All About Capacitors – Our Experiences with EEME’s “Fade to Black”

*affiliate links included*

We just completed another EEME project, Fade to Black!  EEME generously provided this project for us to use, so we could share our opinions and review with you!  And we loved Fade to Black just as much as we have all the EEME kits we’ve tried.  It’s really just exceptional kid science.


And for any parent out there who wanted to know what Doc Brown’s “flux capacitor” really did….Fade to Black will unlock that mystery for you!  🙂

What is Fade to Black?

The Fade to Black project introduces kid scientists to the STEM world of LEDs, Farads, stored energy, circuits, and capacitors.  This project, like all EEME projects, builds on the original breadboard and battery set that comes in the Basic 6-Project Set (in the first project, Genius Light, to be exact).

The new components in Fade to Black are:

  • an LED light
  • a transistor
  • long wires
  • resistors
  • Two capacitors
  • a push-button switch

With these components, the child will build four different circuits that accomplish four different jobs.  As always, the project comes with a complete step-by-step video tutorial by EEME Dad Jack, with instructions, safety features, questions for the student, and scientific explanations for the whys and hows of the activities.  An accompanying lesson summary can also be printed, if you’d like to have a record of what your child has studied and learned in this.


Some of the amazing things we saw in Fade to Black:

A push-button, which, when connected to the battery and LED lights via wires and resistors, caused the LED light to come on….as well as performing another important task!

Two kinds of capacitors!  You can see one of them in the picture above; it’s the component with the blue arrow pointing at it.  I want to tell you what it does, but I don’t want to give away any spoilers!  (Yes, if you really want to know what the flux capacitor did, you’re going to have to try out Fade to Black for yourself!)  I will tell you that there is a connection between the button, the capacitor, and the LED (no pun intended).

Those are only two of the builds/activities we completed in Fade to Black.  As EEME Dad Jack has done in our other projects, he starts with the simplest build or activity to introduce the components and principles to the child.  Then, each activity becomes a little more complex or contains more components and steps.  But every single activity certainly contains the “Wow!” factor!


And finally….

Fade to Black was our 5th EEME project.  And I noticed some really wonderful things as we worked through this one!  First, Jackson has really grown in his understanding of circuits, electricity, technology, and the various components EEME has introduced him to.  Other than taking the photos, I didn’t do anything on this project besides sitting and watching the teaching videos and Jackson’s construction of each activity!  Second, he has really grown in his confidence in working with these technologies.  He’s very comfortable watching the videos and following the directions EEME Dad Jack is giving.  I am truly excited about this, because I know that he is REALLY learning.  And I love that he’s learning these things now, because he’ll revisit these concepts again in high school, when he takes physics.  EEME is an incredible, delightful, and truly wonderful addition to our science studies.

Jackson said, when I asked him if he could share a couple of things he liked about Fade to Black, “Of course!  I loved the buttons!”  So here are his impressions:

“This was our first EEME project to feature a push-button component, and I absolutely loved it. Pushing the button to make the light come on is fun, but it becomes even more fun and cool as the project progresses and when you let go of the button, the light fades. This project introduced me to some new components such as the button and the capacitors, and was a very well-done project.”

As you can see, he loved this project!

I’m very happy to recommend both EEME and Fade to Black to you!  You can purchase Fade to Black from EEME, via their Basic 6-Project Set.  Be sure to visit EEME and check out their free materials, which you can download directly from their website.  I think you’ll be very, very impressed!

Enjoy—I know you will!  –Wren

Disclosure: We at finchnwren may receive a free product or service in exchange for our honest opinions expressed in our blog.  We are not required to write a positive or glowing review, nor are we additionally compensated for these reviews.  We share our own (and our family’s) opinions of these products.  We’re disclosing this in accordance with FTC regulations.


Science & Electricity: Our Experiences with EEME’s Project Attraction

*Affiliate links are included in this post.*

Over the holidays, we completed our most recent EEME kit:  Project Attraction.

EEME is a wonderful company which creates STEM project kits for children.  Even younger kids can complete these projects, but generally with parents’ assistance.  For each project kit, EEME provides a step-by-step video tutorial (at the EEME website, available for each kit) which walks the user through all the different building directions for each kit.  We’ve happily completed EEME’s Project Tentacles, Project DIY Display (my personal fave, thus far), and Project Genius Light.  Each one of these projects has been a joy to put together and learn from; both my son Jackson and I have learned more than I could have imagined about engineering and technology!  EEME’s kits have been a phenomenal addition to our science studies.

What is Project Attraction?

Project Attraction builds on the original breadboard (and battery), like the other EEME projects in this series; each kit teaches children about some facet of STEM technology.  This one teaches about electricity, magnetism, current, heat, and….electromagnetism!

This kit includes the following components, which enable you to complete several projects with this kit:

  • A tiny, yet powerful, magnet
  • A steel bolt
  • LED light
  • Resistor
  • A reed switch
  • Wire coil
  • Long wire
  • AA battery
  • Paper clip, sandpaper, rubber band
  • (We use the original breadboard from the first EEME set.)

And as always, EEME has provided a step-by-step online tutorial which provides instruction, cautionary recommendations, and the whys and wherefores of the way the components work alone and when put together.

Of the four EEME projects that we’ve built, Project Attraction has the most for the parent to do. This is because Project Attraction adds an electromagnet and more electrical current in the building of the kit on the breadboard; and also because the wire used to create the electromagnet is somewhat delicate.  I admit that this made me a little nervous; I just don’t have that much familiarity or experience with electrical current.  However, EEME’s tutorial provides very clear instructions while issuing very clear warnings about what NOT to do (like using a more powerful battery instead of the one included in the kit; i.e. DO NOT DO THIS).  So as you can imagine, we followed EEME Dad’s instructions TO THE LETTER.  And we were able to complete our project successfully!

So…what were some of the cool things we did in Project Attraction?

We built an electromagnet!

We learned about reed switches (I’m not going to describe them too much, because I don’t want to give you too many spoilers!).  These are seriously one of the coolest components we’ve been introduced to by EEME…and that’s saying something!  You can see it below; it’s the one with the arrow pointing at it.  You might also notice that the LED light is on.  Don’t you wonder how that happened?

We also learned about how and why heat is generated in an electromagnet; how to get power using an electromagnet; how and why to strip a wire, and so much more.

In conclusion:

Project Attraction is yet another fascinating STEM project from EEME.  Although there are a number of important safety procedures to follow, the parent and child build electronics and tech that are high in the “wow!” factor, and teach more important STEM principles.

You can purchase Project Attraction and the Basic 6-Project Set at EEME’s website, along with all their other excellent and affordable science kits.  Check it out!  And, you can also find free online STEM lessons at the same links, where you can get more of a taste of what EEME is like.

Enjoy!  –Wren

DISCLOSURE:  Finch and Wren have affiliate relationships with a number of excellent companies.  If you purchase an item through our affiliate links, finchnwren will earn a commission.  However, you will never pay more for the item when you purchase it through our links.  And, we only recommend products that we truly believe in.  Thank you!


Things We Love: EEME & Giveaways!

Our family ADORES…yes, really!…EEME.  This incredible company creates STEM project kits for families that will teach both you and your children loads about engineering, electricity, circuits, tech, and all kinds of science facts and processes.


Now you have the chance to win 3 of EEME’s project kits!  If you’re brand-new to EEME, it’ll be the first three (Project Genius Light, Project DIY Display, Project Tentacles).  And if you’re already an EEME subscriber, it’ll be the next kits after the ones you’re currently working on.  So, whether you’re an EEME newbie or veteran, you will be thrilled with your win!

EEME and finchnwren are thrilled to offer one lucky person a chance to win.  Click through to the EEME Facebook page at Win an EEME 3-Month Subscription!, and guess the number of buzzers (used, btw, in Project Tentacles), to win!

Hope you’re enjoying this Thanksgiving weekend.  And remember, the giveaway ends 11/30/15….so enter today!

Enjoy!  –Wren

Enter to Win a 3-Month Subscription to EEME–Our Fave Kid Science/Electronics!

If you’ve read the finchnwren blog this fall, you’ve probably seen the EEME button on our sidebar…and maybe you’ve seen our posts reviewing their cool science project kits!

EEME 3-set giveaway banner

EEME is a company that teaches STEM techniques and lessons to children through their amazing electronic project kits, where children (and parents) build complete circuits, lights that switch on and off, buzzers that actually sound and more!  We have absolutely loved every kit we’ve received and built, and Jackson has learned some incredible engineering, technology, and science skills.

You can see more about the cool kits we’ve built and reviewed by clicking on the links below:


Proj Gen 4Project Genius Light


EEME Proj DIY Display 1Project DIY Display


Project Tentacles pic 4Project Tentacles

And now—the giveaway!

How would you like to win a fabulous three-month subscription to EEME, so that you and your kiddos can build some of these fascinating projects yourself?

Well, you can!  EEME and finchnwren are joining together to give away these awesome STEM kid projects.  What you’ll need to do (no Rafflecopter this time!) is hop over to the EEME Facebook page via this link:  Win an EEME 3-Month Subscription!

EEME Dad Jack has designed a fun giveaway.  He has a tub full of the buzzer component from the Project Tentacles kit.  All you have to do is guess the number of the buzzers!  Then, you can like the posts and share.

These kits are SO amazing and cool.  They make learning about STEM the most rewarding and enriching experience.

One winner will be selected on 11/30/15, and the projects will be shipped directly to that winner.

Enter today—and best wishes!

Enjoy!  –Wren


Project Tentacles–Our Newest Amazing EEME Kit

*affiliate links are included in this post*

What happens when you combine transistors, a buzzer, and a circuit?


You get the newest EEME product we’ve put together!  Project Tentacles is the third project in EEME’s Builder Basic 6-Project Set, and it is every bit as cool and interesting as its name implies.


What is EEME?

EEME is a company devoted to making science, technology, engineering and math accessible to children, especially those aged 7-12.  EEME Dad Jack has created excellent kits which teach children how to build electronic projects.  These kits teach the kid builders  about electricity, programming (we’ve built a project based on binary programming already), and engineering principles.  Designed for parents and kids to do together, EEME’s kits are easy to understand and fun to build, even for those with no engineering experience!


How does Project Tentacles work?

Project Tentacles, like Project Genius Light (#1) and Project DIY Display (#2), works on the breadboard from the first project.  So, we reused the breadboard and battery set.  However, EEME did send us the following additional components:

  • A buzzer
  • Wires, both long and short
  • Resistors
  • Transistors

And, as always, a complete video tutorial is included from EEME, along with clear step-by-step instructions.  The video tutorial for Project Tentacles contains 33 sub-lessons.  These sub-lessons teach safety tips; what each component in the project does; and assign questions which review what the students learn as they complete each project.



And the cool projects students build in Project Tentacles?  Completing a circuit so a buzzer sounds.  Adding wires to the buzzer circuit, for a more complex project.  Using resistors in the circuit.  Working with two different types of transistors, with different results.


How we used Project Tentacles:

Since EEME includes many different projects in each kit, we’ve found that we learn best when we break up the projects over the course of a week or so.  That means that we’ll do about 5-7 sub-lessons on a given day.  And, each day that we worked on some sub-lessons, Jackson built something fascinating that taught some specific scientific principles.  Here’s a short list of some of the principles he learned with Project Tentacles:

  • The function of a closed circuit in electricity
  • What a resistor does to the flow of electricity
  • Different kinds of transistors and the way they work
  • What each pin on a transistor accomplishes
  • How electricity affects sound


Our conclusions about Project Tentacles:

I have said before how much we love EEME and the EEME projects we’ve built.  There really is a beauty in working through all of the Builder Basic 6-Project Set, and I’ve been able to watch it happen.  Even though we’ve only completed the first three projects of the 6, I have watched Jackson become very comfortable working with breadboards, electricity circuits (which are powered by 2 AA batteries), and all the different components that are included with each set.  He understands circuits and the flow of power through the resistors, wires, and transistors.  And, he’s learning that there are very practical uses for these projects!  (How about setting up an alarm with Project Tentacles on your door or dresser drawer?)

Just as important, he is able to follow the step-by-step instructions which direct the student in completing the projects.  And, when he gets to the end of several steps and doesn’t achieve the desired end result, he can work back through them to find his mistake and correct it.  How important is that problem-solving skill?  I’d say, it’s a crucial one!

So, Jackson and I wholeheartedly recommend both Project Tentacles and EEME’s Builder Basic 6-Project Set.  These projects are fun, exciting to complete, and fantastic for teaching excellent life skills and STEM knowledge!

You can purchase Project Tentacles and the Basic 6-Project Set at EEME’s website, where you’ll also find excellent and free STEM curricula.  Check it out!  You truly won’t be disappointed.

Enjoy!  –Wren

DISCLOSURE:  Finch and Wren have affiliate relationships with a number of excellent companies.  If you purchase an item through our affiliate links, finchnwren will earn a commission.  However, you will never pay more for the item when you purchase it through our links.  And, we only recommend products that we truly believe in.  Thank you!






Here’s what my son Jackson said about Project Tentacles:

“It works in a very fun way.  And is pretty easy and also very fun to build.  I would definitely recommend it once you have done all the previous EEME projects.  The buzzer is fun.”

Introducing EEME’s Project AMP….and a Giveaway!

**Affiliate links are included.**

Here’s YOUR chance to win a huge–and cool–EEME project!

You all have heard me talk about EEME in recent posts.  EEME is a fabulous company devoted to getting kids involved in electronics and engineering projects, as young as age 7!  We’ve been working through their Builder Basic 6-Project Set, and have  the first two, Project Genius Light and Project DIY Display.



I have to tell you, I adore this company.  We have built electronic machines on breadboards and have learned SO much.  I doubted my ability to do this well (although I never doubted Jackson’s, who has been a Lego builder for years).  But because EEME’s step-by-step videos and instructions are so clear and understandable, we’ve successfully completed both our projects.  And learned so much in the process!

Each month, we receive another project from the Builder Basic 6-Project Set to build and review.  And every month, it’s something amazing!

But now….let me introduce you to EEME’s newest!

How would you like to help your child build an actual set of speakers for a musical device?  Project Amp–the newest and biggest creation from EEME–will help you do just that!

Project Amp is an actual amplifier and speaker that can connect to your smartphone or music player.  It’s much bigger than the sets we’ve been building, but EEME has designed it to be just as user-friendly and understandable as the smaller sets.  In the process, builders will learn more about circuits, capacitors, volume, speakers and current, with actual hands-on building activities.

Read more about Project Amp by clicking the link!  There are even free online lessons you can view there.

And…the giveaway!

You have the opportunity to win your very own Project Amp from EEME, worth $189.95!  Just enter below!  The giveaway closes October 1, 2015.  Best wishes! Project Amp Giveaway

Enjoy!  –Wren

DISCLOSURE:  Finch and Wren have affiliate relationships with a number of excellent companies.  If you purchase an item through our affiliate links, finchnwren will earn a commission.  However, you will never pay more for the item when you purchase it through our links.  And, we only recommend products that we truly believe in.  Thank you!

Fascinating Biology ~ A TOS Review

Are you looking for interesting science courses for your middle or high school student?

Our latest review from Fascinating Education, an online course called Fascinating Biology, may interest you then!  We received a full year’s subscription to Fascinating Biology, a complete online science program with lessons, scripts and tests.


What is Fascinating Biology?

Fascinating Biology is one of three courses offered by Fascinating Education.  They also produce Fascinating Physics and Fascinating Chemistry, which we reviewed last fall.  The biology and chemistry classes are designed for high school students but many middle schoolers have taken the courses and understood them.  The physics course builds on mathematical understanding gained in algebra, geometry, trigonometry and calculus.

Fascinating Biology is an 18-chapter biology lesson course.  Each lesson contains a slide show with excellent graphics, taught by Dr. Sheldon Margulies, the creator of the Fascinating Education courses.  The lessons include a script (images and Dr. Margulies’ teaching in written form), as well as a glossary of terms and a test.  Here is a listing of some of the Fascinating Biology lessons:

  • The Cell Membrane
  • Take In Energy
  • Take In Nutrients
  • Grow
  • Reproduce
  • Homeostasis
  • Protists, Animals, and Fungi
  • Plants

Because so much of biology is based on principles of chemistry, Dr. Margulies has prepared a 6-lesson chemistry pre-course that is useful for students who haven’t studied chemistry yet.  It can be purchased separately from the biology course.


I’d also like to share a little with you about what is in each chapter or lesson, because simply sharing the chapter titles doesn’t really show you the depth and breadth of all the concepts that are taught in Fascinating Biology.  Here’s a few of the concepts discussed in Lesson 7, “Take In Energy – Part 3:”

  • Storing and using glucose
  • Glycogen
  • Fat for energy
  • Fat cells under a microscope
  • Epinephrine
  • Carnitine
  • Oxidation releases energy
  • Mitochondria
  • and much more than that!

Each of the biology lessons introduces new information plus a review of what has been learned.

How we used it:

During the review period, we utilized this course as our main science spine.  We found that the best way for us to use it was to print the script (in the blue buttons above) and refer to it while watching the videos; and then study and review the script.  We discovered, as a matter of fact, that we needed to put in more study time than we had, to really learn the information.  We did utilize portions of the chemistry pre-course, but since we had studied it last fall we didn’t review all six pre-course lessons.

Jackson (and sometimes, the two of us together), would watch the video lessons, using the printed script and the drop-down glossary definitions alongside them.  After some additional time of study and before we moved on to the next lesson, he took some of the tests.

What we thought about Fascinating Biology:

Both the Fascinating Education courses (chemistry and biology) we’ve studied are well-written.  They’re beautifully produced, and the images are both vibrant and interesting and really help to explain the lessons Dr. Margulies is teaching.  The printable scripts are a great resource, as are the glossaries in each lesson.


Fasc Chem metallic bond image

Some of the information really surprised us…like the reasons gold is so soft, or the way it interacts with other elements (in a chemistry lesson on Metallic Bonds in the biology course), or the way photosynthesis works.  Or, the way nutrients move across cell walls.

Here’s what Jackson had to say about it:  “It is an awesome curriculum.”

However, I do think that the information was a little challenging for my son.  Jackson is in 8th grade, so he does fit into the age groups this course can be used with.  We did find that some of the concepts explained would have been better understood, had we covered more science in these categories before we took Fascinating Biology.  Or, if he were just a little older!  The tests were very difficult, and showed that we probably needed to do a lot more study before taking them, and perhaps made flash cards for some of the topics.  Apprehending this information can require daily study and review of the concepts that are so beautifully presented in Fascinating Biology.  One of the things that I think would have helped me as a homeschool mom is a lesson plan, which could recommend a little more on how to break down the lessons, study them, and review them prior to taking the tests.

However, it is a very enjoyable course.  I just believe that Jackson would have found it an even better fit in a couple of years.  I can see how it would fit very well into a high school course of study.  We’ll continue to use it from time to time as a science adjunct, though; the video teachings are just a joy to watch.

In conclusion:

I think very highly of the Fascinating Education company.  Their products are well-produced, interesting, and cover a lot of information.  I can recommend it for high school students for sure.

You can purchase Fascinating Biology from the Fascinating Education website.  And, if you’d like to see more about the biology course before you purchase, you can download a sample lesson (Take In Nutrients) and also view a PDF of the biology course outline.  It’s an impressive course and company.


Fascinating Education Review

Crew DisclaimerEnjoy! –Wren

Another Cool EEME Review: Project DIY Display

*Affiliate links are included in this post.*

Jackson and I just completed our second EEME kit, Project DIY Display!



You may remember the review we did last month of EEME’s Project Genius Light, in which we learned all about a breadboard, resistors, LED lights, and wires….and all the amazing electronic projects you could build with them.  And even though I had had ZERO experience with electronics, EEME’s thorough step-by-step instructions enabled us to successfully complete each step of Project Genius Light!

So naturally, when EEME asked if we’d like to review the second project in their Builder Basic 6-Project Set, we happily agreed.


What is EEME?

Let me remind you a little about EEME.  EEME kits are designed to teach electronics, science and technology to children—all those important STEM skills–particularly for those kids aged 7-12.  Parents and kids work together to complete each project and learn really cool science in the process. The EEME kits can be purchased singly or in sets, all of them beginning with Project Genius LightProject DIY Display is set #2!


What’s included in the  Project DIY DIsplay set?

The Project DIY Display set builds upon the set from Project Genius Light.  So, we already had the breadboard and the battery pack from that set.  EEME sent us the following additional components to use in addition to those:



  • Long wires and a short wire
  • Resistors
  • 8-Switch Panel
  • Segmented LED
  • Pinmounts for both of those


How we used Project DIY Display:



Just like in our first EEME project, Project DIY Display gives the student and parent access to a complete and quite excellent online tutorial, taught by EEME Dad (and company founder) Jack.  This project’s online 38-step tutorial is comprised of step-by-step instructions, questions for the student, videos for each part of the process, and safety instructions.  In addition, printed instructions for each step are listed on the right side of the videos (the white portion of the photo above), so that you know exactly where each component is to be placed for successful  building.

Since there are quite a few steps in this kit, we split up the lesson over two days.  (I’d actually planned originally for us to do it over three days, but Jackson was so excited we did it in two!)  First, we watched the tutorial for each step of the lesson.  Then, we’d identify and select the components for each project.  Next, we’d complete the building portion for that step.  And then, we’d move on to the next!  (Jackson did the actual building, while I was on hand to check his progress and help whenever necessary.)

The Project DIY Display contains the following lessons:

  • Reviewing the breadboard and battery
  • Safety review
  • Installing a segmented LED display


  • Sharing (power) current
  • Installing and wiring the switch panel
  • Connecting the switch panel to the LED display
  • and much more!


Our impressions:

I’ve told you before that I was a little nervous about the EEME projects, simply because with my liberal arts background I had never done anything with electronics and little with technology.  However, EEME’s thorough step-by-step process makes it easy for any parent–whether she has that STEM background or not–to help her child accurately complete each project.   AND to thoroughly enjoy the entire process.

We did run into two snags as we worked on Project DIY Display.  However, because EEME Dad Jack breaks down the lessons into manageable portions, and provides lists of where each component needs to go to the right of the video tutorials, we were able to easily locate our errors and correct them.  Only two mistakes in 38 steps….not too shabby!  🙂

So by the end, Jackson had connected wires and resistors to the LED component on the breadboard.  He’d also connected the LED display to the switch panel.  He was able to turn the LED display on and off, and even make it light up in letters and numbers.  Although I knew that we’d be able to learn how to do this, I must admit I was pretty amazed at all Jackson accomplished!

Here’s what Jackson thought:

“This is a great project and I was glad to build it.  It’s fun playing with the switches, toggling them on and off to create letters and numbers (on the segmented LED).  I do recommend you do this after you do the Genius Light Project, for breadboard experience.  All in all, another great EEME product.”

In conclusion:

Jackson and I can happily recommend EEME’s Project DIY Display to you, for fabulous STEM learning experiences for your children!  You may purchase Project DIY Display at EEME, as part of the Builder Basic 6-Project Set.  (As Jackson mentioned above, we do recommend that you complete the Project Genius Light first, both because you’ll need the breadboard and battery pack, and because you’ll learn about the whole electronic building process.

In addition, EEME has free access to curricula on their website.  I really recommend you check it out….you’ll get to see for yourself what we’ve been so delighted with!

Enjoy!  –Wren

DISCLOSURE:  Finch and Wren have affiliate relationships with a number of excellent companies.  If you purchase an item through our affiliate links, finchnwren will earn a commission.  However, you will never pay more for the item when you purchase it through our links.  And, we only recommend products that we truly believe in.  Thank you!

Amazing Science Experiments with Funtastic Unit Studies ~ A Review

Our latest review item from the Schoolhouse Review Crew is in a subject that’s near and dear to our hearts—science!

Funtastic Unit Studies bannerAnd science experiments, to be precise!  Funtastic Unit Studies Science Unit Studies for Homeschoolers and Teachers is chock-full of experiments in 18 different scientific categories.  Even better, the chapters are divided for younger students (ages 4-7) and older students (ages 8-13).  Regardless of what science topic you’re studying, you’ll find a chapter devoted to it, and experiments which illustrate the properties being taught.

What is Science Unit Studies for Homeschoolers and Teachers?

Author Susan Kilbride has written a book which can be used either as a collection of science unit studies (where a student studies the entire book, moving through it chapter by chapter) or as a supplemental tool  for categories in your student’s regular science textbook.

Funtastic 4

Each chapter contains: short explanations of scientific principles and accompanying experiments; a materials list; and a test at the chapter’s conclusion.  Here are some of the chapters for the younger set, ages 4-7:

  • The Human Body
  • Insects and Their Kin
  • Fun with Magnets
  • Stars and Planets
  • Beginning Plants
  • and 5 more

Funtastic 6And for the older age group, 8-13, you’ll find chapters like:

  • Microscopes and Microscopic Creatures
  • Atoms and Molecules
  • Matter
  • Chemistry Fun
  • Weather
  • Force and Motion
  • and 4 more

There is also an answer key at the end of the book, for all the tests and worksheets.  Although, any student who works through the experiments in each chapter will probably be able to answer the test questions, because of the practical ways he’s learned the information.

Funtastic 3How We Used Science Unit Studies for Homeschoolers and Teachers:

For the purposes of review, we selected one of the chapters for ages 8-13 (my son Jackson is 13, and going into 8th grade).  Although we would have been thrilled to work on ANY of the chapters (yes, they’re really that exciting and we really love science that much), we chose the chapter on “Matter.”  And here’s what we found!

Funtastic 1As you open a chapter, the first thing you find is a Materials List.  Although the Materials List for “Matter” was extensive, we only had to purchase 4 inexpensive items (cabbage, two glass vases from the dollar store, and duct tape).  We had every other item at home.

“Matter” is divided into 8 segments (plus the test at the end of the chapter).  Each of these segments has a few paragraphs about a particular characteristic of matter, plus the experiments (labeled as “activities” in this book).  So, in the chapter we studied, we learned about: the definition of matter; states of matter; its properties; solubility; and four other defining factors.

Our impressions:

As a mom/teacher, I found Science Unit Studies for Homeschoolers and Teachers easier to use than any book of experiments I’ve ever taught with.  Each segment, in every chapter, basically has a script you follow and questions to ask as you teach the scientific principles.  This made it incredibly easy to teach.

Funtastic 2It was also highly informative.  Each of the activities Ms. Kilbride selected strongly illustrates the principles being taught.  Not only that, the activities are incredibly fun to do.  And many of them have the “Wow!” factor that captivates both the student and the teacher, and solidifies the information in the child’s memory.

I really appreciated how inexpensively we were able to do the course.  Because many of the materials needed for the activities are common household objects, even families on a budget will find Science Unit Studies for Homeschoolers and Teachers accessible.  Depending on the chapter you’re working on, however, you may need to purchase some supplies.

Here are some of the questions we were able to answer after learning about matter:

  • Does nature really abhor a vacuum?
  • How can you illustrate that molecules move more slowly in a solid than a liquid?
  • Can you watch oxidation occur?
  • What is a chemical reaction?
  • What are some visible ways you can measure a chemical reaction?

Funtastic 5Of course, we learned more than that.  That’s just a short list of some of the principles we covered!

And here’s what my son Jackson had to say about it:

“This curriculum has some of the funnest chemical reactions you’ll ever see, period.  It gives you the opportunity to do fun things from decompressing a bottle all the way to turning cabbage water from purple to red.  This curriculum will give fun for all ages.”

Funtastic 8Our conclusions:

We happily recommend Science Unit Studies for Homeschoolers and Teachers.  Our experiences were so positive.  And I believe that, over time, homeschool moms will be able to pick up this book again and again to supplement their regular science books.  It’s a definite win-win, for both moms and students!

One recommendation that I’d add is for the student, regardless of age, to record his experiences and discoveries in a journal or notebook.  This will go a long way in enabling the student to really remember the principles being taught, and the scientific truths that go with them.  A simple binder with notebook paper, or a composition book, would work well for this.

Would you like to test my recommendations out for yourself?  Susan Kilbride is offering two of her unit studies, absolutely free, to you.  Just visit Science Unit Studies for Homeschoolers and Teachers and scroll down til you see the book cover.  You’ll be able to click on links which will give you free copies of her Plant Unit and her Atoms and Molecules Unit.  Try them out!  I believe you’ll be just as impressed as we were!

You may purchase Science Unit Studies for Homeschoolers and Teachers via the Funtastic Unit Studies website for $16.95.  Trust me, you get a LOT for that price!



Funtastic Unit Studies Review 

Crew Disclaimer 

Enjoy! –Wren

Win a Project Light Link from EEME!

So….you may remember when Jackson and I reviewed EEME’s Project Genius Light a few weeks ago….and how completely impressed and captivated we were by this tech project for children! 

Even for this non-technogeek mama, EEME has made their projects simple to use.  And their video tutorials and instructions are clear and easy to follow.

Working on an EEME project

Working on an EEME project

We thoroughly enjoyed it (AND learned a lot!) and are looking forward to our next EEME project.

Today, however, you have a chance to enter a giveaway to win an EEME project of your own!  Just follow this link to Project Light Link.  This will take you to the giveaway form.  EEME is giving away three Project Light Links, so your chances to win aren’t too shabby!

The Project Light Link is a hands-on kit where kids and their parents can build an LED circuit.  Along with the kit, the winners will receive the online curriculum.  So even if, like me, you have no electronic building experience, you’ll still be able to build–and complete—this circuit! Project Light Link Giveaway

If you’re looking for ways to add more STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) subjects to your child’s life, EEME is one of the best ways I believe you can do it!

The Project Light Link giveaway ends August 5, 2015.  So enter today….and I hope you win!

Enjoy!  –Wren