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Review of The 101 Series

Physics, Chemistry & Biology 101 {The 101 Series}
For my final review of the Crew year (how hard is that to believe?), I have a super fun science product to share. The 101 Series has a series of really neat science DVD sets, and I was fortunate enough to receive Chemistry 101 to review. Although Physics 101 and Biology 101 both look amazing, too (so amazing that I can see myself purchasing them in the future), Nicholas (13) is passionately curious about Chemistry, so choosing which DVD set I wanted was really a no-brainer. 
Physics, Chemistry & Biology 101 {The 101 Series}
Chemistry 101 consists of 4 DVDs with 19 segments varying in length from 20-45 minutes. Also included on the DVDs is a PDF guidebook containing quizzes of the material and a one-year high school course booklet. Although the course is intended for ages 15+, there is nothing contained on the DVDs that is inappropriate for younger ages. In fact, there is much that would be enjoyed by all ages. At 13, Nicholas had no trouble following the material. 

The DVDs consist of the following material:

Disc A - The Road to the Periodic Table
1. Introduction & The Last Alchemist
2. Birth of Modern Chemistry
3. The Bold Russian
4. Lots of Mystery Rays

Disc B
5. The Likable Rutherford
6. The Period Table at Last
7. The Period Table - Main Group
8. The Period Table - Quantum Mechanics

Disc C - Chemistry Essentials
9. Neutrons, Isotopes, and Ions
10. Compounds and Molecules Part 1
11. Compounds and Molecules Part 2
12. Balancing Equations 
13. Essentials Wrap-Up

Disc D - Meet the Elements and The Future
14. The Four Main Columns
15. Non- Metals and Poor Metals
16. Transition Metals
17. Rare Earth and Radioactive Medals
18. The Future of Chemistry Part 1
19. The Future of Chemistry Part 2
Guidebook and Accreditation Booklet (PDF)

The videos are hosted by Wes Olson, who also hosts Biology 101, a graduate of Multnomah Bible College and a 20 year-veteran filmmaker. His engaging and serious manner are perfectly suited to the subject matter. The included 128 page study guide make it easy to turn this DVD set into a course, but it's just as easy to watch the DVDs as family entertainment. 

The guide contains extensive notes on the DVDs, much like the notes you would take if you were rigorously writing down everything Mr. Olson said. It also contains discussion questions and quizzes. It's black and white, making it easy to print at home.


DVD 4 also includes an accreditation guide. The guide walks you through the process of using the DVDs as the backbone of a 1 year high school Chemistry course. This is a huge value add for this program! The guide is thorough and understandable, and it answered any questions I had about possibly turning this into a high school class for my kids in the future.

What We Thought of It

Because Nicky is only in 8th grade and is not taking Chemistry for any kind of credit yet, I just gave him the DVDs to watch on his computer at his leisure. I didn't have to tell him twice! As I mentioned, he loves chemistry. He loves learning about the periodic table. These DVDs suited his purpose perfectly. They didn't feel like school to him. While I did peruse the guide at length, I didn't use it with Nicky because I didn't want to make the DVDs feel like school to him. Right now I want to keep him in love with science. I can absolutely see using the guide in the future, though, as we work through the DVDs more rigorously.



I love the ease and versatility of The 101 Series and I definitely plan to check out more of their offerings in the future. To see their other products in use, be sure to click the banner below!


Physics, Chemistry & Biology 101 {The 101 Series}
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