TOPS

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Melissa

  • Reviewed on Wednesday, September 21, 2005
  • Grades Used: elementary
  • Dates used:
I think I already posted a review but I read the last one and had to reiterate my 2 cents. I LOVE this program but I also bought the kit and even with it there is a tremendous amount of teacher prep at first. Once you have it ready it can be completely independant. Expect to put in some work to get it to that point though.

Lydia Biggs

  • Reviewed on Tuesday, August 23, 2005
  • Grades Used: K-6
  • Dates used: August 2005
I am using the lentil science workstation from TOPS learning system to teach science to my 4th and 2nd graders. I enjoy this kit because my children guide themselves and work at their own pace. Buying the kit is a must because there is no preparation. Everything is included. It can be purchased at www.topscience.org.

Molly

  • Reviewed on Tuesday, July 19, 2005
  • Grades Used: 3-8
  • Dates used: June/July 2005
I held two week-long science campsfor 13 kids ages 9 to 13 with varying background knowledge. The first was electricity and the second one was magnetism. I used the TOPS science books as part of the curriculum for each camp. These worked out REALLY well, because those students who wanted to work ahead could just follow the easy directions (with the great illustrations), but those who needed more help could go a bit more slowly. The teacher's notes were very helpful, too, adding good info to the class.

The beauty of these two books was that you use cheap household items to do great experiments. We will be using more of these TOPS science books on those days when mom doesn't feel like preparing a huge science lesson because the kids can do them on their own.

Molly

  • Reviewed on Tuesday, July 19, 2005
  • Grades Used: K-6
  • Dates used: haven't yet
I just got the primary / Lentil science kit combo and I wish the other reviewer had posted before I ordered it! It is VERY time intensive to assemble, and I (thankfully) got the kit too. In a homeschool setting, it's probably too much time, because you're making small little items that will only be used for one or two activities.
That said, this looks like a wonderful program that the kids will just love. It is very math intensive implementing practice with measuring, symbolic math, fractions, estimating etc. There are some geography skills even and some creative writing options (that we'll probably skip.) Not really too much science, but a whole lot of fun. I will put the time in to make all the parts because I think my kids will enjoy this, I just wish I'd known that before I bought it.
If this idea sounds intriguing, but you don't want to do all the work, I found on the website that the Get a Grip kit comes pretty much ready to use without all the prep work. It concentrates more on number sense and number facts. Had I known that, I probably would've opted for Get a Grip instead of Lentil Science. I have not seen Get a Grip though.



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