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I did Apologia Astronomy this past semester with my second grader and we loved it. Science is her favorite subject so she was just eating it up. I had planned to follow TWTM order and go with chemistry next, but thanks to the forum, I just learned that Apologia will be releasing Chemistry/Physics in 2011, so I've decided to hold off until then.

 

My kindergartener tuned in and out of our astronomy sessions, so I know it can at least partially hold her interest, and hopefully moreso in a few months when we start a "soft" first grade (she's only 5 1/2, but she's been reading/writing for several years).

 

...So I'm wondering which of the other Young Explorers books would be best to start with for both of them. I refuse to do two sciences, histories, etc. so I'm determined to learn how to consolidate them, just as so many of you have modeled for me!

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If your children like animals and/or trips to the zoo (isn't this all children?), I think I'd recommend Zoology 3 - Land Animals. It almost feels like a trip to the zoo, but with projects, etc. The new anatomy one looks interesting to me, too, (I don't have it yet) but I think it's geared to older children.

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I think for those ages Botany might be most appropriate next - as far as ages and understanding goes.

 

Zoo 3 is longer than the other books and has many, many scientific words that would be way over the head of most young ones. My 13 yo did Zoo 3 last year, beefed up for middle school.

 

Because the author started writing them for her own kids you can tell the gradual difficulty level rises with each book. IMO 3rd grade is the most appropriate age to start with these books. We love them, but I want my ds to get the most out of them that he can since he will only do them once. I have chosen to use Elemental Science for 1st, 2nd and possibly 3rd and then start with Apologia Astronomy and Botany in 4th grade. We only take 1 semester to do the Apologia books, so we will do 2 per year between 4th -7th and then move on to General Science in 8th.

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I'd go with Zoology I, or set Apologia aside for awhile and go with the WTM chemistry recommendations. :) My rising second grader did parts of Zoology I last school year, but he liked Astronomy much better.

 

While the Botany book is good, it wouldn't hold the interest of my first graders very well. They'd get much more out of it if they do that one at a higher grade.

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We loved Botany for 1st and 3rd. Since we enjoy gardening, it was a natural fit. And there were so many cool "labs" and activities that we could do with the plants in our own yard (they loved dissecting a hibiscus flower).

 

We did Zoology I simultaneously and that worked great too. Actually, I think Zoology I, II or III would be fine.

 

Have fun!

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Thank you all for the helpful input. I was realizing that because we started homeschooling mid-year when my oldest was in first grade, we really rushed through anatomy, botany, and especially animals (crammed it all into one semester and did it as directed in TWTM). So what I'm going to do is talk with both of my girls and see what they're most interested in learning in the life sciences.

 

I want to stick with Apologia because I like Jeanne Fulbright's style, and so does my oldest - we'll see what happens with my younger daughter (I was surprised at how much astronomy she picked up on), as I can always supplement her with the life sciences resources I collected that first year.

 

We'll probably come out with something similar to what tampamommy did, so thanks for the encouragement tm :)

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I did Astronomy book and Astronomy notebook with my 2 grader last year. She loved experiments and textbook by itself but had problems describing what she was doing in the notebook. I think she was quite young for that. We are going to do Astronomy again in a year or so. This winter we are planning to do Zoology II and Zoology I through Spring/Summer. Then I hope to do Physics/Chemistry book if it gets released in time or go with Zoology III and then do Chemistry.

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