Philosophy for Kids
Social Studies / January 2, 2014

Philosophy for Kids Content: Philosophy Grade(s): 4th – 8th Perspective: Secular Prep Time: Minimal Teacher Manual: None Teacher Involvement: Moderate Cost: $ || ? Pages: 216 Publication Date: 2001 Publisher: Updated Review: 01/02/2014 Reviewer: Sarah Butler MacLeod Philosophy for Kids: 40 Fun Questions That Help You Wonder About Everything, written by David A. White, is aimed at children 10 and up but could easily be used with somewhat younger gifted children, depending on verbal skills and their ability to think abstractly. The book is broken down into four sections: 1- Values (ethics) 2- Knowledge (epistemology) 3- Reality (metaphysics) 4- Critical thinking (logic) Each section is then divided into 10 questions. You have the option of reading through the chapters in order or jumping around through the book, following the kids’ interest, as the author suggests. Most chapters end with a reference to another question in the book, which could also guide your way through the book. Each chapter begins with a brief discussion of the question and (for the first 29 questions) a short introduction to the philosopher whose viewpoint is under examination for the lesson. Midway through the discussion, the reader/listener does a brief exercise designed to deepen…

Ellen McHenry’s Cells
Science / March 25, 2013

Ellen McHenry’s Cells Content: Science Grade(s): 4th – 8th Perspective: Secular Prep Time: Moderate Teacher Manual: Yes Teacher Involvement: Essential Cost: $$ || ? Pages: 160 pages Publication Date: 2013 Publisher: Review Updated: 5/7/2014 From Ellen McHenry’s website: Topics covered: The history of the discovery of cells, the molecule structure of phospholipids and phospholipid membranes, the cytoskeleton and its functions, motor proteins, ATP and the mitochondria, how the electron transport chain works, amino acids, proteins, DNA discovery, translation, transcription, mRNA, tRNA, ribosomes, chaperone proteins, lysosomes, enzymes, endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi bodies, docking proteins and protein synthesis inside endoplasmic reticulum, the structure of the nucleus, the nucleolus and how ribosomes are made, histones, nucleosomes, rRNA, cell metabolism, overview of digestion, chylomicrons, fatty acids, glucose, the Krebs cycle, acetyl-CoA, phagocytosis, pinocytosis, exocytosis, glycolysis, mitosis, meiosis, and overview of common body cells such as epithelial (skin, capillary, goblet, villi), muscle cells, neurons, bone cells and blood cells. Activities included: Fluid mosaic model, membrane simulations, motor protein pen craft, “Motor Protein Relay Race,” diffusion demonstrations, “Electron Transport Chain Relay Race,” protein pencil topper craft, tRNA cookies, hands-on activity about transcription and translation, “Roller Coaster Review” game, “Translation Relay Race,” lysosome simulation game, edible Golgi…

Everyday Learning Logic Puzzles
Featured , Logic , Math / February 5, 2013

Everyday Learning Logic Puzzles Content: Math – Logic Grade(s): 3rd – 7th Perspective: Secular Prep Time: None Teacher Manual: N/A Parent Involvement: Moderate Cost: $ || ? info Publisher: Updated Review: 04/17/2014 From Everyday Learning’s website: We’ve taken critical thinking activities to a whole new level by integrating content-area facts with fun, deductive thinking, table logic puzzles. Everyday Learning Logic packets come with a sample puzzle and step-by-step directions to help your kids learn how to do these kinds of brain teasers on their own. An answer sheet is in the back to help make your job a little easier. All of our logic puzzles have been kid-tested and edited for clarity and solve-ability. Find 5-puzzle packets for $3.00 each on the following topics: Halloween Thanksgiving Winter Holidays US Presidents Physical Geography Colonial History Be sure to check out ABC=123 Brainteasers, math-based logic puzzles called alphametics. These math puzzles appear deceptively easy at first glance, but can be very frustrating for students who have not been given some basic problem-solving skills to use. Alphametic problems require a great deal of mathematical reasoning to solve, which is why we’ve included an extra two puzzles in the packet with hints for…

Flash Kids: Reading for Gifted Students
Reading / January 11, 2012

Flash Kids: Reading for Gifted Students Content: Reading Comprehension Grade(s): 1st – 6th Perspective: Secular Prep Time: Minimal Teacher Manual: None Teacher Involvement: Minimal Cost: $ || ? Pages: 192 Publication Date: 2010 Publisher: ** From the Publisher’s Website ** A gifted child’s reading level, critical-thinking ability, and interests can range far beyond his or her current grade level. This workbook caters to that unique capacity. It contains almost two hundred pages of reading material carefully calibrated for your advanced student. Challenging reading passages present new vocabulary and offer a depth and range of information on fascinating nonfiction. These passages are followed by true or false, multiple choice, cause and effect, ordering, and even creative writing questions to test analytical thinking skills and reinforce your student’s understanding of the readings. The varied activities encourage your gifted learner to experience learning at an accelerated level. Each Reading for the Gifted Student workbook features: Inviting readings that favor nonfiction such as science, social studies, and the arts Comprehension questions and activities in various short- and long-answer formats Full-color illustrations and diagrams that bring concepts to life Perforated pages for on-the-go practice

Rockin’ Root Words
Reading , Writing / May 9, 2011

Rockin’ Root Words Content: Vocabulary Grade(s): 3rd – 8th Perspective: Secular Prep Time: Minimal Teacher Manual: No Teacher Involvement: Moderate Cost: $ || ? Pages: 161 Publication Date: 2010 Publisher: Updated Review: May 7, 2014 From Prufrock’s website: If your students like Red Hot Root Words, they are going to love Rockin’ Root Words, an exciting twist on vocabulary development! In these comprehensive books, students will enjoy learning the roots, suffixes, and prefixes of more than 500 common vocabulary, words presented in an easy-to-follow style that utilizes visual learning and word maps to enhance student comprehension and memory. By teaching students word parts using word webs, graphic organizers, and cartoons, teachers can ensure that every student in their classroom understands the basics of vocabulary development. Book 1 is focused on vocabulary for grades 3–5 and covers a variety of topics, including numbers, colors, family and relationships, location and distance, and scientific vocabulary. Book 2 is geared to the more advanced vocabulary needs of students in grades 6–8, covering topics, including time, human emotions and experiences, biological sciences, government and politics, and religion. About the Authors: Manisha Shelley Kaura was a high school senior from the Detroit area when Rockin’…

Red Hot Root Words
Reading , Writing / May 9, 2011

Red Hot Root Words Content: Vocabulary Grade(s): 3rd – 8th Perspective: Secular Prep Time: Minimal Teacher Manual: No Teacher Involvement: Moderate Cost: $ || ? Pages: 120 Publication Date: 2005 Publisher: Updated Review: May 7, 2014 From Prufrock’s website: Book 1 – Grades 3-5 A knowledge of word parts gives students a head start on decoding words in reading and testing situations. Each of the well-developed lessons in this text includes: * one to three word parts along with meanings and sample words, * five vocabulary words that use the prefixes or root words, * definitions and sample sentences for each of the five words, * a practice exercise that lets students apply knowledge of the words and their meanings, and * a one-page review worksheet for one or two lessons that presents more unique opportunities to work with the prefixes and root words and to see how they are combined with suffixes. Book 2 – Grades 6-8 This book, the second in a two-book series, contains three sections (prefixes, root words, and suffixes), but each section has the same format. Each of the lessons include: * two to four prefixes, suffixes, or root words along with meanings and…

Jacob’s Ladder Reading Comprehension
Reading / February 20, 2011

Jacob’s Ladder Reading Comprehension Content: Vocabulary Grade(s): 3rd – 8th Perspective: Secular Prep Time: Minimal Teacher Manual: No Teacher Involvement: Moderate Cost: $ || ? Pages: 156 Publication Date: 2008 Publisher: Updated Review: May 7, 2014 From Prufrock Press’ website: The Jacob’s Ladder Reading Comprehension Program targets reading comprehension skills in learners by moving students through an inquiry process from basic understanding to critical analyses of texts using a field-tested method developed by the Center for Gifted Education at The College of William and Mary. In the form of three skill ladders connected to individual readings in poetry, myths/fables, and nonfiction, students move from lower order, concrete thinking skills to higher order, critical thinking skills. Each book, geared to increasing grade levels, includes high-interest readings, ladders to increase reading skill development, and easy-to-implement instruction. The ladders include multiple skills necessary for academic success, covering language arts standards, such as sequencing, cause and effect, classification, making generalizations, inference, and recognizing themes and concepts. Jacob’s Ladder, Level 1 is geared to students in grades 2–3, Level 2 is aimed at learners in grades 4–5, and Level 3 is based on skill development standards for students in grades 6–8 About the Authors:…

Life of Fred
Math / February 16, 2011

Life of Fred Content: Math Grade(s): 1st – 12th Perspective: Christian Prep Time: Minimal Teacher Manual: Available Teacher Involvement: Moderate Cost: $ || ? Pages: 128+ Publication Date: 2011 Publisher: Common Core Aligned: No From Life of Fred’s website: The Life of Fred series is designed as a complete math curriculum for homeschoolers, so there is no need to cram, squeeze, or expand the material in order to fit into some government 9-month program. When students finish one course, then they begin the next one. Fred’s Home Companion offers you daily assignments and can be used by parents as a study guide and curriculum planner. As a parent, you have ten or eleven years to gradually introduce addition, multiplication and long division. By the time your child is in, say, the fifth grade, the addition and multiplication facts will be memorized if it is gradually taught over the years. What’s to be avoided is beating the addition and multiplication tables into the child’s head. Life of Fred: Fractions is a reward for learning the tables. Elementary Series Apples (128 pages) Some topics include telling time to 5-minutes, shapes, counting by hundreds   Butterflies (128 pages) Some topics include cardinal…

Carbon Chemistry
Science / February 15, 2011

Carbon Chemistry Content: Science Grade(s): 4th – 8th Perspective: Secular Prep Time: Moderate Teacher Manual: Yes Teacher Involvement: Essential Cost: $$ || ? Pages: 83 pages Publication Date: 2013 Publisher: Review Updated: 5/7/2014 From Ellen McHenry’s website: This curriculum is designed to be a follow-up to The Elements. The style of the text (including the bits of whimsical humor) are the same as in “The Elements,” but the student text is more substantial and requires more reading. Topics covered: A quick review of what an atom is, three types of atomic models, an overview of the carbon atom and its allotropes (diamond, graphite, buckyballs), introduction to organic chemistry (alkanes, alkenes, alkynes, e.g. methane, propane, butane), refining of crude oil, isomers, saturated and unsatured molecules, functional groups (alcohols, carboxylic acids, aldehydes, ketones, esters, ethers), combination of functional groups (sodium benzoate, nitroglycerin, soap, pheromones), plastics and polymers, rubber and silicon polymers, carbohydrates (simple sugars, starches and cellulose), fats (saturated, unsaturated, trans and cis fats), proteins (amino acids, polypeptides, protein folding and its significance, the lock and key principle, structure of DNA), and finally the carbon oxides (like CO2) and the carbon cycle. (For those of you are “chemistry-shy”, don’t let this…

History of US
Social Studies / February 10, 2011

History of US, 3rd edition Content: History Grade(s): 4th – 9th Perspective: Secular Prep Time: Teacher Manual: Available Teacher Involvement: Moderate Cost: $ || ? (each volume) Pages: 192 Publication Date: 2007 Publisher: Review Last Updated: May 28, 2017 Common Core Aligned: Yes ** From the Publisher’s Website: ** A History of US contains none of the intimidation that comes with behemoth texts. It tells the tale of America in 10 user-friendly small, illustrated books. (An 11th source book, with original documents, is also available.) Whether it’s standing on the podium in Seneca Falls with the Suffragettes or riding on the first subway car beneath New York City in 1907, the books in Joy Hakim’s A History of Us series weave together exciting stories that bring American history to life. This 10-book series includes: First Americans: Prehistory-1600 Making Thirteen Colonies: 1600-1740 From Colonies to Country: 1735-1791 The New Nation: 1789-1850 Liberty for All?: 1820-1860 War, Terrible War: 1855-1865 Reconstructing America: 1865-1890 An Age of Extremes: 1889-1917 War, Peace, and All That Jazz: 1918-1945 All the People: Since 1945   Teaching materials to accompany A History of US are available from Oxford University Press, as well as from the teacher/educator…