Friday, April 11, 2014

Let's get Supercharged about Science! Schoolhouse Review Crew Review 2014 #hsreviews #hsmommas #homeschoolscience

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Supercharged eScience Review
          My kids get charged up over Science, so they were over the moon that we were given the opportunity to review Supercharged Science. We were sent and e-Science Premium Membership.
There are no cumbersome text books needed for this Science Curriculum, it is all computer based with a monthly subscription delivered right to your email inbox.

    This homeschool Science class is for all kids K-12, started by Aurora Lipper, who is a real Rocket Scientist, who 10 years ago decided she wanted to make learning Science fun for kids, and show kids there is something to get excited about when it comes to studying Science. When you first enroll you will have access to a couple of units and then each month you are given access to 1-2 more units that are all taught by Aurora herself by video. Being given access to only a couple of units at a time prevents the students and parents alike from feeling overwhelmed. Aurora is passionate,energetic, engaging and fun, my kids love the videos. Even when they were having a rough day or were just not into that quickly changed as soon as Aurora popped up on the screen.
Supercharged eScience Review
A few key factors that made this easy for me as a homeschool Mom...
1. I always get a shopping list for the experiments, this made it easy for my kids to let me know which experiments that they wanted to do and for us to easily gather the supplies(many you already have in your home) and be prepared ahead of time.
2. All of the lessons are self guided, my boys 9th and 10th grade easily worked at their own pace and that gave me, the parent who is not so Science Savvy piece of mind that I CAN do this homeschool Science thing, along with Aurora's help. No Science background needed on the parent's part. Now if you have littles with no bigger siblings to help, you may need to get involved. I found myself liking to join in even when that was not my intention.
3.The step by step videos make it easy for kids to find the fun in Science. There is no frustration when you have a real Scientist guiding you every step of the way through the experiments and lessons.

Supercharged eScience Review
You can pick which experiment you want to do and in what order you want to do them within the units for that month, see a unit you would like to cover instead by looking over the complete list that you gain access to upon signing up, never fear simply email Supercharged Science and they will arrange access for you. This is helpful when you may be studying certain topics already or your kids are particularly excited about a certain topic. Take my boys for instance they love anything to do with Electricity, so if we simply had to do that first we would just email and access would be granted. Very accommodating if I do say so myself. If homeschool parents know anything, we know that delight directed learning works fantastically for our kids. It lets their true passion shine through. 
Each unit is set up primarily the same, making for easy navigation. On the right is all of your links starting with top is the Getting Started link. Here you will find your shopping list, you will also read about the topic of the unit as well as watch a video. One of my favorite details is that you can print a pdf, so you can have your shopping list handy when you are out and about. The shopping list is divided by lesson, so there is no need to get everything all at once or if you know you may not do a particular lesson you can just skip those items all together. Also in the pdf you get key vocabulary words, we tend to use these for that week's spelling work. Makes it easy on me and the boys get more help with words that they encounter in their Science lesson. There are also reading text, as well as work exercises and answer keys. There is even an abbreviated blurb about the videos, this came in handy on days when I could not sit with the boys during their lessons. It helped to keep me up to speed. The boys used this 4 days a week, only because we have co-op on Thursdays and do not do school. Do you know what? I found them using it even on the weekends when they did not have to. I cannot tell you the last time that has happened. 

Now if you do not want to print the pdf, all of the same information can be found through the various links on the right sidebar. For me it was a little harder to be organized which is why I kept the pdf handy at all times. It also helped the boys stay focused as well. 
One of the things I like the most, was that you can watch all of the lessons and experiments without having to actually do the experiments, so for ones that did not interest both boys, they just watched them and then the ones they were equally interested in, those were the ones they actually completed in our homeschool classroom. There weren't too many that they did not want to do though. As they went through the program for the last several weeks, they seemed to get into it even more and now do almost all of the experiments. 
Aurora encourages the children to keep a Science Journal, this helps my boys to get some more writing practice, both boys have poor fine motor skills, and this helps them to develop them more and they don't really think of it as writing. It's a win, win for me! Having the Science Journal helps them to be able to go back and look things over, even after they have finished that unit or lesson. This helps with quizzes and test.
So you may be wondering what areas of Science are covered and how much does this cost. So here is the nitty gritty. 
You have two options a K-8 for $37 or the K-12 option which is what we reviewed for $57, this includes everything from the K-8 as well as additional areas of topic for 9-12th graders. You only need one subscription for the whole family, no additional books needed. There are some supplies you will need to get, but most of them you already have in your home, and some that you do need to get can be reused for other lesson and units. You also can just watch the experiment for the ones that have items that you need to go out and find, but none are too terribly hard to locate so do not worry. 
The areas of Science covered are, The Scientific Method, Biology, Physics, Chemistry and even Geology. There are even some Math lessons and Science Fair Projects. How cool is that! Now I was a bit disappointed that there was no Biology for the High School level. That may change in the future but is not offered right now. Would it deter me from purchasing it because of no Biology. For us probably not but if that is your main focus for purchasing it, then you might want to rethink it. If your kids just love Science or you want them to love Science than it is most definitely something to invest in. As a special for you my faithful reader you can try out Supercharged Science for one month for just $1. There is also a sample free version if you do not want to put your credit card info online. You can find that by clicking here.

Supercharged eScience Review
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