Guest Hollow's High School Chemistry Curriculum

Homeschool Chemistry Curriculum

Welcome to Guest Hollow's High School Chemistry in the Kitchen!

Most chemistry curriculums are comprised of thick, boring textbooks that require a firm grounding in algebra and feature labs with chemicals that can strike fear in a homeschool parent's heart. Our chemistry curriculum is like nothing out there in the homeschool market (that I know of)! You don't need to know any higher level math to do it. You don't have to purchase a $250 lab kit with chemicals galore and test tubes. This is a PRACTICAL chemistry course for those of you who have students who hate math, hate science, and are in tears thinking of that scary chemistry textbook they are supposed to choke down. This is also the perfect science curriculum for those students who LOVE science and want to learn some down-to-earth science they will use and enjoy knowing throughout their lives.

In this very different and non-traditional chemistry curriculum, students will learn "guesthollow" style with loads of great books, fun hands-on activities, fascinating videos, online articles & images, and free printables scheduled in. It's meaty enough to be a "core" curriculum, but flexible enough to be reduced to the bare bones, if you already have a daily schedule that is weighing your student down.

There is NO textbook. That keeps things fresh, interesting, and non-intimidating. Students also learn a bit of history and other subjects like physics, because chemistry is NOT something that happens in a vacuum. It's the world all around us and tied to many other things. Your student will learn lots of interesting and fun facts while getting to learn another important skill s/he can actually put to use - cooking!

Customer Login - Click here to go to the online schedule. Your login info is located on the first few pages of the printable PDF or MS Word schedule.
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Click here to see some suggestions about assigning credits.

Click here to see some sample weeks.

Labs

Since this is a non-traditional chemistry course, there are no labs. Instead, students have lots of hands-on activities that yank chemistry topics right out of the abstract and put them solidly into "real life". Cooking yummy foods you can eat afterwards (like Devil's Food cupcakes!) is a big component of this year's studies - a real bonus for budding chefs. There are plenty of other activities to choose from like making a density tower, making color changing " chameleon eggs", evaluating milk chocolate bars, and lots more! Learning chemistry has never been this fun!

Materials and resources

I've scheduled in a variety of fascinating books and resources to make this high school science course informative, interesting and memorable! Guest Hollow's High School Chemistry in the Kitchen Curriculum is stuffed full of practical information teens can use for the rest of their lives!

Homeschool Chemistry Curriculum Books

Click here to see the book and resources list!

Question: What age is this chemistry curriculum for?

Answer: This curriculum is designed for high schoolers. Many of the books scheduled in are for adults and may mention topics that may not be appropriate for younger students. A younger student can possibly use this curriculum in conjunction with an older sibling, but a parent will need to preview materials and may wish to read some books out loud, instead of handing them to the student. There is also a lot of cooking activities, which of course involve using a stove and such. It's assumed that any students who use this curriculum have been taught kitchen safety and will be supervised at all times during any and all activities.

Question: Is this science curriculum Christian or secular?

Answer: It's secular with one Christian biography of Louis Pasteur. That resource is marked as a Christian book in the resource list, so non-Christian families can easily skip it. Christian families may enjoy adding in the Elements of Faith book, which is listed in the "extra credit" section, for a bit of a Biblical view of the elements.

Question: If I buy all of those books, I'll spend a fortune! How can I afford this?

Answer: Borrow as many books as you can from the library. If you want to order them all, the cost will be similar to any other core or literature type curriculum, such as Sonlight, except you won't have to shell out tons of money for an instructor's guide! Please consider ordering through our links, as we get a small commission via Amazon. Your purchases through our links help our site stay up!

Most of the scheduled activities use inexpensive materials found in your home or from the grocery store. Please refer to the supply list that's provided when you purchase the curriculum. Also, most of the videos in the schedule can be found for free online, even the ones in the resources list. Do a search online and see if they are!

Question: Why is your curriculum so different from most science curricula with all of those books and videos instead of just a textbook?

Answer: When I design curricula, I design it to be something *I* would love to learn and base my choices off of 20+ years of teaching my own children! Most kids don't retain a lot of what they learn solely from textbooks. Why? Because textbooks are often boring and kids can't relate what they are learning to real life. I've scoured through hundreds of books to find interesting stories and entertaining resources that bring learning to life and help students better understand the world around them. Chemistry is a super-interesting subject. My curriculum makes it accessible to students who would otherwise not enjoy earning their high school science credits.

I LOVE science. I've always wanted my kids to love science too, or to at least learn some practical things that using just a textbook isn't going to deliver. I've worked hard to create a high school science curriculum at a fraction of the cost with plenty of options that make it flexible, fascinating, and fun!

Question: How is this curriculum different from a traditional chemistry course?

Students will explore many chemistry concepts in this curriculum, but they will NOT learn some of the more traditional chemistry topics that require higher level math skills. They also will not cover some of the topics in as much depth as they would in a traditional chemistry course. Some of the topics that ARE included:

  • Acids & bases
  • Different types of atomic bonding
  • Gases
  • Ions
  • Molecules and some of their properties
  • Oxidation and reduction
  • The periodic table and elements
  • Solutions
  • Organic chemistry
  • Much more!

Some of the topics that are NOT covered:

  • Chemical equations
  • Entropy
  • Rate Laws
  • Stoichiometry
  • The mole - other than a brief video introduction & explanation
  • ETC.

Many different chemistry concepts are covered in this curriculum, but in a way that leaves out much of the "blah blah blah" kind of stuff that makes many student's eyes glaze over. I also don't expect students to be able to classify what they know, as in, "I just learned about oxidation and reduction" (although many will probably retain a lot of that), but rather that they understand and absorb the practical knowledge behind those concepts like, "I need to blanch those apples before canning them to keep them from turning brown." Chemistry is explained using real life examples students can relate to. This is a PRACTICAL chemistry course.

Question: Who is this chemistry course best suited for?

Answer:

  • A student who is science or math phobic but needs to fulfill science credits
  • A kid who is behind in math, or doesn't want to apply it outside of "math time"
  • A kid who is planning on a non-science major in college or wishes to pursue a career like law enforcement, art, culinary arts, etc. (but still needs to fulfill those pesky science credits!)
  • A student who is taking a traditional chemistry course, but loves science so much that s/he wishes to learn some more practical aspects of chemistry and would like to add this in as an extra or "core" class
  • A student who has taken other Guest Hollow courses and wishes to stick with the "Guest Hollow" style of learning
  • Kids who are more "out-of-the-box" and don't fit the traditional subject mold
  • A student who is sick of textbooks

I feel there is a real need in the homeschool world for a curriculum like this. Chemistry is an important part of just about everything. Kids should be acquainted with it in a way they are going to retain and enjoy!

In my opinion, this is NOT the chemistry course you should use to fill your student's chemistry credits if s/he is on a path to have a future career in the sciences. It does NOT cover all of the traditional chemistry topics to the same depth. That doesn't mean it isn't rich and stuffed full of great information. In some cases, it may even cover things that aren't in a traditional course at all. Just be aware that I don't make ANY claims that this curriculum will prepare your student for college chemistry courses, or anything like that. Take a look at the scheduled materials and sample weeks to see if you think it's a good fit for your student's future plans, or not. That is ultimately YOUR choice and your decision.

Question: How do I assign grades?

Answer: Click here for a suggestion on how to assign grades.

Question: How does your curriculum schedule differ from traditional style instructor's guides?

Answer: Take a look at the free sample weeks by scrolling down below. There are no tests & quizzes.

I sometimes shelled out big bucks for instructor's guides and usually only ended up using the schedule portion. Sometimes, in my opinion, less is more.

Question: Do I have to have my student do everything in the schedule, even when you have 5 videos to watch in one week?

Answer: I've scheduled in lots of videos as well as free printables and things like online articles. Consider them a buffet of activities. If you are behind due to illness or another reason, it's easy to get back up to speed. Just pare down the schedule activities, and you're all set! Do you have another resource you'd rather use? Just plug it into the schedule and use it instead. The printable schedule is editable, so you can take out and add things as you desire.

Many weeks will have more than one recipe listed. Your student can choose to do one per week, or s/he can do all of them. You are really only limited by your student’s interest level and your budget for cooking ingredients. I’ve marked a few activities or recipes as optional (although technically they ALL are optional), because they require you to get some items that are not common and may be more expensive than the regular activities/ recipes.

Don't let the schedule rule you!

Always remember that YOU are in charge, not the schedule. Guest Hollow schedules are adaptable and flexible. There are some "light" weeks where you can play catch-up and heavier weeks with lots of OPTIONS, not commands, lol.

At the beginning of the year:
  • Set up a notebook (3-ring binder or similar) to store all your science papers for the year. You may want to take pictures of the hands-on activities, print them out, and put them in the notebook.

    I do NOT make any guarantees about this curriculum. USE IT AT YOUR OWN RISK. 

    Are you ready to become part of the Guest Hollow family?

    Click here to purchase a curriculum schedule in my store.
    Buy it now!

    The following is not guaranteed and is only provided as a courtesy. It may become unavailable at any time:

    When you purchase a printable schedule, you also get access to a password protected ONLINE schedule for those of you who’d like a more visual schedule with links a student or parent can click on directly from a computer or a tablet.

    • Free updates & additions to the online schedule may be added occasionally! You do not need to repurchase anything to access these changes, as long as the online version of the schedule is provided. That means that even if your printable schedule is out of date, the online schedule will always be the newest version of the curriculum.

    Click on the linked (yellow) weeks below for a free sample! Please note that the printable schedule is formatted for printing and does not contain book cover pictures, etc. like the online schedule, so as to save ink!

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