What curric would you recommend in place of Apologia for elementary?

(Lisa) #1

@Homeschool_Forum What curric would you recommend to other homeschoolers for elementary school if they like Apologia, AiG or Jay Wile’s new series? As in, they are looking for a spine and don’t want to put together their own list of books and experiments etc. I often tell people that I don’t like the direction these books go (only presenting YEC, having an anti-scientist feel) but I’m not sure what to recommend, especially for people that want something “Biblical”. We hardly use any overtly Christian science materials anymore because the faith-neutral stuff (I hate to call it secular because many times the authors are Christians) is just so much better and we easily talk about how it fits in with our faith. I also am very comfortable putting together my own book list and labs for elementary but not everyone is. This question comes up a lot and I would love to have a good recommendation when everyone else chimes in about Apologia etc. Any ideas?


I ran into the same problems in selecting a science curriculum. I decided to go with Elemental Science. It follows a classical pattern, so you spend a year each on biology, chemistry, physics, and earth science/astronomy. You can purchase an electronic download so that you can use the materials for multiple kids, and it’s relatively inexpensive. We’ve used it for 4 years now and really like it. I also considered Noeo science, which is similar. It includes biographies of scientists, which I found appealing, but I ended up liking the pace of Elemental Science better. And I also considered Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding. I liked how it spiraled through topics, tying them together. But it seemed like a lot of work to put together and harder to use with kids of different ages. I’d love to hear what you eventually land on!

(Christy Hemphill) #3

I think that is the core issue. If you are coming at the science from a non-YEC perspective, it’s just science. The “biblical” part usually implies creation science.

Christian Schools International texts are explicitly Christian texts recommended by Reasons to Believe as old earth friendly. I don’t know if they are anti-evolution though

We used Sonlight K-3 and it was fine. I skipped a couple books and a DVD, but almost all of it was secular Usborne, DK, National Geographic, etc books with a daily schedule and worksheets and an experiment kit. The instructor guides have suggestions about how to introduce Christian themes along with the secular content if you so desire. It felt a little hodge-podgy compared to using a text on a single subject, but it was all laid out for you.

(Lisa) #4

@Christy …you’re so right, to the rest of us it’s just science :slight_smile: Since I don’t think the Bible is meant to convey scientific information, maybe I really just need to come up with a simple way to explain that to people so they understand why I use and recommend material that isn’t overtly Christian. Maybe that’s a better approach.

(Laura) #5

It’s so interesting to me to see how homeschooling has evolved over the years, at least from the niche I was raised in. I remember having explicitly “Christian” spelling books and a “Christian” math book, etc., and that was believed to be a very important facet of Christian education. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I can also see the sense in using “secular” materials for many subjects and simply teaching kids how to fit it in with their faith instead.

I really like Sonlight since the literature approach worked well for me and works well for my kids too (especially having a variety of different books to use rather than the same one every day, when they’re young), but I appreciate this forum in considering what to use when my kids are older!

(Christy Hemphill) #6

I remember someone telling me their kids’ math book had 1 Cor 14:40 (Let all things be done decently and in order.) to memorize along with the order of operations. Right. Because speaking in tongues in the assembly has everything to do with multiplying before adding. :grimacing:

(Laura) #7

Ha! Someone really knew how to use their concordance. :smile:

(Mervin Bitikofer) #8

Well … “multiplying” is one way to “add” to your congregation. Works for the Amish. Didn’t work so well for the Shakers though. Paul speaks of division too (just to show who is right I guess). Now to look up subtraction – that’s gotta be in there somewhere. Any chance that any of the apostles talked about logarithms? I do have pre-calc to teach after all. Conics are covered when Jesus talks parabolically.

(Christy Hemphill) #9

This is a Bible math song from my childhood. (Kid’s Praise musicals, anyone?)

Didn’t help me ace any math tests.

(Mervin Bitikofer) #10

Reminds me of Reverend Tim Tom on “The Middle”. He has a song for everything… almost. The Heck family may have nearly stumped him in one recent episode, though!

(Simone) #11

The best elementary science curriculum I’ve come across is “Mystery Science”. They give away free subscriptions sometimes, right now is one of those times. The regular price is around $49-69 for the year. They are video based online, with labs/experiments that follow the scientific method and use affordable supplies (mostly household items). I’ve been blown away by this curriculum! My kids are both very sciencey and to see them learning new things, using the scientific method, has been a nice change from the typical elementary curricula out there.