From the HSLDA E-lert Service:


4/3/2008 10:06:44 AM
Home School Legal Defense Association
HSLDA's Homeschooling Thru High School Newsletter--April 2008

HSLDA's Homeschooling Thru High School Newsletter
High School Science--Bane or Delight?

Dear Friends,

April is the time of year when the deadness of winter suddenly bursts
forth with new life and color. The wonders of science are all around
us from the blooming plants to the starry skies to the cake baking in
the oven!

What conjures up in your mind when you hear the word science:
experiments, chemicals, fossils, plant life, medical discoveries, or
the intricacies of all of God's creation? Cathy Duffy aptly describes
a proper viewing of science when she said, "Science, in terms of
education, means the study of God's creation, its purposes, its
functioning, and its beauty. We often limit our definition of science
education to memorization of plant structure, the names of bones, the
periodic table, and other such laborious data without seeing beyond to
God's purposes for each aspect of creation." For many of us, science
was that difficult or "uninteresting" subject we were required to
study in school. However, in retrospect, we realize that without
science, we cannot know God and appreciate His creation.

With this fresh way of looking at science, let's focus on answering
some of the many questions we receive regarding how to effectively
teach the high school level lab sciences in the homeschool setting and
how to stimulate and keep your teen's interest in these courses.
Hopefully, the suggestions and resources listed below will increase
your confidence and ability to teach science and perhaps even provoke
in your teen a desire to pursue a science-related career!

First of all, it is important to know which science courses are
required at the high school level. If your child is planning to attend
college, then physical science, biology, chemistry, and physics are
courses to consider. Most colleges require at least two to three years
of science including two lab sciences. If your child is not pursuing
college, it is still wise to provide at least a couple of these high
school level science courses, simply for your child to gain an
appreciation of God and His creation and to understand differing
worldviews such as evolution vs. creation.

The next decision to make is how to provide these science courses. If
you will be teaching these subjects, choosing homeschool friendly
curriculum will make your task easier since many providers design
experiments and labs that use easily accessible materials. These
providers are also available to give you support should you need help
in answering your teen's questions. Another option to consider is
organizing a co-op where you can share the load or find a mom or dad
with a science background to teach the course.

Some families decide to teach the non-lab sciences at home and then
have their children take the lab sciences at the community college.
This allows the children to satisfy both the high school and college
general education requirements simultaneously. If you choose this
option, remember that one semester of biology at the community
college, for instance, will be equivalent to one year of high school
credit on your teen's transcript.

Families who decide to tackle the lab sciences at home may choose to
join together with other homeschool families, collectively buy lab
equipment, and hold lab days at one of their homes. You may already
have a favorite source for purchasing science materials. If not, on
our website,, we list a couple
of lab science equipment providers: Wards Natural Science,, and Home Science Tools, . Both of these companies offer
discounts to HSLDA members. Another company, Bio Corporation, has an extensive catalog of
science-related equipment and resources.

However, if you don't want to invest in lab equipment, store
chemicals, or open the refrigerator to see lab specimens staring you
in the face (or, are those leftovers from last month :)there are
curriculum providers, , who
offer video science courses complete with videotaped labs. Even though
these labs do not provide hands-on experience, they are very graphic
in showing and explaining the various experiments. In addition, there
are also online science courses,, which provide your teen with
high school credit.

Another idea for labs is to use virtual labs. For a physical science
course, check out SEED, , and
try some of the online experiments. For an example of a biology
dissection website, try Froguts, , where your teen can actually
dissect a frog without the smell permeating your kitchen! Or for
chemistry, watch a virtual lab demonstration at Virtlab, . Your teen can mix chemicals
without explosions or injury. As you will see, using the internet
wisely can enhance your own teaching of science courses.

Once these foundational high school science courses have been
completed, if your child is eager to continue the scientific quest,
consider adding courses such as anatomy and physiology, astronomy, or
marine biology to name a few. Maybe your teen is interested in the
environment, so providing an ecology course may be beneficial for
investigating whether this is a field he or she will wish to pursue.

If your teen's post high school goals include a science-related field,
"required" sciences in more depth by taking an Advanced Placement
course such as advanced biology. On our website, , we offer a sampling of
Advanced Placement course providers for you to investigate. Or, should
your son or daughter know for certain he or she is interested in a
medical career, then taking an anatomy course rather than, say, a
physics course during high school may be beneficial.

With all the innovative, interesting ways of teaching and learning
science, you may find that the whole family will not want to miss out
on the lessons or experiments. So when you think science, think of the
many opportunities to: Search, Calculate, Investigate, Explore,
Notice, and Calibrate Everything. Even though neither of us were
Einsteins, the Lord provided each of us with a way to teach high
school science at home, and He'll do the same for you!

Next month, join us as college admissions officers answer questions
relating to homeschool applicants. Until then, enjoy the beauty of
God's creation.

Becky Cooke and Diane Kummer
HSLDA High School Coordinators

Transcript questions? See the following links:

Becky and Diane's speaking engagements

May 2-3, 2008 Long Island, NY Loving Education at Home (LEAH)

May 9 - 10, 2008--Christian Home Education Association of Pennsylvania
(Becky and Diane)

May 30-31, 2008--ENOCH of New Jersey

-> How many news articles did you read this morning over your

We live in a world where concise information presented at the
right time can make a big difference in the outcome of important
legislative efforts. Yet it's tough to keep up with all the
issues that affect you. HSLDA does this for you in the areas that
affect your homeschool. Our emails and website enable you to
take quick, decisive action. Please consider becoming a part of
this team.

More reasons to join HSLDA...

The HSLDA E-lert Service is a service of:

Home School Legal Defense Association
P.O. Box 3000
Purcellville, Virginia 20134
Phone: (540) 338-5600
Fax: (540) 338-2733

How To Subscribe:

- Subscribe to the HSLDA E-lert Service at our website:

- Or send an email with name and complete mailing address to:

Subscription Information:

- You subscribed to the HSLDA E-lert Service as:


- To unsubscribe from the HSLDA E-lert Service send an email from
the email address you want to unsubscribe to:

- To change your email address or make other changes to your
subscription, visit the HSLDA E-lert Service account web page at:

POSTMASTERS: This message is being sent to the most recent address we
have for our subscribers. If this is an invalid email address or you
have other problems, please reply to
DISCLAIMER: This is considered a private and confidential message
from HSLDA to its bonafide HSLDA E-lert Service subscribers.
HSLDA cannot attest to the authenticity of copies posted, forwarded,
or sent by any party other than HSLDA.
NOTE: Please do not reply or otherwise use this email address; is for broadcast purposes only and is not intended to
receive incoming messages. We cannot reply to any email sent to this
address. If you have comments or questions, please send email to or call HSLDA at 540-338-5600. HSLDA members can also
email staff directly through the Members website at Thank you for your cooperation.