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Homeschool Crew Review: Light Speed Chemistry AP Exam Prep


Well.  Wow! My head is spinning!  Even when I still remembered chemistry, the Light Speed Chemistry AP Exam Prep video would have been overwhelming. It covers so much so quickly.  The dynamic student presenters speak rapidly, and concept follows concept at lightning speed.  I actually had to take a break and turn the DVD off. (Smiles.)


One thing I can guarantee.  Any student who knows—and understands—what’s on this DVD will do well on the AP chemistry exam (barring test anxiety, etc).  Another thing:  any student who tries to use this product to learn chemistry will not succeed.  This is not a teaching presentation, but a review.  You’ve got to know the chemistry first, and then watch the DVD several times to help you tie everything together.  That being said, it’s a very effective and compact review.


OK, so what is the AP exam, you ask?  Good question.  The Advanced Placement exam, common in the US but difficult for homeschoolers to access in Canada, gives high school students a chance to be tested on college-level material for college credit.  Many colleges and universities, including a significant number of Canadian institutions, give varying amounts of credit for good AP exam scores.  The exams are for all high school students; in fact some high schools even have special AP courses. Homeschoolers can use online courses or learn on their own following guidelines from AP Central. 


Many companies produce exam prep resources, and Cerebellum Corporation, an acclaimed educational DVD company, has now also entered this field with its four AP videos: Chemistry, English Language and Composition, History of the US, and US Government and Politics.  Each program has been designed by a team of professors from leading universities and is presented by enthusiastic student actors.  It’s a unique combination that seems to work. 



As part of the Homeschool Review Crew, we received the Light Speed Chemistry AP Exam Prep program containing a 55 minute DVD and a digital workbook on CDROM.   




Dynamic students present the content of this video, which includes general information about the AP chemistry exam, valuable test-taking tips, and a whirl-wind tour through chemistry. The students present 30 major topics in 30 minutes, including:

  • Atomic Theory and Structure
  • Chemical Bonding
  • Nuclear Chemistry
  • Gases
  • Stoichiometry
  • Equilibrium & Kinetics
  • Thermodynamics
  • and much more!


The entire video is almost an hour long.  Since the presenters speak very quickly but clearly, there really is no time to think.    In fact, you’ll need to stop the video occasionally and use the handouts from the Digital Workbook to absorb the concepts reviewed.  Here’s what the test-taking tips section is like: 



Digital Workbook

This PDF document contains handouts, including various kinds of question sheets with answers.  These interesting questions are fun and require the student to think about what he has learned.  I also noticed a small focus on environmental issues.


Our Experiences and Opinions

Miss 17 is studying chemistry (although not for the AP since it’s difficult to write AP exams in our area), so she and I both went through the program.  It reinforced what she’s been learning in her current course.  She liked the dynamic actors, although the backgrounds bothered her.  Overall, her impression is that it’s fun and full of information, but doesn’t suit her learning style.  She prefers learning from a book and flipping pages. 


My impression is that this program offers a great review of first year university chemistry. That, I suppose, is essentially what the AP exam is designed to test. This program is organized and quick, and it focuses on the essential concepts in an engaging manner.  Light Speed Chemistry AP Exam Prep would be a good resource for anyone planning to write the AP chemistry exam since it’s thorough, interesting, and inexpensive.


I’m also going to be reading what my Crew Mates thought of the Light Speed English Language and Composition program. I’m hoping its quality is similar to the chemistry program.   If so, I suspect it would be just the thing to ensure that we haven’t missed an important concept in our upper level English, since we put together bits and pieces from various programs.  


To read more about the Light Speed AP Exam Prep videos, please visit the Homeschool Review Crew blog. 


20% off Coupon and Purchasing Information

Until the end of the year, you can receive 20% off the purchase price of any video offered on the website by using the coupon code OSH20.  When I simulated an order, it seemed that the coupon also gets rid of shipping charges.  I’m not certain of this and will be checking it, but if so, this is a very, very good deal.


The Light Speed Chemistry AP Exam Prep Video is on special for $11.24 US until the end of the month (discounted from $14.98 US).   Add the coupon, and this is a truly a great deal.


Disclosure Policy:   As a member of the TOS Homeschool Review Crew, I received the Light Speed Chemistry AP Exam Prep Video in exchange for our family’s honest opinions.


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