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For those who do Sonlight Science....


robsiew
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I have a few questions...

 

1. We're doing Noeo this year. It's good for my youngers, but my older ones need more, so I'm looking at a change in Science next year. We like the "real" books in Noeo so I want to stick with that, but more "beef".

 

2. I don't know that I can afford two levels (which I'll need next year). Is it easy enough to check some of the books out from the library? How long (about) is each book used? Are there any books you would say "You must own this one!" Besides the teacher's guide of course!

 

3. Are the DVD's necessary?

 

4. Do you see yourself being able to stick with this for awhile? I want to try and find something that will take us possibly until high school so that I'm not skipping around all over curriculum and having to fill holes.

 

5. What are the pluses and minuses you can see?

 

6. My 9 yo. is VERY science orientated (needs some real challenge... he wants to become a chemist!). Next year my youngest will be 5. Am I right to expect this is too big an age range to cover with one level and therefore am I on the right track in purchasing two different levels?

 

Thanks for any input you can give! :-) If I were a "box curriculum" person I think I would like Sonlight!

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We like SL Science but I don't know that it is terribly meaty, compared with NOEO, which I haven't seen but have been admiring online.

 

My 2 cents. . .

 

SL seems to be set up similarly to NOEO, with various reference books mixed in with various experiment, and an instructors guide to tell you what to do each day. SL also does have worksheets with (one to a a few) comprehension/summary type questions each day.

 

I like the SL Science 4 that my older dc have been doing over the past year. The books/experiments are of good quality and I appreciate having the IG to tie it all together, and most importantly, to schedule for me.

 

Frankly, the NOEO looks quite similarly designed, except that it is single subject and looks like it doesn't have review questions. While I like the review concept, I don't think it is essential so that wouldn't keep me tied to SL.

 

If I were you, I'd try to assess the components of the SL and NOEO packages you are considering and compare them in content, challenge, etc. . . I often google for reviews and/or go to the manufacturer websites to assess specific titles. . .

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I like SL Science. You don't need the DVDs - they just go through all the experiments. As many of ours fail - I like them ... and my dd9 loves to watch them as they are often funny.

I have found SL Science fairly challenging for my kids. But mine are also extra-challenged as we do Science Olympiad and they have to do whatever events they are assigned very indepth.

And yes - it would be a bit of a stretch to combine a 5 year old and a 9 year old. I usually buy the SL books used - I have a blog entry (see my blog in my signature) on where to find used books - and of course the forum here is great for that too. I check our library first to see what they have - they usually have Magic School Bus ones and the biographies. They don't have have the Usborne books.

Meryl

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We've done NOEO Chemistry 1 together (1st and 3rd) and now are doing Sonlight 4 and 2 separately.

 

I have a few questions...

I don't know that I can afford two levels (which I'll need next year). Is it easy enough to check some of the books out from the library? How long (about) is each book used? Are there any books you would say "You must own this one!" Besides the teacher's guide of course!

 

I think this would be possible, but it would depend on your library. The length of each book varies widely, so it isn't possible to estimate this. The TOPS books you would need to buy because you use them for a long time. (longer than you would be able to check them out from the library from.)

 

3. Are the DVD's necessary?

 

I would buy them if at all possible. They clearly show the experiments. We've found them very helpful.

 

4. Do you see yourself being able to stick with this for awhile? I want to try and find something that will take us possibly until high school so that I'm not skipping around all over curriculum and having to fill holes.

 

Yes, we are loving it! We've used Bob Jones Science, Rod & Staff Science 2 & 3, NOEO Chemistry 1, and Apologia Astronomy. This is our favorite science so far.

 

 

5. What are the pluses and minuses you can see?

 

Plus is that older children can work almost independently. It is very pick up and go if you buy the coordinating science kit. My second grader can do 60% of it independently. By independently, I don't mean I'm off in another room doing something else; I'm across the table working with another student. They are able to ask me if they have a question about anything. Another plus is that the questions asked in the student pages all require thought. There are a few multiple choice questions, but the majority of questions require complete sentence answers. I really like this! My oldest is science-oriented, too, and I like that this program challenges him. It's not a minus for me, because I wanted a more meaty science program, but science takes more time this year than other years.

 

6. My 9 yo. is VERY science orientated (needs some real challenge... he wants to become a chemist!). Next year my youngest will be 5. Am I right to expect this is too big an age range to cover with one level and therefore am I on the right track in purchasing two different levels?

 

I definitely would not use the same program for these ages. If it is a $$ based issue, I would recommend Sonlight for the oldest and something "lighter" for the younger.

 

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