Frequently Asked Questions

What is Great Oak Academy?

Great Oak Academy is a science program in the home of Jay and Norma Street. For many years, we’ve shared our passion for exploring God’s creation with other homeschoolers. The fully equipped science lab, woods, gardens, and field trips are now enjoyed by dozens of families. Most classes have between five and ten students.

What is Great Oak Academy’s position on creation versus evolution?

We believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God and contains the creation account. Salvation is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. We should always be ready to give a gentle, reverent defense of our faith in our discussions with others who may believe differently.

We’re interested. What should we do?

First, go to the web site,, and look through the course offerings. The New Family Checklist explains how to apply, when the interview occurs, and what to do after a student is accepted into the program.

Which course should my student take with Great Oak Academy this year?

Monthly classes have suggested age ranges, although decisions are made primarily on the readiness of individual students. For weekly classes, it is recommended that students plan to take biology the same year they take algebra 1. This is to prepare them to take chemistry the following year which requires successful completion of algebra 1. General science and physical science are the two courses that are recommended before biology, and provide a strong foundation for later science courses.

Can high school credit be earned for taking general
science or physical science?

With a final grade of at least 85%, a student can earn high school credit for physical science. It is an excellent introduction to the concepts that will be developed in chemistry and physics.  Although not for high school credit, students should take general science, because half this course covers the important area of human anatomy which is not included in the biology text.

Are the same classes offered each year?

For our monthly students, we offer earth science and anatomy one year, and classes such as botany and zoology the next year. General science and physical science are routinely offered every year. Biology, chemistry, conceptual physics and advanced biology are offered as needed by currently enrolled students.

My student really loves science already. Can you
challenge this kind of student even more?

Yes, of course! Students are encouraged to modify text experiments to improve them on their own or with other students.  We ask that they email their proposed experiment at least two days prior to their next lesson. Once we determine their proposal is feasible, the new experiment may be done by the student(s) who designed it and the results will be shared with the rest of the class.  Everyone benefits! Extra credit opportunities are always available.

Which edition of the text should we buy? Do we need the Solutions Manual and Multimedia CD that come with some of the textbooks?

We use the most recent edition of each textbook. Either go to the Course Offerings page of the Great Oak Academy web site or the Apologia web site: Each weekly student needs a Solutions Manual; it is used to check homework. The Multimedia CD is optional.

Where can we purchase textbooks?

Homeschool Hangout ( carries Apologia textbooks and puts them on sale occasionally. Christian Book Distributors ( and Rainbow Resource ( are excellent sources of educational materials.

How can I best help my student at home between

Monthly students come home with “Optional Home Challenges,” activities to further explore the concepts covered in class. Points may be earned to trade in for prizes from the science box. For weekly students, parents are to check the assignment sheet in the student’s notebook after each class, help the student schedule homework wisely and initial that it is corrected and scored. Parents or grandparents are welcome to attend classes with their student(s) at any time.

About how much time should a student expect to
spend on science homework?

Monthly students are encouraged, but not required, to do homework. It is up to the parents to determine which “Optional Home Challenges” the student does each month. Weekly students in general science or physical science will likely spend about 30 minutes per day on homework. Biology, chemistry, and physics students will probably spend 45 - 60 minutes on homework daily. Students may schedule times at Great Oak Academy to study with others, or work on projects.

Do students test with you in class?

Testing is usually done at home. Students bring home each test in a sealed envelope with the due date written on it. These are proctored by a parent, and the student returns it to the teacher to be graded. Testing may also be done during class at the teacher’s discretion.

Norma, are you the only teacher?

For many years, I was the only teacher. We have recently been blessed by the addition of a teacher with a degree in medicinal chemistry. She and I are co-teaching the chemistry classes. We desire to get to know each student personally, and become familiar with his / her individual interests and learning styles, often for several years. Occasionally, we invite guest speakers to present topics of special interest.

Who goes on field trips?

Most field trips are local, inexpensive, and open to all Great Oak Academy families regardless of the classes in which they are enrolled.


Application Details

New Family Checklist