Review by Bridgette Taylor
“The World of Space” by Susan Simpson and Dinah Zike is part of the “Great Science Adventures” series from Common Sense Press. This curriculum is perfect for grades K-8 and it can be used to teach all grades within that range simultaneously. Of course, the lower grades are not expected to retain the same amount of information as the higher ones, but there is an ample supply of information and projects to keep everyone occupied. There are 24 lessons in all, and they can be broken up into 2-3 lessons per week. If your homeschool is like mine, somewhat hectic at times, you will appreciate the ability to move through the lessons at a reasonable pace.
Throughout the unit your student will be creating a “3D Graphic Organizer.” Students will use this as their own 3D library of facts. At the end of the unit, this organizer along with their investigative discoveries, and their lab records will be used to complete the “cumulative project.”
The amount of information given throughout this unit is enormous. Each lesson is filled to the brim with facts and information about the planets, the stars, the sun, galaxies, asteroids, meteors, astronomy, space shuttles, space probes, life in space, astronauts, and more. Another aspect of this curriculum that I was impressed by is the professionalism of the labs. The “Investigative Loop” tool makes sure that students are thorough and effective at learning, recording, and retaining the material.
Sprinkled throughout the unit you will also find poems by Zike that are comical and really bring the information to life for the student. My kids especially like “Hungry Space Monster” which helps them memorize the order of the planets. All in all, this is a great study on space. You get a huge amount of information for a reasonable price. I definitely recommend “The World of Space” for the homeschooling family.