Wednesday, October 1, 2008

2nd Grade Science

We are finally feeling more in the groove about science around here. I hadn't gotten our astronomy lessons planned when we started in August so we were just working on finishing up our plant lapbook from the summer.

But four weeks ago we finally started in on Exploring Creation with Astronomy (Young Explorers Series) by Apologia. Initially, I thought that it was a little too heavy for 2nd grade and that we would have to spend 2 weeks on each chapter. But I have been pleased to discover that it fits Jefferson perfectly this year! He is interested in the topic so he is listening well and understanding most of it. I am finding that we hardly have to review our vocabulary cards - the book reviews many terms as it goes and builds upon previous concepts.

As for projects, the book offers from 1 to 2 per chapter, some some quite easy and some more in depth. Each chapter also has an assignment for the student's 'Astronomy' notebook. We have been using the blank sheets from History Scribe for these assignments. Jefferson illustrates what he las learned and then writes his narration (with my help still). So far he has in his notebook, the sun, Mercury, Venus, and a mnemonic sentence he made up to help remember the order of the planets (My Very Easy Motorcycle Journey Seems Uniquely Normal Presently).

We've blown up balloons and hung them so he can see the difference in size. This was time consuming and then they didn't stay inflated for more than 2 days, but we had fun doing it and seeing how the planets compare. We've made a Mercury out of flour and craters with pebbles dropped into it. This week we poured hot butter over a mountain of flour to show how the lava on Venus flows and then hardens. We skipped the solar eclipse viewing box until we are ready for an actual eclipse. And we looked through The Astronomy Book (Dr. Jonathan Henry) from the Wonders of Creation series for more creation based info - nice book but a little over his head right now.

Can't wait to continue our exploration of God's universe! After our next week's break, it's on to Earth, Mars, and beyond.....


Sharon said...

A friend lent me this book to check out last year. I think it looks great. A very sensible mix of enough information, instructions for narrations, and simple but informative activities to bring it all to life.

I'm still not sure what we'll be doing with Science next year with Anna. We might just skip Science all together since we've done biology this year and she'll technically only be in K5, we might do something on the human body, which we have missed out on so far, or we might move on to astronomy. Or we might just get one of those books on "Kitchen Science" or "Backyard Science" and have some fun.

I hope the rest of your homeschooling is going well with the distractions of the computer minimised!

~ Sharon

Monica said...

I don't know about you, but I've enjoyed science so much more this time around:) Keep up the great work!

Mary@notbefore7 said...

Looks GREAT! We are kinda haphazard this year. ARe you still using the CLP science one too? The one based in creation?

Sharon said...

You will notice I don't do a weekly report every single week. And sometimes I do cheat and backdate them as well! I told Joshua that Jefferson liked his dinosaur and he promptly asked to see his latest stuff you've posted. He thinks the planet poster looks great.

~ Sharon

Jennifer@DoingTheNextThing said...

Awesome! We have that book (and the Botany one, too.) and we love it. Glad he's enjoying it.