Sunday, November 8, 2009

Bright Ideas Press

As a 2nd year member of the TOS Homeschool Crew, I have been given the wonderful opportunity to review many homeschool products over the next several months. The only compensation that I receive for my review is the free product. I feel truly blessed to be participating in this review group and I'm looking forward to trying out more products and giving you my honest opinion.

I'm always excited to find new companies offering homeschool curriculum. Bright Ideas Press is a homeschool company offering "Practical, Fun, and Affordable History, Geography, and Science Resources". I was pleased to review two curriculum from BIP.
A Young Scholar's Guide to Composers is a full year's curriculum studying the lives and works of well-known composers from a Christian perspective and in chronological order. Being completely ignorant on this topic myself, I am thrilled to now own this incredible resource!

Here's what you'll find in this book:

• 32 Weekly Lessons• 26 Bios of Famous Composers• 6 Eras of Music Explained• Easy-to-Use Comparative Timeline• Easy-to-Use Maps• Composer Info-Cards & Game Directions
• Note-taking Pages• Quizzes• Answer Keys• Listening Suggestions• Intricate Coloring Pages• Resource Books

The book is geared towards grades 4-8, but I have found that it is quite suitable for my kids in grades 3 and below. We have used the curriculum as a family read aloud and listened to music selections via the online links suggested in the book. Since each lesson also has reproducible coloring pages, my little ones can keep their hands busy while they're listening.

A Young Scholar's Guide to Composers can be purchased from BIP in a print version or on CD-Rom. I did find that I had to do a lot of flipping back and forth from the lessons to the Appendix to get all the information I needed. For that reason, I'm certain that I would prefer the print version. It sells for $34.95.

If you are looking for a teacher-friendly, easy guide to teaching Biology from a Christian perspective then you will certainly want to check out Christian Kids Explore Biology. This curriculum is written by Stephanie Redmond, a homeschool mom who found it difficult to find a science curriculum that was appropriate for her she wrote one herself!

Each lesson can easily be completed in 1-2 days with only a few short paragraphs to read, some review questions, and a hands-on project. You'll also find beautiful coloring sheets, memory verses, and more in the book that correspond with each lesson.

There are 35 lessons and 8 units that include: Biology Basics, Plants in God's World, Birds of the Earth, Mammals in the Wild, The Human Factor, Reptiles All Around, Insects High and Low, and Water Creatures.

If you like your science lessons to be short and simple and easy to prepare you will definitely like Christian Kids Explore Biology. But if you enjoy a more thorough science lesson, I'm afraid you may find these a little lacking. Each lesson is more of an overview of the subject than an in-depth exploration of it.

Christian Kids Explore Biology can be purchased for $34.95 from BIP. They also offer Christian Kids Explore Chemistry, Earth & Space, and Physics.

For more reviews of products from Bright Ideas Press head on over to the TOS Crew blog.

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