Biology Lab Work for Home Educators


One question that I get asked a lot from people who hear that I am Homeschooling my high school aged kids,  is: “How do they do lab-work? ” – This is usually the follow-up question for the, “Won’t they miss the Prom?” question. Once I assure the “asker” that my kids love going to our Homeschool Prom every year, they come up with the lab-work question nearly every time!

I believe in “hands on” learning experiences and I love Science, so of course we did our labs. We ordered all our equipment from Home Science Tools  and dug in (pardon the pun)!

My 9th grade daughter particularly did not enjoy filling in the lab book and like the irresponsible parent that I am, I didn’t make her complete it. Thus, when I began to peruse the requirements for the colleges that she wanted to attend and they mentioned that she would need to show her “lab book”,  because she is a Homeschooler, (I think that Lee Binz, from “The HomeScholar” warned me about this!)  I decided that she would have to do the work again and complete the lab book for the record!

Just in time to avoid hitting that “but Mom, I’m a senior, panic moment”, I discovered that Landry Academy had a “Lab Intensive” for Biology close to our hometown and decided to let her try something different. We signed up and let them do all the work this time. She loved it- she enjoyed the experiments, the classroom time and loved her teacher. Her lab book looks lovely!

If you are considering teaching your high schooler at home and worry about the lab-work  you have options! Home Science tools and other online supply stores have all that you need to do your labs at home. (just make sure they complete a lab book!)

From what I have heard, real “hands on” lab-work is looked upon more favorably by colleges than virtual dissections, but that could be an option depending on the school they want to attend, or if they don’t want to go to college. There are some free online virtual dissections, good DVD’s and even an iPad app!

If you are a little squeamish about dissections or just dread the mess of these type of experiments, Landry Academy is a great alternative. My daughter learned a lot, met some great new people and has a shiny new lab book to take on her college interviews!

We are signing both our high-schoolers up for the spring Chemistry Lab Intensive!  Maybe we will see some of you there :)

Merit K


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