Interdisciplinary.... it's a word I am LOVING more and more as I homeschool! The latest product I have the pleasure of reviewing for The Homeschool Village is a perfect illustration of an interdisciplinary study. Creation (by Masterbooks, a division of New Leaf Publishing Group) builds on the foundation of God's Creation by exploring it through math, science, art, language arts, and spelling.
Written by David & Helen Haidle and Mary A. Hake, it is designed for grades 1-4 and consists of thirteen "6-in-1 comprehensive curriculum lessons":
- God Creates Light
- God Creates Sky
- God Creates Water
- God Creates Land
- God Creates Plants
- God Creates Sun, Moon, Stars & Planets
- God Creates Sea Creatures
- God Creates Birds
- God Creates Animals
- God Creates PEOPLE
- God Creates a Day of Rest
- Creation Celebration
- God's Great Plan for You
The authors have designed the book to be used as a 4, 6, 12 or 13 week study, depending on the number of days you choose to work out of the book and which lessons you choose. Since we like flexibility in our schedule, I am choosing to use the FOUR WEEK Study of Creation, which is one lesson on three or four days each week. I especially love one of the authors' suggestions, which is to designate one whole day a "Creation Day" and just explore God's creation on that day. Fridays might be a great day to do this.
Each lesson begins with a list of the materials you will need - most of these items are things you would have around the house or in your homeschool supply closet. The lesson also opens with an object lesson, which is always hands-on and engaging for the young child. In preparing for this review, I showed this book to a friend at church who used to be an editor for a major Christian publishing house. Her comment was, "I love the way it is laid out so simply and easy to see everything you will need right away. It's easy on the eyes!" When I first looked through the book everything looked achievable and easy to implement because of the simple layout.
The lessons then offer math, English, science, art and spelling activities. The Masterbooks website is an EXCELLENT RESOURCE for users of this book. Take a look at it here. Explore some of the links at the site to get a wonderful feel for what activities take place in the book. My children enjoyed the math connection in Lesson 1, which was making a Moibus Strip. There are "suggestions" and "extra activities" to extend learning even further. Preview a portion of the book here.
In addition, the book offers 12 "Character, Connections" lessons:
These little lessons are favorites of mine... I think because they are short (15-20 minutes) lessons based on finding Bible verses, reading them aloud, and then some type of craft or activity to reinforce the value of that lesson. For example, I made a large block "W" for each of my children and they cut them out and wrote what Wisdom meant to them on their W. They put the W on their room door and now they see it often and we talk about what being "wise" truly means. It's something that has extended way beyond the small time investment of the lesson itself! I love that my daughter wrote that being wise means "Knowing how to use your wisdom" on her W. One of the Bible passages about wisdom we read:
Get wisdom, get understanding;
do not forget my words or turn away from them.
Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you;
love her, and she will watch over you.
The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom.
Though it cost all you have, get understanding.
Cherish her, and she will exalt you;
embrace her, and she will honor you.
She will give you a garland to grace your head
and present you with a glorious crown.” Listen, my son, accept what I say,
and the years of your life will be many.
I instruct you in the way of wisdom
and lead you along straight paths.
Proverbs 4: 5-11
This book can also be used in conjunction with The Creation Story for Children, written by David and Helen Haidle, which is based on Genesis 1-2 and Psalm 139. I hope you can see that there are SO MANY POSSIBILITIES in Creation. For just $14.99, it would be an excellent investment for your homeschool. Hey -- what about using it as a wonderful summer Bible study that still keeps the kids academically focused? Visit The Homeschool Village today to WIN YOUR VERY OWN COPY!
*Please note that I have been provided a complimentary copy of this resource by The Homeschool Village specifically for review purposes.