One of the greatest things about homeschooling is sharing resources among families. There are a lot of subscription Science Activities in a Box that will bring your child some fascinating things to do and will get her rip-roaring in love with science. But sometimes we like to get together and share lessons because it enables us to use resources more efficiently and is frankly, just more fun! With that in mind, I want to suggest that you gather the homeschoolers your family knows and start a Science Club.
Starting a Science Club
When you start a Science Club with homeschoolers, you’ll have the opportunity to get to know the students and can encourage them to develop interests outside the actual, day-to-day classroom. Here are some things to think about when you start your club.
- How will you time your meetings? 30 minutes? An hour? When and how often will you meet?
- Will your students be all the same age or a mix of ages? How will you determine what they’re interested in studying?
- Where will you meet? Will you include field trips? Who will transport the students?
- What will it cost? Will there be class or membership fees? Who will pay for supplies and equipment? Where will those things come from?
- What will the focus be? Competitions, either formal or informal? Which ones?
A different idea for your focus might be getting involved in “Citizen Science” projects. These are regional and nation-wide projects. The students record observations in their own communities and upload the data to a project database. As part of a larger project, the students get to see how their data is used and are encouraged to submit research questions of their own. The Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology has several ongoing projects
Try incorporating STEM or STEAM lesson plans in the mix, and you’ll have lessons that can be the main focus for a whole day! I’ve put three lesson plans I wrote for small groups of kids to do together. Each one has a teacher’s version followed by a student’s version, and you can use them for absolutely free. Simply click on the image above and download the plans. Easy peasy! I hope you enjoy using them as much as I enjoyed writing them!