Adding nature study and living books to high school science textbook with labs

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  • Wings2fly

    I would like to have my 9th grader use:

    Apologia Physical Science with Labs

    Physics 101 dvd set

    occasional nature study and natural science book (Rascal)

    Living books: Sloane’s Weather Book and The Archaeology Book

    Is this too much?  Should the extras be included with 180 credit hours required for lab science, or separate?  I don’t see how I could include nature study and Rascal as “Physical Science” on the course description.  Or do we just complete the Apologia text and Physics 101 set and give the credit?  Then would we not count the other living books and nature study on the transcript?  Would they count as 1/4 credit each year as non-lab science? Or would I count Rascal for literature?

    I’m not sure how to schedule the class time each week.  50 minutes for five days, for 36 weeks is 180 hours.  Would this time scheduled for science include the extra books and DVD set, or would extra time need scheduled each week to add those in with Apologia Physical Science?

    I am not sure how to count these on the transcript and course description.  Together or separately?




    50 minutes for six lessons (or days), for 36 weeks is 180 hours.

    The extra 50 min. session for 36 weeks is the 30 hours lab time.

    Does Apologia Physical Science really take this much time to complete?

    Little Women

    Apologia Physical Science didn’t take my kids nearly that many hours to complete.  It took them 30-45 minutes per day, 5 days a week, for about 32 weeks. (My kids may be faster workers than some other kids, though.)

    However, you don’t have to have 180 hours.  There are several ways to calculate time for high school courses, one of which is simply to complete a high school level textbook or program.  It doesn’t matter if it takes them 90 hours or 220, completing the textbook or program counts as one year.    If you don’t have a standard text or program, then you want to add up hours spent as a rough estimate of total amount of learning.   Most high school courses only require 120-150 hours, that way, though.   I don’t think any public high school in the country requires 180 hours, though I see it recommended sometimes for home schoolers.   Often, a high school “hour” is closer to 45 or 50 minutes, and then there are assemblies and such that take up many days as well.   I wouldn’t try to push for 180 hours–that’s going to be overwhelming.

    What I usually have done with my kids (we didn’t do much SCM with the older ones–I’m not even sure it was around back then, as my oldest is now 24–was to use a basic text as the essential, “you have to get this done to get the credit” thing.  Then I could add more if I wanted to, without feeling the pressure of counting it carefully. They were just “extras” we did, and they counted in that general topic, but I didn’t tally them carefully.  (Some states require a more careful tallying of hours, but mine doesn’t.)    Things like the Physics 101 videos can easily be assigned as “homework,” and the nature study days can be something you just do, without having to tie it in perfectly.  It’s ok to have loose associations in some places.    You will talk about some thing that are in your physical science when you do nature walks, because it covers things like rivers and parts of earth science, and those will also be observed. It doesn’t have to fit perfectly to still be relevant.

    I have never counted these things as separate on a transcript.  For one thing, I want my transcripts to look comprehensible to the average person reading them. If they see, “Physical Science,” they know just about what that means.   If they see a credit for that, plus a half credit for nature study, plus a quarter credit for videos, they start to think, “this transcript doesn’t make any sense.”

    I did give my kids honors credits for things they did that went above and beyond the average, which all Apologia sciences certainly do.



    Thanks so much for helping to clear up this confusion.  We will complete the Physical Science course and use this for the course description.  Everything else will be an added supplement as we have time for it.  I will schedule them in.  If it looks like we are getting behind in the textbook, we can drop the extras.  I appreciate your help!

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