Elementary science

My son is in 1st grade, and we are currently using Science in the Beginning by Dr. Jay Wile. I love the concept of it, that we do an experiment with each lesson (what kid doesn’t love experiments!), that it’s geared toward elementary age, and I can use it for all my kiddos at once. The problem we’re having is that the lessons are a bit over my sons head (and even sometimes for me!). I’ve tried reading it ahead of time and rewriting it so I shorten it as much as possible. I don’t feel like he needs to have a ton of ‘scientific’ knowledge, like for terminology, but more of just a general concept for each lesson. He gets bored after 2 minutes of me reading, and asks if we’re done yet. I’d love to find something maybe even more simple and fairly inexpensive for the remainder of the year and possibly shelve this until he’s a bit older. Does anyone have any suggestions for possibly a more simple science curriculum?

We are using Elemental Science and are in Biology for the Grammar Stages. I have also strongly considered God’s Design for Science by Answers In Genesis. I think both are wonderful at remaining on a child’s level and affordable. Elemental Science uses living books we get from our library to go with the curriculum. :smiley:

My son is in first grade as well. We are using God’s Design for Science by Answers in Genesis. I really like it, however I do like to supplement with books from the library that go along with the subject matter. I have also looked at Evan-Moor workbooks and like what I see- I may purchase them as well to go along with specific units of study.

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We use A Beka. The books are simple, colorful and easy to read. The lesson plans are in the teacher edition but I have never used them. You can look inside the books at their website. https://www.abeka.com/ABekaOnline/ProductSearch.aspx?grade=&subject=SCIE&title=&sbn=&ods=

We use primarily the Exploring Creation series by Apologia. I’m sure you’ve heard of it before. It works well for young ones in my opinion, even if they don’t comprehend all that is written. The text allows for pauses and I find it easy to elaborate on it or even add living books from library to enhance their interest and the studies. The activities are simple and yet it helps cement the concepts.
I’m not sure if it’s as cost efficient as you were hoping for this year but it’s very reasonably priced.

I agree with you. After thinking about it some more, the A Beka Science was the best choice for the 1st grade level.

Thank you all for your response! I like the simplicity of A Beka - is that something that could be used for multiple grades, or is it more individual based? I considered Apologia in the past (and then I found out about SITB and thought it would be a better fit), but after looking at a sample lesson online, it seems like it’s a bit easier to understand than the one we’re currently using. I think I may need to look more thoroughly in to that as well! Has anyone had much experience with Sonlight’s science program? I was looking in to that online, and while that one is a bit more pricey, I like the living literature type approach and thought maybe that would keep my children’s interest a bit more. But I haven’t know of anyone who used it so I would be interested if anyone has thoughts on that!

We love, love, love the Let’s Read and Find Out series, available at your local library. The books are excellent - well written with clear but detailed explanations, well illustrated, very engaging for my 5 and 7 year old. Many have simple experiments you can do with common household items. If you read every one of these books that you can get your hands on, your child will have a very well rounded early elementary science curriculum. And it’s free.

My 7 year old is precocious and interested in more advanced explanations. She really enjoys the Let’s Read and Find Out books, but we also use some Apologia with her. My 5 yr old listens in to Apologia and picks up whatever sticks - I don’t worry too much if it’s over his head.

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Thanks so much for the recommendation - I have some on hold at the library we’ll take a look at!

We are actually using sitb for my 1st and 3rd grader and they absolutely love it. Have you tried using more visuals and hands on to explain it to them? Also remember that they will most likely get all this again and it’s an introduction. I let mine grasp what they can. They actually are remembering more than I thought they would.

mack - is there anything in particular you do to make it more hands on? We do the experiments of course, but perhaps having my son keep a science notebook and drawing the experiments and what’s happening would help him engage a bit more?

We also will do the experiment and I will read to them. I add in where needed and they may be lost. There are also wonderful people who are generously sharing notebooking pages they’ve made. On the websites for the actual curriculum there is a complete book that you can print for the student to answer the questions in. This may include drawing examples and writing. This is what we use. I also found on the SITB FB group some one uploaded more simplistic pages for the units (not one per lesson though), but it may be more suitable for a younger one.
Also we act out things. For example, when we were studying the changes in energy, we’d act it out…be plants and sun and act out how there is change. I believe there are also YouTube videos others have found to go along with the curriculum. And when in doubt, I grab some books at the library for them on the topic.

Those are all great ideas - thanks so much! My kids love to act out things, so I think that would be a perfect fit when we it’s doable for a lesson. I’ll look in to some of the other resources you mentioned as well, as they sound like helpful as well.