Homeschool Creations

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Nancy Larson Homeschool Science {Review}

Nancy Larson Homeschool Science

Until this year, science was one of my LEAST favorite areas to teach the kids. It was the one thing that I went to our homeschool convention hoping to find. When I passed the booth for Nancy Larson Homeschool Science, I was intrigued. After stopping by, I ended up spending {literally} hours talking with the ladies there. It was the BEST stop of my convention trip.

We’ve been using Nancy Larson Homeschool Science 1 for the last 6 weeks and science time has become one of the most enjoyable and fun subjects we work on together as a family. The kids don’t want to stop and because of how the lessons are put together, neither do I!

About the Science Program

Nancy Larson Homeschool Science is a complete homeschool science program that currently has three levels available with an emphasis on Life Science for Science 1, Physical Science in Science 2, and Earth and Space in Science 3.

We are using Science 1 with our oldest three children, and it focuses on the following areas:

  • Developmental Biology: life stages of human beings
  • Botany: observing trees
  • Earth and Space: exploring sunlight, water and soil
  • Zoology: investigating animals and their habitats
  • Anatomy: discovering what is inside our bodies
  • Entomology: examining the characteristics and life cycle of insects

Nancy Larson Science 1

The Science 1 complete program includes a Teacher’s Manual, Student Materials, Resource Materials, and a Tool Kit ~ almost everything that you need to begin using it immediately {minus the pens, pencils and some basic household items} with one child. Additional student units can be ordered if you want to use the same level with more than one child.

Nancy Larson teacher's manual The Teacher’s Manual is AMAZING!! The lesson plans are scripted, giving examples of what the teacher and student dialogue should be and lessons are completely laid out for the teacher. Supply lists are included at the start of each lesson, so you can quickly grab what you need and have it ready for the lesson {a big help!}.  You can view a sample of a lesson here.

Each level of the Nancy Larson Science program includes the following learning tools in the Student Material packet:

Nancy Larson Studen Materials

  • Student Booklets ~ help children highlight important information from the lessons, draw pictures that correspond to the lessons, and record information that they are learning during their lessons
  • Lesson Reviews ~ questions to help the children review information from the current and prior lessons
  • Study Guides ~ a review of the information in the student booklets
  • Assessments ~ a little something to help you assess what your child is learning from the lessons.

Laurianna science

Laurianna illustrating a lesson in her Student Booklet

Each Science Level also includes a Teacher Resource CD that provides extra information relevant to that level: complete supply lists, photographs to go along with lessons, word lists, and more.

The Tool Kit for the Science 1 program includes all of the hand-on manipulatives and books that you will use throughout the year: pine cones, tree cookie, hand lens, x-ray set, Live Butterfly Garden®, Butterfly Larvae Coupon, Ladybug Land™, Ladybug Larvae Coupon, insect learning cards, plastic insects and spiders set, and the following books: What Do Scientists Do?, Peterson First Guide to Trees, Trees to Paper, Familiar Insects and Spiders, Your Insides, and The Seasons of Arnold's Apple Tree.

You can view more information on any of the homeschool science programs on Nancy Larson’s website.

My Thoughts

I don’t know that I can say that I have one favorite thing about the program, because it all fits together as a wonderful program. Having  everything I could possibly need included in the Complete Program is definitely wonderful. I didn’t have to run around town to find random items or hunt down random books to use with the program. I also love that I don’t need to plan any lessons because it is all done for me!

I mentioned that we’ve been using it with our three oldest children {ages 5, 7, and 9}. Nancy Larson Homeschool Science has literally turned our science learning time around. We have our science time twice a week and when we have finished one lesson, the kids all beg me to keep going. This is a huge difference from year’s prior when the kids did not want to work on what we were supposed to…and neither did I. We all look forward to science time now and I look forward to using future levels of Nancy Larson Homeschool Science.

While talking to the ladies from Nancy Larson science at the homeschool convention, I was amazed to hear that seven years of research, planning, and development go into EACH level of the curriculum. It is field tested for several years of that time, so that when it arrives on your doorstep you are ready to go. I can’t say enough how thoroughly impressed I am with the curriculum as a whole ~ or how highly I recommend it to other homeschool families.

Find Out More

You can view and purchase all of the products available from Nancy Larson Homeschool Science on her website. A few other things to note:

  • Science 1 is designed for ages 5-8; Science 2 for ages 7-9; Science 3 for ages 8-11
  • Science K Homeschool Kit is scheduled to be released the summer of 2011. Science 4 Homeschool Kit should release the summer of 2012. Science 5 Homeschool Kit is scheduled to be released summer of 2013.
  • Check out the Blooming Scientists blog ~ the homeschooling parent community from Nancy Larson.

Please feel free to ask any questions in the comments or contact Madon Dailey directly, a representative of Nancy Larson Homeschool, if you have any specific questions. She is wonderful and would be happy to help you out!

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19 Comments:

  • Sounds lovely! Too bad our oldest two are 13 and 10!

    By Blogger Samantha, At September 28, 2010 at 7:31 AM  

  • Sounds awesome! I was looking forward to your review on this one. Too bad I only have 1 left to use it with. :(

    By Blogger Heidi, At September 28, 2010 at 8:26 AM  

  • This looks awesome. For a child with a kinesthetic learning style this would be great. No too much writing. It looks very hands on. Thanks for reviewing.

    By Blogger Kimmywizzie, At September 28, 2010 at 8:56 AM  

  • Your review is wonderful. By the way, I've read of moms are using the program with children from 4-13, and it can also be re-sold to other families. They would just need to buy the consumable ISUs for their children. So you get a great return on your investment.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At September 28, 2010 at 10:58 AM  

  • It would be a GREAT tool to use in a co-op setting also!! I second the re-sell ~ that makes the investment wonderful too because another family is blessed when you are finished!

    By Blogger Jolanthe, At September 28, 2010 at 11:20 AM  

  • I have avoided a complete science curriculum thus far... I've been doing a little here and there. I know that isn't going to work much longer. I'll have to check this one out for next year... you've never led me astray! :)

    By Blogger Amy, At September 28, 2010 at 11:29 AM  

  • Thank you for posting about this curriculum!! We start first grade in 5 weeks and I have been stressed trying to decide between this one and Real Science-4-Kids. I JUST blogged last night asking for an opinion.
    Thank you for answering my prayer!

    By Blogger Kendra, At September 28, 2010 at 1:20 PM  

  • Kendra ~ I'd love to talk to you more too!! Your name isn't linked to your blog though. Can you email me ~ homeschoolcreations at gmail.

    You will LOVE it!! Zachary has been walking around the last few weeks reciting the stages of development ~ it cracks me up!

    By Blogger Jolanthe, At September 28, 2010 at 2:39 PM  

  • Looks like a great program! I'll be on the lookout for their Science K program, since we'll be starting K next year...

    By OpenID nottwins, At September 28, 2010 at 2:57 PM  

  • Thanks for the review. I have been looking for a new science curriculum and have come across her sets again and again. my only questions is (and I haven't found the answer on her site) is this curriculum from a christian/creationist stand point or evolutionist. I know it may be petty but I am so tired of having to edit my "evolutionist" curriculum to fit our views of the data interpretation! I dont want to shelter my children from the Theory of evolution but I'd like curriculum I can teach without editing first! Just wondering! Thanks!
    Tia Keikikuddlerz@earthlink.net

    By Blogger Tia, At September 28, 2010 at 3:16 PM  

  • Tia ~

    Tried emailing you back, but your email is bouncing and saying it's over capacity. Is there another way to get ahold of you?

    Jolanthe

    By Blogger Jolanthe, At September 28, 2010 at 4:13 PM  

  • I always enjoy reading about what worked for your family – and I appreciate all the wonderful ideas you share. I love your blog and gave you the Sunshine Award at http://livingmontessorinow.com/2010/09/28/versatile-blogger-award-and-sunshine-award-to-happily-pass-on/

    By Blogger Deb Chitwood, At September 28, 2010 at 6:07 PM  

  • Hi Tia;
    I work for Nancy Larson and would be happy to answer any questions. Nancy Larson Science is a neutral,or secular program. There is nothing in the program that would cause a person concern, no matter what their belief.
    Each program is a complete curriculum, not a bunch of unrelated topics. Throughout the year, Nancy reviews and pulls together concepts from the past to the present. Nancy chose life science in Science 1 to get children excited about science. These lessons are about children themselves, the world they see around them. We talk about stages from infants to toddlers, children, teenagers, adults and elderly adults. We discuss the differences and changes from stage to stage in all living things. We compare things like human skin to tree bark and how they both provide protection.
    Science 2 focuses on physical science and how things work. We make connections between the physical properties of matter, then move to forces, simple machines,light and sound. The year ends with ornithology, the study of birds. What do birds have to do with physics? Nancy shows that the sciences are interrelated. Birds’ beaks are levers to crack nuts. Their talons are wedges. They are simple machines.
    Science 3 focuses on Earth and Space. Science 3 also introduces chemistry in a unique way. Children understand what elements are, how they affect atmospheres, weather and photosynthesis.
    Science is all around us and a part of us all. Nancy's programs allow children to experience and love the wonders of science through hands-on activities, reading informational text, and recording data in their own science books.
    The program teaches study skills, the use of primary resources for research, reading competencies, and writing activities for language arts. It works for various learning styles and exceptionalities. We've heard remarkable stories of how Nancy Larson Science has improved confidence, self-esteem, handwriting,and prompted meaningful conversations within families.
    I am the Homeschool Manager for Nancy Larson because I was completely awestruck. I've never seen anyone who put so much into a program, or a program that works so well. Plus it's such fun, and so easy to teach.
    Any time you have questions or comments, I am here to help.

    Take Care.
    Madon Dailey

    By Blogger Madon, At September 28, 2010 at 8:44 PM  

  • Thank you for this review!! I've been struggling to decide on a science program for my son for this year. Everything I've researched just left me feeling like it "could" work for him but it wasn't 100% what I was looking for.

    When you mentioned that you were trying the Nancy Larson science this year I researched it and instantly loved it, but I'll admit I was put off about the price. Although I was secretly hoping you'd do a review after using it for a while, and say that it was as wonderful as it seemed!!

    I saw that that it was neutral/secular, but I was just wondering if there was anything like "we're evolved from apes" or "dinosaurs lived millions of years ago" etc in it? Any reason to avoid it basically!

    I'll be chatting to my husband about purchasing this science curriculum for our son, thank you!

    By Blogger Leigh - Puddle Magic, At October 7, 2010 at 10:32 AM  

  • Answering your question here about Nancy Larson {sorry, your email isn't linked to your blogger profile! :)

    There are NO references to either of those or anything that would put up a red flag. :)

    Hope that helps you out!

    By Blogger Jolanthe, At October 7, 2010 at 10:38 AM  

  • A million and one thanks for blogging about Nancy Larson's Science Program. I received my box last week and love the program! Can't wait for us to start our new school year next week!

    By Blogger Kendra, At October 25, 2010 at 11:24 PM  

  • Hi Tia;
    I work for Nancy Larson and would be happy to answer any questions. Nancy Larson Science is a neutral,or secular program. There is nothing in the program that would cause a person concern, no matter what their belief.
    Each program is a complete curriculum, not a bunch of unrelated topics. Throughout the year, Nancy reviews and pulls together concepts from the past to the present. Nancy chose life science in Science 1 to get children excited about science. These lessons are about children themselves, the world they see around them. We talk about stages from infants to toddlers, children, teenagers, adults and elderly adults. We discuss the differences and changes from stage to stage in all living things. We compare things like human skin to tree bark and how they both provide protection.
    Science 2 focuses on physical science and how things work. We make connections between the physical properties of matter, then move to forces, simple machines,light and sound. The year ends with ornithology, the study of birds. What do birds have to do with physics? Nancy shows that the sciences are interrelated. Birds’ beaks are levers to crack nuts. Their talons are wedges. They are simple machines.
    Science 3 focuses on Earth and Space. Science 3 also introduces chemistry in a unique way. Children understand what elements are, how they affect atmospheres, weather and photosynthesis.
    Science is all around us and a part of us all. Nancy's programs allow children to experience and love the wonders of science through hands-on activities, reading informational text, and recording data in their own science books.
    The program teaches study skills, the use of primary resources for research, reading competencies, and writing activities for language arts. It works for various learning styles and exceptionalities. We've heard remarkable stories of how Nancy Larson Science has improved confidence, self-esteem, handwriting,and prompted meaningful conversations within families.
    I am the Homeschool Manager for Nancy Larson because I was completely awestruck. I've never seen anyone who put so much into a program, or a program that works so well. Plus it's such fun, and so easy to teach.
    Any time you have questions or comments, I am here to help.

    Take Care.
    Madon Dailey

    By Anonymous Madon, At December 15, 2010 at 12:55 PM  

  • I always enjoy reading about what worked for your family – and I appreciate all the wonderful ideas you share. I love your blog and gave you the Sunshine Award at http://livingmontessorinow.com/2010/09/28/versatile-blogger-award-and-sunshine-award-to-happily-pass-on/

    By Anonymous Deb Chitwood, At December 15, 2010 at 12:55 PM  

  • Thanks for the review. I have been looking for a new science curriculum and have come across her sets again and again. my only questions is (and I haven't found the answer on her site) is this curriculum from a christian/creationist stand point or evolutionist. I know it may be petty but I am so tired of having to edit my "evolutionist" curriculum to fit our views of the data interpretation! I dont want to shelter my children from the Theory of evolution but I'd like curriculum I can teach without editing first! Just wondering! Thanks!
    Tia Keikikuddlerz@earthlink.net

    By Anonymous Tia, At December 15, 2010 at 12:55 PM  

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