Elementary Science: Earth Science by Tom DeRosa & Carolyn Reeves
Elementary Science: Earth Science. DeRosa, Tom and Carolyn Reeves. Green Forest: Master Books, 2011. Purchase the Teacher Guide & Student Journal for $6.99 or less and the accompanying book of experiments for $11.04 or less.
Are you looking for a science curriculum that is fun and engaging and from a biblical creation perspective? The elementary science curriculum is a great way to introduce children to the sciences from a biblical perspective. Written by Carolyn Reeves and Tom DeRosa, the series looks to be engaging and fun for all.
Tom DeRosa is an experienced science educator. He has been able to bring together his love for God and His creation as well as his passion for science as the founder and director of Creation Studies Institute. He has over 35 years of experience in the field of education in the public, Christian, and home school arenas.
Carolyn Reeves is a gifted teacher in that she is able to help students develop an understanding of scientific concepts and how they are to be applied in everyday life. She served 30 years as a science teacher and has a doctorate in science education. She now serves as an educational consultant.
Each workbook is divided into investigations (not chapters). Each investigation includes the following sections:
• Think about this: an introduction to the need for greater understanding that will be found in the course of the specific scientific experiment.
• The Investigative Problem: This will introduce what the students should be looking for during their investigation.
• Gather These Things: the tools needed
• Procedure & Observation: This is the heart of the experiment. Following the instructions and making observations of what happens will aid the student later in the class work.
• The Science Stuff: this section explains the actual science behind what took place.
• Making Connections: This helps the student to apply what has been learned.
• Dig Deeper: This section builds on the previous sections and will enable the student to expand his or her knowledge of what was learned in the experiment.
• What Did you Learn?: This helps both the teacher and student to review what was learned and to “cement” it into their minds.
This guide helps the teacher to teach a course in earth science with no real training in the subject. This is important for many homeschool moms who are afraid of some or all disciplines of science since they were never trained in these disciplines beyond introductory levels. Aside from gathering the resources needed for each experiment, the teacher need only read their part of the book and then teach what they have learned.
Included in the teacher guide is the student journal. It is designed to be ripped out and written on creating a journal for the student to reference again and again.
Both books, the Teacher’s Guide and the text book, cost a total suggested price of $19.98. So, for less than twenty bucks (not including the additional materials), you have an entire semester’s worth of experiments for your classroom. The color photography in the text book is exceptional and the teacher’s guide proves to be an invaluable resource.
I was concerned, however, that the student’s guide and the teacher’s guide came together in the same book. I was concerned that a homeschooling family would be forced to purchase numerous copies of the teacher’s guide to accommodate your children. This prompted me to make a phone call to the publisher (870-438-5288). The gist of the conversation was that if you call and ask permission to reproduce the student guide in a homeschool setting (emphasized because that was all I asked), you will more than likely be granted permission to duplicate. Nonetheless, let me caution you to call the above number and seek permission to do so. In other words, this is not a blanket permission slip to allow anyone and everyone to duplicate the student guide.
Each experiment is designed to help the children delve deeper into God’s creation. Included as part of the discussion guide for teachers are some creation apologetic points to help the children engage the world at the fundamental premise rooted in Genesis 1—that God is the creator of the universe and therefore has the right to judge the world for sin.
If you are a homeschooling parent and you want an easy (though not canned!) curriculum to teach science to your children, I highly recommend the Elementary Science curriculum. With all the colorful photographs in the text book and the easy to follow, even easier to do directions, each experiment will prove to be engaging, learning, and impactful for both the student and the teacher.