Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Christian Kids Explore Biology (TOS Review)



If you’ve read my blog for any length of time, you know my girls are obsessed with science.  When the opportunity arose to review one of the books in the Christian Kids Explore series for Bright Ideas Press, I jumped at it.  I allowed the girls to choose from the four books, and they asked that I request Christian Kids Explore Biology.



The Christian Kids Explore series began as a homeschool mom’s desire to find a science curriculum which somewhat followed the classical mode of education plus taught science from a Christian point of view.  There are four books in the series:

Christian Kids Explore Earth and Space – geared toward grade levels 3-6
Christian Kids Explore Biology – geared toward grade levels 3-6
Christian Kids Explore Chemistry – geared toward grade levels 4-8
Christian Kids Explore Physics – geared toward grade levels 4-8

The biology book is available from Bright Ideas Press for $34.95.  The book includes 35 lessons in eight units:

1.  Biology Basics

2.  Plants in God’s World

3.  Birds of the Earth

4.  Mammals in the Wild

5.  The Human Factor

6.  Reptiles All Around

7.  Insects High and Low

8.  Water Creatures

Each unit begins with a vocabulary list, a list of materials needed for the unit, and a coloring page.   Each lesson includes Teaching Time (the lesson) and Hands-On Time (an activity or experiment).   Review questions and quizzes are built in, and memory work, puzzles and and creative writing assignments are also included.  The author suggests teaching one lesson a week, and using two days to cover it.

A digital download of the activity pages is available.  Instead of copying from the book, you can print the pages you need.  At the time  of this review, the download is on sale (an April special) for $7.95 (normally $12.95).



I love that Scripture is sprinkled throughout.  It is “unabashedly Christian.”  Even the “trivia” included on some of the pages is associated with Scripture:


(Sorry about the color on this picture – my camera was evidently set weird.)

I like that each unit is broken up into smaller parts, and there are hands-on activities for each lesson.

I love the appendices in the back - 100+ pages that include:

Reproducible Forms and Maps
Memorization or Reference Lists
Scripture Memory cards
Instructions and Art for ABC Book (a year-long project where the student learns  
     about one animal for each letter of the alphabet
Additional Coloring Pages
Recipes and Supplemental Activities
Answer Key
Suggested Further Reading (a/k/a the beloved book list!)


If you choose to have your student read the lessons independently, I’d recommend at least reading the first one together, as it deals with creation vs. evolution, and discusses the big bang theory.

I’d also recommend reviewing Lessons 22  in the Humans Unit before allowing your children to read it independently.  This lesson covers human reproduction.  Despite this book being geared to 3rd grade and up, there are many homeschoolers who have delayed “the talk”, me included.  While not providing explicit information, there are still issues covered and vocabulary used that might prompt questions.  Call me odd, but a science book is not the thing that I personally want prompting questions from my girls.

Don’t worry about the shortness of the lessons – there is plenty of information in each, plus many suggestions for additional learning activities.



Check out samples and Info

  • Table of Contents
  • Sample Week
  • Materials List by Unit
  • Sample Lesson Plans
  • Sample Reading List


    By mail: 
    Bright Ideas Press
    PO Box 333
    Cheswold, DE 19936

    By phone: 
    toll-free at 877.492.8081

    By fax:

    By email
    general inquiries: 
    or use the
    online contact form.


    My girls have enjoyed the lessons we’ve done in this book, and I plan to continue using it.  The 35 lessons can be considered a full year’s curriculum, and a full year of science for $34.95 can’t be beat!


    To see other reviews of this product, click HERE and look for the linky tools list at the bottom of the post. For giveaways, other product reviews and other fun things, follow the 2011-2012 TOS Homeschool Crew blog at:


    **Disclaimer: As part of the 2011-2012 TOS Homeschool Review Crew, I received a pilot version of the product referenced in this review at no cost in exchange for my fair, honest and unbiased (and not necessarily positive) review. No other compensation was received.

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