Wednesday, June 20, 2012

TOS Review: Creation Illustrated Magazine

Last year, my sister-in-law gifted Wonder Boy with a subscription to Ranger Rick magazine.  He loved it, and was sad when it ran out.  I have been thinking of finding a Christian version for him, and hoped I'd found it in Creation Illustrated.  It was not what I was looking for, but I am still pleased!

I received a whole year of Creation Illustrated, which is four issues.  My first impression was that the photos are beautiful!  The image above does not do the actual cover justice.  It is an amazing picture of a dragonfly, and you'd just have to see it in person to really appreciate it!  The covers are glossy, and the magazine feels nice in your hands.  There are a handful of lengthy articles about nature, which all have a spiritual application and are accompanied by lovely pictures.  There is a children's story, a Bible study, news bits from creation institutions, tips on how to be a good steward of God's creation, a children's photo contest, a recipe page, and an instructional guide to help you use the magazine as a teaching tool.

I found the recipes to be an interesting addition - I wouldn't expect a nature magazine to have recipes.  Also, out of all the wonderful photos in the magazine, the food photos are frankly not very good, in my opinion - they suffer from lighting issues.  However, the recipes themselves - all vegetarian - sound pretty tasty.  I am eager to try the Ginger Lychee Boba Drink (bubble tea) and Grapefruit-Avocado Tacos.  The Savory Mushroom & Pepper Cupcakes sounded good, too.
My favorite issue was Autumn 2011, with articles about the pronghorn, aspens, and seeking God in nature.  The Autumn Instructional Guide (as well as the Spring 2012) had hands-on creation activities in addition to the discussion questions for each story and a word search based on the issue.

I asked Wonder Boy and Super Girl to choose at least one issue to peruse.  Super Girl was overheard saying "WHOA....cooooool!" as she read.  She informed me that she liked that the stories all point back to God, and that the pictures were awesome.  She also liked that there were recipes (she loves to cook).  Wonder Boy was a little tougher critic.  He said it was like a cross between Smithsonian magazine, Ranger Rick, and a catalog.  There are a lot of advertisements, but thankfully they are all for family-friendly things like homeschool supply companies.  I think that for WB, the articles are a little above his level right now, aside from the children's story.  He was also a bit disappointed that the cover photos don't relate to an article inside - he really wanted to read about the preying mantis that was on the cover of his issue!  Overall, Creation Illustrated does a good job of producing a magazine that the whole family can enjoy!   

Creation Illustrated can be found at www.creationillustrated.comSubscriptions start at $19.99 for one year, and you can also request a free issue if you would like to "try before you buy."


***Disclaimer:  I received four copies (1 year) of Creation Illustrated in exchange for my review through the Schoolhouse Review Crew.  All opinions are those of myself and my children.

1 comment:

Melanie said...

I have considered getting the Magazine Nature Friend, perhaps it is more what you are looking for.