Saturday, October 24, 2009

Another Great Idea...Educaching!

Several weeks ago I received a complimentary e-book copy of "Educaching:  GPS Based Curriculum for Teachers" from SDG ltd.  I promptly printed out my copy and put it into a three-ring binder.  The printing was a breeze and I was able to use my favorite printing software (fineprint) which allows me to print two pages landscape on one 8.5x11 sheet of paper.  That way the e-books print on half the paper you would normally use.  I have reviewed some vendors whose printing and downloading software would not allow me to use fineprint, but Educaching gave me no problems at all.

Although the wording and instructions are geared to a classroom teacher, this concept/curriculum is easily adapted to a homeschool.  Many have said that it is condusive to being used with a homeschool co-op, but I really find that this program is great for the individual homeschool.  We have two boys, and I found it to be very useable in our homeschool.

The other thing that is great about this curriculum is that it is very adaptable to whatever you are studying.  Once you're read the book, you could develop your own educaching experiences based on whatever you are working on in your homeschool.  If you have ever made up your own unit study, you could develop an educache once you've learned how from this manual.  Using the concepts in the Educaching handbook, you can make lessons covering a multitude of subjects.  This is not a science curriculum, or a geography program.  This program works just like a unit study covering multiple subjects in one lesson.

We have geo-chached in the past, so we did not have the learning curve of needing to learn to use a GPS.  But if you do, there is an entire section in the book about using a GPS.  Learning how to use the GPS and learning how a GPS works would be a great beginning lesson for your children as an introduction to this new way to learn!

I think the Educaching manual is a great addition to any homeschool.  It gives your students an opportunity to get outside, but truthfully, you could complete a cache activity with only one point inside your house!  In every activity the child will get some exercise, learn about geography coordinates, write, and think creatively or critically.  The rest depends on the activity.  Some of the educaching activities involve history, some involve science, some involve a lot of subjects.  I was just reading over one of the activities available for download on the educaching website and it covered history, art, geography, physical education, language arts, and math!  And that was just one activity!

This program or curriculum can be used with any age.  Small children may need help working the GPS and understanding the coordinates, but this is definitely something you could do with a large age-range.

There are two Educaching products available.  The digital version of the book, which I received, is $32 + applicable sales tax.  The print version is available for $32.00 plus $6.95 shipping and handling.  The print version gives you the educaching manual packaged in a 3-ring binder with a CD of all the printables that you would want to use in your adventure.  There is a Bronze package which includes the printed manual in a binder, the CD and a "Factory Refurbished Garmin* eTrex H Model B/W GPS receiver."  This package is $129.00 plus $9.75 shipping and handling.  The Silver Package contains everything in the Bronze package plus a Otterbox all for $159.00 plus $14.95 shipping and handling.  The Gold kit comes with the manual in a binder, with the CD, four Garmin receivers, and four otterboxes and sells for $544 plus $28.75 shipping and handling.  And, finally, there is a Platinum kit that sells for $619 + $33.55 shipping and handling.  This kit includes the complete manual in a binder, the CD with printables, and six Garmin receivers.  If this is all too much information for you to absorb, check out their product page here

If you would like to contact SDG Creations Ltd., their contact information can be found here.  There are very brief opinion- reviews on their web site, but for more detail, check out the reviews of my fellow crew-members here.

I know I haven't really given you the details of the educaching system, but I don't want to give away the plans.  Check out their website.  Get yourself a copy of the book.  And begin an adventure in learning that you and your family have never taken thus far no matter how long you've been homeschooling!

1 comment:

  1. Great review! We love to go geocaching and this looks like it would be so much fun! I'm going to check it out.