About the Creator of Supercharged Science
Supercharged Science was created by Aurora Lipper, who earned both a Bachelors and Masters degree in mechanical engineering. She went on to become the youngest instructor in the engineering department at Cal Poly State University. Oh, did I mention she was also a scientist for NASA?
She began studies at the doctorate level, but then decided she’d rather be teaching. Meanwhile she started creating science lessons for kids to make science more interesting, which is exactly what my son needed!
What Is Supercharged Science
The site is very easy to navigate in part because Lipper has a getting started video that explains how to use the program.
What You’ll Experience with Supercharged Science
When you use the program, you can choose to follow the program by topic or by grade level. We choose by grade level.
There are several benefits of this program.
- If you have multiple children in K-8, you can pay one flat fee per month ($37), and have science materials for all of your children.
- In addition, there are plenty of science experiments. On the topic of Energy for 4th grade, there are 27 experiments available! Lipper herself suggests that you don’t try to complete all of the experiments under a topic.
- This program is also great for visual learners. You can read about science on the site, but every experiment comes with a video explaining how to do the experiment or set it up. Lipper’s enthusiasm shines through on the videos, so they’re not dry and boring as you may expect a science video to be.
Drawbacks to Supercharged Science
While we loved the program for all of the reasons stated above, there were a few difficulties we had.
- Lipper shows what materials are necessary for any experiment, and she explains how to put the items for the experiment together. However, sometimes she doesn’t show how the experiment actually works in action. For instance, in one video she made an insect aspirator (used to catch insects that are too small for a net). The video first shows still pictures of people using insect aspirators in the field. After an excellent, detailed tutorial of how to build the insect aspirator, the video ends. I’d love to see Lipper or someone else use the aspirator in action, to show exactly how it works.
- In addition, this isn’t just an open and go program. My kids do most of their science experiments with daddy on the weekend since he’s the science guy. He discovered that if he just went searching through Supercharged Science for a good experiment on Saturday morning, he would often find that we didn’t have the right materials. For instance, Lipper uses a glue gun frequently in the K-8 experiments, and we don’t have one.
- Finally, Lipper believes that science can often be boring to kids because they get the explanation first and then do the experiment. She actually presents things in reverse–do the experiment and THEN learn why things happened the way they did. In theory, I love this method. However, Bookworm and Dad just got frustrated by it. They both prefer the traditional method of getting the explanation first and then doing the experiment.
Is This a Good Fit for You?
While we had some trouble with the program, I believe that is largely our own fault. If we were to decide to use this curriculum for next year, I’d make sure we first had all the necessary supplies.
I also think that we had trouble because we tried to use Bookworm’s science book and just use Supercharged Science to supplement. I think we would have enjoyed the program more if Supercharged Science would have been our only science curriculum.
If you’re not sure if this program will work for you, Lipper is extending a very generous offer. Sign up now, and you can try Supercharged Science for $1 for the first 30 days. If you decide to continue after that, you will be charged the regular rate of $37 for a monthly subscription for grades K-8 or $57 for grades K-12. You can also access sample experiments to help you decide.
While we likely won’t use Supercharged Science for our science program next year, as Bookworm gets older and enters more difficult science studies, I would definitely consider this program again, especially for high school.