Homeschool Science Blog!

I saw this come through my Facebook feed over the weekend and I thought I’d share it with you. It looks like something my kids would love to explore! There are several pages of great science experiments, links, and explanations all written by another homeschool Mom. This is the kind of thing I love most about the internet, regular folks having a cheap and easy way to share what they know with the world. And here we are probably a thousand miles away, reading and learning from them for free. Kinda makes you think, doesn’t it? What can you share with the world?

Have some fun checking out the site – Homeschool Science Geek!

Free EBooks?!

No. Really! Free EBooks! A friend shared a post about a site with a list of places to get free drawing books online and I love to draw so, of course, I checked it out! It looks great! This is a great way for a homeschooler to take a drawing class at home. All you have to do is pick one out, grab a sketch pad and pencil, and start learning! Have a high school age kid? Be sure to add Art 1 or Drawing 1 to their transcripts and keep a few samples if you want to have¬† a nice portfolio of high school work. You’ll want to keep a few samples with dates to show your progress.

The article is called “18 Sites with Free Drawing EBooks”. I clicked back to the main page and found lots of other lists of free books and where to find them. I could be here for days! Enjoy!

Because, Science!

That is one of my sons’ favorite things to say when I ask a question about why something is the way it is, “Because SCIENCE, Mom!” They surpassed me in science knowledge years ago but that doesn’t mean I’ve given up learning more about the world around me and doing some experiments on my own.

When they were younger, we had a plastic tote (a big one) of materials for impromptu science projects. It was filled with straws, batteries, cardboard, tape, erasers, pens of different varieties, rubber bands, popsicle sticks, foil, plastic, etc. It also had a small postal scale, magnifying glass, multimeter, and wire. Anytime I found things that looked like trash but might be used for an experiment, I put it in that box. The box came out whenever they found something on tv, the internet, a magazine, or book that looked like it needed to be done at home. It was awesome because it was a mess and it usually was spread all over the table, kitchen floor, or (in the case of something that might cause smoke or overflow the table) the back yard but it was still easy to clean up at the end of the day without causing stress about losing something precious.

Today I found this gem of a list of science projects to tackle, “Boeing: 100 Days of Learning” and I was transported to those fun times. I immediately started to think of other people that might like to experiment like this and decided to share it here. I also thought it might be a fun thing to do with our group’s “Activity Club!” when it starts up again in the Fall. Who knows? Maybe my big teenagers would like to join in the fun! They’d probably even be able to answer the why questions way better than I did when they were little.

New Resource for Non-Vaccinating Families

I’ve experienced a huge jump in numbers of people joining our local homeschool group due to the new law passed this year regarding mandatory vaccinations to attend public school. Most of these people are parents of pre-school age children looking into their options for education in the future.

There are new websites popping up all over the internet about how to “get around” the new law, some of them have good information and some are not so good. There are different people trying to make sense of the new law and how it will apply to each of us. I’d say all of them have the best intentions. The best advice I have for anyone looking into homeschooling as a way to satisfy the compulsory education laws without vaccinating their kids is to look to the large statewide homeschool advocacy groups for help. CHN and HSC are non-profit groups that have been helping people comply with the law for many years. They have “experts” and veterans of homeschooling keeping track of the changes and advising people about how best to stay legal and get the best education for their kids.

A new website popped up this week that seems to have good, concise information about how to legally homeschool in California. It’s called sb277 Homeschool. I’ve read some of the website and I plan on watching her videos. I’ll check that information against what the statewide groups are saying and what the law says. That’s what we all should do. Don’t take one person’s word for what is right to do. Anyone can put up a website and claim to know the answers, but if what they are saying checks out against other sources, it’s most likely true. And in legal cases, it’s may be true only for the moment.

Science!

Check out this cool website called “Ask a Biologist”!

There are loads of interesting articles to read and a page called “activities” that has puzzles, coloring pages, and games.

How can you use this in your “homeschool”? At our house, I’d explore the site and share things I found interesting over the course of a couple weeks. I’d print some of the coloring pages or word searches and leave them on the coffee or dinner table. If they find it interesting, they’ll look into it more. If they don’t, we’ll move on. I may bring it up again in a few weeks to see if anything strikes their fancy. Even if they don’t have an interest at all, at least they know that sites like this exist and that “biology” is a science!

A Math Resource

Yesterday’s Thomas Jefferson Education Presentation in Yucca Valley was a great success and I look forward to bringing more home education speakers out to the desert to share their stories.

During the talk yesterday, I was reminded of an awesome online math resource called Living Math. This website is filled with lists of alternative methods to traditional math instruction, from books to websites.¬† Go check it out! But prepare to be sucked in, even if you aren’t a “math person”.