And, last year worked well for us. I had fun researching, gathering, discovering good things at the library. But, it was, alas, quite a bit of work.
This year, I gave in to my inner curriculum junkie and we're looking more structured here than we have in awhile.
For science, each of my girls wanted her own book. So, I've tailored things to their desires and interest.
Anne-with-an-e is very interested in all things animal, and for the last two years has been insisting she will be a vet when she grows up. I know that most girls, at some point, want to be vets when they grow up. And, it's true that this may be a passing phase, but it may not. For this year, anyway, we're focusing on the life sciences with this book from Catholic Heritage Curricula.
Life Science: All Creatures Great and Small is recommended for Anne's age, and appears to be a good fit. It's more textbook-ish than we're used to, but I have no qualms about adapting such resources to our needs, style and purpose. I tend to leave out the busywork and get to the core.
Add to the above Anne's almost daily habit of reading the encyclopedia for recreation, and some volunteer time at the local animal shelter, and we've got science.
Betsy was a little harder. She wanted variety, and so did I. I was looking for areas in which we may be weak, may have overlooked some things. Then I found this Science Daybook at Rainbow Resource. It combines reading about the day's science topic with journaling and looking at related snippets of literature, poetry or magazine articles. It appears to be a living sort of textbook, and Betsy is pleased with what she's seen so far.
I am, too.
I also plan to stick to my commitment to follow up on the idea in this post of Melissa Wiley's, wherein she notes:
I've been looking for the passage I know is in one of Charlotte Mason's books about making sure children have one or two favorite nature-spots to visit on a regular basis: a park, a garden, a particular wood, a shore, that is visited over and over in all seasons, so that the children may grow familiar with the plants, birds, and beasts that live there, and see how things change throughout the course of a year.
We were at a local lake yesterday, marveling at how much its banks have risen with the recent buckets of rain, and spotting a variety of wriggly little creatures that we don't always see when the lake stays within its usual confines.
I imagined us returning much more regularly this year, through every season. And, now I'm itching to buy some lovely, new nature notebooks. Oh, I know the ten-cent ones from Target will do, but ....