October 12, 2010

Creation Curriculum: "God Made the World & Me" Review

What is even more exciting right now than getting free books? Getting free educational materials! This book, God Made the World & Me by David and Helen Haidle and Susan Laurita is a 13 lesson curriculum unit on the Creation Story. It goes hand in hand with the book I reviewed a few weeks ago: The Creation Story for Children. You can read my review for that book in the post before this one.

Anyway - I have read through this curriculum and I will definitely be using it. Though most of the material is preschool-oriented, I may even use some of the ideas now with my 2-year old. And I felt that the material would scale well - you could use this with older kids (not tons older, but definitely anywhere in the 3-7 range), which would be nice if you had two children in that age range and wanted to use the same curriculum for both of them.

-Cross curriculum activities. For example, each lesson has ideas for a Physical Center, Science Center,  and Art Center. Each lesson has songs that you can sing with the kids, a memory verse, and quite a few game ideas. Each lesson also has at least one Older Children idea and one idea for Younger Children, which helps to make the curriculum scale well depending on the age of your children.

-There is a parent note for each lesson if you were to be using this in a larger classroom as a teacher.

-There are discussion questions for each lesson.

-There are extras for each lesson as well if the other ideas aren't enough to keep you busy.

-I like that they have large group vs. individual instructions for some of the activities. I also like that there are often multiple options for the same type of activity (e.g. two art options in Lesson 2, two physical options in Lesson 3).

-The only thing that I found to be a con was that there was a graph that the kids were supposed to make during the week for Lesson 2, and I thought it would have been nice if the curriculum had a sample graph for the kids/parents to look at. I know that it would be an easy thing to figure out, but I'm so very visual and graphs are not my strong suit.

Overall, this seems like a great, hands-on, curriculum that is very cross-curricular. It's not just a set of science lesson plans, it also includes art and music, PE, critical thinking, some writing, and it is not at all just a workbook. It is very home-school oriented, but I like that it would also be very easy to use in a classroom full of kids. This is definitely something I will use with my children.

Many thanks to New Leaf Publishing Group for providing this curriculum for review. The FTC requires that I inform you that NLPG did not ask for a positive review, merely an honest one. Therefore, I like NLPG more than I like the FTC... but I also like not being fined... so I include the disclaimer as ordered.

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