We were truly blessed to be able to review Moving Beyond the Page. We received the Language Arts Online Package for Holes and the Science Package for Rocks and Minerals. These two units can be used independently of one another, but are designed to go together.
The Language Arts Package included the book Holes and online access to the curriculum guide. The Science Package included the curriculum guide, the book Geology Rocks!, Dig A Dino T-Rex Kit and Minerals, Crystals and Fossils Science Kit.
Moving Beyond the Page is an all-encompassing unit study (with the exception of math). These units are used simultaneously and take about 3 weeks (15 days) to complete. The Language Art Unit includes grammar, geography, writing, etc.. There are questions about the book to review daily (a few chapters are assigned reading each day), and journal entries to make. Each unit has a final project at the end that takes 2-3 days. It’s a great way to wrap up all that was learned over the course of the unit. My son enjoyed the book a lot, however, he doesn’t like to read it in small sections as assigned by the unit. Writing is a challenge for him, but he was able to complete most of the tasks without too much trouble (others were easily adapted). His favorite part of this unit probably was watching the movie at the end and making spiced peaches. There were several other activities he enjoyed, but Language Arts is not his favorite subject (by far). This unit did, however, make many of the assignments a lot more enjoyable for him. The unit was a bit long for his attention span though, 15 days of working and talking about the same book got old for him. This is most likely because he read the book in the first few days, as opposed to stretching it out over the unit as suggested.
The Language Arts Unit was the online option. I don’t really like the online guide, I prefer a PDF or in hands option. The online option is accessible via internet and is only available for a limited amount of time after activating the purchase. . This unit is designed for ages 8-10, it is recommended that they read and comprehend at a 4th-5th grade level. My son is a few months shy of 8 year old, but reads on the suggested level. The online package costs $19.92, the physical package costs $23.98. In my opinion, it is worth the few extra bucks to purchase the in hand copy.
The Science Unit contained a lot of really fun HANDS-ON activities. Science is one of my son’s favorite subjects, and this unit did not disappoint! The unit is jam packed with lots of fun experiments and projects. There wasn’t a single activity that my son didn’t enjoy, and he always wanted to start each day with science!
There was chip mining, gemstone coloring, fossil making, rock testing, volcano making, geode crushing, crystal growing and dinosaur digging (to name a few)! With the exception of a few items, everything you need is included in the package. My younger kids even enjoyed participating and/or observing with the projects. This unit was just A LOT of fun, my son didn’t get bored or tired of it at all.
I much preferred the in hands curriculum guide that came with this unit. The science kits that came with it were also great! We use a workbox system, and he was excited each day to see what the Science box held.
The suggested age and reading levels are the same for this unit as for the Language Arts unit. The cost of this unit is $64.89, with the online option costing $60.83.
To sum it up, these are really great units! My son could really take or leave the Language Arts unit, but I think if he had more patience and enjoyed writing more it would have been more enjoyable. He didn’t dislike the unit, but it wasn’t his favorite. He did enjoy several activities and loved the book and movie. The Science Unit was by far his favorite! It had so many fun things to go along with it. The fact that it tied into the book was nice. In the future I think it is best to stick to the reading schedule for the Language Arts unit (might be a good lesson in patience for him). I just find it hard to ‘discourage’ them reading ahead when they want to read.
Add in a math curriculum and these units could make up your entire homeschool. We like unit studies more for occasional fun, as opposed to an all the time thing. But that is the beauty of these units. You can purchase all of them and have your entire school year set up, or just pick and choose the ones of interest to use through out the year as part of an eclectic approach.
I’m eyeing the Ben and Me unit next – since we are studying US History!
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