Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Bright Ideas Press - a review

I hate to admit it but Science is the last thing to get done around here. As a result, it often times just doesn't get done at all. The kids get plenty of nature studies and they even take a class at our local zoo once each month, but Science with an actual curriculum just doesn't happen much around here. When given the opportunity to review a Science curriculum I was excited that Science would actually get done for atleast a few weeks, since review items always get done.

Bright Ideas Press publishes the "Christian Kids Explore" series and we were given a choice of which one we wanted to review. "Earth and Space" seemed like the one that would work best for us.

"Christian Kids Explore Earth and Space" is divided into 6 units.
Unit 1: Getting Started
Unit 2: The Lithosphere
Unit 3: The Hydrosphere
Unit 4: The Atmosphere
Unit 5: Earth's Weather
Unit 6: Beyond Earth

Each of the units is divided in to lessons for a total of 24 lessons and 6 "unit wrap-ups" in the book. At the beginning of each unit you are given the vocabulary for the unit as well as a list of all materials needed. Preparing for the entire unit by getting all the materials gathered made for very little daily prep, which is great for us!

You can check out a complete Table of Contents as well as a sample unit to see what you think about this curriculum.

The Appendices in the book include:
Appendix A: Reproducible Maps, Forms, and Illustrations
Appendix B: Memorization Lists ( a different list for each unit)
Appendix C: Scripture Memory (several scriptures for each unit)
Appendix D: Coloring Pages (a different page for each unit)
Appendix E: Recipes and Supplemental Activities.
Appendix F: How to Make a Folder-book
Appendix G: Book and Resource List
Appendix H: Answer Key

As you can see the appendices are full of useful information and activities. My little ones loved the coloring pages that were full of detail and took lots of time to color. The activities you will need for each unit are listed in the "materials needed" list at the beginning of each unit. To make printing/copying these things easier you can purchase a pdf download for only $7.95. This definitely made it more convenient to have all the papers ready as I needed them.

Since we have a hard time getting Science done and I knew this curriculum had to be used I scheduled into the beginning part of our day. I try to keep all three kids together for Science so I decided to have Science right after Bible first thing in the morning. This worked so well, especially with this curriculum. There is so much scripture intertwined in this curriculum that it seemed like just an extension of our Bible studies. The conversational tone of the book also helped with keeping all three kids involved. It was easy enough for the two little ones to understand the basics but there was also enough "meat" for Paul to really dig into it and learn a great deal.

Molly drew this picture after our very first lesson. It's God creating the earth! Notice that there are seven continents! She can name all 7 of them, as well as the oceans.

The kids truly enjoyed learning about the layers of the earth and had a blast making the earth's layers out of play-doh.

They had entirely too much fun destroying the earth as well:

They then dove right into learning about caves in Unit 2 and we pulled out several other books on caves as well as looked back at many of the pics we had taken of the caves we visited in Virginia a few months ago.

You can purchase the "Christian Kids Explore Earth and Space" through the Bright Ideas Press website for only $34.95.

The "Christian Kids Explore" series also offers Chemistry, Physics, and Biology. Bright Ideas Press offers so much more than Science you have to go check out all the curriculum choices they offer on their website.

Also make sure and go to the TOS Homeschool Crew Blog to see more reviews for the "Christian Kids Explore" series.

Disclosure: I was given a free copy of "Christian Kids Explore Earth and Space" as well as the pdf download of all the activities at no charge in exchange for an honest review. All opinions stated are my own, and there was no other compensation given for this review.

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