TOS Review: Library and Educational Services

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We recently had the opportunity to review some science DVD’s.  We don’t often watch DVD’s at our house, so viewing them is a special treat.  On a rainy day we decided to have science time and watch our new science DVD’s.  The kids were excited to watch some experiments!

Library and Educational Services offers the six volumes in the Go Science series.  Each volume presents a different science topic.  The six topics are:
Volume 1-Motion and the Laws of Gravity
Volume 2-Simple Machines, Sound, Weather
Volume 3-Magnetism, Electricity, Engineering, and Design
Volume 4-Chemistry, States of Matter, Life Sciences
Volume 5-Air, Flights
Volume 6-Water, Space, Solar System

I was able to choose two volumes for review-which was a tough decision.  In the end, I chose Volumes 1 and 3.

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The DVD’s are filmed with a small audience of children who participate in the experiments and answer questions posed by the scientist.  The science is Christian based and often references God as the Creator.  These DVD’s are intended for kids ages 6-14 and are available for $8.97 individually or as a six-volume package for $47.95.

Even kids who claim an aversion to science will be engaged by the high-energy science demonstrations of Ben Roy! Ben teaches science methods at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and is the former director of a science program on television. With this expertise, Ben captivates, motivates, and inspires students to be excited about science, while providing effective instruction based on science phenomena. Each spectacular demonstration of physical or chemical science has a spiritual application and points to our Creator!  (from the Library and Educational Services website)

Pros:
I appreciate any program (especially a science program) that is Christian based in mirrors our beliefs.  I feel comfortable with my children watching the content and I don’t have to edit any references to evolution.

The scientist, Ben Roy, is very enthusiastic about each topic and is high energy.  My kids enjoyed watching his excitement.

The DVD’s have children participating in experiments which made my children feel that they could participate in the experiments as well.  When Ben asked his small audience questions, my children responded along with them.  They were very engaged.

Cons:
The experiments presented were very short and some were very simple.
There was very little explanation following each experiment.  I was often left wondering why something happened or what the point of each experiment was.  Some terms were not defined, while other terms were too far over the heads of my crew.

Overall:
Since my children are all young (6 and under), they enjoyed the enthusiasm and the children in the audience.  If my children were older, they might feel the program was too young for them.  I personally found the enthusiasm of Ben Roy to be forced which made the DVD’s difficult to watch for me.

I found the explanations to be lacking.  If we are going to watch a science DVD, I prefer there to be an introduction to each experiment, an explanation of each item used, and a thorough explanation of the process.  I don’t want to be left hanging with the question of “Why?” or “What happened?”

I was initially excited that this program was explicitly Christian.  A quote from the website is “Every time we learn something about SCIENCE, we learn something about our CREATOR GOD.”  I was looking forward to seeing how Ben tied the science experiments to Biblical truths.  In the end, I was disappointed.  While he does end each experiment with his short tagline, there is usually no other explanation of what the experiment told us about God.

My children enjoyed the enthusiastic experiments but did not gain any scientific understanding from the videos.  I think they’ll enjoy these videos on occasion, but in a few years will have outgrown the style in which the experiments are presented. I feel the videos would be best as a supplement for an early elementary student to begin getting them excited about scientific topics.

See what other Crew Members thought about their Go Science DVD’s here.

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Disclaimer:  As a member of the TOS Crew, I received this product at no cost to me in exchange for an honest review. 



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