Summer's Lab Reference Notes
Join Summer Beach and her prairie dog lab assistant, Ulysses S. Grant, on a sandwich-filled first look at science!
These reference notes provide you with the basic pages you will need to document your journey through learning about animals, the human body, plants, weather, rocks, space, matter, and energy.
Introduce your littlest learners to science through stories, living books, and hands-on activities! Starring research scientist, Summer Beach and her lab assistant, Ulysses, a precocious prairie dog, children are swept away into a 32-week journey designed to sharpen observation skills and teach basic science topics. Young children learn about animals, humans, plants, weather, rocks, space, matter, and forces. The heart of the program is the Teacher Guide, which provides introductory information, the materials and library book master lists by unit, and the unit lessons. There are 8-units each lasting 4 weeks. The units are formatted similarly and include the unit at a glance with the purpose, topics, supplies list, schedule (in grid and list format), the story to read aloud to your children, scientific demonstrations and coordinating activities, reading assignment from the DK Children’s Encyclopedia, as well as additional book suggestions and written assignments from the Lab Manual and Reference Notes. Cleverly, the Teacher Guide builds a science sandwich to explain the various lesson components. Weekly lessons begin with the meat and bread of science - a brief introduction (meat) and questions or age appropriate written activities to assess their key understanding. What follows is a “cheesy addition” (scientific demonstrations) which add flavor to the science sandwich; the “extras” like mayo or tomatoes (art or extra science projects, are snack options) to add flavor and pizazz to your science lessons. One additional feature is the “listen while you eat” scheduled DK Children’s Encyclopedia reading and other suggested living books for read aloud. Flexibility is built in through the two lesson track options: 2-Day or 4-Day. Families choosing the 2 Day track will spend 20-30 minutes per lesson, and those choosing the 4-Day track will spend 10-15 minutes per day. The teacher guide includes reproducible templates for some activities.
It may be possible to use the teacher guide as a stand-alone; the lessons will be richer with the addition of the Reference Notes and Lab Manual, for the student. Both are scheduled in the Teacher Guide (and recommended) although busy families may choose to do one of the student resources. The Reference Notes (70 pgs) contains the stories found in the Teacher Guide and a set of mini books for the student to color, cut and glue into a journal or lapbook. The Lab Manual (149 pgs) contains the stories, coloring pages, demonstration pages, and activity sheets. If you chose the Lab Manual, children completing the program will have a personalized lab journal when they are finished. Both allow for copying of student supplemental pages, for the purchasing family only. Core books are presented from a religiously neutral position, although some of the additional resources like the DK Children’s Encyclopedia present evolutionary theories from a secular perspective. Feel free to contact us for a list of suggested books and master supply list.
The Charlotte Mason and Unit Study mama in me absolutely loves this wonderful introduction to science for little learners! Well-laid out and easy-to-use, appealing books to read aloud and fun hands-on activities creates a wonderful learning experience for parent and child alike! ~ Deanne
What a delightful way to learn science! Read a story, perform experiments, keep a log, and learn some science. This Charlotte Mason style, hands-on, inquiry-based science program might be just what your children need to understand and enjoy science. From the same publisher as Elemental Science, this program follows the Sassafras Twins as they travel the world during their summer break, learning the science content that they failed to master during their previous school year.
The underlying storyline is that the Sassafras twins felt science was boring and pointless. Despite Mom and Dad's warnings, they continued their lackluster approach towards science. Consequently, they must forego attending camp with their friends and instead spend the summer with their crazy (or is he?) Uncle Cecil. Uncle Cecil and his lab assistant, President Lincoln, developed a series of invisible zip lines and special carabineers that would take Train and Blaisy (Uncle Cecil's names for the children) on the adventures of a lifetime as they learn to love science. Readers will join the twins through 300 pages of adventures around the world as they learn about zoology – mammals and their habitats – in volume one; and then continue the journey through tombs in Ethiopia, a landfill in Texas, and much more as they explore human anatomy in volume two. Children in fourth through sixth grade can read the adventures on their own, or parents can read them aloud to all ages.
The Sassafras Guides to Zoology (Vol. 1) and Anatomy (Vol. 2) offer the road maps for your travels. These books contain 18 chapters that correspond to the chapters in the texts. For each chapter there is a summary, information and instruction for the Official Sassafras Scidat Logbook, encyclopedia readings, a list of additional living books on the topic, an experiment, vocabulary, copywork & dictation, additional activities, and optional schedules. The schedule offers a two- and five-day pacing option for the course. Encyclopedia suggestions are Kingfisher First Encyclopedia of Animals (#29186) for younger children and DK Encyclopedia of Animals (#14569). Experiments for chapters 1-3 and 16-18 are in the guide, but you will need Science Around the World by Janice VanCleave (#27250) for the experiments in chapters 4-15. For your convenience and planning purposes, there is a complete "living book" and supplies list at the front of the guide. An appendix includes reproducible pages and is limited to reproduction for family use only.
The Official Sassafras Scidat Logbooks become a record of each child's journey as he/she visits each location with the twins. The logbooks include illustrations, maps on which the child colors or marks locations, a place to record project information, and pages for notes. The Logbook is not reproducible, so you will want one for each child. There is a fair amount of writing, so some of the activities may not be appropriate for younger children.
Sets include the Official Scidat Logbook, Sassafras Guide and the Reader for that topic.
Use the book as a fun read-aloud or add the activity guide and logbook for a complete science curriculum. Zip line your way through the African grassland, Egyptian dessert, Canada, Amazon rainforest, Australian forest, Chinese bamboo forest, the Arctic, and the Atlantic Ocean with Blaine and Tracey – then look forward to your next adventure with Uncle Cecil! ~ Donna
Items listed in this section tend to be complete science programs with a teacher and student component, requiring few supplements besides science supplies.
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over 7 years ago
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