My youngest kiddo is very much a touch it, feel it, do it kind of learner. She loves to experiment and create. Either I provide an outlet for that, or she finds one herself. Hence having to clean a mixture of glue and whipping cream from the hardwood floors this week. Sorry, I digress. Her love for experimenting and creating is why I was excited when I received an opportunity to review homeschool science from BookShark. We've never used BookShark Science before, so I was intrigued when I read that it is a literature based curriculum with hands-on experiments. Lots of hands-on experiments.
What is BookShark
BookShark is a complete, literature-based, homeschool curriculum and they offer curriculum from preschool through high school. It was developed to equip parents with the tools they need to create a comprehensive, enriching learning experience for their children. It is fully planned, four days per week for 36 weeks, including a weekly schedule with outlines that tell you when to use the provided books and materials. Each day includes a lesson plan that outlines what to read and even provides you with the discussion questions to ask. It's about as open and go as you can get. Just as BookShark is designed to equip parents, it is equally designed to help develop creative and academically successful minds in children.
While we're only reviewing a BookShark Science package, BookShark offers an All-Subject Package, a Reading with History Package, and Individual Subjects. They even have a new BookShark Virtual option.
New for 2021: BookShark Virtual
When you pair BookShark print curriculum with a Virtual seat, parents and students get cool online features like assessment, grading, and accountability—accessible via mobile or desktop!
The best way to understand BookShark Virtual is to try it yourself. The first three weeks of every Virtual course are available for FREE just like the Instructor's Guide samples always have been (here).
BookShark uses levels based on age ranges instead of a grade level system. This is done to make it easier to match a level to your child's abilities and maturity, rather than trying to make your child conform to a grade level that may not fit. It also enables you to use a level with multiple children, if they are close in age.
BookShark is a faith neutral curriculum and it does not advocate for any specific faith. The science and history programs from BookShark do not teach evolution, creationism, or intelligent design theory. Instead, they leave it up to the parent, or homeschooler, to teach on matters of origin and spirituality from their own point of view, without promoting any within the curriculum. This means if you wish to teach from a particular worldview, you can without any conflicts from the text.
Homeschool Science from BookShark
As with all of their subjects, BookShark Science is based on age ranges. Preschool science is included in the all-subjects package, and not sold separately. Check out each of the levels and what's included in each level.
Little Miss is nearly 8 1/2, so we could have easily have chosen Level B, C, D or E for our review. Based on the books that we already own, we chose BookShark Science Level E for our review.
Subjects covered in BookShark Science Level E
- earth’s systems, including: rock formations, tectonic plates, and natural hazards
- properties of waves
- physical characteristics of living things
- an interactive workbook that directly teaches computer coding
- a famous Hollywood inventor <– my daughter loves this!
Experiments range from: simulating animal nerve connections with an electrical current, building a methane gas collection system, creating an electromagnet, and many more!
BookShark Science is one of the few truly “open and go” curriculums we have ever experienced. I mean, this science curriculum package includes everything we need. The Discover & Do supplies kit has everything you need for experiments, including soil, clothespins, tubing, corks, rubber bands, and so much more.
The included schedule is easy to follow, and the teacher's guide is easy to work from. You don't have to spend a week brushing up on topics before teaching your children, because it is all laid out for you in a logical sequence and has all the details you need.
If you're looking for a science curriculum, keep in mind that benefits of the BookShark Science packages are:
- they are fully planned 4-day/week lesson schedule – with literally everything planned out for you
- NEW/updated: standards-based [Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) not common core]
- faith-neutral – you can teach from your preferred world view
- includes hands-on activities and experiments — it has all of the directions PLUS the supplies
- complete package that is easy to use
This Discover & Do supplies kit is epic. I can't even tell you how many science experiments we've cancelled last minute, over the years, because I didn't have something on hand to complete the experiment. That's not a problem with this kit. No cancelled experiments or last minute trips to the store to purchase hard to find supplies!
Watch this video to check it out, and then take it for a spin. Let your child take a peek, too!
Not sure where you should place your child?