Is SCI secular?
Yes! SCI is fully secular.
How can I tell what subject is taught each year?
SCI is interdisciplinary, which means each year we cover topics from multiple branches of science. Just like in real life, no one subject is presented in a vacuum. Instead, we find connections across scientific disciplines.
Do the levels correspond to grades?
Levels do approximately correspond to grades, but because SCI is discussion-based it can be used with a wide range of ages and presents deep scientific discovery in an accessible way, therefore each level is easily adapted to multiple ages.
Where is Level 1?
We started with Level 3 to meet a specific need, but earlier and later levels are planned for future releases. Level 5 is planned for release in fall of 2021, and Levels 1 & 2 are tentatively planned for release in spring of 2022 and 2023, respectively. If demand dictates, Levels 6-8 will follow.
Do I need to start at Level 0?
No! SCI is designed so you can start at any level, with needed background information given in notes throughout. However, if you have done previous levels of Scientific Connections through Inquiry, or the corresponding levels of Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding, you’ll have the full background to get the maximum depth from each level.
Why are the sessions so short?
Our goal is to provide flexibility while providing a deep understanding of the material. Simply covering the facts won’t take long, but diving into them and internalizing them will take longer, and may continue happening outside of “class time!” Because the curriculum is so based in discussion and hands-on discovery, the time each session takes can be highly variable, based on how your discussion and activities go. If your student is familiar with the topic in a session, you may find it only takes 10-15 minutes. If it is new to them, it may take 30-45 minutes. If it captures their interest we’ve found students can spend hours on a single session. If your student is moving through the material quickly, feel free to cover 2, or even more, sessions in a single sitting. If your student is already familiar with all of the topics covered in the unit and can answer the questions at the end, and it is not something they are interested in exploring again, please feel free to skip the unit and move on to material that is new to them! The goal is to keep interest engaged and to fuel a sense of discovery and connection.
Why are the sessions so long?
The sessions are written to provide a deep understanding of the material, which requires time sitting with the ideas and exploring them as the student makes sense of them. When an idea is totally new to a child, especially if it is a bit of a stretch for them to wrap their mind around, this process may take longer. This engagement means they are learning and cementing the idea in their brain, where it will provide a strong foundation for future knowledge! If they are taking more time than you have for the day, or they are feeling burnt out, feel free to split each session into multiple sittings, or to repeat sessions until your student is satisfied and ready to move on!
Is SCI a simplified version of Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding (BFSU)?
Not at all! While SCI has been streamlined and organized for ease of use, the content has not been simplified in the least. The deep science that is the core of BFSU is the heart of SCI; it has been made more accessible, updated, and expanded, with photos, student book pages, diagrams, videos, and more!
Do I need to own Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding to use Scientific Connections through Inquiry?
No! While SCI is inspired by BFSU, it is a separate complete curriculum.
How do SCI and BFSU align?
SCI levels 0-2 align with BFSU vol I
SCI levels 3-5 align with BFSU vol II
SCI levels 6-8 align with BFSU vol III
Can I buy a printed copy?
No, SCI is available only in digital format. Many companies can print and bind it for you, including several online-only companies that cater to homeschoolers.
Can I use this to teach a class?
When you purchase SCI from our website, you purchase a single-family license. If you would like to use SCI to teach a class please contact us and we will be happy to assist you with group pricing!
Are the materials included?
No, but aside from some basic scientific equipment like a microscope and graduated cylinder we strive to keep the needed materials simple, minimal, and easily accessible.
What does each level contain?
Each SCI level contains a full Teacher’s Guide and the accompanying Student Book.