Scientific Method: Asking and Answering Questions
In this episode of The Classical Scholar Mom’s Course Teaching Workshop, I’m coaching homeschooling parents Colleen, Alexis, and Todd about teaching the scientific method as a strategy for improving critical thinking skills. Humans have always been curious and eager to understand our natural world.
Scripture opens with a glorious passage on creation in Genesis, and the Psalmist sings songs of praise as he observes, interprets, and analyzes what he sees, hears, smells, tastes, and touches. Hungry to understand, critical thinkers dating back to ancient Egypt and Greece and later Europeans in the 18th Century documented and refined the method for finding solutions that we now call the scientific method.
The scientific method is a systematic, empirical method for asking and answering questions about the world around us.
It’s all about inquiry and problem-solving, but the key is this: your problem has to be measurable. If the question that you’re asking or the solution that you’re seeking about the natural world isn’t quantifiable, you can’t really use the scientific method to find your answers. Remember I said the scientific method is an empirical system? That means when we observe facts or collect data about our world, we can verify our experience with more than theory or pure logic.
Before you watch this homeschool coaching workshop, download the slides so that you can take notes. Don’t worry about writing down all the exact website addresses; I’ve included complete links in the Teaching Resources section below.
Plus follow me for more creative teaching ideas for critical thinking skills on pinterest.
In This Homeschool Mom’s Workshop, You’ll Learn:
- the difference between inductive and deductive reasoning
- how to come up with a hypothesis
- a simple way to teach cause and effect
- the exact 5 steps to follow for the scientific method
- what 8 things go on every lab report
- supplies you’ll need for investigative observation
Plus lots of ideas for customizing entry-level teaching to your specific family interests, how to come up with your own hypotheses, and where to find “done-for-you” experiments (book & website recommendations).
You can start preparing your younger kids for the scientific method by teaching them to pay attention to the natural world and welcoming their inquisitive mind. During elementary, introduce the steps of the scientific method. After years of practice, your homeschool teens will be ready for laboratory biology and chemistry during high school.
Scientific Method Teaching Resources
Homeschool moms and dads can find lots of great teaching resources in the local library and on the web.
- Have you seen my Chemistry Infographic? Handy quick reference tool for scientific method
- Thousands of simple experiment ideas from Janice VanCleave books
- 15 edible science experiments — yummy fun!
- Tons of science experiment videos from Steve Spangler so you can preview what to expect
- Almost 5000 creative teaching ideas in every science discipline on pinterest
- Want to watch other kids do science experiments? See Whiz Kid Science on youtube
- Don’t forget your illustrated science encyclopedias for explaining your knowledge
- 21 free critical thinking homeschool ideas
Teaching the scientific method is fun, and it not only prepares your homeschool child for a potential career in science, medicine, engineering, or technology, but it also helps him become a better steward of the natural world. A kid who knows how to use the scientific method can observe, interpret, and apply his knowledge and understanding to finding solutions that make the world a better place…now and for years to come. Great news!
Do You Know How to Teach Chemistry?
Everything you need to know about teaching chemistry in your homeschool is right here on this lovely infographic. Download a copy for your science planning notebook.