This week was our first one back at school full time after our move to the farm. It has been great and everyone fell right into routine.
Part of our new routine includes our first real science curriculum: Elemental Science Intro to Science (which is on a Kindergarten level).
So far this curriculum is right up our family’s alley! It is based on the Classical and Charlotte Mason models of education; as you may know I LOVE teaching using those models and so far they fit my children’s learning styles well. It requires 2 books, 1)The Usborne Internet-Linked First Encyclopedia of Science and 2)More Mudpies to Magnets: Science for Young Children. The third book that is recommended, and I LOVE IT, is Handbook of Nature Study.
Each week you have options for 2 or 5 day lessons; we do a combo depending on how much time we have (it worked out to 3 days this week). You will have your lesson intro, experiment, student notebooking sheets that go with that experiment, and a nature study! (see a sample HERE). There are also short reading assignments for most lesson from the required supplement books above.
The lessons each have an experiment, which for me is awesome because A) it is all set up for me and I have the books I need for it and B) I am not good with hands on … so it is good that it tells me I need to do it! (plus my kids love hands on stuff). I did buy the experiment kit because of the move and everything, I just didn’t want one more thing to do. But everything in it is pretty easy to come by so you could easily set up your own kit to pull from throughout the year. It was about $42, and I wasn’t disappointed.
This week we studied how matter can states; from a solid state to liquid and back again using old crayons for our experiment (via the curriculum). We also did a little experiment that was in the science encyclopedia creating gas!
Then we took our science outside to do our very first nature study which was about pine trees. I did not do a lapbook for this nature study since it was our first week- we just drew/wrote in our nature study book. (look for another post about our nature study notebook soon!)
We are starting all of this very slowly and I don’t want to overwhelm Lexie with too much at once as she is still young, but she is soaking up every single thing we do. I will plan more in depth nature studies when appropriate. 🙂 Mister loves tagging along and wants to do all the same things we are doing, so of course he joins us.
Another thing that turned me on to ES is that in the later years they have tests included as part of the curriculum, along with everything else. Now, I do NOT believe in testing everything all the time. I do however think science is a great area to use test for assessment (and as a tool for learning to take tests when older). So there’s that …
Elemental Science so far has been a delight, and something both the kids (5 and 3yo) look forward to! I would definitely recommend it if you are interested in a Charlotte Mason, gently hands-on, Classical science curriculum.