I am now homeschooling my 5th child for high school. At this point I have two sons in their junior year of college, my oldest daughter is full-time at the local community college as a senior in high school, my second daughter is in cosmetology school half day (and homeschooling half day) as a junior in high school, and my freshman son is homeschooling with me. They all have one thing in common. They have all done at least one of the following for science in homeschool high school!
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. I was compensated for my time researching and writing.
Science doesn’t have to be the bane of your homeschool or a reason to quit homeschooling your high schooler to send them to school full-time. There are so many helpful homeschool companies such as College Prep Science that can make homeschooling science a wonderful experience for both you and your student!
Lab Intensives and Science Camps
My four oldest kids have attended lab intensives through College Prep Science. These were amazing experiences for them. At the time we were doing the biology or chemistry class at home by simply going through a text book. But, the labs worried me. So, when I learned that there was an option for my kids to get a full-year’s worth of high quality labs in a day and a half, I was sold! College Prep Science still offers these lab intensives, and now they have science camps, too!
First, they have a Marine Science Camp on Dauphin Island, AL. It’s a full week of immersion where the students do things like take an estuaries boat trip, experience a touch lab with squid dissection, build an ROV (remotely operated vehicle), and do some coastal oceanography. No prerequisites are required for this camp.
And, the other option is a Pre-Med Camp in Nashville, TN. This camp provides a week of immersion into all things medical with anatomy and physiology. If you have a homeschooled high schooler who is thinking about becoming a nurse, doctor, physical therapist, forensic scientist, chiropractor, or a similar career, this is perfect! Students will do dissections, forensic case simulations, simulated surgery, wound stitching with synthetic tissue, medical injections with synthetic tissue, and much more.
Virtual Science Labs
Now, maybe you live far away from these lab intensives and camps, or doing them in person isn’t really an option. I love the fact that there are virtual science labs you can participate in to get the experience and credit you need from a high school science lab!
No supplies are necessary with the online lab experiments. Students use their mouse and keyboard to follow a step-by-step procedure to perform the steps of each experiment. Students record the data and create a lab report.
Are you wondering, as I was, “Are virtual science labs good enough?” Then, be sure to read what I wrote below about the community college physics lab my daughter is taking right now.
Last year my oldest daughter did a science class online. It was completely hands-off for me because she could ask her teacher questions, do the tests online, and I just got the grades emailed to me. There are quite a lot of options for College Prep Science’s online science courses. I think it’s really helpful for many families that they provide both college prep and “life prep” science courses so you can choose the best one for your student. Click here to see all the options.
Local Public High School
My second son stayed homeschooled throughout high school, but since he wanted to go to college to study engineering, I desired him to have a more hands-on physics class. Our local public school allowed homeschoolers to sign up for individual classes, so his junior year he took physics there, as well as a semester of wood-working and a semester of graphic design. We didn’t have all the tools and equipment for these classes at home, so this ended up being very useful and productive for him.
This same son as well as my oldest daughter spent much of their senior year taking classes at the local community college. What’s awesome about this is that they not only get their high school credit, but many times these classes will transfer to the college they’ll attend for their degree. My son took chemistry, and my daughter is taking physics presently.
Since we are in early 2022, her community college physics class is live (not pre-recorded), but completely online–including the labs and professor office hours. Yes, I said the physics lab is completely online! We’re still waiting to see if this will be a good experience or not. But, it might help a homeschooler realize that the world has changed, and we don’t have to be quite so worried about doing online courses and even virtual labs in our homeschools, if even a community college is doing it like that now.
Hire a Teacher and Host a Class in Your Home
Another unique way to do science in your homeschool high school is to hire a science teacher. Host the class in your own home. We are doing this right now! My 9th grader is taking biology. The teacher is experienced with homeschooled high schoolers. She uses a reputable homeschool science text book, and the kids do the work during the week. Every Friday they meet in our basement for a couple of hours to discuss the work, answer questions, and do in-person labs. She does all the grading of homework and tests.
My final idea for doing science in your homeschool high school is to do it at a homeschool co-op. You could either have one mom plan on being the teacher for the entire year. Or, you could split it up between all the moms whose kids are in the class. This would be a perfect option for doing in-person labs. However, it might be easier to take advantage of College Prep Science’s virtual labs!
Which option seems right for you? Have you tried something else for science in your homeschool high school? Please share in a comment below!
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