Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
Our family loves science. In fact, for most of us, it is our favorite subject. Science is great simply because there is something for everyone and for every age. My daughter has some special circumstances that did not provide her with those early science discoveries such as exploring a flower or catching a bug in a jar. This has made learning science a bit of a struggle for her, and so we were thrilled when we were picked to review Experience Biology: Elementary from Journey Homeschool Academy. Here is what we found…
A Little Bit About Experience Biology: Elementary
Journey Homeschool Academy offers Experience Biology: Elementary, which is an online course that uses videos, home experiments, and cut/ paste activities to teach young children about the world and how it works.
There are 16 lessons that cover basic biology concepts. They include:
- What is Life?
- The Secret Code of Life!
- Fueled Up!
- What’s in a Name?
- Biomes Everywhere!
- Itsy Bitsy Teeny Tiny Creatures
- The Junk Drawer Kingdom
- The Fungus Among Us!
- What is a Plant?
- The Wide World of Plants
- Mean, Green, Energy-Making Machines
- Roots and Shoots
- The Reason for Flowers
- It Begins With a Seed
- Amazing Animals
Each lesson begins with a short (15-20 minute) video. The videos typically begin in Luke and Trisha’s kitchen, which brings about a personal feel. Once the video is finished, students have access to resources to take the learning further. These resources include suggested reading, memory games, copy work, cut and paste activities, simple experiments, fun games, quizzes, etc.
There is no timeframe for lesson completion, so parents get to decide what is right for their children. However, I also did not see a gradebook option either. There is a way to mark lessons complete, but to my knowledge this is not tracked in any way other than a check mark appears next to the lesson.
We do not keep track of grades, so this is not an issue for us. Since my daughter has some extra educational needs, we tend to revisit lessons again and don’t use lesson traking either. However, this is something to keep in mind if you need an online option with automatic grading.
How We Used Experience Biology: Elementary
First, let me say that my daughter loves this program. Most science programs we have tried are way above her understanding with a lot of difficult material. This program breaks things down into easy to follow and engaging learning activites that allow for various learning styles. We did not do any of the memory cards, as this would have been too difficult. However, my daughter loves the videos as well as the games and cut/ paste activities.
Each week, my daughter starts with the video for the lesson. She watches it twice – once by herself and once with me. Then we sit and discuss what was covered in the video. The next day she gets to start working with the “Extra Material” activities. Then, for the rest of that week, we see if we can incorporate what she has learned into her world in some way. This may be simply asking her a question like, “Where do plants get their energy from?” Or, it could be playing a sorting game with her a few times during the week.
My daughter’s favorite activity so far is the sorting monsters game. She loves to color, cut and paste. With this activity she got to cut out various monster cards and then sort them based on certain features such as number of eyes, color, tail or no tail, etc. This brought up great discussions such as how we would classify our pets (4 dogs, 2 reptiles, 4 chickens, 1 cat, and 1 rabbit). She thought this game was fun and decided that she would like a tail so she can be like most of our pets. 🙂
Ruth (age 17)
“I like this class. I get to learn about animals and I get to play games with mom.”
“This is a wonderful course. It is easy to follow, and comes with a lot of extras so parents can choose what will work best for their families. I am looking forward to seeing what future lessons bring.”
Review Crew Thoughts…
You don’t have to take our word for it though. Other Review Crew families have also been working hard to bring you a great review. Since each family was given a different science course from Journey Homeschool Academy to review, I highly recommend checking out all of the Review Crew reviews.
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