written by: Kathy Wiehl
• edited by: Donna Cosmato
• updated: 9/11/2012
Science, a favorite subject among homeschooling students and parents, allows children to learn about the world around them through hands on experiments. Although each curriculum requires it's own set of supplies, many homeschool science tools are commonly required with all curriculum choices.
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Most homeschool science curricula include at least one or two hands on projects each week, and many parents choose to do even more, pulling experiments and projects from supplemental books such as Janice VanCleave's Science for Every Kid series.
Homeschooled families are known to have ongoing experiments throughout the house. For example, you might have decomposing bananas in a container in the kitchen, a butterfly house in the living room, or a botany experiment in the back yard. Common household items can be used for most homeschool science experiments, however, your curriculum probably requires that you buy a few additional homeschool science tools. Purchase these at your local hobby or educational supply store and online homeschooling stores such as Home Training Tools.com, Rainbow Resources.com, and Delta Education.com.
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The projects and experiments your child does while studying life science, or Biology, will help him better understand the human body, animals, and botany. You may choose to purchase dissection kits or anatomy models, though these will probably not be required by your curriculum. The following items are examples of what might be necessary to complete activities within your lesson plans.
Butterfly or bug house
Field guide for studying wildlife
Microscope with both prepared and blank slides
Petri dishes and agar
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Earth and Space Science
During your study of Earth and space, your child will learn about geology, weather, and astronomy. Expect to use household items as well as items found in nature for most of your hands on activities, but you'll probably need to purchase the following items to complete many of the activities.
Telescope with star locator
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Students studying chemistry can use chemistry kits that come with everything you might need, or you may choose to purchase each item separately. If you decide to purchase a kit, be sure that the kit contains everything on your curriculum's supply list. The following items are typically used when studying chemistry.
Beakers, test tubes and graduated cylinders
Ring stands and burners
Safety goggles, lab aprons and gloves
Thermometers, scales and pipette mohrs
Ph meters and test strips
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Physical Science and Physics
As your child studies physics and physical science, he will do experiments concerning electricity, lights, magnets, sound and force. Snap circuits or beginning electricity kits are fun supplements, but your curriculum will include a list of what you will need for each lesson. The following items are examples of what might be required to complete activities within a physical science and physics course.
Batteries and circuits
Various types of magnets
Levers and pulleys
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In addition to the suggested homeschool science tools, supplemental kits can be great fun for independent exploration of the topics your child studies as part of his daily lessons. Most homeschool supply stores sell an abundance of kits, including The Magic School Bus science kits, K'nex, ant farms, and other science kits. Remember to have fun and allow your child to explore further if she desires.
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References and Photo Credits
MorgueFile/clarita/used under the morgueFile free license