Science - Is there enough?

niki
Posts: 128
Joined: Thu Dec 21, 2006 10:00 am

Science - Is there enough?

Unread post by niki » Thu Apr 19, 2007 4:06 pm

Question about rumor that science is too light
klhcom wrote:I have heard people say they think the "science is too light." Can I get your opinions on this please. If you use another type of science which one. Thanks!!!!
Kim
Let me give you my take on the science.

Science is not light, it's age appropriate. My kids really enjoy science days, they would love to do science every day twice if I would put the effort in doing that. We are using ADV this year and my kids have wanted more than the scheduled science. I tend to forget as I teach my young kids that they are young and what I think is "light" is really just what they need to continue to love learning and give them a desire to want more.

So on that note, what MFW has done in their science at least the 3 years,(K, 1st and ADV) we've used, has been to give them an appetite for more - Hooray! If they want more feed them. We've added some science when they want it because it seemed such a good fit for the "bird" study this year: Apologia, Zoology book 1. My kids really enjoy this but we are not on a schedule to get through the year, it's just extra, completely for fun and not needed - a good fit for us, and I'm certain we'll continue to read through it and do some of the projects throughout the summer.

Just my take...
Niki

Strong Tower Academy
EX1850
DD 6th DS 5th DD 3rd

cbollin

Unread post by cbollin » Thu Apr 19, 2007 6:36 pm

Is Science too light in MFW? not really. and Niki said it very well.

Here is a little story from tonight’s supper table that helps to illustrate my opinion.

Oldest dd: “Mom? Did you put salt on the mashed potatoes?”
Me: “yep. Put some in the water. Put some after they were drained. It’s enough.”
Dd: “can I have some more anyway?”
Me: “ok. But not too much or you will have potato flavored salt, instead of salted mashed potatoes”


The science in MFW is a lot like the salt in our supper tonight. There are parts of science woven throughout the program with processing skills (observation skills, graphing, etc) just like I salted the water. There are 2 or 3 days worth of science lessons, with experiments scheduled in the program (just like the salt I put in before going to the table). And --- if you need more, you have the freedom to add a little bit.

Here are ways that we have added from time to time: extra library books on the science topic. Extra nature walks. Nature journaling --- except we just take pictures. And I have even been known to grab a Janice Van Cleave book and have some off topic, fun hands on experiments.

We go to the children’s science museum in town. We’ve taken the oldest to the science open houses at the local university (geared to school age kids – not to the college kids). We have a telescope and look at the stars and have even seen the rings around Saturn together. We haven’t done it, but I’ve heard of some local homeschoolers who have Roller Coaster Science day at Six Flags.

I’d encourage you to add in simple ways. Many of the books that MFW select have extras built in via internet links. The Apologia books that are used in years 3 and 4 (Astronomy and Botany) have links in the introduction. Use them. Some of the Usborne books have links for more information. Use them. And don’t forget about going outside for the nature walks. Listen for the birds. Watch a rabbit run away from you and burrow in a hole under a bush. Watch a squirrel climb down a tree. Let your budding engineer build a better way to pack up a vendor booth from a homeschool convention :)

-crystal, whose dh is has a PHD in chemistry

kellybell
Posts: 475
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 2:40 pm

Unread post by kellybell » Thu Apr 19, 2007 11:26 pm

Aaah, it's the quarterly post about "light science." Here's my standard answer (it always turns out a little different each time):

MFW science is "just right." It's not heavy, by any means, but it's easy to do and very effective.

It seems like most of the homeschoolers I know here in town are a bit science-shy. The moms don't want a heavy science program, they just want "enough." MFW is enough, and I dare say, more than enough.

Some previous posts have been about the science in ECC being light [1st edition]. Compared to other MFW programs, it is lighter. There is a lot of reading, discussing, and understanding, but there is not a lot of blowing up the kitchen and chasing down exotic ingredients or animal body parts to dissect! I like that ECC isn't bogged down with extra science. That year is so heavy in geography and culture studies! So, the lighter science sort of balances out the heavier "social studies." Also, many families use ECC as their first year homeschooling! And, if you are going to have a lighter science year, then your first year is a good year for that...

Okay, that said, we're a science-y family. We've beefed up science simply because we like to do science (not because we felt the science is light). I'd suggest going to the library and getting some experiment books and some reading books if you wish to beef up science. Then, let the dc decide what they'd like to try. We've done this and had a blast learning about physics ("Roller Coaster Science" was the library book we used), chemistry ("Fizz, Bubble, and Flash" by Brandolini served us well), flight (several different books -- this combined history and science), weather (again, several books), the physics of bridges (look for a book by Johmann), robotics (I'm a geek), polymers (I can't remember the Williamson book we used but it had "concoction" in the title), and simple machines (a variety of books). We've had fun with this. The kids enjoy it and it's a real fun thing to do on those light Fridays.

So, rest assured that the science is just plenty. If you do the MFW science you'll probably be doing more science than most of your homeschooling buddies (remember, many families shy away from science and many "classical" style homeschoolers don't do a formal science until middle school anyway)!

If you are geeky like me, then you can add more, but don't feel like you must.

Kelly, whose dh IS the proverbial "rocket scientist" (via MIT)

TammyB
Posts: 87
Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2006 10:27 pm

Unread post by TammyB » Sun Apr 22, 2007 11:30 pm

I am personally salivating over all of the science titles in the Adventures' supplemental book list! My struggle will not be with science being light next year but with keeping my book obsession from making it too heavy!

Seriously, the book lists are amazing. I can't even imagine the research it took to create them.

Tammy

cbollin

Science - Is there enough?

Unread post by cbollin » Wed Jul 09, 2008 4:21 pm

hsmomof5 wrote:I was just curious and wanted to ask if anyone did MFW science without supplementing in the lower grades (3-6) and if so, how was the science for you? I've heard about some who have supplemented but it looks great to me. I just wanted some feedback.
Thanks
Kysha
(Starting ECC this year)
My story.... when oldest was in 2nd and 3rd grade, I added more curriculum. Well, I have to learn by trying. Too much curriculum is too much curriculum. And truth is --- I wasn’t doing all of the science that MFW recommends. We weren’t really doing nature walks, journaling, etc. So, I was adding and there was no real need to. There is plenty of age/grade level appropriate science in MFW for the elementary years. You can always have them keep a record of science experiments in CTG. It’s a lot of fun and I really made a mistake by taking away the fun of the science in CTG by adding extra programs. Nearly burned out my daughter and me. Even my husband wasn't enjoying it when he was helping me teach the extra program. His reaction was "do we have to? Can't I just take her up to the lab and let her play with a microscope or build a molecule or something fun? Hasn't she done enough school already today?" blush

(ok.... now everyone is laughing at me. Kysha, in case you don't know... my husband was working as a researcher at a university chemistry lab at the time.)

When oldest hit 4th grade (and using RTR), we stopped supplementing science with extra curriculum. We were all happy!!! We even got to do the science from RTR and enjoy some of the fun experiments from 1st grade too. When we wanted to, we added more science reading books into our book basket because she was interested in reading them. We would sometimes want to play and do more science experiments (i.e. my kids were bored and wanted to do something fun in the afternoons) so we would grab a library book (usually written by Janice van cleave) to do fun science because we like science. My dh holds a PHD in chemistry and we like to do science things for fun, but I’ve stopped adding extra curriculum because it really is plenty in MFW for elementary students.

With all of that experience over the last 5 years, I now say --- do the science in MFW. If you like to read more information, then grab some library books on the topic and put them in book basket. If you like extra science experiments – grab a library book and do some of them don't feel the need to finish them. Send the book back. Check it out later for fun. Enter the local home school science fair for fun. things like that. But only if your children are interested in it.

Keep the fun in science in the elementary years. They'll be able to do more science later in jr. high and high school. <smile>

-crystal

Joy1139
Posts: 25
Joined: Wed Apr 26, 2006 10:03 am

Unread post by Joy1139 » Wed Jul 09, 2008 6:26 pm

Well, I'm just coming back to MFW after a period of burn out. I was trying to do way too much. I've decided that I am not going to add any other curriculum even though my son already knows alot about the science that we'll be covering in ECC.

We used MFW for second grade and I didn't add any science during the last part of the school year. I was really concerned because my son is very interested in science and I didn't think he'd get enough with MFW. I kept hearing that it was too light. Honestly, like Crystal, we weren't really doing everything that MFW was recommending and in fact, we couldn't have, because I was adding so much other stuff there for awhile. Anyways, that second half of the year, I didn't add any science and all on his own (I mean, all... he didn't get any help from me.. other than transportation!) he designed his own science fair project, put it all together, and went on to place 3rd place in a statewide competition. It was his first competition and it was a wonderful learning experience for him.

I should have learned then that MFW sciece is plenty. As I said, I won't be adding anything from here on out. He can do alot in his own free time, but I won't intentionally add or require additional science.

Jenn in NC
Posts: 144
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2006 2:00 pm

Unread post by Jenn in NC » Thu Jul 10, 2008 6:15 am

Just agreeing with the others that so far the science has been plenty to keep us busy and happy and learning a lot! I even have at least one amongst my kiddo's who has decided to be a scientist when he grows up. I don't know if that aspiration will last or not, but I do know that all my dc seem to very much enjoy the science and, judging from the talk around the dinner table, they are really learning quite a bit.

hth :)
mommy to four boys & two girls... and another boy on the way :)
completed K, 1st, ADV, ECC, CTG and RTR
2009--2010 Enjoying Exploration to 1850

my3boys
Posts: 149
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2007 12:50 pm

Unread post by my3boys » Thu Jul 10, 2008 8:41 am

My 9yo is a science nut. We started a couple of years ago buying him science kits for christmas and birthday presents. Honestly, this is all he wants to do with his spare time. We have found this is a nice way to add more science without adding to our curriculum load - it also gives him something constructive to do. I don't do the experiments with him, but I try to be aware of what he is doing for safety reasons.

Lucy
Posts: 442
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2004 9:37 am

Unread post by Lucy » Thu Jul 10, 2008 8:49 am

Just another poster agreeing that all we ever did was MFW science and it has been enough. We are now in our 7th year with MFW and have found the science very balanced with everything else that is taught .Now my kids are in Apologia, but we did use all of the 5 year cycle science.

Lucy
wife to Lee and mom to Twila 18 (girl) and Noel 16(boy). Happy MFW user since 2002.

mgardenh
Posts: 174
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2007 4:55 pm

Unread post by mgardenh » Thu Jul 10, 2008 10:33 am

I think that some people think it is lite because they don't follow all the recommendations so people feel they need to add. Sometimes its just easier (it seems) to get another science curriculum then to go out on nature walks and draw the pictures and write the names down of the stuff you find and research on it. (look how much science is there just in that). Observing, analyzing, documenting, some experimenting and research! Woo are you tired yet:) We just did about 2 hours of science doing all that stuff :)
Mike
DH to Laurel
SAHD (mostly) to
Julia - 10 years old, Explorations to 1850
Alexis-7 years old, Explorations to1850 see her story at
http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/alexisg
Have used MFW, k, 1st, Adventures, and ECC, CTG, RtR

hsmomof5
Posts: 38
Joined: Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:03 pm
Location: South, USA
Contact:

Unread post by hsmomof5 » Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:04 pm

Thank you so much. Crystal, that was a beautiful explanation and just what I needed to hear.
mgardenh wrote:I think that some people think it is lite because they don't follow all the recommendations so people feel they need to add. Sometimes its just easier (it seems) to get another science curriculum then to go out on nature walks and draw the pictures and write the names down of the stuff you find and research on it. (look how much science is there just in that). Observing, analyzing, documenting, some experimenting and research! Woo are you tired yet:) We just did about 2 hours of science doing all that stuff :)
You are absolutely right! I totally agree. I hope others are referred to this link when this question arises. Wonderful and encouraging!

Thank you. :)
~Kysha
ds 19 (college freshman), ds 12, ds 12, and ds 10 (ECC '08) (CTG '09), dd 3 (Preschool)

Lucy
Posts: 442
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2004 9:37 am

Thinking of adding a science program to Adventures

Unread post by Lucy » Wed Sep 10, 2008 9:55 am

Threelittleangels wrote:Hi everyone!
I am thinking of using God's Design for Science, but wonder if I will regret it - meaning, does the science get more in-depth as the year goes on? Also, will I regret the fact that I will no longer have an integrated science subject to tie into that week's bible, etc.? Thanks :)
Christa
Christa,

A few thoughts for you to consider here. The science is not the same every year. It grows with the kids and information is layered. For instance the solar system/astronomy is covered several years but each time adding a new layer of depth. It is covered in K,1st, Adv, year 3(a whole semester) and finally again in Jr. High science. Marie in my opinion has done a good job in helping to present information in a way that kids can grasp it at their level.

Another thought is that in MFW the science is integrated a bit differently every year. So next years science will not be exactly the same as this year. For instance in years 3 and 4 we spend a semester on the following topics: Human Body, Astronomy, The Animal Kingdom, and Botany.

Using library books is a wonderful way to always go deeper. I know you mentioned that the books were just sitting there. It may be that you need to help engage your kids with them. Our attitude toward it many times will help our kids to become more excited and will help them to go deeper as well. For instance I am looking at weeks 4 and 5. In week 5 particularly, Marie is giving some information for you to read or share about the days topic. This is really helpful if you can not find any books related to these topics, but the library books are really going to add to these 2 weeks, especially week 5. So I would not just leave these in book basket . I would read at least one book during science that relates to that days topic.

Also I think that it is important to remember that in this year, as in the K year, that many science concepts are reinforcing the biblical concepts, which are the names of Jesus this year. This year is to help your kids to begin to grasp who Jesus is and how he is living water, a rock, and the bread of life. These are abstract concepts for kids and many times for adults as well. Where possible the science lessons are giving concrete ways of helping to understand how Jesus is like these many things. So I would consider even if you decide to add more science from a different source that you not skip the science that is directly related to helping kids understand these names of Jesus more concretely.

Two more things that I think will complete the program.One would be the optional nature walks(see the manual under Teaching Tips and week 1 notes). This is listed in the T.M. under the grey line on Friday. The other idea would be to look at the table of contents at the science topics and see if there are any field trips that would relate to and help reinforce the things you are learning at home. Of course you can not do one for everyone but a few would be neat. I know when my kids were about the age of yours, we had a science center close to us. We would go about once a month. They had lots of hands on activities for the kids to do.

These are just some ideas to see if you can make the current program work for your family. You are not very far into the year so I would consider giving it a few more week too.

I hope some of this will be helpful to you as you try to figure out how to move on with science this year.
Lucy

[More on this topic can be found here:
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=2083
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=7894 ]
wife to Lee and mom to Twila 18 (girl) and Noel 16(boy). Happy MFW user since 2002.

cbollin

APOLOGIA ELEMENTARY SCIENCE

Unread post by cbollin » Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:22 pm

Posted by cbollin » Sat Dec 30, 2006 9:47 am

APOLOGIA ELEMENTARY SCIENCE:
* The Botany book, Exploring Creation with Botany by Jeannie Fulbright, is used in the year 4 history cycle of MFW, Exploration to 1850. This book can be a full year study, but MFW picks up the pace and uses it in one semester's worth of time during EX1850. The other semester of science in EX1850 is taxonomy of the animal kingdom. So you get a full year of science lessons. Taxonomy is done with a different set of books from the Botany series.

* Another book in this series, Exploring Creation with Astronomy, is scheduled in Rome to the Reformation. It is also used in one semester's worth of time. The other semester is a different topic -- human body study -- using different books.

Both of these J. Fulbright books have about 13 or 14 chapters of material. MFW schedules it at about 1 chapter per week in these upper level history cycle programs.

cbollin

Re: Science - MFW science topics? Is there enough?

Unread post by cbollin » Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:25 pm

amelasky wrote:I am a science major and my daughter LOVES Science. I cannot imagine us keeping a "light" approach much longer. She loves our experiments that we are doing in MFW1, but wants to do Science everyday. Do you use Apologia with second graders? If so which one?
Posted: Fri Jun 06, 2008 1:29 am

My dh has a PHD in chemistry and we over-added to the science schedule in MFW for several years. So don’t over add. We really took the fun out of science.

But, we found a better solution. Look for fun ways to do stuff. We ended up really liking Janice Van Cleave books at our library. And there are so many topics to choose from. It’s nice for elementary age kids. So if your child wants to learn more about earthquakes, there is a J. Van Cleave book for that. But --- you’ll want to save her Human Body book until RTR year. The good thing is --- you don't have to complete all of them.

MFW does not use the Zoology books. (they were written a little to late for that)
MFW uses the Astronomy book in Rome to the Reformation as 2nd semester.
MFW uses Botany in EX1850 as 2nd semester.

The Apologia elementary books are not used in Adventures. In Adventures, be encouraged to use the extra Internet links in the First Encyclopedia of Science that is part of Adventures, even though it is not from Apologia. Use the internet link with supervision of course. But you’ll find other things to do as well in that book that may not be obvious.

keeping asking if that didn't quite answer what you were looking for :)

-crystal

TriciaMR
Posts: 999
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 11:43 am

What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by TriciaMR » Tue Mar 31, 2009 4:32 pm

beaglemamma2008 wrote:DD (5) and I have been working our way through MFW K this year and loving every minute of it!!

As I look through the science that comes with MFW 1, I'm wondering if (1) they don't have a chance to get into one subject long enough before moving on, (2) this might result in lots of "gaps" in what they learn, and (3) most importantly, you would be hard pressed to find anyone more ignorant in science than I am, so I probably do feel the need to have my hand held more than most people do. I rely extremely heavily on the science books I check out from the library each week, and those are never from a Christian perspective. Usually that's not a problem, but this week, for example, we studied rocks and everything mentioned evolution. I didn't have any Christian resources, and because of my ignorance I simply didn't know what to tell dd. We ended up focusing on very basic info, like three types of rocks, some come from volcanoes, etc. That's fine for K, but it's not going to be fine for 6th grade, so I just wonder if I'd be better off with something more structured. BTW, we would have had the same problem with the dinosaur unit except we had What Really Happened to the Dinosaurs, which was an excellent resource that came with our K package.

Did you end up feeling like the science was enough? Did you feel like MFW"s teaching instructions were thorough enough to guide you along (vocabulary, what all to cover in each unit, etc.)? Have your kids gone on to Apologia General Science smoothly? And BTW, I definitely don't want to overwhelm dd! I love the "light" feel of MFW, and I don't want to lose that! Pleeeeease share your thoughts! :)
Jennifer :~

PS - From what I have seen so far, they have put together a phenomenal curriculum that is, above all, Christ-centered. The problem is not with them at all; the problem is with my feelings of inadequacy in science and in my concern that dd won't retain as much jumping from topic to topic.
Just my personal opinion, I don't think you *need* to go deep in elementary years. If your kids show an interest, extra books in the book basket are a good way to deal with that. I honestly don't remember much before middle school (growing crystals, observing weather, ???). Then in middle school, they threw me into biology head first. (I was a public school, military brat.)

The MFW Adventures science has to do with the names of Jesus (the bread of life, water, etc). ECC science is a study of biomes (mountains, deserts, oceans, jungles, forests). The older years get into astronomy and human body. In 7th/8th MFW expects your kids to start doing Apologia's Physical Science.

I've thought ECC's science was just the right amount for our life. But, I come from a workbook/textbook background that was just reading. The experiments in ECC have been fun and educational experiences and made my dd think, just a little.

-Trish
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
My blog

cbollin

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by cbollin » Tue Mar 31, 2009 5:09 pm

Jennifer,
I offer you a few (hugs)) about your feelings of inadequacy in the teaching of science for a first grade child.

Before starting all of what I have to say, I want to say that my husband holds a PHD in chemistry and worked in a research department for a university for 12 years. We are science nerds.

We have a very high opinion of how and what MFW does in science.

I personally think you did the exact and perfect thing in the Rock unit in Kindy. Bravo!

The first grade science is very different from Kindy. There are three big units in the science in first grade that cover a wide variety of subtopics. You study Plants for a long time. You study “Things Outdoors” (that covers a lot of science with first grade words). And you have a long unit on Water. You’ll have more of a book list to work with and remember to check the Ideas forums too. Maybe as I (and others) go along in the year, we’ll remember to add in some of our favorite science titles too.

When a child is only in first grade, you have the opportunity to begin them on a journey with science. Exposure is the important thing. Breadth over depth is more important at this stage. And in the MFW elementary sequence you will get lots of opportunities to hang information in little storage places in them. I disagree that there will be “gaps” in their learning based on what you do or don’t do in first grade. It’s ok. You have a long time to go. You want them to stay excited about science and enjoy the fun hands on stuff.

Now, there are some programs on the market that prefer taking a year to focus on just one topic. First graders like to be curious, so why should you limit them to just one topic? You want to keep the science moving at this age and do not overkill it. If they spend too long on a topic at this age, it doesn’t always mean more retention. Your daughter may not realize what it really means to spend a full year on a science topic. So, I wouldn’t gauge it based on her wishes. She’ll get tired of it and you’ll be thinking (but I paid for this other science curriculum, now do it!) Each year the length on the unit studies in science gets longer. You will have the freedom to add extra stuff that is fun for her. If she wants more to read on an animal, then add it. But realize that she needs a wide variety of exposure to many topics in science to see the breadth of it all.

You will have much higher level material in the rest of the years with MFW. In some of the years (ECC and EX1850 for example), MFW is already going to use God’s Design books when they are more appropriate to use age wise. Also, MFW will use some of the Apologia Elementary Science books. You’re not going to feel this same level of inadequacy or not being sure. The science in MFW doesn’t stay at the exposure to many topics level for all years.

I absolutely do believe that MFW’s science is very well done. It helps to keep the pace going when they are youngest, most hands on when they are youngest, and then as they continue in elementary, the focus gets smaller (fewer topics covered) and then 7th grade, switch it over.


Here’s what’s going on in MFW science.
K: getting to know nature with a little bit of info for a 5 year old. It is not the only time they will get the information.

1st grade: It’s biology, chemistry and physics all from hands on, not all done at the same time. The topics might look like that they don’t make sense, but they are subtopics of the larger Units. It is not the only time they get the information.

ADV: this is a thematic year where you really begin to help them develop a Christian worldview for science as the science topics help to show who Jesus is.

ECC: science includes a book that Marie includes notes when to dismiss the evolution content. The Science will include one of the those God’s Design books. Most people who say on the internet that science in ECC is light, may not be doing all of the steps that are in the manual. But that's first edition (and I'll save that info for another time). 2nd edition, you get one of the God's Design books.

CTG: The information is in the teaching book, Genesis for Kids. This is another elementary year of really building on Christian worldview in science. Covers biology, physics and chemistry with a specific focus on how those topics relate to the days of creation.

RTR: you do 2 programs in one year. Human Body systems. Astronomy (Apologia) Again, as the years progress, the information is added on. What they didn’t learn in CTG science in Astronomy, they learn in RTR.

EX1850: again, 2 years in one. Botany (why spend a full year on it at elementary age?) and Taxonomy of the Animal Kingdom (using God’s Design books). And you’ll get a lot of this again in 7th grade Apologia.

1850MOD – if your child is in 6th grade or under, they’ll get a full year of chemistry/physics. Just let them set up all of the experiments and learn to take notes if you want them prepared for 7th grade. (of course, that's true for when they hit 5th and 6th grade to gently begin that step up)

Then in grades 7-12, use the Apologia Science.

Yes, the science in MFW’s elementary program will prepare them for Apologia General Science. My oldest is doing just fine in 7th grade science. If you aren’t sure of that, then in 5th and 6th grades, make sure your children can read the science texts they are using, and make notes of new vocabulary words. Have the upper elementary kids be “in charge” of experiments under your guidance.

That’s all they need. Don't fret the idea of "information gaps" from it. ((hug))

Do the nature walks in some fashion in MFW.

From the wife of a PHD chemist, stick with MFW’s science. Ask for help along the way if something isn’t clicking. Remember your notebooking. Yes, the manuals help you in the other years. MFW’s science is going to get you where you need to be.

-crystal
Last edited by cbollin on Tue Mar 31, 2009 7:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

mgardenh
Posts: 174
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2007 4:55 pm

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by mgardenh » Tue Mar 31, 2009 5:28 pm

I think MFW science is excellent, no reason to add anything else. May I point out to you, at least for our state, elementary teachers are not required to teach science because it is not tested in our state testing. So if a teacher wants to do science they have to just throw it in there. Funny thing is as homeschoolers we're required to have math, science, reading, writing, and history-Doesn't make sense that they require it for homeschool but not public! 8O
Mike
DH to Laurel
SAHD (mostly) to
Julia - 10 years old, Explorations to 1850
Alexis-7 years old, Explorations to1850 see her story at
http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/alexisg
Have used MFW, k, 1st, Adventures, and ECC, CTG, RtR

Poohbee
Posts: 394
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 10:38 pm
Location: North Dakota

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by Poohbee » Tue Mar 31, 2009 6:15 pm

We are doing Adventures this year, and we have really enjoyed all of MFW's science so far. My dds love science, and the experiments in the Usborne books used in 1st and Adv are simple and fun, yet they teach the science concept at a level my dds can easily understand. We enjoy learning about many different topics, and I love that the science is often incorporated with the Bible. Actually, the science in MFW is quite a bit like the science at the elementary level in public schools, as many different topics are usually covered. Well, that's how it is in the PS in our area of the country, anyway. So, I would encourage you to give the science recommended by MFW a try. You might be pleasantly surprised. :)
Jen
happily married to Vince (19 yrs)
blessed by MFW since 2006
have used every year K-1850MOD
2018-2019: Adventures with 9yo boy

Ariasarias
Posts: 94
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2005 11:26 am

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by Ariasarias » Tue Mar 31, 2009 6:44 pm

My kids aren't the biggest science kids naturally but they have enjoyed the science. It's been just enough and if they are really interested in a topic, we spend a little more time or read more books.

Just to add a little encouragement. In my psychology classes in college I remember learning a little about learning theory. We learned that to really retain something in your brain, you first have to have little pegs to hang them on. I feel like the way MFW approaches science is helping our children lay down those little pegs. It's just enough info to spark interest and lay a foundation so the next time they are exposed, they have somewhere to hang the information (store it) in their brains. Without the pegs, the info goes in one ear and out the other.

I have really seen this at work with my oldest. She is finishing third now. In K and 1st I wanted her to master so much information, but she really couldn't. She had no where to put the info. Now that she has been exposed a little bit at time, over and over, she can make more sense of the info and retain it and even add more depth into her brain.
Nicole :)
Nicole, wife to Claudio since 1996, and mom to dd (2000), dd (2003), dd (2005), and ds (2009).

RB
Posts: 87
Joined: Wed May 09, 2007 9:14 am

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by RB » Tue Mar 31, 2009 9:45 pm

Just a quick thought...a good number of 'classical educators" skip science completely in the elementary years! I didn't know this until recently, but noticed it in the veritas press catalog (which we keep for literature ideas). This was also true of our local Classical School before it closed. I think lots of Charlotte Masonish things do only nature study at first, too.
My point is that MFW may do less than some but does a great deal more than others. Perhaps MFW is like the "just right" in Goldilocks and the Three Bears :)
I've toyed with the idea of substituting the Jeannie Fulbright texts, which we use in our co-op. But I think it's because I really love them...agreeing that in early elementary it might be deeper than most kids are ready for. We've really liked the ECC science, and as our weather is finally beginning to warm up we look forward to Nature Walks again, maybe even tomorrow!
R.B.
dd 15 dd 14 ds 12 ds 1
Adventures and 1st ('07/08), ECC and K ('08/09), CtG ('10-'11), RtR ('11-12), Expl-1850 ('12-'13)

my3boys
Posts: 149
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2007 12:50 pm

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by my3boys » Wed Apr 01, 2009 7:44 am

I think it depends on your kids too. I have two super science buffs at my house and they always want more science. I tend to add more by providing science kits and the discovery channel - that's what they like to do in their 'free time' and they explore it themselves, I don't lead it.
Alison
Mom to 3 busy boys ages 11, 8, and 6
finished K, First, ECC, and CtG - currently using RtR

Julie in MN
Posts: 2927
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by Julie in MN » Wed Apr 01, 2009 9:15 am

beaglemamma2008 wrote:Did you end up feeling like the science was enough?
Hi Jennifer,
My son did MFW science pretty much exclusively from 3rd to 6th grade. I think all we added was a weather chart one year. And I will say that every time he's had an outside class at co-op, or even when he took a science lab that a local middle school teacher offered to homeschoolers, he complains that he has already done everything at home (using MFW)!

I'd say that MFW not only has a solid science sequence, but it schedules it so that you really get it done.
Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

TriciaMR
Posts: 999
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 11:43 am

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by TriciaMR » Wed Apr 01, 2009 10:52 am

beaglemamma2008 wrote:Wow, it's unanimous! That makes it easy! :-) Okay, so we'll use MFW science. But since I am "scientifically challenged" and everything, I have a couple more questions for you...

(1) At some point in the TM or even in the science books that come with the curriculum, is vocabulary given and are names given to scientific concepts? What I mean is at some point will dd be given the definition of atom, molecule, mass, density, velocity--all of those things that I am completely and totally incapable of defining for her?

(2) Do the TM and science books just give directions for great science experiments, or do they make it clear that this one illustrates that molecules are always in motion, this one illustrates the concept of potential energy, etc.? Because, again, I don't have enough knowledge to be able to explain it to dd.

(3) Honestly...honestly...don't you think it would be wise for me to purchase one of those other curricula just to use as a reference, or is it really and truly unnecessary?

Thanks so much for your help everyone! My hands are feelin' toasty from all of the hand-holding y'all are providing! :-)
Jennifer
Jennifer,

Don't worry about those technical names until jr. high. I didn't even learn some of them until college ;) .

In ECC's manual, if Marie has us doing an experiment, she tells us why we're doing it. Encourage your kids to ask questions if they don't understand. ("Mom, what's a molocule?" "Hmm, honey, I'm not quite sure. Let's grab the dictionary and see what it says." Don't worry, happens all the time to us.)

I checked out science fair books for our science fair this last year, and those books always talked about why you were doing what you were doing.

You'll be fine.

-Trish
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
My blog

KimberlyND
Posts: 67
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2008 4:55 pm
Location: United States

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by KimberlyND » Wed Apr 01, 2009 11:24 am

Totally agreeing with all the other posts.

Just wanted to add if you don't know something and can't find the answer in any of your books you can do what I do. I look it up on the internet. It takes me less time to do it here than to search through books!

Blessings!
Kimberly in ND
MFW user since 2007, gone through K, 1st, ADV, ECC, CtG, RtR, Exp. to 1850, & 1850 to Modern Times
Using ECC 2014-2015 with an 8th grade son and 4th grade daughter
Have been HS for 19 years and graduated 3 dc.

Julie in MN
Posts: 2927
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: What's your opinion of MFW science?

Unread post by Julie in MN » Wed Apr 01, 2009 12:18 pm

beaglemamma2008 wrote:What I mean is at some point will dd be given the definition of atom, molecule, mass, density, velocity--all of those things that I am completely and totally incapable of defining for her?
MFW always explains why you're doing an experiment. And the reason you do an experiment will change with the age of the child. Knowledge builds. e.g. Toddlers use verbs. Elementary kids use verbs correctly in most cases. Junior hi kids understand why they are using them correctly. High schoolers can identify the correct verb choice in even complex situations. Adults can teach about verbs.

I agree with Trish that they don't need all of this stuff until Junior Hi. And yes, in 1850MOD, atoms & molecules are explained as part of the science! Careful instruction is given in the 1850MOD guide for making notebook pages & defining all these terms.

Julie
Last edited by Julie in MN on Wed Apr 01, 2009 2:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

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