"Science" comes from the Latin scientia, which means “knowledge.” Today the word is most often used to refer to the hard sciences, such as physics and chemistry. Most students will not need a significant knowledge of these subjects. However, some students will like these subjects so much that they will want to make a career out of them. Regardless, a basic knowledge of science makes for a well-rounded individual.
Science for Homeschoolers
Online curricula is revolutionizing education, and this includes the subject of science. The means parents do not have to teach the material but can simply serve as a guide for their children, especially while they are young. (When they are older, parents don't even need to do that.) While textbooks serve a purpose, they can be difficult to use for homeschooling (or any schooling!). It therefore seems best that parents use video instruction for teaching science. Here are some recommendations for science curricula.
Ron Paul Homeschool is strongest in history, government, and economics. But they also have a full homeschool curriculum, including science courses. The Ron Paul curriculum has general science courses from 4th grade through 9th grade, which make sure to involve science projects. Then they offer 10th grade biology, 11th grade chemistry, and 12th grade physics. Each course consists of five videos per week (for a total of 36 weeks). A subscription is $250 for the entire family per year, plus $50 for each course you take. Here is a list of all the courses offered by Ron Paul Homeschool.
Khan Academy offers middle and high school level science courses for free. They have instructional videos in the following subjects:
- Organic chemistry
- Health & medicine
- Electrical engineering
- Cosmology & astronomy
Khan Academy also serves as a great tool for students who attend schools, as they can watch the videos as a refresher or to help with concepts they are struggling with. The Ron Paul curriculum seems better suited for young children, but both have good content for high school students.
If parents want live online classes, they should consider the Logos Online School for 7th–12th grade. This is also an explicitly Christian program. These classes meet live over the Internet Monday through Friday for 50 minutes per day, with students turning in assignments just like any other school (they max at 24 students per class). Full-time tuition (four courses) is about $2,200, and part-time tuition is $600 per course (not including books). You can choose your own courses to take, or you can follow the suggested diploma track. They offer courses in physical science, biology, chemistry, physics, and advanced biology.
Science and Worldview
While Khan Academy and Ron Paul Homeschool are not explicitly Christian, neither will undermine the Christian worldview. (The Logos School is Christian.) Khan Academy mentions evolutionary theory in a lesson in biology, but Khan makes clear there is debate over the issue. Regardless, it is important for children to be familiar with opposing views and learn to critique them. Parents may want to supplement the above curriculum with helpful books on science and issues like evolution. And of course, parents should emphasize to children that science is the study of God’s created world. All knowledge is God’s knowledge.