Friday, November 8, 2013

Exploring Creation with Chemistry and Physics (A TOS Review)

We started this year using Apologia Physical Science, and although it was supposed to be the right book for my son's grade level we were both struggling with it a little bit. Apologia Educational Ministries is a wonderful company, with a goal of educating students (and adults) with a Biblical world view. I love their creation-based homeschool Science curriculum materials, even though we were struggling with the Physical Science, So I was delighted when I learned that I would have the opportunity to review Apologia Educational Ministries' Exploring Creation with Chemistry and Physics. It has been a breath of fresh air. My son just wasn't ready for the other book yet.

We were blessed to receive both the Exploring Creation with Chemistry and Physics book and the Exploring Creation with Chemistry and Physics Notebooking Journal. Having that Journal makes using the book so much easier! 

We started our work with vigor and enthusiasm, and it hasn't let up. My biggest challenge has been working ahead to make sure I have on hand the materials for the hands-on projects in each chapter. It's not hard; it just takes planning. 

I'm not real good about having my camera ready when we do our school work, but I did manage to photograph a couple of the experiments. In this first one, four different cups are lined up, and the water in each cup has a different amount of salt in it. The water is colored so you can see what is happening. You pick up 1" of water from each cup, and the levels of water stay where they do in the straw because of the different levels of density in the different water samples.

This next experiment started with a selection of liquids of various densities that were then layered in a tall clear container. Then you dropped items of various weights in to see which layer they stopped on.
I didn't have all of the suggested liquids and made at least one substitution.
I also didn't have an adequately suitable container for the layering process.
And I didn't have a turkey baster, which I was supposed to have.
So, sadly, this experiment was a bust. But we had fun trying to do the experiment with our efforts at substitution for materials and supplies. We did our best to layer the liquids. But we couldn't really see through the plastic cup we tried to use. When we dropped the items into the liquid layers, we couldn't see where they stopped. ::sigh:: Oh well. But it was very fun and very "hands on".
JD has grown crystals...

and is currently studying atoms...

(Get it? H2O)

Basically, our move to this curriculum has been a very good move for him. I've been very pleased with the way my son has been able to take off with the materials and work independently. Keep in mind that he is an older student. For a younger student, parental supervision will be called for with many of the experiments.

Exploring Creation with Chemistry and Physics  is a beautiful hardbound book with 278 pages, divided up into 14 Lessons, designed to be spread out over a full year. It costs $39,00 and can be used for grades K-6 (or above, as appropriate -- my son is 8th grade). The lessons are broken up, incrementally, and there is a suggested schedule of how to complete the assignments. See the Table of Contents, a Sample from the Book, the Labs Supply List, and a Sample from the Notebooking Journal. That last one shows a sample of how the recommended schedule goes.
Chemistry and Physics TOC
Chemistry and Physics TOC

The Notebooking Journal is a beautiful black-spiral-bound softcover book with 206 pages, plus 67 pages of additional items for inserted mini-book and other projects. The Notebooking Journal is priced at $24.00 and is designed for upper-elementary aged students. There is also a Jr. Notebooking Journal designed for lower-elementary aged students, which is also priced at $24.00.

 Other members of the Review Crew also had the opportunity to review Exploring Creation with Chemistry and Physics and either the Notebooking Journal or the Jr. Notebooking Journal. To read more reviews, please click the link below.

1 comment :

  1. I've also chosen to do this curriculum with my seventh grade son instead of using Apologia's Physical Science this year. I think he'll be more ready for their higher level offerings after he's finished this course.