By Dawn Michelle Michals
It’s time for seventh grade and you and your child are both ready! Whether you’ve been homeschooling since pre-K or this is your first time leading your child’s education, you are in the right place!
We have compiled everything you need to get started homeschooling 7th grade and keep you on track. From competencies and developmental milestones to field trip ideas and more, we have it all included below.
Homeschooling curriculum in the state of Texas must include the five basic subjects of reading, spelling, grammar, mathematics and good citizenship. Science, history and social studies are also included below for you.
Not in Texas? Check out state requirements for homeschooling seventh grade in your state.
Growth spurts will gain intensity this year so you may see some clumsiness and decreased coordination from your emerging seventh grader. With all these height and weight changes, your preteen will need a lot more rest to keep up with the energy he’s using to grow right now.
Peer pressure could be a concern this year as your child is now more intune to the world around him and his desire to fit in, yet desires to be an individual at the same time.
Your child may no longer take things at face value and may begin questioning everything around her, including the decisions you make as a parent and the events that are happening in our world.
These milestones are expected and set the course as they mature toward adulthood.
Suggested School Supplies for Seventh Grade
- Identifies the major eras in Texas history and the importance of dividing our history into eras
- Studies and understands of the Declaration of Independence including memorization of: “We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness–That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed.”
- Familiar with the events, issues and individuals including Chief Bowles, William Goyens, Mary Maverick, José Antonio Navarro who shaped the history of the Republic of Texas and early Texas statehood
- Understands the individuals, events, and issues which shaped the history of Texas from Reconstruction through the beginning of the 20th century
- Knows the significant individuals, events, and issues of the development of the cattle industry from its Spanish beginnings and the cowboy way of life
- Able to explain the political, economic, and social impact of the agricultural industry and the development of West Texas resulting from the close of the frontier
- Able to explain our industrial history during the late 19th, 20th, and early 21st centuries including our oil industry, farming, oil and gas production, cotton, ranching, real estate, banking, and computer technology
- Able to describe and compare reform movements in Texas in the 19th and 20th centuries such as progressivism, populism, women’s suffrage, agrarianism, labor reform, and the conservative movement of the late 20th century and how they have impacted our state
- Able to identify prominent geographical sites and areas including the Mountains and Basins, Great Plains, North Central Plains, and Coastal Plains regions; major cities, bodies of water, etc.
- Familiar with different immigrant groups and their contributions to Texas culture and history.
7th Grade Math Checklist
- Applies math skills to to everyday life and understands how they apply to business, society and life
- Fluently adds, subtracts, multiplies, and divides rational numbers
- Understands proportionality
- Uses geometry to describe or solve problems
- Dives more into personal financial literacy to become a knowledgeable consumer and investor including calculating sales tax and income tax
- Understands the concept of personal budgeting and of how interest rates work
- Able to compare and analyze the use of sales, rebates, and coupons and how they save money
- Uses probability and statistics to describe or solve problems
- Uses basic algebra skills to solve for the unknown, such as 9+x=11
- Uses formulas to find the area, perimeter, and volume of shapes
- Use coordinates to locate points on a grid, also known as graphing ordered pairs
- Able to work on fractions, percentages, and proportions
- Able to apply mathematics to solve problems that arise in everyday life, society, and the workplace
- Adds, subtracts, multiplies, and divides integers fluently
- Able to convert units within a measurement system, including the use of proportions and unit rates
- Understand ratios and rates to solve real-world problems
- Uses coordinate geometry to identify locations on a plane as is able to graph points in all four quadrants using ordered pairs of rational numbers.
7th Grade Science Experiments and Skills
- Understands the relationship between living organisms and their environments and the adaptations needed to live in each
- Understands that all living organisms pass on traits to their offspring through sexual or asexual reproduction
- Understands that all organisms are composed of cells and that they use energy, get rid of wastes, and contain genetic material
- Knows and explains the major functions of the human body systems and that all organs are made of up of cells
- Able to describe how biodiversity sustains an ecosystem
- Able to explain why and how different adaptations help organisms survive such as gills in fish, hollow bones in birds, or xylem in plants
- Understands the importance of our Earth in space and is able to explain reasons why different objects in our solar system are able to or not able to support life. Example: Earth’s position in relation to the Sun, water, etc.
- Able to explain how catastrophic events such as floods, hurricanes, or tornadoes impact our ecosystems
- Understands the effects of weathering, erosion, and deposition on the environment in ecoregions of Texas
- Able to conduct laboratory and field investigations and uses safe practices to do so
- Able to use a variety of tools for scientific inquiry and uses them correctly.
5 Homeschooling Seventh Grade Science Experiments
What better way to enhance understanding of our natural world than to incorporate science into your seventh grade homeschool day? Here are five fun and easy experiments for you and your budding scientist:
- Purify Water With Charcoal
- Build your own world with Disney Imagineers
- NASA’s BEST Activity Educator Guide
- Build a Robotic Hand With Household Items
- How Bad is Sugar REALLY? The Effects of Sugar On Our Teeth
7th Grade Good Citizenship Lesson Plans
Being a good citizen not only means understanding your right to vote and the privileges of having citizenship, but also respect for our planet, good stewardship and understanding the world around us. Below are ideas to assist you and your young learner in understanding the relationship among individual rights, responsibilities, duties, and freedoms in societies with representative governments and why civic participation is so important. If you are in need of resources and lesson plans to fulfill this requirement, consider joining THSC. We offer our “Lone Star Study” guide as a free download for our members.
Here are a few ideas:
- Become involved in events and initiatives such as Capitol Days sponsored by THSC.
- Learn about the electoral process in local, state and national elections.
- Register to vote on time and then go to vote on election days! Take your child with you to see the process. Children under the age of 18 are allowed to go with you and even go inside the booth with you in every state in the United States. In our state, one child under the age of 18 is allowed to accompany a parent.
- Compare the principles and concepts of the Texas Constitution to the U.S. Constitution, including the Texas and U.S. Bill of Rights. How are they different? How are they the same?
- Learn the words together of our most beloved patriotic songs. “The Star-Spangled Banner,” “God Bless America,” and “Texas, Our Texas” are three that offer a rich history in their lyrics and the stories behind them.
- Discover the meaning and history of the Pledge of Allegiance and the Pledge to the Texas Flag.
- Write a letter to your elected officials in support or against legislation affecting lives within your community. Start a letter-writing campaign to get others involved!
- Attend city council meetings as a family and discover the workings of your town.
- Volunteer at a food pantry, animal shelter, or other organization (many places allow younger children to participate with a parent).
- Learn about local and national non-profit organizations and how each serves your community (such as the Boys and Girls Clubs of America or The Salvation Army).
- Attend rallies of causes you believe in as a family.
- How is your town significant in Texas history? Find out! Visit the library or chat with a local historian.
- Discover how each of us affects the environment from how much water we use to how much trash we produce. Then, discuss and implement ways you as a family can lessen your impact.
- Learn about recycling in your area. What items are recyclable and where and how do you recycle them?
- Keep our state clean by picking up litter everywhere you go, wearing disposable gloves when necessary.
- Did you know that flags from six nations have flown over our state? Learn which countries played a role in our history and why.
12-Year-Old Developmental Milestones
All children develop at different rates. However, certain skills are easily identified by the age of twelve. If you have concerns about your child’s development after reviewing this list, please discuss those with your healthcare provider.
12-Year-Old Gross Motor Skills
- Frequent growth spurts
- May be more mature in some others and immature in others such as physical, emotional and mental due to uneven body and brain growth
- Coordination may decrease with increase of growth spurts
- Reaction times improves, contributing to motor skill development
- Shows increased awareness of physical skills in all areas and is able to coordinate movements (like dribbling and shooting a basketball, dance or martial arts) with better coordination
- Overall increase in large muscle development and strength
- Increased hand-eye coordination.
12-Year-Old Fine Motor Skills
- Writing is fluid and less of an effort
- Writing speed increases
- Continues to increase skills while performing tasks such as folding clothes, typing, writing and drawing
- Drawings become more sophisticated with depth cues through overlapping objects, diagonal placement, and converging lines
- Fine motor skills used in team sports increase.
7th Grade Language Development and Comprehension
- Uses voice inflection to add meaning to sentences
- Asks relevant questions
- Uses complex sentences and different types of sentences to express ideas clearly
- Contributes meaningfully and understands social etiquette in conversations
- More aware of others’ perceptions
- Begins to understands body language cues and tone of voice as indicators of mood
- Able to shift conversations based on increased awareness of the listener’s needs
- Use humor and even sarcasm effectively.
Homeschooling 7th Grade Reading List (10 Great Books)
Find these books at your local library, or find them on Amazon. (If you do shop on Amazon visit Amazon Smile and choose Texas Home School Coalition as your charity of choice!) You might want to check a site like Common Sense Media or Focus on the Family’s Plugged In for media content appropriateness for your child.
- “The Hunger Games” by Suzanne Collins
We are introduced to a world where geographical districts receive food from the government, but only if they win it. When 16-year-old Katniss Everdeen’s 12-year-old sister is chosen to compete in the deadly Hunger Games, what will she do?
- “The Maze Runner” by James Dashner
Thomas only remembers his name as he arrives in the Glade surrounded by boys with no memories and a maze that changes everyday. There is no escape and the Grievers want nothing more to kill you if you try. When a girl arrives—the first one ever—with a cryptic message, everything changes.
- “Percy Jackson and the Olympians” series by Rick Riordan
Getting kicked out of boarding school is the least of Percy’s problems now that mythological creatures and the gods of Olympus seem to be around every turn.
- “The Book Thief” by Markus Suzac
As a foster child in 1939 Munich, Liesel Meminger’s life revolves around bombings, Nazi threats and parades of Jewish prisoners. But, one thing in her life remains constant–books. And, she steals them whenever she gets the chance. As the war comes closer, her stolen books are what bring solace to not only Liesel, but her neighbors and the Jewish man hiding in her basement as well. As told by the narrator–Death.
- “Life As We Knew It” by Susan Beth Pfeffer
When an asteroid knocks the moon closer to the earth, the results are catastrophic–worldwide tsunamis, earthquakes, and the sun is blotted out by volcanic ash. When the heat of August turns into winter overnight, sophomore Miranda must huddle with her family around a fire for warmth and survive on meager rations and limited water. This story shares Miranda’s journal with you.
- “Divergent” series by Veronica Roth
Beatrice has a secret, but she won’t share it. She can’t because “in this world, what makes you different makes you dangerous.” In a society divided into five factions, Beatrice must choose between staying with her Abnegation family or transferring to a new one. Her choice shocks her community and herself.
- “Freak the Mighty” by Rodman Philbrick
This book tells the story of two boys, one a slow learner in a teenage giant, and the other a genius with leg braces. Together they are Freak the Mighty, and they will conquer the world. “ ‘We’re Freak the Mighty, that’s who we are. We’re nine feet tall, in case you haven’t noticed.’ That’s how it started, really, how we got to be Freak the Mighty, slaying dragons and fools and walking high above the world.”
- “Legend Trilogy” by Marie Lu
June and Day come from two differet worlds. June, destined for success in the highest military circles was born into an elite family in the Republic. While Day is the country’s most sought after criminal. In a shocking turn of events, “the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.”
- “The Lions of Little Rock” by Kristin Levine
When Marlee meets the new girl in school, Liz, she finds someone the complete opposite of herself–bold, brash and brave. But, when Liz disappears from school suddenly, rumors swirl that she was trying to pass as white. Marlee doesn’t care about the color of her friend’s skin, she just wants her friend back! To stay friends, the two must take on segregation in 1958 Little Rock, Arkansas.
- “Among the Hidden” by Margaret Peterson Haddix
Are you a third child? In the future, a third child–shadow children–are deemed illegal by the Population Police and must be hidden, or else. When Luke meets another shadow child, can he risk becoming involved in her dangerous plan?
More books to read in seventh grade.
Magazines offer a great way for children to learn core subjects and relationship skills. Here are a few great options:
- National Geographic Kids (ages six and up)
- Highlights (ages six to 12)
- Sports Illustrated Kids
- Boys’ Life (ages six to 18).
10 Awesome Field Trips When Homeschooling 7th Grade
Everyone loves a field trip! Don’t feel you have to leave your town or your own neighborhood to enjoy one. Be creative and your next stroll down the street can be an educational experience.
- First Responder Appreciation: Police, fire and EMS stations are located throughout most cities. Locate the one closest to your house and make a connection. Tour a fire station, talk to a police officer or reach out to an emergency medical technician and find out what it truly means to be a first responder.
- Government: THSC Capitol Days are one-day, hands-on events that allow homeschooling families to fully participate in the state legislative process. These events give the opportunity to defend the rights of homeschool families in Texas, meet representatives and staff and actually help pass a law. A free grade-specific tour is available at our Texas state capitol, which includes history, architecture and the legislative process.
- Job Fair: Seventh grade means your child may begin forming opinions on a career or college path. Visit a farm, watch a lawyer in court, chat with a pastor or priest or cook alongside a chef. Electricians, college professors, nurses and more are available to show you the ins and outs of their careers and help guide an eager learner on a possible career choice.
- Historical Sites: What are you studying right now? Bring your homeschool studies to life by visiting the places you are learning about each day. That’s the freedom of homeschooling! Discover places close to home or go on a road-trip tour through Texas and learn along the way.
- Museums: If you have an interest, there is a museum for you in Texas! The Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum located in Waco offers guided tours and programs with topics covering Texas history, government, crime-scene investigation, public safety, geography, and more. For some in-home fun before you go, check out the “Educators” section of their website for activity sheets and a Crime Scene In a Box activity.
- Do you have a future astronaut on your hands? Visit the Space Center in Houston and it’s “400 space artifacts, permanent and traveling exhibits, exhibits and experiences and theaters related to the exciting future and remarkable past of America’s human space-flight program.” The center is the Official Visitor Center of NASA Johnson Space Center and a Smithsonian Affiliate.
- Sports: Sports fans! Did you know that tours are available at your favorite stadiums throughout the state? Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros, and AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys, offer tours and lesson plans to educators.
- Libraries: Teen groups, anime meetups, coding camps and more are held throughout the year at local libraries throughout the state. Check with yours and see what activities you can plan ahead to take advantage of free programs and educational opportunities.
- Theater/Music/Art: Grab a blanket and head to a free outdoor concert, stroll through a sculpture garden or get those must-see tickets to the latest show. Shakespeare Dallas and their famous Shakespeare in the Park performances allow you and your child to “experience Shakespeare in a casual park setting.” Visit their Student Enrichment page for ideas and activities to bring the world of William Shakespeare to life with your child.
- Get Outside: Our Texas state parks offer opportunities throughout the year for hiking tours, educational programs, scavenger hunts and more.
- Feel like staying closer to home? What better way to learn about ecosystems than by searching for insects, nests and other furry habitats in your own backyard! Go for a walk, visit a pond and discuss the different types of wildlife, or take a stroll through your neighborhood. Simply walking around noticing nature opens up a world of conversations with your preteen.
- Need a road trip? Head east to our Texas coast and see the birds and creatures that make up this diverse ecosystem. With a state as big as ours, the possibilities are endless!
- Living History: Groups across the state work to ensure historical accuracy and diverse programming, such as the Crossroads of Texas Living History Association and the Texas Living History Association. Museums and special events throughout Texas offer presentations and workshops that keep the craftsmanship, allure and heirloom skills of our past available for your family to learn today. For more Texas road trip ideas (and beyond), check out our roadschooling page.
We hope you found this helpful in preparing to homeschool seventh grade. Have fun this year!
We believe homeschooling is one of the best educational models, which is Texas homeschoolers support families with encouragement and practical resources like you found in this article. Would you help make more of these resources available to families by joining thousands of families as a THSC member today?