Saturday, July 15, 2017

Fascinating Education~ Fascinating Physics

A couple of years ago we reviewed Fascinating Physics (with my then just barely 15-year-old ~ please do go ahead and check out that review if you are a newer reader, as much of the information is still the same, and I may not go into quite as much detail here). Fascinating Education has given us another opportunity to review their course, which is appreciated now that he has reached a more typical scholastic level to comprehend a physics course.

The 15 Fascinating Physics Lessons/Modules
I mentioned in my first review that my Middlest utilizes the laws of physics when juggling, playing pool, and while playing baseball and fishing without even thinking about it. Fascinating Physics offers examples that use physics in every day life (or maybe even in the less ordinary life led by someone in the C.S.I. field~ which should help to grab the attention of some teens!), which helps to give answers to the question "Why do I need to know anything about physics?"

The course is set up to particularly suit audio and visual learners.  In order to begin the audio/visual lesson the student can click the graphic, or the red "lesson" button (Shown in the graphic on the left). This starts up an audio/visual lecture (approximately 45 minutes long), with a number of slides.
If your student is less "auditory" you'll be happy to know that the blue "script" button contains the text of the lesson, which they can read, but I do recommend watching the presentation as well, since some of the slides are not static, like the photos in the text, and can help comprehension of the topic.

If you want to break the lesson up a little, or time requires you to take a break to get to an activity, no worries, the program remembers where you were, and offers the ability to resume where you left off. This was particularly helpful for us as our summer schedule had us going in many directions at once, and there wasn't always a block of time every day.

You can see that the chapter is broken up into sections, and you can easily click on a title to review anything that wasn't understood. We also appreciated, as mentioned above, the ability to work through this in smaller chunks throughout the day, when necessary, and having the titles of each section made it easier to figure out where a good stopping point might be.

In the Physics course there is a "need help?" button that opens up an audio/visual slide (My son's computer only played the audio for some reason... I love my Mac! :) ) to help them reinforce the information learned in the lesson. I appreciate this help,  particularly when there are so many formulas to remember. Dr. Marguilies believes that testing should be another opportunity to help ensure the student grasps the material and so offers helps to make sure they succeed.

I actually think providing the formulas is more "real world" because today everyone looks everything up. My son felt this was a bit like an open book test, with answers given to him in the "helps." I suspect that we are more likely to use the online test as a "review" and then follow up with the printed version for most units.  I will note that the "help" video only opens the first time the question is attempted, so not entirely "open book" because there is no replay. If they don't grasp the concept after the help, I would suggest going through the "Script" again, and then retaking the test.

If you'd like to learn even more, and check out some samples, visit the FAQ page , where you will find more information that details Dr. Margulies' philosophy, links to course outlines and more.

Not So Nutty Nitty Gritty 
Please click the banner below to visit the TOS Homeschool Review Crew and see what others had to say about Fascinating Physics, Fascinating Biology, and Fascinating Chemistry. As always, I hope that this review was useful to you as you choose where best to spend your homeschool budget.
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