For this review, my 14 year old son received a year membership to Fascinating Education's online Fascinating Biology!
We aren't big fans of online learning. In our experience very few websites pack enough of an academic punch without fluff. But, when I read about the website's creator, I was intrigued. The creator of Fascinating Education, Dr. Marguilies, is a retired neurologist, author of three books (The Fascinating Body - How it Works, Everyday Doctoring, and Learning Law - The Mastery of Legal Logic.) , has a law degree, and has taught over 2500 medical students and residents in his career. That's quite a resume! From that I assumed that there would be plenty of meat, but, would it be dry and boring?
Fascinating Education uses a right hemispheric approach, instead of the usual written text with explanatory illustrations, audio visual lessons focusing on scientific facts while eliminating unnecessary complexity.
Fascinating Chemistry, Fascinating Biology, and Fascinating Physics are all designed for a high school audience, though some middle schoolers may be able to use these programs. Suggested sequence with Fascinating Science is Chemistry, Biology and then Physics. Fascinating Physics requires a student to have basic proficiency in Algebra and Geometry. Calculus is not necessary.
Within the 19 lessons on Fascinating Biology, your student will learn the basic principles of biology: cell membranes, taking in nutrients, creating chemical energy, growing and repairing, reproducing, maintaining a stable internal environment, and adapting to a changing external environment.
- What is Life?
- Chemistry Review
- The Cell Membrane
- Take in Nutrients
- Take in Energy - Part 1
- Take in Energy - Part 2
- Take in Energy - Part 3
- Take in Energy - Part 4
- Reproduce, Part 1
- Reproduce, Part 2
- Reproduce, Part 3
- Homeostatis, Part 1
- Homeostatis, Part 2
- Adapt, Part 1
- Adapt, Part 2
- Prokaryotes, Protists, Animals and Fungi
For each lesson, there is an audio lesson, a text copy of the lesson, and an online test.
Fascinating Education courses are correlated to the Next Generation Science standards.
Our experience with Fascinating Biology
My son thought the website was easy to navigate and Dr. Marguilies was easy to follow and pleasant enough that he wasn't bored. However, he did find that he retained more information by reading the text that by listening to the audio.
Speaking of information, boy was there a LOT of it! Fortunately each lesson is broken down into many sections that are easily navigatible if you need to go back and listen to a section again OR pick it up the next day.
Final thoughts about Fascinating Biology
In the end, my son was glad he got to try something now. However, he is at a crossroads as to whether or not he'd continue with this program or move into a regular text book.
Though this program is written with evolutionary content, that wasn't an issue for either one of us. At this stage my son is able to separate a Biblical Worldview from an Evolutionary Worldview.
The one thing that I didn't like about this program was that the test scores were not saved within the student account. If you wish to have tests and tests scores for documentation, you must either do a screen shot of the graded test OR print out the tests and grade them yourself.
Labs are not included.
Check out what other crew members are saying about Fascinating Biology, Fascinating Chemistry and Fascinating Physics from Fascinating Education!