Sunday, April 7, 2013

A Science post

At the Unschooling Catholics email list, we were asked a question:

"I'm having trouble letting go of the traditional high school Science sequence. What have your kids done for Science and did they have any trouble with college acceptance if they did not complete the traditional Science sequence? "

A response...and please feel free to share your ideas, too!

"I found even in high school that it was best to go with passions and interests. University is always something we kind of expect and so all by sons have gone or are studying for degrees, the youngest Unschooler starting university a year early this year at age 17.

Now some of mine have been Science "mad" and so we naturally sought Science resources for them eg volunteer work at a Science museum, applied for  and studied in a program for gifted Science  high school students at a university, I organised a weekly lab session for homeschoolers at a Scienceworks  venue, buying books and reading on Science, buying a Chemistry set and setting up a mini lab in the laundry away from toddlers, investigating Science courses like Open Uni and Unilearn ( online/external mode and I think the US has online courses, community college) get the idea!

Others were not really into Science so I just strewed resources and articles and experiments and outings and nature study and cooking and life and wrote it down on our transcript/report as General Science.

The kids who want and need Science follow the interest and need; others follow Science in life. And like everything this all comes down to the unschool idea of passion and motivation. 

One of mine was keen on Latin for example so for a year or so he had a Latin tutor. That would never have worked for another son but for him there was no pushing and no mum micro managing because it was what he wanted.

The same could apply for the field of Science.

Some good resources are the book And the Skylark Sings with Me by David Albert - one of his daughters became interested in Science and did correspondence Science college courses. 

Also good ideas in The Teenage Liberation Handbook by Grace Llewellyn and examples of real life teens following interests and including Science at al in Real Lives: Eleven teenagers who don't go to school, also by Llewellyn. 

And Cafi Cohen's And What About College? 
is good just for the appendix on how to log life as learning and count hours as credits for transcripts!

MacBeth always has great Science resources on her blog - here is one with some suggestions