5/25/11

TOS Review: Considering God’s Creation

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I was familiar with the name Considering God’s Creation.  I knew it was a creation based science curriculum for elementary students. The authors, Sue Mortimer and her sister, Betty Smith, created this science program for their own children.  Published by Eagle’s Wings, Considering God’s Creation (CGC) utilizes a notebook approach to learning.  As students work through the program they create a notebook that is “simple to store and impressive to show to family and friends.”

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I had planned on using this with both Tailorbear (6th grade) and Supergirl (working at a 1st grade level).  The program states that it would be appropriate for grades 2-7.    Because the units stand alone and are not dependent on each other, I let Tailorbear choose the topic that interested her most.  She choose “The Universe, Stars and Planets".  My plan was to use this with both girls and add in some of the “Digging Deeper” suggestions for Tailorbear.

For every lesson CGC includes a “Digging Deeper” section of activities you can use to add depth to a lesson.  Some of these suggestions are specific such as “learn to identify three constellations”.   I found other suggestions vague and frustrating such as “check out The Astronomy Book by Dr. Jonathan Henry.”  Check out as in look it over?  What parts?  Which chapters go with this specific lesson?  How exactly should I use this additional resource with this lesson to add depth for my 6th grader?

CGC alone is not enough for Tailorbear but it is nearly perfect for Supergirl.  Trying to use some of the additional resources suggested with Tailorbear made the program too teacher intensive for me.   We decided that Tailorbear would drop CGC and I would continue with Supergirl. 

Supergirl needs quite a bit of help with the notebook pages because of her fine motor skill delays.  I would NOT want to be doing this with two or more children who require help with cutting, gluing, and even writing.  It’s working well for us and she enjoys the notebook pages but skips most of the coloring and I do the cutting and I play scribe.

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The Teacher’s Manual states, “there are enough lessons included to allow one lesson a week for an entire school year. (However, many of the lessons have several parts and it would be beneficial, especially for younger children, to spend two to three years covering the material.)” (p.iv)

Some lessons are not broken up into parts, but I feel it would be beneficial for Supergirl for us to break them up.  We are taking our time and covering the Planets (all of them are included in one lesson that is not broken down into parts) at a slower pace..  We are doing science on a rotation basis with history so we do science 2 to 3 days per week so we’re covering a planet a week.  It will take us quite some time finish the planets but she’ll have done a notebook page for each planet!

I am not using the Bible portion of the lesson, but for those who like to do bible reading with their other subjects, this is included.  I really appreciate the “introduction” and “vocabulary” sections.  These sections together are perfect for one day of instruction for Supergirl.  We can then do an activity or something from the digging deeper on another day.  Day 3 (or Day 2 if we do not add in other activities) is the notebook page and if I want to stretch a lesson for one more day we can use the “review” section for discussion for the last day.

I did not care for this program for Tailorbear.  It requires adding in so much of the digging deeper additional resources to bring it to her level,and some of those additional resources are complete curriculum resources.  I felt I could just save myself the trouble and use one of them instead!  Perhaps if an older student has not studied science, this would work.  I do need to point out though that she did like the notebook pages.

I really like this for Supergirl because it is all laid out for me.  It is a gentle approach to introducing her to God’s Creation.  I love the notebook pages.  When they are finished, we both get a sense that we have accomplished something.

For more information about Considering God’s Creation please check out the FAQ page HERE. For sample pages of the program click HERE.  The Considering God’s Creation set is $29.95 and can be purchased HERE.  Eagle’s Wings also offers materials for history, Bible, geography and phonics.  Click HERE to see these other products.

Please click on the banner below to read what my fellow crewmates had to say about Considering God’s Creation.PhotobucketAll information is correct and accurate as of the date of this review.

Disclaimer: As a TOS Crew member, I received Considering God’s Creation free of charge to review.

This review is my honest opinion with, hopefully, enough detail as to why I liked or did not like a product so that my readers can make an informed decision. I received no compensation.

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