Friday, April 8, 2011

Science Weekly

When I found out that I was going to get to review science weekly, the first thing I did was find their website.  On the "For Parents" page I clicked on the "sample issue" option at the bottom and downloaded their sample issue on Coral Reefs.  I was immediately impressed with the colorful pages, as well as the way this was much more than a science item, but covered language arts, had a hands-on experiment to do, and even some math!  Then I also downloaded the Teaching Notes.  This document that pairs with the student edition I downloaded was 8 pages long and packed with information. I had to wait for a color cartridge to print all these pages, but we totally used this for Friday fun lessons.

Next, I clicked on the "interactive programs" option at the top of the Science Weekly page.  Although these lessons only to to fourth grade, I'm confident that I can adapt them to our 7th and 8th grader.  And these are cool.  It's totally interactive with links and pages to fill in right on the PC.  AND when you get to the end of the lesson, there's an opportunity to download the PDF version of it.  So you can get several more free editions.

Finally, in my beginning tour of the Science Weekly website, I clicked on the "New Printable Coloring Books" option at the top of the screen.  You are now viewing a screen of coloring pages.  They are cute, just complicated enough to be interesting, but not too complicated that they can be overwhelming to a student.  Then you click on one of these coloring pages and it's not just a page, it's a 6-page book on a science subject that you can use as a companion to one of their weekly science reader packs.  Cool.

Yeah, so far I'm impressed.

Then I received a printed packet in the mail.  The printed pages I received were on fractions.  This sheet covered the history of fractions as well as how fractions work.  There were puzzles and a hands-on activity/experiment on fractions.  There was also an opportunity for research and writing.  We spent a few hours completing the pages and working on the experiments.  I gave our youngest, grade 7, the level D sheet, and our oldest the level E sheet.  Although these sheets were supposed to be slightly below the boys' grade level, they were not easy spoon-feeding.  They were colorful and interesting to read. 

In my opinion (and isn't this all about my opinion? :)) the pricing is a bargain.  For home subscriptions, you can get 15 issues for one student for $19.95.  It's a great price for a quality product.  Although these aren't complete curriculum, they could be a fun weekly unit study to break up the monotony.

I don't know about this companies approach to creation.  We are young-earth creationists around here and I can't speak to how Science Weekly approaches that, so please note this if you are thinking about pursuing this as a supplement to your homeschool.  You can contact Science Weekly for more information by using the information on this page.

And of course, please check out the reviews of my fellow crew-mates.  A bunch of different people with children of all ages have used Science Weekly for the purpose of review.  It's worth the read.

I received a copy of Science Weekly in order to complete my review.

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