Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded by Simon Winchester is a 400 page tome that could be read in a year to cover high school geography, history, and, most particularly, geology. Using the vehicle of the most powerful volcanic explosion in recorded history, the 1883 eruption of Krakatoa in the Sunda Strait near present day Indonesia, Winchester explores the history of colonization, the development of the theory of plate tectonics, and (almost incidentally) tells the hair-raising story of the explosion and subsequent tsunami that killed nearly 40,000 people. This book is sufficient for a year’s worth of high school geology and about a term’s worth of supplemental history reading with the usual caveat for Christians that our religion is occasionally treated as an amusing set of myths. Parents will want to prepare some lesson plans with a geology text nearby in order to flesh out some of the scientific chapters, or send their students on learning expeditions of their own.
Chemical History of a Candle Study Guide: This is a study guide with experiments I created for Michael Faraday’s A Chemical History of a Candle, a series of lectures he gave at the turn of the (20th) Century about combustion, and how understanding combustion has led to a fuller understanding of chemistry, the science of matter. I have not, as of yet, completed all of the experiments, but they are readily available on the internet. As with all experiments using caustic or combustible materials, use caution, keep hazardous material out of the reach of children, and try the experiment yourself before letting your youth loose with it.
Better yet, The Engineer Guy has reproduced the series of lectures, with commentary, and his free study guide. You can access them here: http://www.engineerguy.com/faraday/