Earth Science 2: From the Surface to the Sky

From: $80.00 / month for 5 months

Grades:  6th–8th

Class:  Tue 3:00–4:00 p.m. ET

Dates (2nd Sem):  Jan 13–May 9, 2025

Prepaid:  $349

Instructor:  Dr. Karen Joseph

Earth Science 1 is not a prerequisite.

See an example of Karen’s middle school classes

See Reviews of Instructor Dr. Karen Joseph


Course Description

This is a one-semester Earth Science course for students in grades 6-8. Fifth graders will be considered with prior instructor approval. When combined with Earth Science 1: From the Surface to the Core (first semester), these courses, which both include a lab component, will provide one middle school science credit. Both one-semester courses can be taken as a full-year course, Earth Science 1 and 2, for a reduced rate.

Earth Science 2: From the Surface to the Sky

You walk around on the surface of the earth every day, but how well do you know it? You look at the blue sky during the day and the star-filled sky at night, but do you know what’s out there? Join me in this semester long course, where we’ll discuss these topics and more. We’ll start on the surface of the earth and work our way out through the earth’s atmosphere, talking about the causes of weather. We will burst through the exosphere (the outermost layer of the atmosphere) and zoom off into space, where we will discover planets, moons, asteroids, stars, and galaxies. By the time you return to Earth, you’ll have a much better understanding of Earth – from the surface to the sky. This can be used as a stand-alone semester course or students can take the full year Earth Science course here.

Course Structure

The live classes are a combination of game-based reviews of topics from the previous week, introductions to the upcoming week, or case studies to support the course materials. Although it is always best for students to attend the live classes, I will post the recording of the class so that students who can’t attend can watch it later.

Lessons will be posted on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays and will include an online introduction as well as a section to read in the textbook. I use many audio and video recordings to help students learn the correct pronunciation of new terms as well as to reinforce content from the book.

Who should enroll?

Earth Science 2: From the Surface to the Sky is for curious students in grades 6–8 who have a strong desire to understand the Earth and its place in our solar system.

Technology Requirements

  • High speed, broadband Internet
  • Headset, microphone, and webcam (for live sessions)
  • Streaming video capabilities to watch recorded lectures

Evaluation and Feedback

I use “learning checks” at the end of most lessons to assure both the student and teacher that students understand the concepts presented in the lessons. Many of the learning checks are automatically graded by the computer. For the essay questions and projects, I generally grade every day, sending feedback to the students to help them understand questions they may have missed. A final grade will be based on the scores from learning checks, participation in activities and experiments, and attendance and participation in live classes. A Certificate of Completion with a final grade will be given at the end of the course.


I welcome any and all communication from parents. My goal is to partner with you in your student’s education, so if at any time you have questions or concerns, my virtual door is open. I will send periodic progress reports to let you know how your student is doing.

Required Texts


NOTE: Please contact Dr. Joseph before purchasing this book.

  • Earth Science, 2009 edition, Prentice Hall Science Explorer, ISBN 978-0-13-366858-2


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Instructor Bio

Dr. Karen Joseph

Dr. Karen Joseph earned her Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Palmer College of Chiropractic. After working for several years, she began homeschooling her 3 children in 1989.  As a homeschooling mom, she has taught every subject at every grade level, but her favorite subject is science!  She taught science classes, ranging from Middle School Life Science and Earth Science to High School Biology to Honors Human Anatomy and Physiology at a Pennsylvania Public Cyber Charter School for 12 years. She was the recipient of the 2009 Pennsylvania Charter School Teacher of the Year. Contact: kjoseph[at]


All classes taught by Karen Joseph