I was doing a quick review of our Science, making sure we had covered everything that we should have for KS3 and also making sure that we have introduced all the topics that my daughter will be covering in more detail in her next two years (Year 10 and Year 11). She has chosen to continue with Biology and Physics so I have been giving those two a bit more attention and the one topic that I felt we needed to revisit was Sound. So when the lovely people at Oaka Books asked if we wanted to look at some of their GCSE content (I of course said YES), I asked if we could also get a Sound pack to use and they very kindly agreed to send us one. (I am going to write about their GCSE content soon).
The Vibration, Waves and Sound Topic pack comes with a Topic Booklet, a Write Your Own Notes and a Learning Game (we love this combination).
It covers how the ear works (we really loved this diagram), sound energy, the decibel scale, vibrations, the speed of sound, particles in air, sound waves, frequency, changing pitch and echoes. Really a lot more than I was expecting but I loved that it covered all of this.
With this pack I left my daughter to read through the topic booklet on her own (we had already covered a bit on sound a while ago and before we started with the pack we did watch a few sound videos together).
We split it into sections, she would read the pages for a section and then fill out the corresponding pages in the Write Your Own Notes. I do find with these packs that if you split them up into sections, it just gives the kids time to properly digest all the information before they move on and by not rushing through an entire pack in one go they also tend to remember a lot more of it.
Once we had completed the booklets, we played the learning game. As much as I am a fan of the topic booklet and write your own notes format (I love the little blocks of concise information, which always have excellent illustrations that help the kids remember what they have read), the game at the end of the topic is our highlight. The kids always enjoy playing it and I always feel like it is an excellent indicator of what the kids understand and what we possible need to go over again. Oh and if you do have kids of different ages, I often just sort through the cards and give the “easier” questions to my son just so that we can all play the game together.
We have used these topic booklets in so many different ways over the years – as a way to introduce a topic, as revision of a topic, as a way to explain a topic after a different resource caused confusion, sometimes just as a way of winding down before holidays. However we end up using them we always find them to be an effective and enjoyable learning resource.
Admin – Oaka Books kindly sent me our copy of the Sound Topic Pack after I asked for a review copy because I knew we needed to do a bit of extra work on Sound. This is NOT a paid for post.