The other day, a news article was published discussing the fact that the largest publishers of home school textbooks do not support evolution in their science books. Of course, many home schoolers find this article to be a good excuse to get mad and argue about something. But that’s not what I took away from the article.
Instead, it left me wanting to make sure that all secular home schoolers can find support and curriculum resources, and it especially left me wanting to find curriculum about evolution! Which turned out to be harder than I thought. It is really hard to find secular science curriculum, especially for the upper grades. Many curriculum which appear to be secular are still created by creationists!
So what can we do, as home schoolers who believe in evolution?
Lets gather for support: Here are some places I’ve found
- http://groups.yahoo.com/group/secular_homeschoolers/ is a national (or really international) group for secular home schoolers. It’s a great place to ask questions about curriculum and connect with people locally, as well.
- http://www.secularhomeschool.com/ is an on-line community for secular home schoolers. The site has been rather quiet recently, but the blog roll on the bottom of the page is a neat source
- Support groups! Ok, I havent really found what I think a ‘support group’ is supposed to be, but I have found support at local park days and through local electronic groups, and I describe them in my Park Day post
- http://www.hsfreethinkers.com/curricula I havent seen anything else like this. They have clear charts, by subject, of the bigger names in curriculum, and whether or not they are secular. In order to keep this as valuable as possible, I wrote them notes about some of my favorites which they don’t include, such as Time4Learning and the Joy Hakim books
- http://www.squidoo.com/chronologicalhistorystudies This was a very exciting beginning, but the author hasn’t updated it in a long time. She starts with the birth of the universe and ends around the death of the dinosaurs. She lists some resources for teaching evolution, including these two:
- http://www.intellegounitstudies.com/index.php/products.html Their unit studies are secular, but I wrote them this week, asking about evolution specifically. I was told that currently, the K-2 World History one discusses the evolution of humanoids, but from a history perspective. They will be coming out with a K-2 unit including dinosaurs and evolution, and as they add grade levels to their core series, each level will have a unit which specifically addresses evolution
- http://www.charliesplayhouse.com/childrens-books.php At first, Charlie’s Playhouse, which advertises itself as a website of evolution toys, seemed mostly like a time line and some t-shirts. I finally discovered their book list! They have nearly 100 book, targeted to ages fifteen or under and squarely focused on evolution or Darwin, and have a dozen starred as their top picks.
What else can we do to help home schoolers find great curriculum, especially about science and evolution? Join my new Facebook group, I home school and I believe in evolution, and lets brainstorm! And please leave any additional suggestions below, or on the face book page.
Note, I am not interested in controversy. Any posts which I feel are controversial or insulting to anyone will be deleted. Anyone making which I feel are derogatory towards me, my posts, my blog, or my group will be banned from making further posts.
EDITED 3/14/2010: I have changed the name of the facebook group to “I home school and I teach the science of Evolution.” Its still not perfect, but many people were uncomfortable with equating evolution with a belief system.