Friday, March 11, 2016

Two Thumbs Up for Apologia Science Author Jim L. Wise

Exploring Creation with Biology - is an amazing look at science through Christian beliefs that our Maker is also the Creator of the earth. I have read the first two chapters and then read chapter 8 which is about the two opposing theories, evolution and the geological index of eras, or the theory that catastrophic events form earths features like the Grand Canyon.

I wish I had grown up reading  Mr. Wise's science books! The picture of the evolution of horses in America that was in my text books has always bothered me, I knew God created people and the earth and all other creatures but sitting in school listening to the theory of evolution always disturbed me, I shelved it in the back of my mind since I could not resolve the conflicting teachings between school and religion. Now I'm thrilled my kids can have the truth from the beginning, or as much of it as we and scientists who believe in God have uncovered. In 1979, a year after I was born a leading scientist said that the evolution pictures of the horse in America is a perfect example of evolutionists twisting data to fit their theory and that it was discarded as unsound science. Well, my text books did not discard it, I was taught this untruth for many years to come. I now am happily resolved and adamant that my children's minds will remain uncontaminated from deliberate misinformation. Also quoted in the text book is a quote from Darwin himself saying that the only flaw in his theory were the "missing links"  that presented a problem. Most people who find a flaw in their theory Clam Up and don't share something they know to be untrue. What kind of person deliberately lies to become know?

Why? with all the knowledge we have do the lies get perpetuated for generations and the truth is so hard to dig up? Literally, it feels like digging and tossing aside filth and sifting out truth.

math options

Abeka- expensive for the quality, lower grades are the same as a workbook purchased from Costco. Have a second grade student workbook. Too expensive for what it was.

Saxon- very heavy on the parents side, time consuming. Rote memory and not much of the fun reasons to love math. Spirals daily, meaning it goes over all the past learned skills. Skills are mastered but it can feel painful for some students. Have 5/6 and 6/7 books. Pages look overwhelming to some students, large amount of daily practice.

Investigations- K - 5-  like it a lot, kids like it and master the skills, attain fluency due to how it's set up. there are areas to draw out or solve problems in multiple ways. Only a few problems on each page and it builds as it goes. there are student work books and a hand book. I found that I didn't need a teachers manual for k-3 at all and in 4th wanted the unit manual for some units like the fractions section. It is mental math, showing all the work isn't the emphasis. Knowing how to get the answer is the goal. Also is affordable to purchase workbooks for each student. I got unused but worn copies second hand for $10-15 on line at places like and amazon.

Connected Mathematics- 6-8- written by the University of Michigan and are very science oriented math skills, everything taught pertains to real life situations and the graphing sections are actual scientific data, like the ratio of the femur to the height of men and women. It does not spell out the basics for the parent/teacher. It needs a math whiz to teach it, I am not this. We did really really love the amazing feel it gave us for what math can do, it is great for science minded people. Shows the outside the box uses of math. More reading than in other texts, again about life uses for the concept being covered. Units cover probability, statistics, geometry, algebra and everything else! Most of it was over my head even with teachers manuals. BUT so worth it!

so we were introduced to Math-U-See by a friend, we borrowed the pre- algebra and completed it in 6 months, three kids did this. A girl 16 whose struggled because she went through too many different math curriculums trying to pick a good one. And two kids in eight grade, girl 14 and boy 12. I handed them the teachers manual and student book and they primarily taught them selves, I helped clarify when asked, they also watched the video of the writer of the program teaching the lesson if they needed more help. It teaches the necessary basics quickly and concisely, no hammering it into the ground with too many problems or too long of lessons. it is not designed to take 160 -180 school days or a school year to accomplish. The levels are to be done in order as the student has mastered(tested well) the lessons they move on. Very simple, it is however boring, not creative or shows almost no use in life. (keep a clean copy of the student work book, when the publisher/owner reprints or edits and updates his curriculum he no longer prints old versions of the manuals. The curriculum is $77 for elementary levels and $35 for student books.)

My intent here on out is to combine it with Connected Mathematics! I am going to use Math-U-See as my basic lesson and add spice to it by supplementing with the fun applications in Connected. I will let you know in a couple years how this pans out, I am making notes in Connected as to which Math-U-See lessons/grades to complete prior to doing the Connected Mathematics.

My recommendations are to use one math all the way through, any of these work well for the families we know. Just don't switch every year like I did, searching for the perfect math. They all get the job done in different ways. Stay with one, my top recommendation would be Math-U-See and second would be Saxon. Unless you're a math whiz then definitely use Connected Mathematics for 6-8th and use mathusee with it and for the other grades. Raising a little engineer or scientist would be easy with Connected.