space travel

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Typical course of study, science, third grade

3rd Grade Science

Third Grade Science

*Animal helpers
*Life cycle
*Plants and animals of the desert
*Plants and animals of the sea
*Common birds, trees, flowers
*Forest plants
*Conservation of plants and animals
*Weather and climate
*Earth's changing surface
*Magnets and electricity
*Light and color
*Energy and its sources
*Force and work
*Moon and stars
*Earth satellites
*Scientific method and scientific inquiry

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What´s a creative way to make science ´real´ to my kids?

Plaster Of Paris

It's amazing how many educational uses can be found for Plaster of Paris. One of our favorite activities was burying some shells in a cup of Plaster of Paris and then "discovering" and "recovering" it. We've also made prints of leaves and animal tracks, created sedimentary rock and faux "scrimshaw."

To make the sedimentary rock we mixed Plaster of Paris with sand, divided the mixture into three cups, colored the mixture with food colorings and just a touch of water, and then relayered it into a Styrofoam cup. After the mixture has set, we pulled off the Styrofoam.

To make the scrimshaw, we poured Plaster of Paris into the lid of a Baby Wipes container. After it had set, we scratched traditional scrimshaw designs into the surface with a nail. Then, we rubbed black shoepolish over the surface and into the cracks. Finally, we wiped off the shoe polish leaving it in the cracks.

*You can also purchase plaster molds in a variety of shapes. We bought dinosaur molds to create a whole herd of plaster reptiles.

Where can I find information about dinosaurs?

Discovery: Dinosaurs

If your kids are as fascinated with dinosaurs as mine are, they will love this site, too!
You can hatch a virtual dinosaur, excavate fossils, examine dig sites, and just have some fun learning about dinosaurs!


Is there anyway to learn history without using textbooks?

Homeschool History And Literature

If your children are tired of reading dull, drab history from textbooks, you may want to consider having them learn history through literature. Your children will be transported back in time and relive history with historical figures during important times in the world. Literature based curriculums are fun ways your children can get their homeschool history credit without falling asleep in the process. Books on biographies not only teach children about the character of the person they are reading about, but it also teaches them about the culture, events and traditions of different time periods. It takes history out of the past and makes it come alive in the present in your child's mind.

How can my child's hard work receive recognition?

Homeschool History Contests and Competitions

Not all recognition of achievement has to come from a report card. Regional and national contests and competitions are an effective way for students to test their medals.

The Concord Review is a history magazine that publishes winning student essays on a history topic of their choice. And, the American Express Geography Competition (Marietta, Ga.) recognizes original research papers related to one of three broad themes in geography.

How can we have fun with history?

Homeschool History Calendar Dates

Here's an unconventional way to place history on your homeschooling history curriculum calendar. Every day of the year is full of historic landmarks, birthdays, events and achievements that can be easily researched and mapped out. Find and enter one historical fact per week and place it on your calendar.

Week by week, as the months go by, spend some time talking about the history item of that week. There are obviously so many events and milestones over the course of history that you could carry this project on year after year and never duplicate.

What do I do when my child is progressing on different levels in different subjects?

Staggered Homeschool Curriculum

It's easier to find a homeschool curriculum for your child when he or she is working at the same grade level across all subjects, but what happens when that child is flourishing in math and science, but struggling with history and language?

The last thing you want to do is hold back learning in subjects where your child excels to play catch up in others. Those subjects your child is advanced in are most likely the ones he or she loves. If you do a bit of online research, you'll find there are curriculum sources that will provide staggered grade levels for this exact purpose. It's worth the research.

How do you keep up with changing SATs?

Keep Abreast of SAT Changes

If you are teaching high school aged students at home, keep the SAT requirements in mind. The requirements change occasionally. The section for mathematics is one for which you will want to be especially mindful. Make sure your student knows what he or she will be facing for the SAT. Surprises on testing day are never pleasant.

What can I do if I can't afford to buy a packaged home school curriculum?

Sharing You Homeschool Curriculum

Unfortunately, homeschool families pay more for their education than those who attend public school. If you find that the cost of a home curriculum packages are too high for you to afford, try finding a network of like-minded homeschool families with which to share the curriculum.

As the homeschool movement is quickly growing, you very well might find more homeschoolers in your community than you think. And, if there children are on a different grade level than yours, materials can easily be handed back and forth between families to share the expense.

What can I use to help teach science?

The Wild Goose Company

Looking to buy fun science stuff for a home laboratory for your student?

Wild Goose Science is one of the best places around to buy your science stuff. They sell everything from experiment kits to science posters and books to chemicals. The kits are pretty inexpensive, and with names like "Petri Pudding," "Nails For Breakfast," and "Crash And Burn Chemistry," they can help make home schooling lessons or private experiments fun!

Check out their store at:

What's an idea for learning from nature?

Homeschool Science and Nature

There is so much wonder in the world around us - so much to learn from the grandest blue sky to the tiniest insect. And, it's good to get outside a bit too. So, why not start a nature journal.

Try taking a daily or weekly walk to observe the world for a journal entry. The entry itself could consist of writing down one's thoughts and observations, a nature poem, wildlife that was seen, and beautiful leaves that can be pressed. If you have a camera or can get a disposable one, you can even tape photos into the journal. Over time, it's wonderful to look back at the year, its seasons, and its wonderful changes.

What Can I add to my homeschool curriculum package to make it more exciting?

Do-It-Yourself Homeschool Curriculum Projects

Don't forget to add fun to your home schooling program. Not all subjects need to be taught be repetition and drills. There are many learning programs and lessons that make learning feel like play.

Puzzles, art, experiments, outings, films, and more all make your educational days fuller and more exciting (especially for the young child whose love for learning is in its formative stages). Do-it-yourself projects are a tremendous way to learn simply because you do it yourself.

Typical course of study, science, fourth grade

4th Grade Science

Fourth Grade Science

*Structure of plants
*Environment of the local region
*Biological organization
*Classification systems
*The insect world
*The reptilian world
*Plants and animals of the past
*Structure of plants
*Balance of nature
*Human body
*Weather's influences
*Weather instruments
*Cause of seasons
*Earth and its history
*Oceans and the hydrosphere
*Air and water pollution
*Magnets and electricity
*Light and color
*Solar system and the universe
*Living in space
*Scientific method and scientific inquiry

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Can I teach science using household items?

Homeschool Science in the Kitchen

If the idea of turning your kitchen into a chemistry lab sounds unappealing, try remembering that each time you cook a meal, principles of chemistry are being utilized. So, break out the Pyrex and measuring spoons and let the experiments begin.

Did you know that all it takes to make a volcano is some baking soda and vinegar? What other concoctions can you test? With a little adventurous spirit and some common sense, its easy and fun to teach science in the kitchen.

Should I invest in a microscope?

Homeschool Science Revealed Through A Microscope

So much of what we learn in science is observable through the naked eye, but what about the wonders of the universe that we can't see? There's a whole world of tiny matter all around us that is best observed through a microscope.

For any homeschool science curriculum, a microscope is one of those tools that will never be outgrown. From early years on through high school, a quality microscope can reveal all that's wonderful and strange in our world.

Typical course of study, science, eleventh grade

11th Grade Science

Eleventh Grade Science: Chemistry

*Matter and its behavior
*Carbon and its compounds
*Formulas and chemical equations
*Acids, bases, salts
*Atomic theory
*Periodic law
*Water and solutions
*Chemical bonding
*Molecular theory
*Equilibrium and kinetics
*Spontaneous reactions
*Ionization and ionic solutions
*Colloids, suspensoids, and emulsoids
*Metals and alloys
*Energy: forms, chemical changes, and measurement
*Nuclear reactions and radioactivity

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How do I create a lesson plan?

Creating a Homeschool Lesson Plan

One of the best ways to begin a lesson plan is to start with the end in mind. It's often simpler to know what you want your student to know by the end of the lesson so start with those end objectives and figure out what learning activities would best accomplish your end.

In a grammer lesson in which you want the student to be able to recognize parts of speech with a sentence, you might then decide the easiest way to teach that would be to read a book together and point out the nouns, verbs and adjectives as you read together.

What´s a cool tool for teaching science?


Collecting is possible for homeschoolers since they are able to keep large numbers of items in their study space in comparison to traditional students who are limited in their personal space in classrooms.

One of the type of programs of study for homeschoolers is unit studies. This style of curriculum involves collecting different types of objects as related to a single subject. For example, for a baseball unit study, a child will likely collect a bat, baseballs, mit, baseball cards and magazines based on baseball statistics. These objects are used for learning about the history of the subject; the techniques of the sport; for recreational use in playing baseball; to practice math skills in statistics; and for reading via the magazines and cards.

Allow your student to keep a collection in a box to be used throughout the school year. They can also enter their collection into a state fair or homeschooling fair to show what they've learned.

Is it safe to experiment at home?

Homeschool Science Safety

While we like to develop a sense of experiment and wonder for our homeschooled children, its always wise to be sure experiments are safe and age-appropriate.

Explain your assignment carefully and work from a plan. Get all your materials ready and let your students know what you expect from them in terms of behavior around science materials. And, always supervise any activity.

Where can I find information to teach anatomy?

Doctor Doctor

In Doctor Doctor, elementary students play a game to correctly diagnose different medical conditions.

The game is described at:

You can extend the lesson beyond the game by including first aid information for treating various conditions such as a fever or broken arm.

Meal worm, science

Meal Worm Life Cycle

This project will help develop their writing skills, art skills, math skills, and being able to hypothesize what they foresee happening with their projects. Students will also get the sense that they are needed. Students will be able to talk and have conversations about how their mealworm is changing and why.


How do I help my child grasp what he learns in homeschool history?

Homeschool History And Curriculum

Do you have a child that is having a hard time grasping history? Perhaps your child is simply bored while doing history? If so, you may want to reconsider the method you are using to teach history. There is no right or wrong way to do homeschool history. You can study history chronologically, use unit studies, follow a text, use literature, use core curriculums or any other method that works for you.

The beauty of homeschool is that you are the one in charge of choosing how your children will learn. You should base your teaching around your child. For instance, if you have an auditory learner you have the option of teaching homeschool history with CDs, audio books or videos. While picking up a textbook may seem like the easiest thing to do for you, it may be very difficult for your child. You have many options available to you when it comes to homeschool history and you are encouraged to continue searching until you find one that works with your child.

How can we prevent accidents during science labs

Preventing Science Slips

1. Plan carefully. Write out even the minutest detail ahead of time.

2. Allow time for last minute difficulties. Hardly anything ever works exactly right the first time. Make sure that you don't try to cram a 25 minute experiment into 15 minutes!

3. Trust your instincts. If the experiment seems like it might be dangerous or faulty, check with an expert before proceeding.

4. Follow instructions exactly. Now is not the time to cut corners and it could even be dangerous.

5. Don't be afraid to elaborate. While this may seem contradictory to the preceding tip, feel free to expand the experiment where safety is not a concern. Part of the discovery process is asking "What would happen if we did this?".

6. Turn failure into learning opportunities. If the experiment fails, instead of chucking it, go back and search for reasons why it failed.

gardening, science, worms

The Worm Bin Project

In this unit, students will learn about decomposition and the life cycle by creating worm bins. Through direct observation, they will develop an understanding of the effects different organisms, including humans, have on one another. They will collect scientific data.

Such activities will give students an opportunity to explore scientific concepts in a manner that makes science more personally relevant and meaningful.


Typical course of study, science, seventh grade

7th Grade Science

Seventh Grade Science

*Scientific classification
*The cell
*Heredity and genetics
*Effects of weather and climate
*Properties and uses of water
*Air pressure
*Rocks, soil, and minerals
*Ecology and environment
*Heat and temperature
*Laws of motion
*Scientific method
*Laboratory techniques and safety

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How can I keep track of the materials I need for each lesson?

Homeschool Lesson Plans Materials Organization

When putting together lesson plans, always develop a section for materials and supplies you will need to compete the task. Then, gather all of your materials prior to implementing the lesson plan.

There's almost nothing that will lose the interest of your student faster than if you need to interrupt the flow in order to go find something. Over time, your child will grow to have less respect for lesson times when they are less than organized.

Typical course of study, science, tenth grade

10th Grade Science

Tenth Grade Science

*Characteristics of life
*History of plants and animals
*Microscopic life
*Simple organisms: algae, bacteria, fungi
*Vertebrate life
*Mammals and birds
*Plant life
*Protein synthesis
*Genetics and heredity
*Genetic engineering
*Reproduction and growth
*Human biology
*Nutrition and digestion
*Conservation of human resources
*Environmental issues
*Energy in ecosystems
*Scientific method
*Biology and space travel
*Disease and disease control

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Are there curriculum packages that cfome complete with homeschool lesson plans?

The Benefits of Homeschool Lesson Plans Included With Curriculum

Homeschooling is a big commitment. If you have several children to teach, having to create lesson plans can leave you with little time to sleep. Many homeschool curriculums come complete with lesson plans that not only provide your daily activities, but allocate the break up of the materials so you're sure to complete the curriculum within the recommended time frame. These lesson plans are time tested, and will eliminate some of the busy work, leaving you with more energy and time to devote to actual teaching.

How can we make better use of our car time?

Homeschool History in the Car

We often spend more time in our cars than we'd like to admit. So, why not make the best of that time and turn it into school time? It's called carschooling and here are a couple of ideas for fun car activities that will reinforce your history lessons:

Identifying geography is a classic and naming license plates is also fun. For each place or state you name, try merging them. Name one historic event, person or place that corresponds with the place you named. So, if you found a Massachusetts license plate, you could talk about Plymouth Rock or the Boston Tea Party.

Are all the subjects taught in school really necessary?

Curriculum Choices

In some school districts, the home school curriculum is determined by the school administration based on a well-thought-out philospohy of what children need to learn to be well-rounded; in other districts, the decision is based on what books are available at a discount; in others, other guidelines are used.

Even well-thought-out and well-meaning educational philosophies can be wrong for your family or your child. Take the time to sit down and decide what it is that you believe in and what you want your child to know.

Typical course of study, science, twelfth Grade

12th Grade


*Electricity and magnetism
*Photoelectric effect
*Light and optics
*Sound and acoustics
*Wave motion
*Quantum theory
*Space, time, and motion
*Work, energy, and power
*Nuclear energy
*Nuclear physics
*Solid-state physics

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