Oklahoma Homeschool Subscribers,
this is going to be a short newsletter. I am entering my
last four weeks at OSU this semester and have a TON of
work to do. I just havent' had time to do much else. I
am planning on finishing this semester and then take the
summer off. I am going to try to CLEP out of some courses
this summer, but take no classes. Wish me luck!
included an article I wrote about using a microscope that
I hope will be helpful, a few interesting Web links, and
a World War II lesson plan.
as some of you know, I was interviewed in January for a
program about homeschooling that will air on OETA -PBS
in April. I hope I represented you all well. I haven't
seen it yet so I don't know if they presented it friendly
or not! The
is called "Stateline;" the
program is subtitled, "Ready
for Life. It
will air on OETA/PBS (Oklahoma Channel 11) 4 times:
- April 1st at 9:00pm
- April 15th at 9:00pm
- April 27th at 11:30am
- April 29th at 10pm
viewing note: The others interviewed on the program were
Paula Neal and Brian Ray. They both did an excellent job!
Overall, I would say that the program gave a fair representation
of the pros and cons of homeschooling from the respective
points of view of homeschool families versus the public
school teachers and administration. If you miss the TV
showings, you can see it online here.
a wonderful April!
Homeschool Newsletter, April 2008
Science - Using a Microscope by Cindy Downes
of all, you need a microscope that works. Don't try to
buy a cheap one at the local toy store. Try Great
Learning Tools or GreatScopes.
They specialize in selling microscopes to homeschoolers.
For those that are unable to afford a microscope, why
not get together with your support group members and buy
one together that can be lent out on a weekly basis? Charge
a deposit to make sure you get it back and in good condition.
Charge a small rental fee that can be used to purchase
prepared slides to borrow and examine. Because of health
reasons, you should require them purchase their own blank
slides to use to make their own slide specimens.
After you obtain your microscope, you need some directions
on how to use it.. I've located three resources that will
help you in this area and all should be available at your
Greg's Microscope by Millicent E. Selsam is a good introduction
to the microscope for early elementary students. This is
a science "I Can Read" book.
How to Use It and Enjoy It by
Eve and Albert Stwertka. This book is recommended for
students in grades 4-6 and up. It relates a brief history
of the microscope, some biographical information about
Robert Hooke and Leeuwenhoek and how they used the microscope,
how a microscope works, how to handle a microscope, and
then provides lots of ideas for using your microscope
to explore the microscopic world. Unfortunately, it's
out of print; however, there are a few used ones available
at your library on purchase online.
Ultimate Guide to Your Microscope by
Shar Levine. This in-depth guide explains how to put
bugs, water, food, plants and pollen, and even parts
of the body (like fingernails) under the scope for
a close-up glimpse.
What can you do with a microscope? You can look at salt
and sugar crystals, look for protozoa in pond water, examine
plant cells, cheek cells, blood cells, and insect legs.
Rather than just read about science, they can actually
do it! Kids will love it and it's much more effective than
filling in blanks in a textbook. When I prepare curriculum
recommendations for homeschool moms, I always schedule
science two times a week and history two times a week for
one hour or more at a stretch. This is more than enough
time to finish your curriculum and add in some lab work.
Try it! Your kids will thank you for it.
INTERNET RESOURCES FOR MICROSCOPE LAB
Here is historical information about the microscope plus
information on how to make one!
Microscope. Look at "specimens" under
the microscope and then try to identify them.
Microscope. Look at onion root mitosis and moon rock!
Learn how microscopes were developed, how to use one, and
see some samples of what you can do with one.
Ideas. Here are lots of ideas on using a microscope
along with directions for doing it.
Lots of microscope activity ideas from GreatScopes. Also
includes excellent information on how to buy a microscope.
This company is operated by homeschoolers.
A virtual microscope lab. Awesome! You are shown a microscopic
view of something then the Quicktime movie zooms out
so you can see what it is.
Resources from Museum of Science.
Find out how to build your own microscopes, set up a
microscope lab, how to stain specimens, and more.
Microbes in the news (learn about ancient, heroic, strange,
and dangerous microbes), read tales of amazing microbes,
and see the microbe of the month.
Alive. Another fantastic site of microscopic
images only this is done with graphics instead of photos.
This one has images of human cells, plants cells, and
of a microscope worksheet.
Activity Book. I discovered this on
Park Web site and thought you might like
to add it to your WWII unit.
Information and Resources:
Information about the Oklahoma
Quarter. Includes FREE lesson plans!
Oklahoma History Online by
Cindy Downes. An online, multi-level curriculum for
teaching Oklahoma History.
Oklahoma Scrapbook: A Travel Guide and Memory Book for
Exploring Oklahoma by
For more info and learning materials about Oklahoma
history, check my website at: http://www.oklahomahomeschool.com/teachOKH.html
Grammar and Style - A great resource
for everything grammar!
2. If your kids are looking for a Facebook group of homeschooled
kids, check this one out: I
am Homeschooled not Amish. You must be signed in
to Facebook to view and/or join the group.
3. Teaching the Constitution? Here's a free
resource from the Iowa
of microscopes, here is a free, Forensic
Science Unit that will give your children experience
in using a microscope.
Virtual Body - More science fun!
6. This is really fun! Test your knowledge of the U.S.
100 Preschool Web sites! Lots of links to help those
of you with preschoolers.
just discovered a product created by Art of Eloquence
What you Mean: Defending the Faith. After being
in college and around a lot of people who are curious
about what I believe, I can assure you that a course
like this would be a great benefit to your child. I haven't
used it but the sample looks excellent.
learning you will teach; by teaching you will learn." — Latin Proverb
feel free to forward this to anyone who may be interested.
Please forward in it's entirety.
you'd like to be added to the Oklahoma Homeschool Newsletter
mailing list, please email back with "Subscribe"
in the subject line, along with your city and state or country
and how long you have homechooled.
NOTICE: This newsletter is ©Copyright
2007 by Cindy Downes. All rights reserved.
POLICY. Your name and email address will always
remain completely confidential. I do not sell, loan, or share
any subscriber or customer information for any reason. Your
information will never be used for any purpose other than
delivery of my e-newsletter and to occasionally inform you
of updates to the Oklahoma
you want to be removed from this mailing list, please
send a blank email with the word "unsubscribe" in
the subject line.
a great day!
you seen The Checklist? It's
an assessment tool, lesson planner and K-12 Recordkeeper created
for Christian Home Educators: http://www.oklahomahomeschool.com/checklist.html
History Online is
now available! Check it out at: http://www.oklahomahomeschool.com/okhist.html