Don’t make your child struggle through dry, boring science textbooks! Instead, make science rich and engaging with this literature-based science curriculum from Sonlight.
Young children are naturally curious and inquisitive, which makes the early school years an important time to introduce science in a meaningful and engaging way.
But all too often, that natural curiosity is squelched by a dry presentation of facts that would make the most eager learner yawn.
So how can we teach real scientific concepts to younger learners in a way that won’t dampen their enthusiasm for learning and exploring the world around them?
I’ve found that the best way to encourage an early love of science is to read real books that bring science to life and to explore science through hands-on activities.
I was so excited when I discovered Sonlight Science, a homeschool science curriculum based on living books and hands-on experiments. And after using this program for a while now, I can say that it has completely exceeded my expectations for a living science curriculum!
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Literature-Based Science Curriculum from Sonlight
Sonlight Science is a complete literature-based science curriculum for kindergarten through college level. Instead of using dry textbooks, students read meaningful books and complete related hands-on activities.
As students progress through the modules, each year they will circle back to learn more about topics that they have studied in previous years.
I’ve been using Sonlight Science K with my daughter, and I have been thoroughly impressed with both the depth of the lessons and the ease of use. And even better, Kiera tells everyone that science is her favorite subject!
Sonlight Science has four main components:
- Instructor’s Guide
- Living books
- Activity sheets
- Hands-on activities
If you’ve never used Sonlight curriculum before, you’re will fall in love with their user-friendly, well-organized Instructor Guides.
These amazing teacher guides spell out exactly what you need to do each day. A detailed weekly schedule is followed by a shopping/planning list, discussion questions (with answers!), and extra info to round out the lessons. Answer keys for all the activity sheets are included immediately following each lesson.
The Instructor Guide comes pre-punched for easy insertion into a 3-ring binder, and the student activity sheets are already in place behind the instruction pages for each lesson.
With the Sonlight Science Instructor Guide, you’ll never have to worry about lesson planning again. You can literally open up the Instructor Guide, grab the books or supplies listed for the lesson, and start learning right away. Love this!!
High-Quality Living Books
My favorite part of Sonlight Science is the living books that provide the foundation for each science topic. The kindergarten level includes 11 absolutely fantastic books—and no, not a textbook among them!
The books are full-color living books with beautiful illustrations and engaging text that will hold kids spellbound. There is a nice mix of fiction and non-fiction, and every single book is perfect for reading aloud.
Kiera absolutely loves the Usborne books that are part of this level. So far she has enjoyed learning about ants and reptiles . . . and we are both looking forward to learning more!
Sonlight Science’s activity sheets are clean, colorful worksheets that review what the students has been reading and discussing. At the kindergarten level, the worksheets include a lot of cut-and-paste and matching activities, with minimal writing required (parents can write their child’s answer if needed).
The student activity sheets are included right in the Instructor Guide, directly behind each lesson. The activity sheets are consumable, and additional sets may be purchased separately.
Hands-On Science Experiments
The hands-on portion of Sonlight Science includes the Discover & Do Science experiment book, a supply kit, and videos that demonstrate each experiment.
The Discover & Do Science book is a colorfully-illustrated book full of hands-on science experiments that are easy to do at home. Each experiment relates to the topic the student is reading about, allowing them to apply the scientific process to what they have learned.
Each activity includes a supply list, step-by-step directions, and colorful illustrations that demonstrate the process. Absolutely NO science experience needed!
The supply kit contains everything you need to complete the experiments (except a few very common household items). Anything that you will need to provide—such as water, sugar, a pencil, or an egg, for example—is listed in the Instructor Guide for that lesson.
The supply kit is totally worth the cost. I can’t tell you how many experiments we have skipped in the past because we didn’t have the materials we needed. With this handy kit on hand, we are always ready for the next experiment. No more disappointed kids or frazzled moms!
The accompanying digital science videos are a tremendous asset to the course. There is a video to go along with every single experiment in the Discover & Do Science book.
It is extremely helpful for kids (and parents) to be able to watch the videos and see how to do each experiment. And the videos are super fun, too! In fact, when it’s time for Kiera to watch one of the videos, the older kids usually crowd around the laptop to watch along with her.
New Updates to Sonlight Science
BIG NEWS! Sonlight Science levels K-E are all being updated in 2021. We’ve been loving the newly updated Sonlight Science K, and I’m pleased to share that the updated versions of levels A-E will be released in the coming weeks.
The updated versions will provide a more interconnected learning experience while still following the classic Sonlight model of learning: reading, discussing, and doing. Each experiment will now be directly related to what students have read that week, allowing for deeper learning.
The updated versions also adhere to Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). These up-to-date science standards are based on research and are supported by many scientists and scientific institutions.
With Sonlight Science, you can rest assured that your kids are getting a quality science education.