Bizzare "science" from Apologia

(Phil) #21

That statement is telling in that it essentially says,“The end justifies the means, and the argument is not about what is true and correct, but rather what helps achieve the desired goal” which in this case is the culture war. That seems to be what underlies a lot of the YEC rhetoric.
Ultimately, however, truth matters. One post mentioned the circular argument of a literal interpretation of Genesis is foundational to a certain interpretation of “science” which then is used to support the literal interpretation of Genesis. When the science is realized to be false, the circle breaks and it all falls apart to the dismay of those around. Truth, however difficult to understand, does not have that weakness.

(Laura) #22

I just read “Finding Darwin’s God” a few months ago and that scene was in there – I believe you got the name right. Yeah, I agree that it’s a mistake to not believe that YECs are sincere – and probably the longer they have held those beliefs and the more they’ve invested in them, the more sincere they are. For me it wasn’t just about a set of beliefs – it was my entire education, my mom, my dad, my grandparents, many of the adults I’d known and learned from my whole life, my church, many books, and any other beliefs that were tied in with those.

(Clarke Morledge) #23

Flying dinosaurs in modern Africa? That does sound pretty strange.

To his credit, Dr. Jay Wile, who founded Apologia, left the organization not too long after he sold it to someone else. Wile, who is nevertheless a Young Earth Creationist, is thankfully irenic in his views towards OEC and EC folks. But when he saw that Apologia was moving more in an ideologically rigid YEC position, under the new ownership/leadership, he got out.

If Wile had stayed with Apologia, I wonder if his presence would have kept the organization from “not to be too over the top YC,” as you put it.

(Laura) #24

That’s good to know. As much as I disagree with Wile’s YEC views, I really appreciated him as a writer. I used both his chemistry textbook and advanced biology in high school and was able to teach myself from both – he has a great way of communicating scientific ideas in a conversational way that doesn’t bore the reader.

(Sherry) #25

We used Apologia Exploring Creation with Biology in a high school co-op. I didn’t want a YEC text, but it was our only option to have the labs with other homeschool students, taught by parents with a science background. I had my daughter skip the chapter on evolution, and substituted a chapter from a secular high school science textbook I had bought used. This was the textbook written by Wile, and I have to say I thought it was really poorly written and hard to understand. I can’t understand why it had so much praise as a science text. Also, many chapters were filled with critical comments about college professors who taught science, making suppositions as to why they believed in evolution that had no basis in fact. On the plus side, I guess my daughter learned how to deal with a difficult text. It should help her in college at some point.


We’re in that situation for next year. I want to do this both for the social aspect and the labs. Should I just withdraw and teach it myself without Apologia?

(Simone) #27

I found Apologia texts themselves to be very dry. The experiments for the books we used were good, and I also like some aspects of the notebooks, but the texts are incredibly dry. I think there are much better options out there.

One of the things that bothered me the most though was then they cherry picked to try and prove evolution wrong. One specific example I can think of is in the botany text they teach that bee’s and flower’s couldn’t possibly have co-evolved due to something about the ultraviolet stripes on flowers and bee’s vision. When I looked into it more after leaving YEC I found out that there is actually a lot of scholarship about this and it was enlightening to find out about how the evolution in this area actually worked. Same with evolution of the giraffe’s neck. I can see how children or younger students could be swayed by these kind of “facts”, but Apologia twists things and oversimplifies things. Well basically they tell students what they should think, instead of using critical thinking skills. I love that my kids have a thorough enough understanding of evolution to see through these things now.

(Sherry) #28

For me, I weighed the positives and negatives, and taking the class had more positives for us. While the homeschool moms who taught the class believed in YEC, one was a nurse and the other had worked in science research, so they had more of a science background than me. I felt it was more positive for my daughter to do labs with the class, learn how to take tests, and have the socialization with the other kids. So for me, the positives outweighed the negatives. But YMMV.

As I said, I had her read a chapter on evolution. I also pointed out to her statements in the chapters that I thought were deliberately misleading. I know other homeschoolers handled it by using Apologia, then teaching a short unit on evolution afterwards.

It’s hard when you’re limited with curriculum and the YEC homeschooling community. Sometimes you just have to improvise.