Apr 11, 2014

Schoolhouse Review Crew: Supercharged Science

We love science. My kids love to read, watch, and do any and all things science. I often neglect to do "formal" science, because I know they will squeeze in plenty on their own. So I always say "Yes" to any science related review we are asked to do especially when it is something we already know we love like Supercharged Science with its e-Science Program.


Supercharged eScience Review

Supercharged Science is an online program that teaches science to kids in grades K to 12 with the use of videos, experiments and step by step instruction. It was created by Aurora, a former NASA instructor with a passion for giving kids a love for science. Supercharged Science is a complete program that will teach your child science by encouraging them to do science. It teaches kids to ask questions, to explore and to discover.



Supercharged Science is packed with information, both for you and for your kids. The hard part is absorbing it all! Starting with the 18 key scientific principles, then a quick explanation of the scientific method, and an article on how to keep a science journal, this website is packed with science information. There are 20 different topics covered, from mechanics to electricity to astrophysics to sound to chemistry and more. Each topic is packed with experiments and with videos that explain and/or show the experiments. The "how" behind the experiment is always fully explained. For each unit (topic) there is a PDF lesson plan (so you can download it and/or print it if you don't want to read it online), quizzes and a shopping list for the experiments so you can easily prepare ahead of time. You can also access the topics by grade level if you prefer, although the topics can be done in any order at all. For the purpose of this review, we were given access to all the topics and grade levels, but when you purchase it, the levels are unlocked for you at the rate of one or two a month. Here is a screenshot so you can get an idea of how the units are laid out. As you can see, there is a ton of information and everything is spelled out step by step for the student. But if there is any confusion for either you or your student, each lesson has a comment box where you can ask questions or make observations and Aurora will answer them herself.

Supercharged eScience Review

Supercharged Science is so full of information that it is definitely a complete curriculum! We, however, used it as a supplement to our already full repertoire of science activities. What I did was turn my 10 and 11 year olds loose on it. They were easily able to navigate the site, read the information, watch the videos, gather the materials and perform the experiments. They each chose an experiment for me to document in this review.

Kaytie chose a physics experiment called Balloon Racers. She collected her supplies: yarn, balloons (we needed extras before we were done because we did it several times with yarn of various lengths), tape, and a straw (the scissors are not pictured because someone was playing with them during the photograph {{ahem}})


blew up the balloon


threaded the yarn through the straw


taped the straw to the balloon with the help of her handsome assisstant


and re-taped it when it fell off


taped the yarn to the wall with that handsome assistant again


and performed the experiment



Then she explained what she had learned




Nate chose to make moon sand (because little boys like to make messes)

He gathered his supplies


took his mess outside to mix and stir


and mix and stir some more


the other kids had to get their hands in the gooey mess, too!


eeeeeewwwww!!!!!


then they played with it. Nate discovered that even though it was soft and malleable like clay when you dropped it it fell hard, like a rock. But when he threw it against the wall, it shattered!!!



As you can see, there is lots of fun to be had with Supercharged Science. Use it as a complete science, use it as a supplement, use it as an easy way to slip science experiments into your kids' day. The cost is $57 per month for grades K to 12 and $37 per month for grades K through 8. As a special deal, Aurora is offering a month trial of this program for only $1.

We love Supercharged Science because of the freedom to explore whatever topic we want. I love the fullness of the information provided. I love the videos that show how it works. The kids love that they can watch the experiments that we don't have the supplies for. And I love that Aurora provides feedback when you need it!

Kaytie:
I love it because it teaches me science and because it is fun. I love the videos. I can learn about whatever I want.

Nate:
I love it because it is science! Of course. I love watching the videos where things explode. I love doing the experiments. There isn't anything I don't like about it and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to learn science.

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