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5th Grade Science Homeschool Curriculum

5th grade Science Feature

5th Grade Science Homeschool Curriculum


How We Implemented 5th Grade Science in Our Home

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links that I have provided for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.

For 5th grade science in our homeschool, I do not rely on any particular outside textbook/workbook curriculum. In trying to follow the Charlotte Mason approach, I rely on finding information on our science topics by borrowing books from our local public library. We used this same approach last year and it worked very well for us. The following is how I put together the boys’ 5th grade science curriculum but the approach can be applied to any grade.

In order to find our topics, I, first, go to the Virginia Department of Education’s website and search for their standards of learning (SOLs) for the 5th grade science. I print out both the standards and its accompanying curriculum framework. These documents help break down each topic into smaller manageable units as well as provide the essential knowledge, skills, and processes that students in this grade level should possess and/or demonstrate. For example, SOL 5.2 deals with the topic of sound:

“VA SOL 5.2: The student will investigate and understand how sound is created and transmitted, and how it is used.

Key concepts include

a) compression waves;

b) vibration, compression, wavelength, frequency, amplitude;

c) the ability of different media (solids, liquids, and gases) to transmit sound; and

d) uses and applications of sound waves”

As you can see the standards list the concepts involved with sound such as compression waves, vibration, wavelengths, etc. I then use these concepts as my keyword entries when looking up books in the library’s online catalog.

After gathering as many books as I can find on the topic, I use the curriculum framework to choose the best and most appropriate books to use. When searching for these books, I stick to those found in the juvenile or youth section. I also try to include books that have experiments. After choosing the books I want to use, I also like to search online for supplementary activities and worksheets. You can find lots of ideas on sites like Pinterest and For example, I scored some free printables on plant cells where the boys color coded and labeled parts of the cell.

Now, remember that I use the 5th grade science standards as a guide but I don’t stick to them to the letter. For example, when we covered the phases of matter, the standards addressed solids, liquids, and gas. As the boys and I read our library books, there was one more phase that was not included in the framework, and that was plasma. The boys were fascinated by this 4th phase and I saw no reason why we couldn’t add this to our learning.

Each of the boys has their own science journal. 5th Grade Science Journals

These are divided by the standards’ main topic. For example, the boys learned about sound and light, SOLs 5.2 and 5.3. Both these standards fall under the broader topic of Force, Motion, and Energy. In their journals, the boys keep vocabulary, worksheets, drawings, scientific histories/biographies as well as any data taken during experiments and any results. The examples below include: (from upper left going clockwise) a diagram showing the changing phases of matter with labels, planets sorted by whether they are terrestrial or gas giants, a Venn Diagram comparing and contrasting frogs and butterflies, a unit’s vocabulary with definitions, a small biography of Aristotle and his belief on the orbits of planets and data from a plant experiment we did last year. Note that some of these sheets below come from my membership with

Another thing I sometimes do as part of their science studies, is to find kits online. Amazon has plenty of these if you have the money in your budget but it really isn’t necessary. For example, I recently purchased a rock science kit as a way to incorporate the classification of different rocks, SOL 5.7. It was $10 and since I have Amazon Prime it shipped free. I am sure we could have went into our backyard and found some rocks to do this (and we still can) but I was afraid we may only find two or three different types of rocks whereas the kit has 15 different types.

Lastly, I also try to incorporate relevant biographies as part of the topic we are covering. For example, we read about Alexander Graham Bell when we covered our sound unit as well as Marie Curie when we finished our unit on atoms and elements. I used lap book activities that I purchased from one of my favorite homeschool sites,

Now, I know that some people may question my use of the state’s standards but here is my reasoning: if something should happen to me and my children are put back into the public school system, I can feel confident that they will be at the same level as their peers if not more so. Again, I use the standards and framework as a guide but I supplement their learning with lots of hands-on activities and scientific histories/biographies.

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5th Grade Here We Come!

Welcome to 5th Grade Boys!

So this is it! 5th grade: our last year of “elementary” school. I can’t believe how fast time has passed. As usual the boys are not so thrilled about starting school again. I can’t blame them. I wasn’t so thrilled about the first day of school when I was their age. However, I like to remind them the many benefits of homeschooling:

  • Do not have to get up so early (they get up around 8:30am)
  • No rushing out the door to get to school
  • Wearing pajamas in school (what can possibly beat that)
  • No homework (all work is done in class)
  • Field Trips (unfortunately, the schools in our district have had to cut these because of lack of funding)
  • Get out early (if all work for the day is done, I release them. This varies but for the most part we end at about 2pm.)
  • It is safe to bet that their teacher loves them very much.

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links that I have provided for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.

This year we have changed our curriculum a bit. You can find our 2015-2016 curriculum posted on July 31, 2015 at: This change has also decreased our school time as well. That is, I have combined spelling, writing, grammar, and cursive into one subject. I also purchased Susan Wise Bauer’s The Story of the World5th grade for history which the boys (and I) like. Stay tuned for curriculum reviews in the coming months.

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2015-2016 5th Grade Homeschool Curriculum

5th grade homeschool curriculum pic

The following is our 5th grade homeschool curriculum for the 2015-2016 school year. We have a very eclectic curriculum. For some subjects, I purchased textbooks and workbooks. For others, I will use a Charlotte Mason (CM) approach.

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links that I have provided for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.

5th grade curriculum pic of pencils for pinterest

Math Homeschool Curriculum

5th grade math curriculum

Science Homeschool Curriculum

  • I use the science topics found on my state’s Department of Education website. With these topics, I use my local library and gather books that I feel with add to our homeschool learning. I especially gather books that have accompanying experiments. For example, the boys are going to learn about sound. I’ve found a book that is full of experiments for teaching sound. Along with this topic, I will also include the biography of Alexander Graham Bell. For this part, we use Confessions of a Homeschooler’s Scientists & Inventors Unit Studies. As the year progresses, I will add other relevant scientists and inventors to their studies.

World History/Geography Homeschool Curriculum

  • We will be using the Story of the World volume 1 and 2 by Susan Wise Bauer. Volume 1 will be used to review ancient history (which we did last year). Volume 2 will cover the Middle/Medieval Ages. We have not used this curriculum before so stay tuned for a review in a future post. So far, I like the materials and activities it has provided. I also like that they have incorporated relevant geography. We will also use Homeschool in the Wood’s Timeline Notebook Binder. The children love inserting the historical figures and events into their “Record of Time”.

5th grade history curriculum5th grade history 2 curriculum

U.S. Geography Homeschool Curriculum

Free Notebooking Pages Sampler

Language Arts (grammar, spelling, poetry, and cursive) Homeschool Curriculum

  • Last year, all these topics were taught separately. This year, I decided to try the Charlotte Mason (CM) way of teaching these topics. I purchased Spelling Wisdom Book 1 and Using Language WellBook 1 by Sonya Shafer of I can’t wait to use it. Please visit her site as she can explain the CM approach so much better than I ever could. I will provide a review of this curriculum as the year progresses.

Classical Literature Homeschool Curriculum

  • Here, we use Confessions of a Homeschooler’s Classical Literature Unit, Volume 3. We only have a few books left in this volume. So we will also cover Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Art Homeschool Curriculum

Music Homeschool Curriculum

Spanish Homeschool Curriculum

5th grade Spanish curriculumSo there you have it, readers. I can’t wait to get started this year.

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