Thursday, September 8, 2016

A TOS Review: Exploring Creation with Astronomy, 2nd Edition

You ready for a trip to the stars!

One of my favorite Homeschooling companies is Apologia Educational Ministries. We’ve been blessed to have reviewed several of their excellent products. This time around we got to review Exploring Creation with Astronomy, 2nd Edition. My box of goodies included:

* Student Text
* Notebooking Journal
* Jr. Notebooking Journal
* Audio CD


The course is intended to last for a school year (it contains 14 lessons). There is a suggested schedule included in the Notebooking Journal.

I want to talk just a little bit about each item I received.

The Student Text is just plain gorgeous. It smells like a textbook, but reads like a living book. There are beautiful pictures and manageable passages of text. The Student Text also includes fun and memorable activates that brighten the student’s learning adventure.  For example, there is an easy,but effective activity using balloons to create our solar system. No paper mache required!

Notebooking is fabulous tool for any learner. The Notebookand Junior Notebook Journal that accompany Exploring Astronomy not only provide additional levels of learning, but make it easier on the parent/teacher. Both notebooks contain activities such as; copywork, journaling...even the construction of mini-books to make the notebook more interactive. 

One activity encourages students to create their silly mnemonic to aid in remembering the planets.This is Josiah's.

Martina Vacation Earned Multiple Jokes Under Noses. 

Whatever works ,right?

The Junior Notebook focuses less on writing activities (it also uses primary lines). It contains more coloring options and has simpler activities. It is intended for grades K-2/3. 

The Notebooking Journals both contains a helpful parent guide that explains each teaching element of the notebook.

My favorite addition to my box of Apologia goodies is the Audio CD. You might know that Josiah is dyslexic. In fact, as a freshman in High School he is above the recommended age range (K-6) for this product. However, I felt that the readability of the text and the Audio CD would make this a great product for him to enjoy.

The Audio CD is a reading of the textbook. Jeannie Fulbright, who authors this book, is the narrator. I can’t gush enough about this product. Just a note: This is CD has to be played on a CD player that plays mp3’s.  We have a Blu-ray player that handled the task nicely (as well as our car CD player).

My Thoughts

Apologia is one of those companies that I know I can trust for a variety of reasons. There is a quality to their production value. I know that there will be solid Scriptural foundations. And I know that the educational aspect of the products they produce will be stellar.

Exploring Creation with Astronomy is no exception. In fact, it was the one book in the Exploring Creation series we hadn’t enjoyed.

This curriculum doesn’t require a whole lot of prior prep time. There are, however, materials needed for various experiments and activities. The Student Text has the whole list available according to lesson at the back of the book. There is also a downloadable list on the website. I didn’t see anything on the list that is too over the top for our limited budget.  I don’t know about you, but this is always a big concern for us.

I don't want to take anything away from the excellent Notebooking Journals, but if things are tight you can get away with the Student is worth every penny. 

I can’t even begin to tell you what having the Audio CD available means to us. Audio products were a game changer in our homeschool.  Josiah can read along with limited frustration…or we can stick in the car. I’m not sure when car CD players started playing MP3 products but I know ours will (our car is a 2012).  

And if all this wonderfulness isn't enough, there is also an extra special page on the website that has all manner of websites,videos and animations to help you enjoy your journey through space. One of our favorites is the link for the planet finder.

We LOVE this product! You can check it out for yourself by downloading samples of everything I've described above on the website.

Just a note to finish this off. One of the recommended products to use with this curriculum is the Apologia Field Trip Journal. You can read my review of this product here. 

Connect with Apologia via the following social media outlets. Don't forget to click on the banner below to read more reviews!

Exploring Creation with Astronomy, 2nd Edition Review

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