Chemistry Level 1


REAL Science Odyssey- Chemistry Level 1 is a year-long, secular homeschool science curriculum for elementary grades. Students learn key concepts in chemistry through an incremental series of lessons and hands-on exploration.

Pages: 432

Grade level: 2nd – 5th grade

Course type: textbook

Author: Blair H. Lee, M.S.


What is Chemistry Level 1?

REAL Science Odyssey- Chemistry Level 1 is a year-long, secular homeschool science curriculum. Students learn the key concepts in chemistry through an incremental series of lessons. They start with atoms and molecules, and progress to states of matter and chemical reactions. Age-appropriate math and labs are woven into the course, giving students many opportunities to apply the scientific method and reinforce their knowledge. The course guides elementary-age learners as they Read, Explore, Absorb, and Learn chemistry:

  • Read– Fun, engaging readings introduce big ideas and details for the chapter. The text is designed to be read aloud to students, fostering questions and discussion.
  • Explore– Carefully crafted, hands-on experiments demonstrate chemistry concepts in the real world and give your students practice using the scientific method.
  • Absorb– REAL Science engages visual, auditory, and tactile/kinesthetic learners, to help every student understand and retain key concepts.
  • Learn– with Chemistry Level 1, you don’t just learn about the amazing world of atoms, molecules and chemical reactions, you learn how science is done!

It’s also important to understand what REAL Science Odyssey is not. This curriculum is NOT:

  • A random selection of labs. It’s a fully developed, incremental homeschool science curriculum.
  • Too hard for elementary students. Young children are very capable of learning the basics of how the chemical world works, when it’s presented in an exciting and accessible way
  • Lightweight. Children will learn REAL chemistry, from atoms to reactions, and they’ll use the real scientific method.
  • Dry or boring. Rhymes, poems, and crossword puzzles aid in remembering facts, and engaging labs bring concepts from the page alive.
  • Influenced by religion. All REAL Science Odyssey courses are secular and based on valid, empirical science.


Who can use Chemistry Level 1?

We recommend Chemistry Level 1 for ages 7-10, or roughly grades 2-5. Labs, readings, and assignments can be adapted easily to students of different ages. Read aloud and transcribe written answers for younger students, and give older students more independence.


While many of us weren’t exposed to chemistry until high school, younger students are completely capable of building a solid foundation of chemistry knowledge. Elementary-age students in particular are great at memorizing facts when they’re presented in a fun and engaging way. That’s why our chemistry curriculum uses fun rhymes, hands-on experiments, and puzzles to teach the elements on the periodic table and core concepts such as mass, states of matter, and chemical reactions.

What’s more, you don’t need to have a science background to use this homeschool science curriculum! All materials are written with the chemistry novice in mind, so you don’t need to do a lot of extra research in advance of the lessons.

You can also use Chemistry Level 1 as part of a co-op or with multiple students. If you’re using the curriculum with more than one student, you can purchase extra copies of the consumable student pages separately.

If you need a homeschool science curriculum for a different grade or a different subject, check out the REAL Science Odyssey homepage.


Science Topics Covered

Chemistry Level 1 starts with the basics, and each unit builds on the last. Every unit reinforces aspects of the scientific method and critical thinking. Each unit explores a big idea or question in depth through reading, experiments, and conversation.

What Is Chemistry?

What Is Chemistry?

  • All things are made of chemicals
  • Chemistry is the study of chemicals
  • Forming hypotheses and performing tests
Atoms and Molecules

Atoms and Molecules

  • Properties of atoms—size, movement, effects of temperature
  • Parts of atoms—protons, neutrons, electrons, and energy levels
  • Types of atoms
  • Periodic table
  • Atomic bonds
  • Molecular formulas
  • Drawing molecules


  • States of matter–liquids, gasses, and solids
  • Density, mass, and volume
  • Molecule bonding
  • Properties of water
Chemical Reactions

Chemical Reactions

  • Molecules break apart and recombine in different ways
  • Physical vs. Chemical Reactions
  • Acidity, Combustion, and Precipitation
  • Combustion reactions
  • pH Scale



Science Skills Covered

In addition to being a complete, homeschool astronomy curriculum, REAL Science Odyssey will guide your student in learning essential skills that will serve them throughout their education and life, such as:
  • Applying the Scientific method
  • Critical Thinking
  • Observation
  • Presenting scientific data
  • Reading and interpreting informational texts


Lab Experiments

No homeschool science curriculum would be complete without hands-on experiments. Children will get their hands dirty exploring, observing, and seeing how concepts play out in the real world. With Chemistry Level 1, your child will:
  • Think about the physical properties of matter by using their senses of sight, smell, and touch
  • Learn about buoyancy by trying to float an egg in salt and fresh water
  • Create their own pH test solution using red cabbage
  • See how molecules stick together by making rock candy

. . . and much more! Each experiment includes detailed supply lists, step-by-step instructions, and, when needed, safety precautions.

Lab sheets guide your student through implementing the scientific method. Your student will gain experience:

  • Formulating and writing down hypotheses based on knowledge gained from the reading
  • Recording observations and results
  • Drawing conclusions based on those results
  • Reinforcing their knowledge by answering questions about the experiment.


Planning and Scheduling

Research shows that science is best learned in deep investigations of a single subject, rather than short hops from one field to another. RSO curricula align with this methodology. Chemistry Level 1 is designed as a full-year homeschool curriculum. It includes:
  • 36 weeks of material, assuming you teach science twice a week
  • Suggested weekly schedule for the entire course
  • Supply list break down for each week
  • Instructor pages that guide you in implementing each lesson and lab
  • Student pages are available if using the curriculum with more than one student


Important Copyright Information: If you choose the eBook version of this course, you are purchasing a license to use the PDF for your own children. You may make copies for your own children, but you may not share (email, download, print and distribute, resell, etc.) this eBook or any portion of this eBook to others.

Licensing is available for group, school, and co-op use. Please contact Pandia Press for details on group licensing (

Most supplies are normal household items that you can find either in your home or at the grocery, craft, or big-box store. You’ll also need a 3-ring binder for lab and notebook pages.

Uncommon Supplies Needed for Course Labs:

Science Thermometer– The liquid in good science thermometer goes down on its own, unlike the liquid in a medical thermometer, which must be shaken down. Some kitchen thermometers will work, but most do not go low enough. You will need a thermometer that will go down to 30° F or 0° C.

20 Mule Team Borax– A laundry booster found next to laundry detergents in grocery stores.

Polystyrene beads– Used for stuffing stuffed animals. Found in some craft stores in the sewing section. Grated Styrofoam is an excellent substitute.

Please see the Try Before You Buy file for a complete list of the lab supplies needed to complete this course.

Home Science Tools offers supply kits for all RSO courses.

RSO Chemistry Student Pages