Science This Year

I’m excited about what we’re using for Science this year for the boys. Until now, we’ve always used Sonlight Curriculum’s Science, which is a variety of subjects each year and mostly Usborne books. They have activity sheets to go along with the books, and the curriculum is all right as far as it goes. I was starting to feel, though, that we were just scratching the surface of all the different subjects and never digging in deeper, and the boys were getting very bored with it, groaning when it was time to do science. That’s not what we want! Well, sometime around the first of the year I noticed some science books come up on an email list I get, on which homeschoolers around New Zealand can buy and sell books they don’t need anymore. These books were published by Apologia Press, and I knew how much my Mom liked the high school level books they put out. Esther used one last year, and loved it–I never heard her talk so much about what she was learning as with that book! So, I took a closer look on the Apologia website at these books, for elementary students. I liked what I saw! They have six books for younger children, covering Astronomy, Botany, Zoology (three years: birds, fish, land animals), and Human Anatomy. There is a hard cover textbook for each level/subjects, and a notebooking journal to go along with it, with lesson plans. There are actually two notebooks for each textbook, one for older children and one for younger. I was able to get a couple of the textbooks, and notebooks for the Human Anatomy book, from the email list, so we could take a good look. Wow! I liked them immediately! The boys picked up the one about fish right away and were fascinated; one boy even started doing a project from it. I decided, though, that since we had the notebooks for Human Anatomy that we’d do that one this year, and ordered more notebooks so each boy will have one. One of the boys is still proclaiming loudly that the book is boring, and one is ambivalent, but the other two are enthusiastic–and I love it, too! This book glorifies God as Creator and designer all the way through, and shows clearly how wonderfully we are designed. So far, we’ve studied cells, and the boys each got to draw a diagram of a cell (not a simple thing, by the way!). Now, we’re studying bones and the skeleton, and when we happened to eat chicken the day we learned about growth plates we actually found a growth plate on a chicken bone! The notebooking journals provide a great way to write down what they’ve learned, and draw pictures. Some pages have questions to answer or activities to do; we’ll be building a “personal person” for each boy as we go, with overlays to glue onto a picture, showing the skeleton, muscular system, nervous system, etc. I am so thankful to have stumbled onto this book!

This is how we do science--all of us sit on the floor. I read aloud from the textbook, and then we work on filling in the notebooks.

This is how we do science–all of us sit on the floor. I read aloud from the textbook, and then we work on filling in the notebooks.

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About NZ Filbruns

A home-school family living in New Zealand, with a desire to share what Christ has done for us.
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