Middle school science advice

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  • Threekidsmom

    I wondered if you all could give me some thoughts on science for my eighth grader? He did Apologia’s General Science last year, enjoyed it and did fine, but I really missed having him participate in the living science books and activities that I was doing with my younger ones. I was kind of wondering if I could skip Physical Science this year, and just do one more year of living books with him before he starts high school and we move into textbooks. I don’t want to “hold him back” just for my sake, but I also don’t like having him “separated” so to speak from the rest of us. Maybe there’s a balance of both that I’m overlooking?


    I’d be interested to read the responses to this as well. I have an eighth grader as well who took Apologia General Science this past year. She was actually hoping to take their Biology course this year, but she is not permitted to take the lab sessions with our co-op until she is in 9th grade. (Just too many high school students want to take the lab class.)

    I think we’ll be having her take Physical Science, but I really like the living books approach, and we’ve only done that for a couple of years because we discovered Charlotte Mason methods a little late in the game.



    This recent post includes science for 7th grade, other than Apologia. You may find some helpful ideas there.


    Makayla will be doing Physical Science this year and what I’ve found is that the younger kids can do a lot of the same topics easily.  They will be using God’s Design for Heaven and Earth (AIG Blue books) which cover many of the same topics.  Then we’ll pull a basket of books to read from our shelves or the library. 

    I think you could skip Physical science if you wanted to, but I know for Makayla, dropping back to an easy lit based science would erase the progress we made in 7th of jumping to the heavier academic load of Apologia.  Our goal was to introduce one new ‘jump in academic load’ each year from 7th on to ease that 9th grade shock.  Your goal may be different!  I know if we dropped Apologia this year and then pulled it back in for 9th she would kick up a fuss (why can’t I just do literature based science for the rest of high school?) whereas by sticking with it this year she’ll just keep going on those lovely rails we laid down in 7th grade for science.


    My DD will be in 7th this year.  I’ve looked at the Apologia and it looks like too much for my oldest.  I also love the idea of sticking with living books.  Next year we’ll be continuing with 106 Days.  I just ordered Natural Science Through the Seasons and we may be using Science Experiments You Can Eat if we have time.  I think at some point we’ll have to switch to something more challenging for my oldest, but I’m holding off another year or two.

    I read a blog post awhile back (it was probably something someone here posted) about how well someone’s DS did in college even though he hadn’t previously used text books.  It inspired me to stick with the living books.  I’d post it, but I don’t think I bookmarked the blog post.  🙁

    I’m considering these books, but I haven’t heard much about them…they have several sets of books, some of which have suggested credits for high school.  I have a couple of the Tiner books and they look really good.  http://www.nlpg.com/homeschool/middle-school  

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