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Peaceful Ponds Unit Study Giveaway

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Our family enjoys unit studies, especially nature unit studies. We use them when we need a break from our core curriculum and want to do something fun, yet still educational. We have used several brands of unit studies and have our favorites. Those we gravitate toward are the ones who have the most “extras” to offer.

Recently, I asked my friend Leah from CurrClick.com if she could recommend a fun nature unit study to do this fall with the “extras”. (here’s a tip – It’s great having veteran homeschooling moms to ask these things!) Leah recommended the Nature Explorer series from Shining Dawn Books and even made a copy of the Peaceful Ponds unit study available to us to review!

Lots Of Great Features And One Drawback

I have to admit, when it cam right down to it, I had a hard time writing this review. We loved it so much, but I didn’t want to sound gushy. This study has so much to offer and we just touched the tip of the ice berg in what we could do with it! To be sure I don’t go to crazy with my review, here are somethings that I really liked about the Peaceful Ponds unit study:

  • Ideas are given on how to use this study no matter what your homeschool style
  • Background information is given to prepare parents to teach/facilitate the study
  • TONS of observation and research ideas
  • Lots of fun, educational hands-on activities
  • Literature lists
  • Writing ideas
  • Art and composer study references
  • Notebooking pages
  • Tips for including younger and older students

What might be a drawback for some, is that this is definitely not a “open and go” or “day by day” study. The parents will have to do some prep work and decide which activities the students will do. We just chose those that would fit into the couple days at my parents’ pond that we had. Personally, I like to be able to pick and choose. I’m not even sure how long it would take to do every single activity. Peaceful Ponds would be a great multi-year study or a study to do in each season. There are lots of options.

Our Study

The weather around here has been over 100 degrees for weeks and the ponds are very low, so that hindered us from being outside somewhat. However, using Peaceful Ponds as a guide, we were still able to do some very interesting things.

In the shallow water of the pond, we were able to see different kinds of plants and algae growing in the water. My daughter grabbed some with a stick and we looked at them with the Discovery Scope. The dark green algae in the picture above looks and feels like green slime, but when we looked at it with the scope, we could see the individual leaves of the plant. (Please excuse the bad picture! The actual view was much clearer!) We, also, looked for larvae in the still, shallow water with the viewer capsule that came with our Discovery Scope. I couldn’t get a picture, but it was so cool for the kids to see little things swimming in that seemingly clean, clear water.

Because of the drought, the pond was very low. This gave us a great opportunity to see what is normally covered by water. We saw dried vegetation, dried mussel shells and quite a few wolf spider looking for lunch. The mussel shell find was a great follow up to our mollusk study that we did as part of Beach Week.

This hot weather made the literature, art and music a welcome addition to our study. It was something cool to do inside! My son is a Monet fan, so tying that in was neat for him. And, the library is always cool and a hit with my daughter.

The Giveaway

Another amazing feature of the this comprehensive nature unit study is the price. You get a 62 page jam-packed download for only $8.95! A seriously great deal! You can hop over and download your copy right now, or…. YOU CAN WIN ONE!! CurrClick.com and Shining Dawn Books is giving away a copy of the Peaceful Ponds Unit Study to a lucky reader! Contest closed Friday August 3rd at midnight.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Comments

  1. we would love to win a copy of this resource. We have a pond within walking distance and would enjoy doing more activities.

  2. Elizabeth Ritchie says:

    Sounds like just what we need! Thanks for the chance to win it!

  3. Laura Barth says:

    This sounds great. Thanks!

  4. Yes! We started doing some unit studies to go along with our history and science this year and we really like the depth it adds to what we are studying.

  5. This looks like great fun for my boys!!

  6. Christine says:

    I’d love this for my girls. thanks for the chance to win one :)

  7. Michele says:

    We are planning to go on nature walks with another homeschooling family this fall, and we would love to use this unit study to add some fun learning activities! Thank you!

  8. Not yet!

  9. We haven’t used unit studies yet but NaturExplorers are our first choice.

  10. Yes! We incorporate unit studies and a mix of everything else into our homeschool. Unit Studies are always a super big hit with the kids.

  11. Yes, I just got started using Shining Dawn nature studies before we finished our school year and I love them!!!

  12. Our science is all unit studies

  13. This year with our homeschooling (coming year) we are doing a year round nature study. We live in Ontario, Canada and have MANY things like the Bruce Trail and ponds galore (we live on Lake Ontario) to explore. Our children are starting to learn how neat nature is. I would LOVE to use this unit study with our science this coming year. If I don’t win, I’m pretty sure I’ll end up buying it. Thanks for the fabulous review!

  14. Amy Kim says:

    This looks great!

  15. Thank you for the review!

  16. Erin Long says:

    I love these studies!

  17. Wendi S says:

    We have sometimes done a unit study about a fun topic…but I don’t regularly include them in our homeschool.

  18. We do LOTS of unit studies in our homeschool… and sometimes we finish one before the kids’ interest takes us in another direction! ;-)

  19. We are planning to do some more nature studies this year, and this sounds like a perfect addition!

  20. Jennifer West says:

    We have so many ponds around here! That would be a great fall study for us. My husband loves doing stuff like that with the kids. Great giveaway CurrClick!

  21. We are just starting unit studies…and I am DROOLING over that scope!!

  22. I am starting homeschool this year (9th grade) & would love to have this unit of study to try!

  23. We do seasonal unit studies.

  24. We do use unit studies because my son is young and it gives him a nice small goals to work towards when completeing his school work. A long year long study can be very daunting to a five year old, but unit studies provide nice little workable chuncks.

  25. Adding the art and composer references to the unit study sounds very interesting, especially for my arty boys. What a neat study!

  26. Yes, we do unit studies mostly based on science and then explore some history and art through that science topic.

  27. SandyKay Briggs says:

    Some ~ we are always looking for more! Love new ideas and helpful suggestions

  28. Yes, we use unit studies from a variety of publishers.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] forget to enter to win the Peaceful Ponds unit study as part of Nature Week sponsored by Discovery Scope. Filed Under: Guest Posts Tagged With: [...]

  2. [...] have already gushed about my love for the nature unit studies by Shining Dawn Books during Nature Week going on right now at The Homeschool Scientist. I am so [...]

  3. [...] to help and inspire you and your family to learn more about nature. Don’t forget to enter the Peaceful Ponds Unit Study giveaway. You have until midnight tonight! (August 3, 2012) Please visit our Nature Week sponsor, Discovery [...]

  4. [...] Unit Studies are a treasure trove of nature study ideas, not just information. To steal from my previous NaturExplorers review….here are somethings that I really liked about the Peaceful Ponds unit [...]

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