Question: Are the science units consumable? Do I just need one copy per family or group?
Most of the pages in all of the science units are non-consumable–mini books, instructions to the teacher, charts, experiment instructions, and so on. However, each unit contains a small number that are consumable, such as worksheets for the children.
You only need to purchase one copy per family or group. The printed packets will also come with a PDF download of the unit so that you can print off at home any page for which you will need more than one copy if you are teaching more than one child.
Question: How do I plan my science curriculum for the year? How many units do I need for a school year?
Answer: The science units do not need to be taught in any particular order. They are designed for you to choose when you want to study each subject. Each unit has a varying number of lessons, and thus, each will take a different length of time to complete. It is recommended you do at least 2 science lessons a week. (If you have older children doing the additional readings, they will need to spend a good amount of additional time reading.) Each unit includes 4-23 lessons. This document gives more information.
Question: Why do the units not come spiral bound or hole punched?
Answer: Science units are not spiral bound because so many pages need to be cut, taken out, or copied. It is not three-hole punched because it contains items like the mini books or activities that shouldn’t have hole punches in them. If you want the whole thing hole-punched, it will literally take you less than 60 seconds to hole punch the whole unit and stick it in a binder. When Jenny Phillips uses the science curriculum with her children, she takes 30-40 minutes to organize the whole unit. She simply keeps the unit in file folders: one with the front matter before the first lesson, including the vocabulary cards, and then 1 for each lesson. When she puts each lesson in a folder, she checks to see if the unit has any sheets that each child will need a copy of; if so, she uses the PDF download (which comes with the purchase of the physical copy), to print off the number of worksheets needed and puts it in the folder for the lesson. As she puts each lesson in a file, she prepares mini books, supplies, etc. so everything is ready to go. She has found she can prepare the entire unit in 20-90 minutes. Then, it is just grab and go for the whole unit.
Question: Are the lesson extensions for Grades 7-8 sufficient to cover everything for those grades?
Answer: Some people feel that the Grades 7+ lesson extensions are sufficient for 7th and 8th graders and some do not. You can see the lesson extensions in the sample pages and make your own judgement. Keep in mind that our future high school science courses will cover all of the K-6 topics again in greater depth, so students will eventually receive all the information they need. We do not have plans to release science courses for Grades 7-8.
Question: We’re young earth creationist and believe in the biblical timeline of about 7000 years for the age of the earth. How does your science curriculum address evolution (as pertaining to the origin of life)?
Answer: Our science curriculum keeps dates having to do with the age of the earth vague, and it does not include any information that would contradict a young earth theory. For example, instead of saying something like “millions of years ago . . . ” or “over tens of thousands of years . . . ” the curriculum would say, “a very long time ago . . .” or “over an extremely long period of time.” The science curriculum and our recommended read-aloud science books support creationism and do not explore evolutionary ideas. We understand that many Christians believe in the young earth theory, and many do not. We understand some Christians believe in partial evolution, and many do not. The goal of this curriculum is not to teach any unique doctrines about evolution (which are very controversial in both the science world and the religious world), but to simply teach that God created the world and all things in it and to explore the wonders He created. The curriculum is set up in a way that allows parents to expand on the theories they believe personally about evolution and the actual age of the earth, etc. if they so desire.
Question: Can you give me more details about the future high school courses?
Answer: Our science high school courses are projected to release in 2020 or later. We are planning on releasing the following courses: Biology, Physical Science, and Chemistry. The courses will be faith-based. They will not be accredited. The courses will be self-directed through a course book and online videos, with parents administering tests. The courses will include hands-on experiments.