what to do when you just want to avoid science but your kids won't let youI have a degree in Microbiology and spent all of college immersed in science; yet for some reason I can’t manage to make science a regular occurrence at our house.  It’s the hardest thing to get done and I haven’t pinpointed the reason.  I’m not sure why this happens, but I had grand schemes to do Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding since the time Bear was 4 (she’s now 6) and I have yet to get past four lessons in the book.  When Bear was 5, I hosted a homeschool science class so I would stay accountable.  And I did, but I soon exhausted myself and depleted every ounce of energy having 12 kids in my house every single week.  I canceled the class after Christmas and bought Apologia Botany.  I could hand it to Bear and she could read it and journal, but I still was failing at making the experiments happen.  It was still haphazard, but at least she was reading about science.

Still, it’s not my best case scenario.  It’s not hands-on enough and science should be hands-on.  I sense a goal for the 2014-2015 school year.  For now, here’s how I manage to squeeze in a subject I find myself wanting to avoid.

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1. Have science related items laying around.  J-jo often picks up the snap circuits and makes the fan circuit on his own.  They also both enjoy following the instructions in their magnet kit.  Perhaps I should just buy more kits and let science get done without me:)

2. The Brock Magiscope offers some diversion that usually leads to discussion about whatever it is we are viewing.

A silkworm caterpillar from a prepared slide.  Photo taken with iPhone.I like the Learning Resources prepared slides for them to handle on their own.  We have prepared a few of our own slides, but the already prepared slides appeal more to them at this time.
3. Let them watch videos such as The Magic School Bus and Wild Kratts.  I’d actually love some recommendations for other science videos we could watch.

4. Have Bear read Apologia.  This unfortunately, does not trickle down to J-jo, because she reads it silently, so he gets the short end of the Science stick.

5. Use Montessori Print Shop science printables.  The ones shown are about pollution.

6. Sign out Let’s Read and Find Out and One Small Square science books from the library.

7. Do science lessons at Science4Us.com (review coming at the end of the month) – this is mostly for J-jo, because I was feeling guilty about #4.

8. Go for nature walks and talk about what we see around us.  Draw nature and try to appreciate all of God’s creation.

So that’s how science gets done and I just have to let go of my desire that it be more than this.  This is okay for now.  How would I like science to be?  More discovery style, hands-on experiments in which the children are posed questions and they try to deduce an answer, such as, here is a substance, how might you find out what it is?  It’s my goal for next year.  This year we’ll just make do.  What’s your hardest thing?

 

Subject Struggle

Written by Julie Cerdas
I'm a stay-at-home Catholic mom who loves playing with and teaching my two children.