Here it is - THE Ultimate Guide to Living Books for Science!!
We have made no secret of the fact that we are fans of living books. They bring science to life in a way that nothing else can.
There are loads of options out there telling you how to use living books for history and even math, but not so many on how to use living books for science.
And so, we wanted to change that with this post - the ultimate guide for living books.
Think of it as your one-stop shop for learning how to use living books to teach science.
Here's what we will cover:
Great, let's get started...
Here is our definition of a living book:
Living book (n) – A book that engages the reader and draws him or her into learning more about a subject; it is typically narrative in style and written by an authority on the material.
Living books are written by someone with a passion for the material or by someone who has experienced the story first hand.
The author pulls the reader into the story and presents the scientific or historical facts in such a way that the student hardly realizes they are learning.
Learn more about the benefits and downsides of living books.
When choosing whether to use a living book or reference work for a particular topic, you need to decide:
Learn more about the differences between living books and encyclopedias.
First, you need to decide what role living books will play in your homeschool. Will they serve as spines or supplements?
If you choose to use living books as your main spine for teaching science, you will need to create a schedule that includes the three keys for teaching science.
Here is the basic framework for what a week of teaching science with living books could look like:
You can see exactly what this looks like in the following posts:
If the thought of doing experiments really scares you, did you know that living books and nature study go hand-in-hand?
Learn more about nature study from the following posts:
If learning about science outdoors is not your thing, check out the following Pinterest boards for hands-on science activities that go great with living books!
Or you can stay up-to-date with our favorites by following the Sassafras Science Pinterest boards!
When you study science with living books, it doesn't follow the typical "read a textbook chapter and then answer a few comprehension questions," which is a good thing.
But how do you document your study of living books for science?
We much prefer notebooking over worksheets!
If you are not familiar with notebooking, you will want to check out the following:
If notebooking seems like too much for your students, we highly recommend its playful cousin, the lapbook.
Have trouble choosing between the two? This should help you determine if you should use a lapbook or a notebook in your homeschool.
When you are choosing a living book for science look for:
The main purpose of using living books in science education is to engage your students with the material they are studying. Doing so, will build enthusiasm for the topic and will help them to remember what they have studied.
Our living books series began as a desire to make science fun and exciting. A dream to inspire students early on to love science!
We wanted to wrap scientific fact into a storyline that students couldn’t put down. One in which they would get so caught up in the adventure that learning science became the most exciting part of their day.
Hands-on science - what can you use? Why do you have to do this? And how do you actually do experiments at home? Click "Read More" to get the answers.
Writing for homeschool science - what should it look like? And how do you know if you are doing it right? Click "Read More" to learn the answers!
The periodic table visually shows the elements. It is a key concept we need to share with our students, but which table is the right one - click "Read More" to find out.