The challenge of keeping a gifted/ADHD student satisfied with science materials

Here is a great question from my mailbox.   Since the answer may be relevant to many others, I want to share the letter with you.  My responses are italicized.

Hi Holly,
Thank you for offering such great classes, however, I live in Southeast Gilbert (AZ) and the drive to your classes would be so far.

***I am doing a workshop on August 14 in Tempe–at Treasures for Teachers on Priest and Broadway in Tempe.  Here is the link to the workshops (I am also open to setting up workshops in other areas of Maricopa County or the state.  Contact me for details.

I was hoping you could give me some advice online.
My son, 11yrs, is gifted/ADHD and every curriculum I have tried he is bored with. He loves to learn at a very fast past, what catches his interest, only needing to hear new concept once. Fall will be our 2nd year home school and it took me this first year to figure this out!!
***Good for you for learning this with only a year into it! 

He loves science channel and has been watching for years. So I guess I am asking for suggestions for advanced fast paced videos and hands-on science units.

****Some great science units:
1.  Apologia science for the elementary grades:  Astronomy, Zoology (swimming creatures, land creatures and flying creatures), Botany, and Anatomy coming soon. 
2.  Great Science Adventures: 

The World of Plants– Life Science
The World of Tools and Technology– Physical Science
The World of Space– Earth Science
The World of Insects and Arachnids– Life Science
The World of Light and Sound –Physical Science
Discovering Earth’s Landforms and Surface Features –Earth Science 
Discovering the Human Body and Senses –Life Science
Discovering the Ocean –Earth Science
Discovering Atoms, Molecules, and Matter– Physical Science 
The World of Vertebrates –Life Science –TBA
Discovering Earth’s Atmosphere and Weather– Earth Science –TBA

These are the best pre-packaged unit studies that I know about for science, and they can be purchased from Covenant Home School Resource Center


He was tested verbally gifted IQ 122, but the tester thought without ADHD it would be 145. Thank you so much I appreciate any help!!

****That is wonderful that he is so bright, but of course that means you have to stay on the ball!

Here are some other ideas for you:
There are many co-op classes that offer science if a small group setting would be of interest.  Covenant Home School Resource Center has some fabulous classes, and I know several of the support groups in the east valley have classes as well.   I am not up on what each one is offering, but you can do a search for Arizona homeschool groups.

For videos, Moody Bible Institute has a several DVDs on various aspects of Creation which are excellent.

Here is a whole page of links to science videos

Johns Hopkins University has special programs for gifted students

You may want to get involved in a hands-on session with the Jason Project:  A nonprofit subsidiary of the National Geographic Society, JASON connects young students with great explorers and great events to inspire and motivate them to learn science. Its core curriculum units are designed for 5th – 8th grade classrooms but are flexible enough to be adapted for higher or lower grades. (Real scientists are working on specific projects, and students get to work alongside via satellite communication and activities the students do with a group at home.)

The Challenger Space Center in Glendale has camps and ongoing programs for students.

The Arizona Science Center has a volunteer program that parents and students can be part of

Another idea is to take one area of current interest and see if there is a local group or club dealing with that topic.  Sometimes the community colleges have such groups on campus, or a prof in that topic may have some good resources.

Best wishes!

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