Science resources

Home educators may not have fully-equipped science labs, but these days schools are so safety-conscious that most demonstrations must be carried out by the teacher anyway. You can get a better view, at your own pace, with a much wider variety of things to see, by searching online. Here are a few science resources – some will show you scientific ‘worlds’, some will explain things clearly, some will give you ideas for experiments that can be done at home.

Underground adventure – a virtual tour of the world of worms or other underground insects. Suitable for any age.

KidZone science – experiments and facts about seeds, mould, the water cycle, and more. For about age 5-10.

Kids Astronomy – suitable for anyone interested in space exploration and astronomy. As well as clear answers to questions about space, this site includes free courses: one for age 7-11 and one for 11+, for those who like structured learning with assignments and a certificate at the end. There is also a printable sky map.

Glossopedia – a nicely-designed site with useful images and explanations about several scientific topics, from stars to rainforests, bamboo to chocolate. The site map lists all currently available pages.

Biology 4 kids – basic information about cell structure, animal life and other biological subjects, on a mainly text-based site with some photos, and multi-choice type questions.

Science toys – science demonstrations you can make at home, covering simple optics, radio, electromagnetism and many other physics topics. Recommended for parents and children together.

Virtual pond dip – examine creatures found in a typical pond, and find out about them. For any age.

Neuroscience for kids – all you ever wanted to know about the brain, and how it works. Explanations and experiments for children of all ages.

Primary School Science – if you want to follow UK National Curriculum, this site gives extensive resources at Key Stage 2 (approx age 8-11) with descriptions, worksheets and related clip-art.

Atom-builder – enables you to see how atoms are constructed by making your own online.

Reeko’s mad scientist lab – a range of experiments and demonstrations that can be done at home for children of different ages, some requiring parental help. A lot of text including clear instructions, to show principles such as momentum, pressure, etc.

Wave interference experiment explanation – simplified explanations of quantum behaviour and wave forms, with graphics to emulate demonstrations sometimes shown in school labs.

Chem4kids – clear explanations about basic chemistry, including details of the first 18 elements, explanations about biochemistry, and matter. Probably best for older children or younger teens as there is quite a bit of text.

BBC science – studies on space, animals, the human body, and many other topics, as well as links to current science programmes on TV (in the UK) and some quizzes and further links. Mainly suitable for teenagers.

Magnet man – detailed explanations, including relevant history, of everything to do with magnetism, with plenty of ideas to try at home. Lots of text at this site, and fairly complex ideas, so probably more appropriate for teenagers than younger children.

Electricity and magnetism tutorials – plenty of information about many aspects of electricity, including atomic structure, cathode rays, how a CD works, and much more. Simple interactive diagrams allow for visual understanding alongside the text. Most suitable for older children or teenagers studying physics.

Cells alive – all you ever wanted to know about cells, microbiology, and using a microscope. Clear explanations, diagrams, and some animation. Probably most suitable for over 11s as there is a fair amount of complex test, but would suit any interested young biologist.

Doc Brown’s chemistry clinic – chemistry data, quizzes and links for approx age 11-18, tying in with the UK National Curriculum and all exam boards for GCSE and A-level exams.

Frog dissection – intended for age 11+, with a ‘new and improved’ digital version as well as the original. Definitely less unpleasant than doing this in reality!

In addition you might like to see my main science page, which gives some ideas for introducing science in home education at various ages.

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