Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Polaris Chronicles - reviewed by someone who owns a thesaurus

Progress so far on the Polaris Chronicles polar explorers box themed package that we downloaded here

We've started with the Natural History section and the kids have started to make and antique a box in which to put a blown egg (supposed to be a puffin egg but I suspect we'd get arrested climbing cliffs to steal puffin eggs, so an ordinary chicken egg will have to suffice).

The kids stick a mini cereal pack together for the box:

and paint it with acrylic paint

making fake fossils with air-drying clay:

'Antiqueing' pictures (which we'll later use to decoupage the boxes) with diluted cold tea. Actually we used a cat litter tray of barely diluted very hot teabags, but that was only because we were, as usual, impatient. Our impatience also stretched to drying our pieces of paper in the oven - a gas oven (naturally rather flamey). We managed not to set the house on fire, or even set off the smoke detector (must check the battery). A successful outcome methinks.

and finally finished, the Emperor Penguin, a cardboard cut-out downloaded for free from Canon Creative Park
He looks a little worse for wear. Probably something to do with small sticky hands, impatience, multiple clothes pegs and half a bottle of PVA.

So. The verdict so far on the currclick Polar Exploration thingimajig download?

Well, the art/craft activities are great. Quite inventive suggestions, reasonable instructions, and pictures supplied for activities such as decoupage (though I suspect most of these can be found online if I had half a lifetime to look).

However, the introductory info, the interesting background scientific information that is supposed to accompany the craft activities is appalling, I mean really badly written. It is as if someone has cut and pasted a few lines from Wikipedia and then thought 'Oh I'd better try and put it into my own words so I can't be accused of plagiarism' and has then randomly rearranged the words in the sentence without even a tiny thought to clarity or - perish the thought - grammar. The result, therefore, is not only weird, but incredibly repetitive [I think I counted the word numerous used 3 or 4 times in less than 2 sides of A4, and spelt incorrectly on one of those occasions. Hey, guys, what's wrong with the word many..? Are you guys too posh to say lots of..?].

But perhaps I shouldn't be so hasty to judge. It is possible that I have stumbled across something rare and original. Reading it to my children yesterday there was a moment when I truly believed I had, in my hands, an attempt at an English translation of Japanese MFI instructions for an iceberg.


Ruth said...

Looks really good. My two have refused to do the craft so we are back to lapbooking it all.

C said...

Looks fabulous and I am saving all your links ready for when(if?) Seb wants to do it. I feel a second reading of Mr Poppers Penguins coming on! :D

Anne B said...

Oh good, I'm glad someone else found that with stuff from Currclick. When it's good it's very, very good and when it's bad, it's infuriating!

The craft looks gorgeous; but then yours always does.