We have been faithfully working through our Nancy Larson Science 1 Curriculum and are loving it beyond words! Well, hopefully not beyond words as I am going to try to capture it for you in this post 😉
Nancy Larson Science 1 Review
Looking for an insiders glimpse into the Nancy Larson Science curriculum? You’ve come to the right place! We have finished the first booklet in our program and I can’t wait to show you what we learned!
This is a look into our booklets. Each grade level comes with student booklets to work through. The first booklet was life science and we learned about the life stages of a human as well as studied our habitat. Above you can see a general lesson review page. The kids would read the paragraph above (Selah needed some help, but she followed along with me quite well), they would draw a picture in the box and then write a sentence describing what someone in that stage could do. The review sheets vary from circling the picture of the toddler to writing the age range of a child, etc. but they were a lot of fun and easy to do.
Here is another glimpse into how the program works to cater to different reading levels. As we learned about the stages of life, we would write the stage we were working on on the whiteboard. The numbers below show the age range of an adolescent and the list we made shows different things an adolescent can do. When it came time to write in their lesson reviews something an adolescent can do, they would choose one off the list and I would circle it. Selah would be copying her answer, but reading it at the same time and learning correct spelling.
It is ingenious! Simple, but it is worked right into the program. The teachers book literally tells you “circle the one the child chooses from the list so they can copy it.” I mean, multi-faceted learning I don’t have to create, are you starting to see why I love it?
We also made a few different murals this month as we learned about the life stages and our habitat. These were a lot of fun and again, not overwhelming. Each day was broken up, our science still took us no longer than ten minutes and we were able to fit in some pretty awesome projeccts!
A Sample Nancy Larson Science Lesson
Take a look at this short video snippet I made of a part of our lesson this month!
Why we Love Nancy Larson Science
1. It is scripted.
-The ease of this astounds me, I literally open up the book and read to the kids, it gives me prompts to stop, tells me exactly what to say to them and when, what they should be doing when, etc. For example: “Put your finger on the number 1 and read with me”. I was a bit skeptical of a scripted program, but having something that is taylored to the kids’ level that I don’t have to constantly paraphrase and stop to explain gives me so much freedom and takes away a lot of the stress I face when teaching Science. In our house there are so many things going on at once that having a clear direction and just focusing on reading through the lesson without having to “create” something on the fly, is awesome!
2. It is multi-faceted learning at its best!
-Take the above example, “put your finger on the number 1 and follow along”. Nancy Larson has built the entire grade 1 program around intentional learning opportunities and reading/spelling skills. At the beginning of the program, Selah (grade 1) was still reading 3 letter words, I had never even tried bigger words because she wasn’t ready right? Wrong. Each lesson you put a new word on your word list, the kids get to see how it is spelled and you say it a number of times. Then each time you read through your student pages together, you stop at that word and let them read it. It started simply enough, basic memorization, but through Selah following along with her finger she is picking up a TON of sightwords and can read most of her lesson on her own! I never thought we’d be in that place so quickly. Especially through a science program!
3. It is FAST!
-I can’t speak to the other grade levels yet, but grade 1 is pretty quick to run through. Science was my most dreaded subject to teach because of the prep that was involved. Finding what we were going to learn about, purchasing what we needed for the experiment, etc. The fact that this is no prep and everything is ready for me makes this program a treasue in my bookshelf! I now love doing science because all the pressure and planning is off my back. Because I can sit at the table and read to my kids and we can learn together. As the program goes on there are more hands on experiments and activities, but right now it is exactly what I need, a simple, quick, 10 minute, open and go program that I can do without a second thought.
4. It is perfect for multi-grade teaching.
-With five kids, any subjects that we can do together as a family saves me literally hours of time. This grade 1 program is easily meeting all my kids needs at their kindergarten, grade 1 and grade 2 levels. Malakai (kindergarten) listens to the lesson and does the activities with us, but he does not do the lesson assesments in the booklet. Instead he draws a picture of what we learned or to co-incide with what the older kids are drawing in their books. Selah and Caleb both do the complete program and they are getting a ton out of it. You can easily build on the lessons if you want to challenge your older children, but the content is gold and easily adapted to suit your needs.
This program has revolutionized the way we teach science, in that I do teach science 😉 The kids are happy to do it each day, it takes very little time and we are finally getting into a rythm with a curriculum that works for our family in this stage of life.
Convinced? Click on this image to grab your own kit for next school year!