As a former public school science teacher, the opportunity homeschoolers have to work with their children in a small, flexible situation makes me jealous. Homeschoolers have the opportunity to do Amazing science experiments! Even if science is not your strong point, you can do an Amazing Home School Science Experiment without any preplanning or even a trip to the store. Here is how.
The first step to an Amazing Science Experiment
Do you know what makes an experiment amazing to your kids? A child thinks an experiments is amazing, when it is his own idea. So, the first step to doing an amazing science experiment is to catch your child asking a question about anything physical.
As we finished lunch my daughter asked, “Mom, what happens when you put grapes in water?” Of course, she was excited to make her question into an experiment!
Getting started with your Amazing Science Experiment
After you catch your child asking a nature related question, reply with, “How could we test that?” Most likely, if your child has developed a question, it is about something that she is already looking at right in your own home. Help her think of how to test her idea using the materials at hand.
In our case, my daughter put three grapes in a glass of water, and three more grapes in a glass without water.
The third step to an Amazing Science Experiment
Once his set up is done, or at least planned, ask your child what he expects to happen and why. This is the hypothesis. Often the hypothesis comes right after the question on lists of the scientific method. However, I find that it is easier to figure out once you have a concrete set up in mind rather than a generic abstract question.
Step four of an Amazing Science Experiment
Do it! Hands on learning will take time and disrupt your lesson plans a little bit. The high engagement and multiple connections will be worth it
Step five of an Amazing Experiment
Analyze your data. This can be a simple as noting what happened, or as complex as graphing her numbers and working out the particular type of curve. Adjust to your child and her level of learning.
Step six of an Amazing Science Experiment
Once he has looked at the data, take some time to develop a conclusion. My daughter is young, so her conclusion consisted of her verbally summarizing what happened: Grapes absorb water when submerged, and split open.
If you wish, you can turn the conclusion into a multi-discipline writing assignment that includes mathematical analysis of data and error and historical significance of the concept. It will take some time for your child to do the research, but she is not likely to forget what she learns in the process. It will save time later! Your child may be excited to learn how important her idea really is.
You can use your favorite search engine to hunt for the name of the phenomenon, and its discovery. The name of the phenomenon my daughter discovered is osmosis. It was discovered by Henri Dutrochet in the early 1800’s. He was looking for unifying factors in how the cells of all organisms operate. If you are familiar with history, you may know that unifying theories of were an important philosophical movement in the nineteenth century.
The one question you should always ask is, “What could we experiment on next?” In our case, we decided to set up the same experiment, using Craisins instead of grapes.
You can use the materials at hand to do an Amazing experiment with your child. You do not even have to plan ahead. Are you worried about remembering all those steps? We have a detailed printable for you that tells you everything you need to know to do an Amazing Home school Experiment. Print it, and stash it in the back of your planning binder while you wait for the opportune moment! I would love to hear what you and your child discover!
Free Amazing Home School Experiment Printable
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Christy McGuire is a trained physics teacher who loves developing new ways for students to engage with science. While taking a break from the high school classroom, Christy rediscovered that young children are tons of fun, and can learn powerful science and math too. Now she is attempting to cross the excitement of early childhood style learning with serious STEM study and sharing the results at http://www.ThrivingSTEM.com.
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