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scrapper4life

For those who used RSO and found it lacking....

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...did you beef it up or ditch it? I have to tell you I really like the looks of it. Yet, I cannot deny the many reviews here calling it supplemental and light. My second choice is NOEO but I'm just not loving it as much, by the looks. I'm only concerned because my son LOVES science and LOVES experiments. So here's my idea: Use RSO E&S and also read the books selected by NOEO. We can even add in the YS kits if he still wants more. What says the hive?

Edited by scrapper4life

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I didn't find RSO lacking in my house, but I suppose if your child is really into science, one may want more.  Your plan sounds good to me!

 

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I don't feel like it's necessarily light but I feel like there's a lot of work for the amount of information covered. We did the chemistry this year and I honestly think it could have been covered in half a year. Plus to be honest it feels like a lot of effort to get my younger kids to retain and understand something they will be able to get more easily when they are a little older.

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I haven't found it lacking. More that it doesn't take us a whole year. RSO has been my favorite program we've used in the 8 years we have been homeschooling.

 

Last year we did Chemistry and then Ellen McHenry's The Elements. I thought together it was perfect.

 

This year we are doing Physics and when I scheduled it out, there was a lot if extra time. So we have been adding extra library reading and other science books. RSO has plenty if experiments.

 

Also, this was with us only doing science twice a week.

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We are doing RSO Chemistry and I don't find it lacking. It's been a favourite so far. In fact, there is enough to it that I've cut some things and the kids still have had a lot to work with and learn. I think it's a great program. Extra reading is always good, if you want to add things.

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I don’t find it lacking. I have used all three of the original level one and will be using the level 2 astronomy with my ds next semester. Next year we’ll use the level one physics with my youngest and the level two biology with my two oldest.

 

What age child are we talking about here?

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I don't find RSO lacking.   Although I never just do RSO.  (I never JUST do any science program actually!) 

 

Here is how I planned my science years using RSO in early elementary-

 

Step 1:  I make a list of all of the labs and demonstrations included in RSO and the topics to be studied each week.. 

 

Step 2:   I decide how many days I will have to devote to reading about science in addition to these labs.  (I always do this first since I tend to WAY overestimate how many books I can read in a year and then feel like a failure when I don't read them all.  hahaha) 

 

Step 3:  I then go through and pencil in all of the Let's Read and Find Out books that correspond (roughly) with these topics.   I am a HUGE, HUGE fan of these books for elementary aged kids.   They are colorful and amazingly informative.   So, I always start with this series first when making my reading lists.  

Tip:  If you plan to buy the books new, check out the packages available on Rainbow Resources.   For example, The Weather Set, The Space Set, and The Earth Set pair up nicely with RSOs Earth and Space Level 1 program.    

 

Step 4:  I then go through the RSO recommended reading list and look these books up on Amazon.   I pick and choose from this list to fill in any gaps.   

Tip:  The recommended RSO list is pretty good for their biology and earth/space/science programs.   I personally did not care for their list in Physics and Chemistry.

I also consult the NOEO list to fill in any gaps too.  (I do NOT think buying their schedule is worth it.)   Other ideas for supplemental reading are scientist biographies, Quark Chronicles, Magic School Bus, Usborne Encyclopedias, etc.

 

Step 5:  I then come up with the memory work I want them to learn this year.   I use some of the lists/songs from CC, some lists from Andrew Cambell's Classical Memory, the "Big Idea" topics and definitions from RSO, etc.   

I put these into ANKI (an electronic flashcard system that has fairly sophisticated spaced repetition algorithms for review).   I tag them with the week number that we will start this topic (or sometimes the "lesson number").   then, I mark them all as suspend so they won't be reviewed automatically.   Then, I  un-suspend certain tags when we get to that topic.   We review memory work most mornings.   (NOTE:  you can also include links to certain websites you want them to use for review in ANKI.   So I might have them label the plant and animal cells using Shepherd Software when we did biology.)

 

Step 6:  Fun Extras: Videos, Documentaries, and Field trips

I then go through and list any movies that I want them to watch.   My kids like brain pop, so I make a list of what corresponding topics are covered in Brain Pop.  (They are short 5-minute videos.)  I also list any tv shows or documentaries would be fun to watch.   (Magic School Bus topics, Planet Earth, etc.)

 

I also brainstorm for fun field trips that we could go on and schedule these too.    I think this helps form fond memories of the topic which is my ultimate goal for the younger years.  

 

ETA:  Edited to fix typos...some of the typos.   (I'm sure I missed some.)    I was typing while my 4-year-old was crawling all over me.   

 

Edited by TheAttachedMama
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I heard level 1 is a little light on info but I think it is ok for the spine to be a little light. You can explore the topics they really like from the spine in more detail. It definitely has plenty if experiments. Level two is not light at all. It is pretty difficult stuff that can be hard to learn and the questions are not easy. I am finding it hard to fit everything in level two especially with two lab types each week. I got a good balance going now but it was hard at first so I am running behind. The one thing I would change in level two is to change question section a bit and not have so much writing there and have it work on the things mentioned in WTM. I think that would actually work a little better.

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RSO Chemistry I is awesome, but RSO Life I is weak (I hear it is being reworked).  If you're using Life, try Chemistry, it's a different author and a huge jump in quality.

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