Tuesday, October 16, 2018

For two years, Smarty had a science curriculum where topics jumped around between Life Science, Earth Science, some Chemistry, and Physics. Her new school does not subscribe to these fads and teaches one science "area" per year. Smarty was in luck, because this year middle school is studying Life Science - something that she did not have enough yet in her other two years of middle school.
There are a lot of things I like about her science this year:
  • Lots of hands-on work in a science lab, even though my daughter does not enjoy microscope labs, because she has photo sensitivity to bright, slightly flickering, lights.
  • Working in small groups with very specific goals of being able to teach others on a specific topic.
  • Some creative projects, such as that cell city above. 
  • A lot of tests, which my daughter enjoys. 
  • A very deep dive into topic (which makes me wonder if she can just skip to AP Biology next year).
  • Fast progression, no endless repetitions and test retakes.
Smarty is thriving in her biology class. She has good memory allowing her to remember fine points of various biological processes and an extensive science vocabulary of this subject. She gets good grades, and I think the teacher is a little lenient to her, because, frankly, I didn't think that the cell city above deserved an A. The reason he is lenient is because she is also taking his high school marine biology class by a special invitation, and he knows that she has a higher than normal academic load. I will write about marine biology separately some day soon, but, in the meantime, Smarty started talking about pursuing a degree in life sciences (not in medicine though!) - something that she had never considered before. Good teachers can make such a difference and really shape lives!

Your Turn

What kind of science do your kids do this year?


Ticia said...

We originally chose geology and astronomy. But.... this geology is more of earth science, so it's a lot of review of material we'd covered before, so we blew through it, so now we're studying astronomy. The materials aren't as in-depth as I wanted for this time in their studies, but I'm okay with doing that for now.
Next semester we're going to switch to their high school chemistry, which I think will prep them for the depth of materials I want to study for high school.