Guest Hollow's High School Anatomy Curriculum Books & Materials

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NOTE: If you purchase our High School Anatomy Curriculum, you will have access to a printable booklist with a shopping checklist, to help you with your planning.

The table below does NOT list all of the videos in the curriculum schedule, because many of the videos can be accessed via YouTube and will not need to be purchased. Just click on the video link in the schedule or do a search of the title online via YouTube or another video site, if a link to a video in the schedule no longer works.

WARNING Preview all materials!!

I recommend you preview all items to see if they are appropriate for your students. Every family is different in what they allow or find offensive! This is an anatomy course, so some of the resources may feature nudity. We are a conservative Christian household that believes in purity of body and mind. Having said that, we believe the presentation of human bodies (and or body parts) in the materials is scientific and not designed to titillate.

Also, some books may contain evolution or other potentially offensive material like bad language, etc.
Many of these books are intended for adults. By previewing them, you can make choices as to what may or may not be appropriate for YOUR student(s). All of the books below have been chosen because of several reasons:

  • The most important reason is that they each somehow tie into anatomy or health concepts.
  • To provoke a greater interest and understanding about specific topics… Nothing can beat a book chock full of interesting info that brings science "to life" (hence the term "living books").
  • To inspire compassion for other people facing unique challenges due to various medical conditions
  • To teach practical information your student can use and apply for the rest of his/her life
  • To better engage interest… Let's just face it. Textbooks can be boring sometimes. The books I've chosen cover material in a way that is much more memorable and engaging!

Option: If you want your student to write a paper or report about some of the books, click here for instructions and a grading rubric.

Question: If I buy all of those books, I'll spend a fortune! How can I afford this?

Answer: Check out our article on how to use a literature-based curriculum without breaking the bank!

Lab related resources are in YELLOW table cells. Videos are in BLUE.

Christian This crown icon denotes a Christian resource.

Extra and optional literature selections are below the scheduled resources table.

Click here to read my ideas about assigning credits. It will help you choose which unscheduled resources you want to obtain, based on the credits you'd like your student to earn.

Anatomy & Physiology Made Incredibly Easy

Anatomy & Physiology Made Incredibly Easy!


Used multiple weeks.

I choose this book for Guest Hollow's High School Anatomy curriculum because it's friendly and helps students practice and retain what they are learning. It's just right for high school students and does make learning anatomy fairly easy! It also comes in an e-book format. I like the e-book format because you can touch words for an instant definition while reading. The softcover version is easier to browse through, though.

The 5th edition comes with a scratch-off code in the front (inside cover) that gives you access to student resources. The student resources are workbook style pages and games that review the textbook material. Answers are provided. Here's a sample screenshot of one of the activities:

Workbook pages

The activities are in PDF format, ready for you to print out for free.

*WARNING: This book contains nudity- both male and female. The nudity is depicted via 3-D style illustrations and does show detail, although in a scientific type of style. You will have to decide if this is appropriate for your students or not.


Anatomy and Physiology Made Incredibly Visual!


Anatomy and Physiology Made Incredibly Visual!

Do you have a student who is overwhelmed by textbooks and needs an easier option, or wants to spend more time with the other scheduled reading material? This book covers the same material as textbook option one but in a highly visual and a much more simplified manner. It is SUPER friendly and perfect for a visual learner. It's also great for the student who may be overwhelmed by the complex vocabulary in the other book or who wants to focus more on the extra resources (books, videos, etc.) and less on a textbook.

Check out the book previews on Amazon via the links above to see which textbook is the best fit for your student.

Note: I have scheduled BOTH textbook options in the curriculum schedule. Also, if you choose this option, you do NOT need the workbook. There are brief practice exercises at the end of each chapter to review the material your student has learned.

Have $$ to burn? You can do both, lol.

NOTE: There is a scratch off code in the front of this book that gives you one free year of digital access to the entire text online.

Blood and Guts

Blood and Guts
Used multiple weeks.
An e-book version of this book is available to check out for FREE at

This fun book integrates lots of experiments and activities in with lots of information about the human body. Many of this year's labs come from this book, so don't skip it! Some of the activities are very simple and easy to do with a minimum of supplies, while others are more involved like dissections. All 3 of my kids enjoyed this book. The activities are appropriate for elementary school through high school!

*This book does talk about evolution in one place has a few non detailed drawings that depict nudity.

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

Brain Games Season 1

Brain Games Streaming on Amazon
Used multiple weeks. Some of the episodes on Amazon are free with commercials, at the time I'm writing this. Otter thinks they are worth paying for, if they are not. ;-) usually has one season online, for free.

Otter LOVES the Brain Games series. They are a lot of fun and very interesting. The best part? You get to be a participant in some of the experiments as you watch! Our family has had a lot of fun with this show.

I've scheduled episodes in all year. I understand that's a lot of $ if you want to purchase the episodes either for streaming or via DVD, so I don't expect you to watch ALL of them. They are a lot of fun though and quite interesting. Try to fit a few in, if you can. Also, it's not important what order you watch the shows in. I did line up a few with some of the topics, but the others are just fit in wherever. ;-)


Season 1
Season 2
Season 3
Season 4
Season 5

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

Where There Is No Doctor

Where There Is No Doctor
Used multiple weeks starting in week 12.

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

There are so many practical things you can learn from this book! It's highly visual with many drawings and very easy to understand text. This is a great book for any student interested in the medical or missions field, or just for basic first aid, health, and medicine type information.

You can download this amazing book for for FREE as a PDF, however, we like (and have) the softcover.

Some anatomy (breasts, etc.) is shown via pen and ink drawings - sort of cartoon style and only in a medical context.

National Geographic Inside the Living Body

National Geographic - Inside the Living Body - No longer available new, but still available used or on YouTube.

Week 1
Preview for some rear-shots of a body (not too distinct & in shadow), bottom of breasts over a pregnant belly, etc.

Watch it on YouTube

The Cartoon Guide to Genetics

The Cartoon Guide to Genetics (Updated Edition)
Week 3
An e-book version of this book is available to check out for FREE at

I also have this book recommended in my biology curriculum. It is a required resource for anatomy and physiology, unless you are not comfortable with the potentially objectionable material I mention below. If your student has already read it for biology, have him browse through it again for review.


Warning: There are some adult humor/references as well as evolution mentioned.

Below are some examples of objectionable material to help you make a decision as to whether it's appropriate or not:

p. 30

p. 30

And on p. 52

p. 52

The book also takes about the Bible story of Jacob and Laban and interprets the story as Jacob using "fertility magic" when he stripped the bark from willow rods and set them near the watering hole.

Although this book has some issues, it does do a good job of explaining genetics and is worthwhile, if you can deal with the above concerns.

Inheritance: How Our Genes Change Our Lives--and Our Lives Change Our Genes

Inheritance: How Our Genes Change Our Lives--and Our Lives Change Our Genes
Weeks 2-3

PREVIEW - There is some adult content. This is a fascinating book!

"Award-winning physician and New York Times bestselling author Sharon Moalem, MD, PhD, reveals how genetic breakthroughs are completely transforming our understanding of both the world and our lives.


Conventional wisdom dictates that our genetic destiny is fixed at conception. But Dr. Moalem's ground-breaking book shows us that the human genome is far more fluid and fascinating than your ninth grade biology teacher ever imagined. By bringing us to the bedside of his unique and complex patients, he masterfully demonstrates what rare genetic conditions can teach us all about our own health and well-being.

In the brave new world we're rapidly rocketing into, genetic knowledge has become absolutely crucial. INHERITANCE provides an indispensable roadmap for this journey by teaching you:

-Why you may have recovered from the psychological trauma caused by childhood bullying-but your genes may remain scarred for life.

-How fructose is the sugar that makes fruits sweet-but if you have certain genes, consuming it can buy you a one-way trip to the coroner's office.

-Why ingesting common painkillers is like dosing yourself repeatedly with morphine-if you have a certain set of genes.

-How insurance companies legally use your genetic data to predict the risk of disability for you and your children-and how that impacts the coverage decisions they make for your family.

-How to have the single most important conversation with your doctor-one that can save your life.

And finally:

-Why people with rare genetic conditions hold the keys to medical problems affecting millions." Quote from book description

Anatomy slide set

Anatomy microscope slide set
Used multiple weeks.

"Study human anatomy with this set of 16 high-quality, hand-prepared microscope slides. Survey the major tissues and organs of the body and study the detail of cells. Set comes in a plastic storage box."

Need to save money? Don't have a microscope?

You may want look for images similar to those on the slides on the Internet, if you can't afford the slide sets. Try Google images.

(Image shared with permission by Home Science Tools:

human pathology microscope slides

Human pathology microscope slide set Slides from this set are marked with a * in the schedule.
Used multiple weeks.

"This set contains 12 research-quality prepared tissue microscope slides of human diseases."

(Image shared with permission by Home Science Tools:

Dead Men Do Tell Tales

Dead Men Do Tell Tales: The Strange and Fascinating Cases of a Forensic Anthropologist
Weeks 4-5

Warning: There are a lot of factual descriptions of different ways of dying, suicides, etc. Pages 82-84 (chapter 6) talks about death from autoerotic asphyxiation. Preview! This may not be an appropriate book for sensitive or younger students. Some families may not feel comfortable with some of the material.

"From a skeleton, a skull, a mere fragment of burnt thighbone, Dr. William Maples can deduce the age, gender, and ethnicity of a murder victim, the manner in which the person was dispatched, and, ultimately, the identity of the killer.  In Dead Men Do Tell Tales, Dr. Maples revisits his strangest, most interesting, and most horrific investigations, from the baffling cases of conquistador Francisco Pizarro and Vietnam MIAs to the mysterious deaths of President Zachary Taylor and the family of Czar Nicholas II." Quote from book description


Guinea Pig Scientists: Bold Self-Experimenters in Science and Medicine

Guinea Pig Scientists: Bold Self-Experimenters in Science and Medicine
Weeks 6-7 (*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

This is a fun and fascinating book. Your younger kids will probably like it too!

"It was August 27, 1885. In a hospital in Lima, Peru, a student named Daniel Carrión was preparing to infect himself with a dreaded disease . . . He had a small, sharp lancet ready . . . Carrión's friends and teacher from the medical school thought it was a bad idea. They knew Carrión was eager to learn more about this mysterious disease.
But were the risks worth it?

Science and medicine from the inside out-ten engrossing stories of self-experimentation

Who are these "guinea pig scientists"? Searching for clues to some of science's and medicine's bigger (and sometimes stranger) questions, they are all the men and women who devoted their lives to help find the answers. Spanning from the 1770s to the present--and uncovering the science behind digestion, the spread of yellow fever, the development of the first heart catheter, and more--their ten stories are at once scientifically detailed and fascinatingly personal." Quote from book description

*Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

The Theory of Everything

The Theory of Everything
Week 7

"Starring Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones, this is the extraordinary story of love between the renowned astrophysicist Stephen Hawking, and his tireless first wife Jane. "

Stephen Hawking has ALS, a condition that first brings muscle weakness, then wasting and then paralysis. This is a movie about him and his first wife. Christian families may wish to discuss Stephen's atheism.

Click here for the Common Sense Media rating.

sheep brain

Week 8

Labs are important for high school credit! With this one, you'll see what a real brain looks like.

Can't afford or don't want a dissection kit? Watch a video of a sheep brain dissection online!

(Image shared with permission by Home Science Tools:

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

Brain Rules

Brain Rules
Weeks 8-9

Otter couldn't put this book down! It's a very accessible and interesting read.

Warning: Evolution is mentioned in this book.

"Most of us have no idea what’s really going on inside our heads. Yet brain scientists have uncovered details every business leader, parent, and teacher should know—like the need for physical activity to get your brain working its best.

How do we learn? What exactly do sleep and stress do to our brains? Why is multi-tasking a myth? Why is it so easy to forget—and so important to repeat new knowledge? Is it true that men and women have different brains?

In Brain Rules, Dr. John Medina, a molecular biologist, shares his lifelong interest in how the brain sciences might influence the way we teach our children and the way we work. In each chapter, he describes a brain rule—what scientists know for sure about how our brains work—and then offers transformative ideas for our daily lives.

Medina’s fascinating stories and infectious sense of humor breathe life into brain science. You’ll learn why Michael Jordan was no good at baseball. You’ll peer over a surgeon’s shoulder as he proves that most of us have a Jennifer Aniston neuron. You’ll meet a boy who has an amazing memory for music but can’t tie his own shoes.

You will discover how:

Every brain is wired differently
Exercise improves cognition
We are designed to never stop learning and exploring
Memories are volatile
Sleep is powerfully linked with the ability to learn
Vision trumps all of the other senses
Stress changes the way we learn
In the end, you’ll understand how your brain really works—and how to get the most out of it." Quote from book description

The Secret Life of the Brain

The Secret Life of the Brain
Weeks 8-9

"A startling new map of the human brain has emerged during the past decade of neuroscience research, contradicting much of what was previously believed. Narrated by Blair Brown and directed by David Grubin, this series tells stories through a mix of personal histories, expert commentary, and cutting-edge animation. Viewers learn startling new truths about the brain as they journey inside about this complicated organ." Quote from video description

Click here to look for episodes on YouTube.

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

Human Body: Pushing the Limits

Human Body: Pushing the Limits
Week 9

Only 2 episodes are scheduled. I've linked to a free online version of the video in the schedule. If it's not available, you have the option to purchase the 4 episode set on Amazon.

"You've never seen the human body like this before. In this groundbreaking series, we push the human form to its extremes, capturing both the power and the poetry. You will be surprised and even shocked as stunning CGI effects and the latest in cutting-edge photography reveal the body's inner and outer workings in vivid detail. " Quote from video description

Phineas Gage

Phineas Gage: A Gruesome but True Story About Brain Science
Week 9
An e-book version of this book is available to check out for FREE at

(*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

An interesting, true story!

"Phineas Gage was truly a man with a hole in his head. Phineas, a railroad construction foreman, was blasting rock near Cavendish, Vermont, in 1848 when a thirteen-pound iron rod was shot through his brain. Miraculously, he survived to live another eleven years and become a textbook case in brain science.

At the time, Phineas Gage seemed to completely recover from his accident. He could walk, talk, work, and travel, but he was changed. Gage "was no longer Gage," said his Vermont doctor, meaning that the old Phineas was dependable and well liked, and the new Phineas was crude and unpredictable.

His case astonished doctors in his day and still fascinates doctors today. What happened and what didn’t happen inside the brain of Phineas Gage will tell you a lot about how your brain works and how you act human." Quote from book description

*Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum

Blind Courage

ChristianBlind Courage
Weeks 10-11

This book is currently only available new in ebook format. You can use the free Kindle app to read it on any device, including a computer!

"The story of a blind man, Bill Irwin, who, with his dog, Orient, hiked the 2100 miles of the treacherous Appalachian Trail. The journey was made as a testimony to the God whom Irwin believed had turned his shattered life around. It is an account of Irwin's faith, perseverance and will to survive." Quote from book description

The Incredible Human Body

National Geographic - The Incredible Human Body- No longer available new, but still available used or on YouTube.

Available on YouTube

Week 10

"The Incredible Human Body explores the enigmatic human body, showcasing its abilities -- and its potential -- by using revolutionary, cutting-edge imaging systems and the latest advances in science and technology to go inside the bodies of real people, right down to their stem cells. Following a couple trying to conceive, a professional athlete at the top of his game, and a man with a brain tumor, The Incredible Human Body shares in the personal stories of four extraordinary groups of people and explores the body from the inside out as never before." Quote from video description

Cow eye dissection

Cow eye
Week 11

See how the inside of an eye works as you dissect this cow eye!

Can't afford or don't want a cow eye dissection kit? Watch one online!

(Image shared with permission by Home Science Tools:

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

How to Really Fool Yourself: Illusions for All Your Senses

How to Really Fool Yourself: Illusions for All Your Senses
Weeks 11-12

This book contains over 70 activities and is a fun read. Even a high schooler should enjoy it. We had fun playing with this book! ;-)

"Fans of Vicki Cobb's unique blend of humor, science, and hands-on activities will have tons of fun with How to Really Fool Yourself. Kids won't be able to believe their eyes--not to mention their ears, noses, hands, and tongues! Packed with all-new illustrations and a delightful new design, this book features over 70 activities to fool all five senses. Each illusion is followed by a fascinating "Why You're Fooled" section that explains the science and history behind the "magic."
* Illusions of touch, taste, hearing, smell, and sight include: the Incredible Shrinking Sugar Cube, Flavorless Coffee, Movie-Style Sound Effects, Making Circles from Straight Lines, and many more" Quote from book description

*Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

She Touched the World

She Touched the World: Laura Bridgman, Deaf-Blind Pioneer
Weeks 12-13 (*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

"When she was just two years old, Laura Bridgman lost her sight, her hearing, and most of her senses of smell and taste. At the time, no one believed a child with such severe disabilities could be taught to communicate, much less lead a full and productive life. But then a progressive doctor, who had just opened the country’s first school for the blind in Boston, took her in. Laura learned to communicate, read, and write—and eventually even to teach. By the age of 12, she was world famous.
Audiences flocked to see her, and she was loved and admired by children everywhere. This fascinating and moving biography shows how Laura Bridgman paved the way for future generations of children with disabilities, making possible important advances in the way they would be educated. As a blind person with some hearing loss, Sally Hobart Alexander lends a unique and intimate perspective to this inspiring account. At last, the story of Laura Bridgman can find its long-deserved place alongside those of Louis Braille and Helen Keller." Quote from book description

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

Deaf Like Me

Deaf Like Me
Weeks 12-13
An e-book version of this book is available to check out for FREE at

"Deaf Like Me is the moving account of parents coming to terms with their baby girl's profound deafness. The love, hope, and anxieties of all hearing parents of deaf children are expressed here with power and simplicity. In the epilogue, Lynn Spradley as a teenager reflects upon being deaf, her education, her struggle to communicate, and the discovery that she was the focus of her father's and uncle's book. At once moving and inspiring, Deaf Like Me is must reading for every parent, relative, and friend of deaf children everywhere." Quote from book description

Sound and Fury

Sound and Fury
Week 13

This is a great documentary. I learned a lot from it!

"Sound and Fury allows us a glimpse inside the world of the deaf community, while dealing with a controversial operation that some people in that community are resisting." Quote from video description

Sheep's heart

Sheep's heart for dissection

Week 14

Can't afford or don't want a sheep's heart dissection kit? Watch the dissection online!

(Image shared with permission by Home Science Tools:

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

Ryan White: My Own Story

Ryan White: My Own Story
Weeks 14-15
An e-book version of this book is available to check out for FREE at

This is the courageous story of Ryan White, a boy who was born with hemophilia and contracted AIDS from a contaminated blood transfusion.

blood typing kit

Blood Type Eldoncard Typing Test Kit Includes
Week 15 (Optional - You may want to save this for the high school level curriculum.)

We did this kit and really enjoyed it. All of my children are blood type O negative! Please note: You do have to prick your skin to get a drop of blood. The lancet is so sharp that we hardly felt it. If you have a squeamish kid, you'll probably want to skip this activity.

"This single-use blood type test kit contains everything needed to perform a complete blood test at home for ABO and Rh. It's a quick way to identify your blood type."

*Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

Alex: The Life of a Child

Alex: The Life of a Child
Weeks 16-17
This book is available to check out for FREE at

"In 1971 a girl named Alex was born with cystic fibrosis, a degenerative genetic lung disease. Although health-care innovations have improved the life span of CF patients tremendously over the last four decades, the illness remains fatal.

Given only two years to live by her doctors, the imaginative, excitable, and curious little girl battled through painful and frustrating physical-therapy sessions twice daily, as well as regular hospitalizations, bringing joy to the lives of everyone she touched. Despite her setbacks, brave Alex was determined to live life like a typical girl—going to school, playing with her friends, traveling with her family. Ultimately, however, she succumbed to the disease in 1980 at the age of eight.

Award-winning author Frank Deford, celebrated primarily as a sportswriter, was also a budding novelist and biographer at the time of his daughter’s birth. Deford kept a journal of Alex’s courageous stand against the disease, documenting his family’s struggle to cope with and celebrate the daily fight she faced. This book is the result of that journal.

Alex relives the events of those eight years: moments as heartwarming as when Alex recorded herself saying “I love you” so her brother could listen to her whenever he wanted, and as heartrending as the young girl’s tragic, dawning realization of her own very tenuous mortality, and her parents’ difficulty in trying to explain why.

Though Alex is a sad story, it is also one of hope; her greatest wish was that someday a cure would be found. Deford has written a phenomenal memoir about an extraordinary little girl." Quote from book description

Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal

Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal
Weeks 17-18

Note: In chapter 11 there is a mention of drug trafficking, putting drug packets into cavities, and some homosexual behavior is mentioned. Everything is presented in a scientific manner, but you may want to do that chapter as a read-aloud and skip over those parts.

"“America’s funniest science writer” (Washington Post) takes us down the hatch on an unforgettable tour. The alimentary canal is classic Mary Roach terrain: the questions explored in Gulp are as taboo, in their way, as the cadavers in Stiff and every bit as surreal as the universe of zero gravity explored in Packing for Mars. Why is crunchy food so appealing? Why is it so hard to find words for flavors and smells? Why doesn’t the stomach digest itself? How much can you eat before your stomach bursts? Can constipation kill you? Did it kill Elvis? In Gulp we meet scientists who tackle the questions no one else thinks of—or has the courage to ask. We go on location to a pet-food taste-test lab, a fecal transplant, and into a live stomach to observe the fate of a meal. With Roach at our side, we travel the world, meeting murderers and mad scientists, Eskimos and exorcists (who have occasionally administered holy water rectally), rabbis and terrorists—who, it turns out, for practical reasons do not conceal bombs in their digestive tracts.

Like all of Roach’s books, Gulp is as much about human beings as it is about human bodies." Quote from book description

Everybody Poops 410 Pounds a Year

Everybody Poops 410 Pounds a Year
Week 18

Educational and entertaining! ;-)

Chew on This

Chew On This: Everything You Don't Want to Know About Fast Food
Weeks 19-20

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

Otter enjoyed this book!

"When Eric Schlosser’s best-selling book, Fast Food Nation, was published for adults in 2001, many called for his groundbreaking insight to be shared with young people. Now Schlosser, along with co-writer Charles Wilson, has investigated the subject further, uncovering new facts children need to know.

In Chew On This, they share with kids the fascinating and sometimes frightening truth about what lurks between those sesame seed buns, what a chicken ‘nugget’ really is, and how the fast food industry has been feeding off children for generations." Quote from book description

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us

Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us
Weeks 21-23

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

"Every year, the average American eats thirty-three pounds of cheese and seventy pounds of sugar. Every day, we ingest 8,500 milligrams of salt, double the recommended amount, almost none of which comes from the shakers on our table. It comes from processed food, an industry that hauls in $1 trillion in annual sales. In Salt Sugar Fat, Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative reporter Michael Moss shows how we ended up here. Featuring examples from Kraft, Coca-Cola, Lunchables, Frito-Lay, Nestlé, Oreos, Capri Sun, and many more, Moss’s explosive, empowering narrative is grounded in meticulous, eye-opening research. He takes us into labs where scientists calculate the “bliss point” of sugary beverages, unearths marketing techniques taken straight from tobacco company playbooks, and talks to concerned insiders who make startling confessions. Just as millions of “heavy users” are addicted to salt, sugar, and fat, so too are the companies that peddle them. You will never look at a nutrition label the same way again." Quote from book description

Sheep's kidney for dissection Sheep Kidney
Week 22
The World of Germs Kit

The World of Germs Kit -

If your student feels too old to use a Magic School Bus science kit, you can order a similar (more expensive) kit from Home Science Tools. I recommend the Magic School Bus kit to save money and also for the additional activities with yeast, etc.

Comparison of kits:

World of Germs Kit

NOTE: This kit is not availalbe right now. Please order the Home Science Tools kit listed on the right.

Home Science Tools Kit

Grow bacteria & fungi
Test antibiotics
Make a fungus bubble
Grow mold
Cultivate bacteria in yogurt
Use yeast for several experiments

Grow bacteria cultures and test anti-bacterial effects of common household cleaners.

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

  Glo-Germ Mini Handwashing Kit
Week 25
The Gift of Pain

ChristianThe Gift of Pain
Weeks 24-25

Otter's rating: 5 stars (We got a head start on this book in the summer before starting the curriculum, lol.)

This is a fantastic book. It's not just a book about pain. The book starts out by describing Philip Yancey's childhood in India in the 1920's with his missionary parents. It continues on and discusses his medical training with all sorts of fascinating stories about his personal experiences. There is so much info about medicine and different issues from malaria to guinea worms to leprosy, as well as historical issues like the advent of antibiotics and World War 2- told in prose that keeps you riveted to the story. Even if you are not a Christian, you will appreciate the content from a memior and medical ruminations perspective. Our family loved this book and shared it as a read-aloud.

Be warned: The Gift of Pain does not shrug from graphic medical details like a toddler who can't feel pain painting her crib with her own blood after chewing her own fingers. A very squeamish student may not feel comfortable with some of the descriptions.

"A WORLD WITHOUT PAIN? Can such a place exist? It not only can―it does. But it’s no utopia. It’s a colony for leprosy patients: a world where people literally feel no pain, and reap horrifying consequences. His work with leprosy patients in India and the United States convinced Dr. Paul Brand that pain truly is one of God’s great gifts to us. In this inspiring story of his fifty-year career as a healer, Dr. Brand probes the mystery of pain and reveals its importance. As an indicator that lets us know something is wrong, pain has a value that becomes clearest in its absence. The Gift of Pain looks at what pain is and why we need it. Together, the renowned surgeon and award-winning writer Philip Yancey shed fresh light on a gift that none of us want and none of us can do without." Quote from book description

Good Germs, Bad Germs: Health and Survival in a Bacterial World

Good Germs, Bad Germs: Health and Survival in a Bacterial World
Weeks 26-27

Very interesting book!

"Public sanitation and antibiotic drugs have brought about historic increases in the human life span; they have also unintentionally produced new health crises by disrupting the intimate, age-old balance between humans and the microorganisms that inhabit our bodies and our environment. As a result, antibiotic resistance now ranks among the gravest medical problems of modern times. Good Germs, Bad Germs tells the story of what went terribly wrong in our war on germs. It also offers a hopeful look into a future in which antibiotics will be designed and used more wisely, and beyond that to a day when we may replace antibacterial drugs and cleansers with bacterial ones." Quote from book description

A Paralyzing Fear

A Paralyzing Fear
Week 26 (*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

"First appearing in the United States in 1916, the disease crippled tens of thousands of children every summer until it was finally eradicated by the Salk vaccine beginning in 1954. Every baby boomer remembers the terror of the polio epidemic and the thrill when the vaccine was discovered.

A PARALYZING FEAR is not only about the disease itself, but also about the effects it had on society as the epidemic struck and people began to fear and shun each other. Polio was blamed on immigrants, called a curse from God, and even thought of as the result of choosing the wrong types of friends. The film also portrays how the same society converged to meet the challenge of this epidemic and triumph over it. It brings to life an America that was both brave and innocent--when one of the greatest private fundraising campaigns of all times led millions of youngsters to collected dimes, to support scientific research, and a President became the poster child for acceptance of a disease." Quote from description

American Experience Influenza 1918

American Experience Influenza 1918

"As the nation mobilized for war in the spring of 1918, ailing Private Albert Gitchell reported to an army hospital in Kansas. He was diagnosed with the flu, a disease about which doctors knew little. Before the year was out, America would be ravaged by a flu epidemic that killed 675,000 people--more than died in all the wars of this century combined--before disappearing as mysteriously as it began. "

Parasites: Tales of Humanity's Most Unwelcome Guests

Parasites: Tales of Humanity's Most Unwelcome Guests
Weeks 27-28

Warning: mentions evolution

"Hidden away within living tissues, parasites are all around us--and inside us. Yet, despite their unsavory characteristics, as we find in this compulsively readable book, parasites have played an enormous role in civilizations through time and around the globe. Parasites: Tales of Humanity's Most Unwelcome Guests puts amoebae, roundworms, tapeworms, mites, and others at the center of the action as human cultures have evolved and declined. It shows their role in exploration, war, and even terrorist plots, often through an unpredictable ripple effect. It reveals them as invisible threats in our food, water, and luggage; as invaders that have shaped behaviors and taboos; and as unexpected partners in such venues as crime scene investigations. Parasites also describes their evolution and life histories and considers their significant benefits. Deftly blending the sociological with the scientific, this natural and social history of parasites looks closely at a fascinating, often disgusting group of organisms and discovers that they are in fact an integral thread in the web of life." Quote from book description


Week 28

This novel is a Michael Crichton-style thriller that is firmly anchored in real-life science and technology!

"A decade in the future, humanity thrives in the absence of sickness and disease. We owe our good health to a humble parasite -- a genetically engineered tapeworm developed by the pioneering SymboGen Corporation. When implanted, the Intestinal Bodyguard worm protects us from illness, boosts our immune system -- even secretes designer drugs. It's been successful beyond the scientists' wildest dreams. Now, years on, almost every human being has a SymboGen tapeworm living within them. But these parasites are getting restless. They want their own lives . . . and will do anything to get them." Quote from book description

Buzz: A Graphic Reality Check for Teens Dealing With Drugs and Alcohol

ChristianBuzz: A Graphic Reality Check for Teens Dealing With Drugs and Alcohol
Week 30 - Only available as an ebook.

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

This book tries really hard to be cool and just seems kind of overdone to me. My family isn't into being "cool". However, it's the only anti-drug book for teens I could find that is specifically Christian. The graphic, magazine style may appeal to your kids, and the message is sound.

"Life is tough. You’ve got questions. You’ve got choices…and the results are yours to live with. So go ahead—do a little investigating and discover the answers for yourself. The graphically captivating books in the FlipSwitch series are the real deal. They unashamedly tackle pressing issues that you face every day. After pinpointing God’s solution, they offer practical steps that will help you take your life in the right direction…without a doubt." Quote from book description

The Deadly Dinner Party: and Other Medical Detective Stories

The Deadly Dinner Party: and Other Medical Detective Stories
Weeks 31-32

" Award-winning author Jonathan Edlow, M.D., shows the doctor as detective and the epidemiologist as elite sleuth in stories that are as gripping as the best thrillers.

In these stories a notorious stomach bug turns a suburban dinner party into a disaster that almost claims its host; a diminutive woman routinely eats more than her football-playing boyfriend but continually loses weight; a young executive is diagnosed with lung cancer, yet the tumors seem to wax and wane inexplicably. Written for the lay person who wishes to better grasp how doctors decipher the myriad clues and puzzling symptoms they often encounter, each story presents a very different case where doctors must work to find the accurate diagnosis before it is too late. Edlow uses his unique ability to relate complex medical concepts in a writing style that is clear, engaging and easily understandable. The resulting stories both entertain us and teach us much about medicine, its history and the subtle interactions among pathogens, humans, and the environment." Quote from book description


Ten Stupid Things Women Do to Mess Up Their Lives (for GIRLS)
Weeks 31-32

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

Dr. Laura has a lot of very practical and blunt advice that could be helpful to your teens as they approach adulthood. Lots of stuff to think about and discuss in this book! Highly recommended!


Ten Stupid Things Men Do to Mess Up Their Lives (for BOYS)

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

I had my son read this book! Great advice and plenty to think about / discuss! Highly recommended!

Note: While Dr. Laura is not Christian (she is Jewish), she draws her advice from a biblical Judeo-Christian & down-to-earth practical viewpoint. These books are so good (imo), that I recommend purchasing them after you've previewed to make sure they are O.K. for your students. You may want to consider giving the appropriate book to your student to keep and refer to as s/he grows up.

WARNING: Dr. Laura gives some very blunt advice about sexual topics (without going into unnecessary detail) and is a proponent of abstinence. I personally feel the delivery is appropriate for the mature teen.

How to Spot a Dangerous Man Before You Get Involved

How to Spot a Dangerous Man Before You Get Involved (for GIRLS) Week 32

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

Recommended for all older teen girls. This book could be life-changing. Preview for appropriateness (sexual content, etc.).

"This savvy, straightforward book pairs real women's stories with research and the expertise of a domestic violence counselor to help women of all ages identify Dangerous Men -- before they become too involved.

Brown describes eight types of Dangerous Men, their specific traits and characteristics. In separate chapters, she explores victim’s stories that tell how they came in contact with this type of Dangerous Man and their outcome. Brown then shows readers how to develop a Defense Strategy -- how to spot, avoid, or rid themselves of this type of Dangerous Man.

Brown explains women's innate "red flag" systems -- how they work to signal impending danger, and why many women learn to ignore them. With red flags in hand, Brown then guides readers through their own personal experiences to develop a personalized "Do Not Date" list. With these tools, Brown shows women how they can spot and avoid patterns of engagement with Dangerous Men." Quote from book description

Twice Born

PBS: Twice Born

"Step inside the newest medical frontier of fetal surgery with an intimate look at the Special Delivery Unit at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, where a courageous group of doctors and patients take on the challenges of operations done on babies still inside their mother's wombs. Witness real-time footage of fetal operations, and meet expecting parents as they face gut-wrenching decisions."

The Gift of Fear and Other Survival Signals that Protect Us From Violence

The Gift of Fear and Other Survival Signals that Protect Us From Violence
Weeks 33 and 35

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)


"True fear is a gift. Unwarranted fear is a curse. Learn how to tell the difference.

A date won't take "no" for an answer. The new nanny gives a mother an uneasy feeling. A stranger in a deserted parking lot offers unsolicited help. The threat of violence surrounds us every day. But we can protect ourselves, by learning to trust—and act on—our gut instincts.

In this empowering book, Gavin de Becker, the man Oprah Winfrey calls the nation's leading expert on violent behavior, shows you how to spot even subtle signs of danger—before it's too late. Shattering the myth that most violent acts are unpredictable, de Becker, whose clients include top Hollywood stars and government agencies, offers specific ways to protect yourself and those you love, to act when approached by a stranger...when you should fear someone close to you...what to do if you are being to uncover the source of anonymous threats or phone calls...the biggest mistake you can make with a threatening person...and more. Learn to spot the danger signals others miss. It might just save your life." Quote from book description


Recommendation for weeks 33-34: Get a pregnancy or parenting book from the library (or off your own shelves!) and have your student read it. There are so many philosophies on birth/parenting, that I felt I couldn't really recommend one for the users of this curriculum. Be aware that many pregnancy books discuss s*x during pregnancy and may contain photographed or illustrated nudity, so I recommend previewing. A pregnancy and/or parenting book will give teens a clearer picture of the entire process, so that they can better prepare for children later in life. Your older teens could literally be just a few years from marraige and parenthood. Start preparing them now!

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

Some book titles that might be of interest:

What to Expect When You're Expecting

Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting

How Eskimos Keep Their Babies Warm: And Other Adventures in Parenting (from Argentina to Tanzania and everywhere in between)

What to Expect the First Year

Nova - Life's Greatest Miracle

NOVA - Life's Greatest Miracle
Week 33

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

Choose either the NOVA or the National Geographic video below. They are both fascinating!

National Geographic In the Womb

National Geographic - In the Womb - No longer available new, but still available used or on YouTube.
Week 33

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

Other options:

National Geographic: In the Womb - Multiples

National Geographic: In the Womb - Animals - No longer available new, but still available used or on YouTube.

Also scheduled in Guest Hollow's Jr. Anatomy Curriculum.

Sex Has a Price Tag: Discussions about Sexuality, Spirituality, and Self Respect

ChristianSex Has a Price Tag: Discussions about Sexuality, Spirituality, and Self Respect
Week 34

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

This book is optional. You can use it or another purity book (if that is what your family believes in). We have read through a variety of purity books. This one is easy to read but very frank and covers some pretty sensitive topics. Please preview it first to make sure it's appropriate for your child.

Other suggested books (depending on what your family's philosophy is):

I Kissed Dating Goodbye

Boundaries in Dating: How Healthy Choices Grow Healthy Relationships



Here are additional unscheduled books for extra credit, extra reading for kids who have a voracious appetite for books, and/or for those times when one of the above books doesn't appeal. You should also add in a few books from below if you are using our anatomy curriculum as a CORE curriculum (your "main" curriculum), instead of just a science curriculum. I have two categories for you to choose from: literature and non-fiction!

These books are also unscheduled books in our biology curriculum, but are interchangeable with the anatomy curriculum.

Basically you read one book and when you are done, read the next one (again - in whatever order you wish). We will be doing some of these books as read-alouds. Yes, I still read out loud to my highschooler!!

Don't forget to check your local library for copies of these books in order to save money!

P.S. You don't have to get ALL of the books. I do recommend you get at least a few, if you have time for them. Pick and choose.

UNSCHEDULED RESOURCES - Literature / Fiction
The Andromeda Strain

The Andromeda Strain
*Literature link

"From the author of Jurassic Park, Timeline, and Sphere comes a captivating thriller about a deadly extraterrestrial microorganism, which threatens to annihilate human life.
Five prominent biophysicists have warned the United States government that sterilization procedures for returning space probes may be inadequate to guarantee uncontaminated re-entry to the atmosphere. Two years later, a probe satellite falls to the earth and lands in a desolate region of northeastern Arizona. Nearby, in the town of Piedmont, bodies lie heaped and flung across the ground, faces locked in frozen surprise. What could cause such shock and fear? The terror has begun, and there is no telling where it will end. " Quote from book description

Cinder: Book One of the Lunar Chronicles

Cinder: Book One of the Lunar Chronicles

This is the first in a series of 4 books, based loosely around different fairy tales. I've read the first 3 and am looking forward to the release of the 4th! They are Y.A. novels about a cyborg girl, a plague and a futuristic world where the war might break out between the Moon and the Earth at any moment.

The books have lots of different & small elements that tie into anatomy / biology concepts like a biological plague, the meshing of cyberntic parts with human, etc.

There is some light fairy-tale style romance in the books, but nothing worse than an exchanged kiss (think of the stories Cinderella & Rapunzel).

"Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth's fate hinges on one girl. . . .

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She's a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister's illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai's, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world's future. " Quote from book description

The Cobra Event

The Cobra Event
*Literature link - Warning: Some cursing

"The Cobra Event is set in motion one spring morning in New York City, when a seventeen-year-old student wakes up feeling vaguely ill. Hours later she is having violent seizures, blood is pouring out of her nose, and she has begun a hideous process of self-cannibalization. Soon, other gruesome deaths of a similar nature have been discovered, and the Centers for Disease Control sends a forensic pathologist to investigate. What she finds precipitates a federal crisis.

The details of this story are fictional, but they are based on a scrupulously thorough inquiry into the history of biological weapons and their use by civilian and military terrorists. Richard Preston's sources include members of the FBI and the United States military, public health officials, intelligence officers in foreign governments, and scientists who have been involved in the testing of strategic bioweapons. The accounts of what they have seen and what they expect to happen are chilling." Quote from book description

Fantastic Voyage

Fantastic Voyage

"Four men and a woman are reduced to a microscopic fraction of their original size, sent in a miniaturized atomic sub through a dying man's carotid artery to destroy a blood clot in his brain. If they fail, the entire world will be doomed." Quote from book description

Fever 1793

Fever 1793(*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

*Literature link - Scientific concepts can be just as memorable in fiction and can encourage students to do more research. At the very least, they make science come alive in a "real" context that is accessible and memorable.

"During the summer of 1793, Mattie Cook lives above the family coffee shop with her widowed mother and grandfather. Mattie spends her days avoiding chores and making plans to turn the family business into the finest Philadelphia has ever seen. But then the fever breaks out.

Disease sweeps the streets, destroying everything in its path and turning Mattie's world upside down. At her feverish mother's insistence, Mattie flees the city with her grandfather. But she soon discovers that the sickness is everywhere, and Mattie must learn quickly how to survive in a city turned frantic with disease." Quote from book description

For Darkness Shows the Stars

For Darkness Shows the Stars

Mom's rating: 4 1/2 stars

"It's been several generations since a genetic experiment gone wrong caused the Reduction, decimating humanity and giving rise to a Luddite nobility who outlawed most technology.

Elliot North has always known her place in this world. Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family's estate over love. Since then the world has changed: a new class of Post-Reductionists is jumpstarting the wheel of progress, and Elliot's estate is foundering, forcing her to rent land to the mysterious Cloud Fleet, a group of shipbuilders that includes renowned explorer Captain Malakai Wentforth—an almost unrecognizable Kai. And while Elliot wonders if this could be their second chance, Kai seems determined to show Elliot exactly what she gave up when she let him go.

But Elliot soon discovers her old friend carries a secret—one that could change their society . . . or bring it to its knees. And again, she's faced with a choice: cling to what she's been raised to believe, or cast her lot with the only boy she's ever loved, even if she's lost him forever.

Inspired by Jane Austen's Persuasion, For Darkness Shows the Stars is a breathtaking romance about opening your mind to the future and your heart to the one person you know can break it." Quote from Amazon

Despite this book being called a "romance" - don't let that scare you off. I think the book description it simply meant to woo teen girls to read it, lol. Although it does has some elements of a frustrated love story (it's based on Jane Austen's Persuasion after all),  it's very "clean" and focused on Elliot, her "luddite" culture and changes being wrought due to science and technology gaining a new foothold in a world that's refused to dabble in such disciplines for centuries. It's actually a beautifully written novel that  explores a dystopian world of people living with the consequences of genetics gone wrong in the distant past and a new struggle of finding the right balance in a society that refuses to allow any advancements, even when it will save or improve lives.

This book is a worthwhile read with a main character who is a decent, hard-working girl who truly gives up her own best interests for others. This is not the typical trashy teen novel hiding under the guise of a dystopian. I do recommend parents who are discouraging dating though to at least preview it though, to see if it's appropriate for your family due to the romance elements. Also, it will appeal more to girls than boys.

P.S. There are also a LOT of parallel's to Jane Austin's Persuasion - so that might be an interesting literature tie-in!

The House of the Scorpion

The House of the Scorpion (Book 1)

The Lord of Opium
The Lord of Opium (Book 2)

The House of the Scorpion

Mom's rating: 5 stars

"Series: National Book Award Winner for Young People's Literature, Newbery Honor Book, Printz Honor Book

"Matteo Alacrán was not born; he was harvested.
His DNA came from El Patrón, lord of a country called Opium--a strip of poppy fields lying between the United States and what was once called Mexico. Matt's first cell split and divided inside a petri dish. Then he was placed in the womb of a cow, where he continued the miraculous journey from embryo to fetus to baby. He is a boy now, but most consider him a monster--except for El Patrón. El Patrón loves Matt as he loves himself, because Matt is himself.

As Matt struggles to understand his existence, he is threatened by a sinister cast of characters, including El Patrón's power-hungry family, and he is surrounded by a dangerous army of bodyguards. Escape is the only chance Matt has to survive. But escape from the Alacrán Estate is no guarantee of freedom, because Matt is marked by his difference in ways he doesn't even suspect." Quote from book description

I read this book (and the sequel which I obtained as an advanced review copy) and LOVED it. I totally understand why it's the recipient of so many awards. The story is creative, contains a decent amount of science and has characters that will stick with you for a long time. It's a masterful mix of sci-fi and a dystopian with plenty of concepts connected to biology / cloning topics. Highly recommended and not just for your students!!!

My Sister's Keeper: A Novel

My Sister's Keeper: A Novel

"Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate -- a life and a role that she has never challenged...until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to question who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister -- and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable, a decision that will tear her family apart and have perhaps fatal consequences for the sister she loves. 
My Sister's Keeper examines what it means to be a good parent, a good sister, a good person. Is it morally correct to do whatever it takes to save a child's life, even if that means infringing upon the rights of another? Is it worth trying to discover who you really are, if that quest makes you like yourself less? Should you follow your own heart, or let others lead you? Once again, in My Sister's Keeper, Jodi Picoult tackles a controversial real-life subject with grace, wisdom, and sensitivity." Quote from book description

The White Mountains (The Tripods)

The White Mountains (The Tripods)

Entire Guest family's review: 5 stars

This is one of those amazing & well-crafted (and "clean") series that's a must-read. It's sci-fi and features a capping ceremony at the advent of adulthood that employs mind control. A great read for when you are studying the brain. ;-) If your teens haven't read this one yet, get it. It's clean enough to be read by younger children and intelligent enough for the adults in the family, too. Don't be surprised when you get asked for the next book in the series...Even my "froo-froo" daughter loved the Tripod series!

"Will Parker never dreamed he would be the one to rebel against the Tripods. With the approach of his thirteenth birthday, he expected to attend his Capping ceremony as planned and to become connected to the Tripods—huge three-legged machines—that now control all of Earth. But after an encounter with a strange homeless man called Beanpole, Will sets out for the White Mountains, where people are said to be free from the control of the Tripods.

But even with the help of Beanpole and his friends, the journey is long and hard. And with the Tripods hunting for anyone who tries to break free, Will must reach the White Mountains fast. But the longer he’s away from his home, the more the Tripods look for him…and no one can hide from the monstrous machines forever." Quote from book description

At the Sign Of the Sugared Plum

At the Sign Of the Sugared Plum
(*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

"‘You be going to live in the city, Hannah?' Farmer Price asked, pushing his battered hat up over his forehead. ‘Wouldn''t think you'd want to go there . . . Times like this, I would have thought your sister would try and keep you away.' Hannah is oblivious to Farmer Price's dark words, excited as she is about her first ever trip to London to help her sister in her shop ‘The Sugared Plum', making sweetmeats for the gentry. Hannah does not however get the reception she expected from her sister Sarah. Instead of giving Hannah a hearty welcome, Sarah is horrified that Hannah did not get her message to stay away - the Plague is taking hold of London.

Based on much research, Mary Hooper tellingly conveys how the atmosphere in London changes from a disbelief that the Plague is anything serious, to the full-blown horror of the death carts and being locked up - in effect to die - if your house is suspected of infection." Quote from book description

The Big Necessity: The Unmentionable World of Human Waste and Why It Matters

The Big Necessity: The Unmentionable World of Human Waste and Why It Matters

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

"Acclaimed as “extraordinary” (The New York Times) and “a classic” (Los Angeles Times), The Big Necessity is on its way to removing the taboo on bodily waste—something common to all and as natural as breathing. We prefer not to talk about it, but we should—even those of us who take care of our business in pristine, sanitary conditions. Disease spread by waste kills more people worldwide every year than any other single cause of death. Even in America, nearly two million people have no access to an indoor toilet. Yet the subject remains unmentionable.

Moving from the underground sewers of Paris, London, and New York (an infrastructure disaster waiting to happen) to an Indian slum where ten toilets are shared by 60,000 people, The Big Necessity breaks the silence, revealing everything that matters about how people do—and don’t—deal with their own waste. With razor-sharp wit and crusading urgency, mixing levity with gravity, Rose George has turned the subject we like to avoid into a cause with the most serious of consequences."

The Genesis of Germs

ChristianThe Genesis of Germs

FREE study guide

"Break out your microscopes and haz-mat suits! It's time to delve into the world of germs and discover how something so small can have such a huge, deadly impact on the world around us. It seems that every day a new, more horrible disease is touted on the news. Where did all these germs come from, and how do they fit into a biblical world view? What kind of function did microbes have before the Fall? Gillen answers these questions and many more in this fascinating book. Professor Gillen also shows that these constantly mutating diseases are evidence for devolution rather than evolution. Written for home schoolers and others with a fascination for learning, The Genesis of Germs shows how all the diseases and germs in today's world point toward creation." Quote from book description

My note: This is a pretty in-depth book and while parts are fascinating, other parts are dry. Only recommended for the super-gung-ho students who NEED more.

Parasite Rex: Inside the Bizarre World of Nature's Most Dangerous Creatures

Parasite Rex: Inside the Bizarre World of Nature's Most Dangerous Creatures

"Traveling from the steamy jungles of Costa Rica to the parasite-riddled war zone of southern Sudan, Zimmer introduces an array of amazing creatures that invade their hosts, prey on them from within, and control their behavior. His vivid descriptions bring to life parasites that can change DNA, rewire the brain, make men more distrustful and women more outgoing, and turn hosts into the living dead."Quote from book description

*Evolution IS mentioned in this book. This is a book written to an adult audience. Preview.

Bitten: True Medical Stories of Bites and Stings

Bitten: True Medical Stories of Bites and Stings

Otter's rating: 5 stars
Dad's rating: 5 stars
Mom's rating: 4 stars

This should make you shudder next time you see a creepy crawly! LOL
My husband really enjoyed listening to our read-aloud of this book and we all learned a lot. Sometimes the medical descriptions can seem a bit redundant. It seems that most things that bite you cause pretty much the same horrible symptoms. ;-)

An American Plague: The True and Terrifying Story of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793

An American Plague: The True and Terrifying Story of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793

(*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

"1793, Philadelphia. The nation's capital and the largest city in North America is devastated by an apparently incurable disease, cause unknown . . .

In a powerful, dramatic narrative, critically acclaimed author Jim Murphy describes the illness known as yellow fever and the toll it took on the city's residents, relating the epidemic to the major social and political events of the day and to 18th-century medical beliefs and practices. Drawing on first-hand accounts, Murphy spotlights the heroic role of Philadelphia's free blacks in combating the disease, and the Constitutional crisis that President Washington faced when he was forced to leave the city--and all his papers--while escaping the deadly contagion. The search for the fever's causes and cure, not found for more than a century afterward, provides a suspenseful counterpoint to this riveting true story of a city under siege." Quote from book description

Killer Germs

Killer Germs

Skip the first chapter (pages 1-5) if you are anti-evolution. There is more evolution in later portions of the book, but not as heavy as that first chapter.

"Everything readers ever wanted to know about deadly viruses, killer parasites, flesh-eating microbes, and other lifethreatening beasties but were afraid to ask...

What disease, known as "the White Death" has killed 2 billion people, and counting?

What fatal disease lurks undetected in air conditioners and shower heads, waiting to become airborne?

How lethal is the Ebola virus, and will there ever be a cure for it?

How do you catch flesh-eating bacteria?

Killer Germs takes readers on a fascinating (sometimes horrifying) journey into the amazing world of viruses, bacteria, protozoa, fungi, and worms and explores the roles they have played in shaping the course of human history. From biblical plagues, to the AIDS crisis, to supergerms of the future, this updated and revised edition of the original covers the whole gamut of diseases that have threatened humanity since its origins.

It also includes a new chapter on the history of bioterrorism and the deplorable role it has played and is likely to play in the phenomenal diversity of diseases." Quote from book description

The Hot Zone: A Terrifying True Story

The Hot Zone: A Terrifying True Story

The whole family's rating: 5 stars

Warning: This book graphically describes what happens to people when they get the Ebola virus. Other warnings: curse words, mention of a prostitute, killing of animals, etc.

We really learned a lot from this book! It was a timely read for us (we read it during the last ebola outbreak) and worthwhile.

Gifted Hands

Christian Gifted Hands

Inspiring! There is also a kid's version of this book which would be appropriate for younger students or a student who just wants a quick read.

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

(*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

Warning: Language and graphic content regarding an abusive situation

"Her name was Henrietta Lacks, but scientists know her as HeLa. She was a poor black tobacco farmer whose cells—taken without her knowledge in 1951—became one of the most important tools in medicine, vital for developing the polio vaccine, cloning, gene mapping, and more. Henrietta's cells have been bought and sold by the billions, yet she remains virtually unknown, and her family can't afford health insurance. This phenomenal New York Times bestseller tells a riveting story of the collision between ethics, race, and medicine; of scientific discovery and faith healing; and of a daughter consumed with questions about the mother she never knew." Quote from book description

The Way We Work

The Way We Work

For those of you familiar with the David Macaulay books, you know how he can take all kinds of things and make them easily understandable with his detailed illustrations. The Way We Work book is a wonderful addition to this year's studies and brings concepts to life visually.

The Speckled Monster

The Speckled Monster

(*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

"The Speckled Monster tells the dramatic story of two parents who dared to fight back against smallpox.  After barely surviving the agony of smallpox themselves, they flouted eighteenth-century medicine by borrowing folk knowledge from African slaves and Eastern women in frantic bids to protect their children.  From their heroic struggles stems the modern science of immunology as well as the vaccinations that remain our only hope should the disease ever be unleashed again.

Jennifer Lee Carrell transports readers back to the early eighteenth century to tell the tales of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu and Dr. Zabdiel Boylston, two iconoclastic figures who helped save London and Boston from the deadliest disease mankind has known." Quote from book description

A 2nd option written for younger kids:

Dr. Jenner and the Speckled Monster: The Discovery of the Smallpox Vaccine

Polio: An American Story

Polio: An American Story

(*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

"Here David Oshinsky tells the gripping story of the polio terror and of the intense effort to find a cure, from the March of Dimes to the discovery of the Salk and Sabin vaccines--and beyond. Drawing on newly available papers of Jonas Salk, Albert Sabin and other key players, Oshinsky paints a suspenseful portrait of the race for the cure, weaving a dramatic tale centered on the furious rivalry between Salk and Sabin. He also tells the story of Isabel Morgan, perhaps the most talented of all polio researchers, who might have beaten Salk to the prize if she had not retired to raise a family.

Oshinsky offers an insightful look at the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, which was founded in the 1930s by FDR and Basil O'Connor, it revolutionized fundraising and the perception of disease in America. Oshinsky also shows how the polio experience revolutionized the way in which the government licensed and tested new drugs before allowing them on the market, and the way in which the legal system dealt with manufacturers' liability for unsafe products. Finally, and perhaps most tellingly, Oshinsky reveals that polio was never the raging epidemic portrayed by the media, but in truth a relatively uncommon disease. But in baby-booming America--increasingly suburban, family-oriented, and hygiene-obsessed--the specter of polio, like the specter of the atomic bomb, soon became a cloud of terror over daily life. 

Both a gripping scientific suspense story and a provocative social and cultural history, Polio opens a fresh window onto postwar America." Quote from book description

Vaccinated: One Man's Quest to Defeat the World's Deadliest Diseases

Vaccinated: One Man's Quest to Defeat the World's Deadliest Diseases

(*Science, History & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

"Maurice Hilleman's mother died a day after he was born and his twin sister stillborn. As an adult, he said that he felt he had escaped an appointment with death. He made it his life's work to see that others could do the same. Born into the life of a Montana chicken farmer, Hilleman ran off to the University of Chicago to become a microbiologist, and eventually joined Merck, the pharmaceutical company, to pursue his goal of eliminating childhood disease. Chief among his accomplishments are nine vaccines that practically every child gets, rendering formerly dread diseases—including often devastating ones such as mumps and rubella—practically toothless and nearly forgotten; his measles vaccine alone saves several million lives every year.

Vaccinated is not a biography; Hilleman's experience forms the basis for a rich and lively narrative of two hundred years of medical history, ranging across the globe and throughout time to take in a cast of hundreds, all caught up, intentionally or otherwise, in the story of vaccines. It is an inspiring and triumphant tale, but one with a cautionary aspect, as vaccines come under assault from people blaming vaccines for autism and worse. Paul Offit clearly and compellingly rebuts those arguments..." Quote from book description

The Woman with a Worm in Her Head: And Other True Stories of Infectious Disease

The Woman with a Worm in Her Head: And Other True Stories of Infectious Disease

"Even the most innocuous everyday activities such as eating a salad for lunch, getting bitten by an insect, and swimming in the sea bring human beings into contact with dangerous, often deadly microorganisms. In The Woman with a Worm in Her Head, Dr. Pamela Nagami reveals-through real-life cases-the sobering facts about some of the world's most horrific diseases: the warning signs, the consequences, treatments, and most compellingly, what it feels like to make medical and ethical decisions that can mean the difference between life and death. " Quote from book description

Do You Believe in Magic?: The Sense and Nonsense of Alternative Medicine

Do You Believe in Magic?: The Sense and Nonsense of Alternative Medicine

(*Science & Health* See my page on assigning credits.)

"In Do You Believe in Magic?, medical expert Paul A. Offit, M.D., offers a scathing exposé of the alternative medicine industry, revealing how even though some popular therapies are remarkably helpful due to the placebo response, many of them are ineffective, expensive, and even deadly.

Dr. Offit reveals how alternative medicine—an unregulated industry under no legal obligation to prove its claims or admit its risks—can actually be harmful to our health.

Using dramatic real-life stories, Offit separates the sense from the nonsense, showing why any therapy—alternative or traditional—should be scrutinized. He also shows how some nontraditional methods can do a great deal of good, in some cases exceeding therapies offered by conventional practitioners.

An outspoken advocate for science-based health advocacy who is not afraid to take on media celebrities who promote alternative practices, Dr. Offit advises, “There’s no such thing as alternative medicine. There’s only medicine that works and medicine that doesn’t.” Quote from book description

Galen and the Gateway to Medicine (Living History Library)

Galen and the Gateway to Medicine (Living History Library)

(*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

My son really enjoyed this book and the others in this series.

"We know about Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine. But we owe nearly as much to Galen, a physician born in 129 A.D. at the height of the Roman Empire. Galen's acute diagnoses of patients, botanical wisdom, and studies of physiology were recorded in numerous books, handed down through the Middle Ages and Renaissance. Not least, Galen passed on the medical tradition of respect for life. In this fascinating biography for young people, Jeanne Bendick brings Galen's Roman world to life with the clarity, humor, and outstanding content we enjoyed in Archimedes and the Door to Science. An excellent addition to the home, school and to libraries." Quote from book description

Exploring the History of Medicine

Exploring the History of Medicine

(*Science & History* See my page on assigning credits.)

My kids enjoyed this book!

"From surgery to vaccines, man has made great strides in the field of medicine. Quality of life has improved dramatically in the last few decades alone, and the future is bright. But students must not forget that God provided humans with minds and resources to bring about these advances.

A biblical perspective of healing and the use of medicine provides the best foundation for treating diseases and injury. In Exploring the World of Medicine, author John Hudson Tiner reveals the spectacular discoveries that started with men and women who used their abilities to better mankind and give glory to God.

The fascinating history of medicine comes alive in this book, providing students with a healthy dose of facts, mini-biographies, and vintage illustrations. Includes chapter tests and index." Quote from book description


Remember, you can always substitute and add in other books that work better for your family!


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