After our Bible lesson (we always do Bible first, if we have a lesson), I usually move right into our History or Science lesson. We’re currently in Vol 5, Chapter 9 — almost finished with this chapter! (In 11 weeks we will complete Vol 5 for the second time — wow… where has the time gone?!)
For this day, we worked on the last activity for objective 3 in Science. My two remaining students are in grades 9 & 11 (again, where has the time gone?!), and the activities are often the same. When I plan out a chapter, I look to see if there are any activities listed specifically for the grades I’m teaching. In this objective there wasn’t, so both students were given the same assignment.
This activity covered thunderstorms and hurricanes. We’ve covered this often over the years, so I decided to just read the info from the Supplement and then assign the questions as homework. But not all the questions! Here’s what I assigned them:
- Sketch and describe the three stages of a thunderstorm and include the following:
- Tell why hailstones only fall during thunderstorms.
- Is there really a “calm before the storm”? Why or why not?
- Illustrate the six types of lightning:
- Pearl Necklace
- Report on hurricanes; include the following:
- Are hurricanes low- or high-pressure areas? Sketch to explain.
- Why do hurricanes need warm ocean water for food?
- What parts of the USA are most affected by hurricanes, and why?
- On average, how many occur each year?
- Why do scientists name hurricanes?
I assigned these three papers on Tuesday, and requested they be turned in by Friday. When we talked about earthquakes later in the week, we did our research together and discussed the info during class. Those were the only two days we had science that week, yet the papers I assigned kept them busy each day as they researched the info, made notes, and wrote their papers. For this assignment, they both chose to write their final papers by hand. I always leave that option up to them–one child prefers to write by hand, the other prefers to use the computer.
If you have a copy of the Supplement, you will notice that I left a few things out. I didn’t require them to outline the development of a thunderstorm. I didn’t assign any of the tornado questions/projects, and I left out some of the hurricane questions as well. As I mentioned earlier, we’ve covered these weather subjects often through the years. My goal was to give them multiple papers to do, to teach them about prioritizing their time and breaking up an assignment so it doesn’t overwhelm them.
The beauty of homeschooling is being able to tailor the assignments (in ANY grade) so that your students learn what you feel they need to learn at this point in their lives.