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s/o #1 Most Favorite * SCIENCE * Curriculum EVER!


JenniferB

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We have really been enjoying REAL science odyssey. Last year we did the life science all year (for K and 2nd grade). This year, I have been picking and choosing among chemistry and earth science. I like that it has a short bit to read for each lesson, makes the main idea of each lesson clear, and has activities that use items I usually already have around.

 

I also grab a bunch of books from the library (ds just started appreciating Basher comics and dd like the "true book" series). I also sometimes peek at BFSU and Building Critical Thinking through Science for discussion/vocab/activity ideas.

 

I am focusing on a different science area each month this year like this:

Sept - science fair project (kids chose), we also learned about big bang/evolution in history

Oct - chemistry (used RSO)

Nov - weather (used RSO)

Dec - energy (used some RSO and library books)

Jan - space (RSO)

Feb - earth / rocks (RSO)

Mar - environment

Apr - physics (not sure yet - going to look at the teaching physics with toys mentioned above!)

May - inventions

June - review life science, add animal habitats and health

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Elemental Science.. for all levels. It took me 4 years to finally find a science program I actually like and will implement...

 

Elemental Science gets done in our house. I'm not thrilled with the depth but, anything that gets done is better then something that sits on the shelf.

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The best things I have ever purchased for science have been field guides, experiment books, magazines, and documentaries. Just having these items around the house has been almost the entire elementary science curriculum. One study lead to another with almost no direction from me. Although I do make sure we have a fresh batch of science books on various topics regularly.

 

Last year my DS made a request to replace field guides we had because he already knew everything in them. I replaced them with thicker field guides. I didn't start with the ones published for children. I began collecting them from the bargain bins at various book stores, our first set of books was probably under $30.

 

If you don't have a subscription to Ranger Rick magazine I highly recommend it. Almost every week we watch the Nature program on PBS, this has spilled over into Nova and the rest of the evening PBS programs. I also grab documentaries at the local warehouse club. We started out using the library for science books, but now we purchase many as well. Some of the books I purchased a year ago look like they were dug up with the Dead Sea scrolls, because they have been carried around and used so much.

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  • 3 weeks later...

The Boston Children's Museum Activity Books.

 

And doing it yourself, of course. :)

 

 

Where do you purchase these?

 

UPDATE: Nevermind just read the WHOLE thread, I will purchase used if I need them, thanks.

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Oh my! I am in love with the Nancy Larson science kits :drool: but I almost choked :ack2: (really) when I saw the price for 1st grade! Is Nancy Larson completely secular? I'm a young earth creation Christian so I don't want to have to wade through opposing views in 1st. I'll do that later. Tell me it's worth it! One kit is as much as I just spent on math and phonics together and I thought I had some pricey stuff in those 2 subjects.

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NL Science is very secular. Nothing at all religious. I am a Christian, and that is perfectly fine with me. I would rather add information than have to remove and then replace.

 

Yes, I know it is expensive...and honestly I was not going to buy it either...but I did...and I have not regretted it. The fact alone that I actually do science with my kids now is reason enough...before it kept getting tabled because I didn't have what i needed to do the lessons...but not anymore...nearly everything you need (except maybe a water bottle, a fork, a piece of paper) is included in the kit.

 

I have every intention of continuing with NL until she has no longer a set of lessons for us.

 

If you have more questions, ask me..pm me....I would be happy to answer them .

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Can someone tell me more about CPO Earth Science? I went on their website and was generally overwhelmed (purchase was for classroom size). Did you use the Middle School Earth Science or the Physical, Earth and Space science? What sets it apart for you? What is a day like with it? Is it daily, a couple times a week? Is it mostly experimentation or book learning or half/half? Can you please tell me all about it? This is the website I went to--http://www.cposcience.com/home/CPOProducts/TeachingLearningSystemsTLS/PhysicalEarthandSpace/tabid/304/Default.aspx. Am I looking in the right place? How much do you spend for a year? What does it include?

 

Also, Ruth in NZ? Can you tell me what you like about Tarbuck Earth Science? The one I found on Amazon seemed like it was a college text. Here's the link I was looking at. http://www.amazon.com/Earth-Science-13th-Edward-Tarbuck/dp/0321688503 How do you use it? Is there a teacher's manual?

 

Thanks!

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Guest anniecurri

We have always used Apologia until this year. I decided to try BJU Press, and my kids hate it! They loved Apologia and seemed to retain a lot more information because they found it so interesting.

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BFSU is my favorite (as I said before).

But fortunately or unfortunately I also need to add Zula Patrol on PBS. Don't laugh. Almost every time I do a BFSU volume 2 lesson with my kids, during some part of the lesson they will say that they have already learned that on Zula Patrol. :tongue_smilie:

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We love the Evan Moor workbooks. Look them up on Amazon. Lots of topics, lots of grade levels. We use the multiple level books so my older DD can join in after school. Fun experiments, fun workbook pages!!

 

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=evaan+moore+science#/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_17?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=evan+moor+science&sprefix=Evan+Moor+science%2Cstripbooks%2C223&rh=n%3A283155%2Ck%3Aevan+moor+science

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We are using this http://homeschoolfreestuff.files.wordpress.com/2010/05/earth-science-curriculum2.pdf as a very loose guide and running wild with living books, notebooking and experiments. With 4 kids of varying ages I can beef it up for the older two and play it down for the younger ones. I have done a few curriculums and this fits us best right now.

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Last year when I was doing my planning, I was inspired by these two threads. We have been doing Physics this year, so I chose 9 topics that I wanted to cover. For each topic, I made a list of books to read and then created a Discovery box. We have been reading together and sometimes take notes and then the my dc can do the science box on their own. Sometimes I just let them play and other times they have to design some type of experiment with the items in the box.

http://forums.welltrainedmind.com/topic/334083-alte-veste-academy-can-we-talk-inquiry-based-science

http://forums.welltrainedmind.com/topic/144421-if-you-could-design-a-science-corner-in-your-school-room/

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Not a curriculum, but I'm using Stunning Science of Everything as a "spine" and jumping off point. I am supplementing it with other books and the Giant Science Resource Book (Evan Moore). It's a really cool book and touches on some historical/biographical science figures too, which I expound upon with other books.

 

We also use the Christian Liberty Nature Readers for nature science type stuff. Plus field guides, nature journals, Burgess Bird book, etc.

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I thought I was decided on using NOEO starting in first grade but now I'm questioning myself. I see nancy Larsen mentioned a lot on here and I finally checked it out and it does look good.

 

Those who love it, what year did you start with? Has anyone done the K year? The one sample lesson looked too simple, but I can't find a TOC or anything to get a feel for the rest of it.

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. I see nancy Larsen mentioned a lot on here and I finally checked it out and it does look good.

 

Those who love it, what year did you start with? Has anyone done the K year? The one sample lesson looked too simple, but I can't find a TOC or anything to get a feel for the rest of it.

 

 

When we started we started with level one. Not becasue my kids were so young that they needed a level that low, but becasue there was so much cool stuff covered in level one, I didn't want them to miss a thing...plus I wanted them to get a feel for how NL Science went. It was expensive, but we actually did level 1 in a Sememster (Jan -may) and we started level 2 in the fall. Level 1 was very easy for my kids...but that didn't take away the joy we all had...I just added somethings to "beef" it up becasue they were on the older side ( all by my youngest...it was PERFECT for him)...even now, we are in level 3...my oldest is on the older side of the range she recommends, my youngest is on the other side and my midlle child...well...he is in the middle...it really is quite perfect for our family.

 

And the retention is great for all 3 kids. I can't count the number of times something comes up that we remember something from science a year or two ago. It's nice.

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Not a curriculum, but I'm using Stunning Science of Everything as a "spine" and jumping off point. I am supplementing it with other books and the Giant Science Resource Book (Evan Moore). It's a really cool book and touches on some historical/biographical science figures too, which I expound upon with other books.

 

We also use the Christian Liberty Nature Readers for nature science type stuff. Plus field guides, nature journals, Burgess Bird book, etc.

 

At looks great, just ordered it!

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When we started we started with level one. Not becasue my kids were so young that they needed a level that low, but becasue there was so much cool stuff covered in level one, I didn't want them to miss a thing...plus I wanted them to get a feel for how NL Science went. It was expensive, but we actually did level 1 in a Sememster (Jan -may) and we started level 2 in the fall. Level 1 was very easy for my kids...but that didn't take away the joy we all had...I just added somethings to "beef" it up becasue they were on the older side ( all by my youngest...it was PERFECT for him)...even now, we are in level 3...my oldest is on the older side of the range she recommends, my youngest is on the other side and my midlle child...well...he is in the middle...it really is quite perfect for our family.

 

And the retention is great for all 3 kids. I can't count the number of times something comes up that we remember something from science a year or two ago. It's nice.

 

By level 1 do you mean the kindergarten or first grade level? And what age was your youngest who it was perfect for when you did it?

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we first did 1st grade...and my youngest son was 6 years old that year. My daughter was 10...and much of it was simple as far as the writing and answering the questions...however, since we didn't do much science before then, she learned a lot. I also added to the program a little..for example when we talked about habitats we drew a huge picture of our town and I had the kids put pictures of things that could be found in our town...when we studied the huam body, and we used the bone x-rays...we built the whole skeleton, and played games with the x rays and we even sang the Hokey Pokey using bone names instead of body parts. Just stuff like that. We had a lot of fun.

 

Does that help??

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I don't know anything about DVD or CD-ROM curricula, but my kids really like Holt Science and Technology books. They are cheap on Amazon and have a student lab book in the back. Some of the labs require materials that we don't have, but there is still a wide enough selection that we can do a lot of them. You can also connect to Holt's ClassZone website for more web links than you could ever possibly use. The books are middle-school books but we have used them quite successfully with a 4th and 5th grader.

 

As far as "instruction," we just basically read the chapters and talk about what we learned, and then we usually take some boks out of the library to complement the topic. I had grand plans for elaborate science notebooks, but that broke down pretty quickly. We like to keep it simple here. :thumbup1:

 

ETA: Last year I bought a subscription to Studies Weekly science, and the kids LOVED that. They send you bundles of science "newspapers" appropriate to your child's grade, and they have articles to read, activities to do, and online quizzes you can take. They also come with a teacher booklet for each 6-week bundle with all kinds of activities and worksheets you can use. I actually found it to be quite a good curriculum that lent itself to easy supplementation with library books. we haven't used it this year but the kids asked me to get it again next year. At less than $10 a year, it's a bargain!

 

Tara

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