MPH Teacher's Guide P5/6 - Interactions (2nd Edition)

MPH Teacher's Guide P5/6 - Interactions (2nd Edition)

# 016434

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Item #: 016434
ISBN: 9789810114367
Grades: 5-6

Category Description for My Pals Are Here! Science (2nd Ed.):

If you liked Singapore’s MPH Science before but thought there were too many components to purchase, you might appreciate this revision, which has taken a few steps in the consolidation direction. Now grades 3 and 4 are combined, and grades 5 and 6 are combined, so a set of books for either level will last you two years. However, there are still quite a few pieces of the program, and in some cases, like the texts and the activity books, there are actually more titles per level now. The most noticeable difference is the division of the texts. The first edition contained two texts for each grade level, labeled “A” and “B.” Within the texts, themes central to Singapore’s primary science syllabus (diversity, cycles, systems, energy and interactions), were all covered. In the new edition, the texts are divided strictly by theme, so there is a textbook for diversity, another for interaction, and so on at each level. While you could definitely teach the themes in any order, Singapore Math recommends doing Diversity and Life Cycles for 3rd grade; Systems, Energy and Interaction for 4th grade, Cycles and Systems for 5th grade and Interactions and Energy for 6th grade. The content within the texts is much the same, although the design has been updated. Easy-to-read, engaging information is augmented by full-color photos, cartoons, charts, fun facts, extension activities, and more. Chapters begin with questions to guide the reading and end with a self-check and list of vocabulary that has been introduced. Red arrows in the margins point the way to related activities in the activity books.

Activity books are divided by theme like the textbooks, and contain a mix of pencil-and-paper activities, graphic organizer activities, thinking questions, and hands-on experiments. For example, in the Cycles Activity Book (Grades 3/4), the first section is on life cycles, and activities include matching photos of adult friends and family with their pictures as children, matching animals and their young, raising a mealworm and observing its life stages, and researching other beetles that go through the same stages as the mealworm. If you’re looking for workbook-type activities to reinforce the textbook readings, look no further than the Homework Books. There is only one Homework Book for each of the two levels, and it is organized to match the group of textbooks. Each chapter in the Homework Book correlates with a chapter from one of the textbooks, and features three sections of activities. In the first part, students answer multiple-choice questions, while the second part asks the student to complete or study a concept map (graphic organizer) and answer questions based around that. The last section presents the student with higher-order thinking questions which ask them to apply the information they learned in the text to a new problem or situation. Often a science experiment is described, and the student is asked to predict what will happen or why a result occurred based on their knowledge. Answers are located in the back of the Homework Book. One thing that really stands out about this curriculum at this point is how most of the exercises and activities are not just “fill-in-the-blank” recall questions, but questions that really ask the student to think. Your most significant investment with the new version would be the teacher’s guides. While there is only one comprehensive teacher’s guide for grades 3-4, the teacher’s guides for grades 5-6 are divided by theme like the textbooks. First of all, the guides were written with a formal classroom situation in mind, so there is some content that may not be quite as helpful to a homeschooling parent. The teacher’s guides contain an explanation of the particular inquiry learning model used in the program (BSCS 5E, to be exact), an overview of the theme with learning objectives and outcomes for each topic, in-depth learning objectives and outcomes by textbook chapter, background text for the teacher to read, lesson plans that include activities or demonstrations for each step of the scientific inquiry process, reduced copies of textbook and activity book pages with answers provided in red and teacher notes in the margins, an introduction to the theme being studied, and a gap chart which highlights the difference in topic coverage between the old and new versions of the program. So are the teacher’s guides necessary? I would say no, especially if you are confident in teaching science at this level, and have other ideas for “extending” the program and adding related experiments and projects. On the other hand, if you want a complete program with detailed lesson plans, extension ideas and activities, complete teaching notes, specific outlines and activities, and all the “official” answers, you may appreciate having it. Adding to the teacher’s arsenal of information are the More Notes. These provide additional background information for the teacher on the concepts taught in each textbook along with diagrams and charts. Suggested internet resources that correlate with the topic, and instructions for a related experiments are also included. The teacher information is in outline information, which would make a handy resource for a teacher needing “just the facts” on the characteristics of living things or the classifications of living things used through history, but this may not be necessary to you if you are supplementing with additional resource books or are already familiar with the subject. There is one test book for grades 3-4 and one for grades 5-6. Each contains tests for all texts used at that level. Tests cover between one and three textbook chapters, and questions consist of multiple-choice, using and interpreting concept maps, short answer questions, long answer questions, graphing, and more. There is also a test on each theme covered in the level (for example, a Cycles test), and several “cross-thematic” tests as well which focus on several of the thematic standards covered at that level. Answers to the tests are found in the back of the books.

Higher Order Thinking Skills Books are also available – one for grades 3-4 and one for grades 5-6. These include sets of activities for each chapter in the corresponding textbooks. These activities are also pencil-and-paper, but you won’t find many multiple choice questions here. These activities involve concept maps, charts, graphs, diagrams, true/false with explanations, predicting the results of experiments, labeling structures, using concepts to explain related problems, and more. The questions have been based on Bloom’s taxonomy, with an emphasis on more complex skills.

There are a few things you may want to note. This version (like the previous version) is not Americanized, so you will see metric measurements, spellings that look British (colour, organiser) and some of the plants and animals discussed are much more common in Singapore than they are in the U.S. Also, the consumable parts of the program (homework books, activity books, and test books) are not reproducible, so you will either need one for each child in the program, or have them write on a separate paper. However, if you are familiar at all with the previous version, you’ll find many of the same pieces of the original program here, just bundled into two, 2-year sets. This could be a plus or a minus, depending on your child’s grade level. If they are going into third or fifth grade, purchasing the components for that level will last you two years. If they are going into fourth or sixth grade, you can purchase the textbooks and activity books you would like to do at that level, but the tests, homework books, and teacher’s guides will still cover the material for both years. The materials are all attractive and child-friendly, and the questions tend to be thought-provoking and challenging. All in all, it’s a solid, engaging science program at a reasonable price, especially if you count on using it for two years. - Jess

Category Description for My Pals Are Here! Science:
Because of multiple requests, we have now picked up Singapore Math's science curriculum, My Pals Are Here Science. Each grade level consists of two parts, an A and a B set. Rather than chopping up the different branches of science into different grade levels and books, a thematic approach is taken, where concepts from different areas of science, including life science, physical science, chemistry and physical science are all linked together under the theme. This approach is meant to help children think about the relationships between different science concepts to lead to a better, more complete understanding of our world. One or more themes are presented in each text, with different science topics featured within each theme unit. The texts themselves are designed to be highly engaging, and feature lines of informative, factual text at an age-appropriate level, surrounded by an abundance of great full-color, well-labeled photos, fun drawings, and diagrams. The text is sprinkled throughout with little "Bits 'n Bites," which feature unique and interesting facts and "Group & Share" questions designed for discussion. Each chapter wraps up with a series of objectives that have been learned, as well as a list of related websites or activities to check out to extend the chapter. The corresponding workbook contains activities directly related to the text pages, with the topic being studied clearly printed at the top of the pages. The worksheets test student's knowledge of information from the text as well as their critical thinking skills, are intended to guide the student through each concept through a wide variety of activities such as classification, matching, labeling, listing, answering thinking questions, filling in graphic organizers, fill-in-the-blanks sentences, crossword puzzles, true/false questions, and many more. The activity book takes the concept a bit further than straight recollection and features pencil-and-paper as well as more hands-on activities that challenge the student to use their critical thinking skills and understanding of the scientific concepts to study the relationships between things. The use of graphic organizers as worksheets, more open-ended thinking questions, and observation are all used more frequently here than in the workbook. The teacher's edition for the activity book includes all the activities in the student book, with the answers in red. I haven't seen the teacher's edition of the textbook, but according to Singapore Math's website, the teacher's edition of the text contains the student text with teaching hints and tips. I would guess that if you feel fairly confident teaching science at this level and with these topics, that it may not be necessary. There is no teaching component to the workbook, although a separate answer sheet is included. Altogether, this looks like a very solid, complete, enjoyable program for elementary grades, and one that even science-haters may come to regard as fun.

Test books are also available for MPH science. Test books contain chapter summaries for review, tests, continual assessments, and semestral assessments. Five to eight tests are included in each test book, with two continual assessments and a couple semestral assessments scattered throughout for more testing. Test questions vary in format and include multiple-choice, short-answer, true/false, and matching. Higher-order thinking questions are marked with an asterisk. Answers to all tests are found at the end of each book. The tests are not reproducible, so you will need a test book for each child.

Note: This is not an Americanized edition, and although this is really not an issue through most of the books, a few places, foods, and animals from the Singapore regions may be occasionally mentioned, and several spellings are different, but these "variations" are few and far between - and hey, it's science - being introduced to these items might add a cool dimension. - Jess

Category Description for Singapore Science:

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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1.5 (lbs.)
11.5" x 8.25" x 0.5"
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