At Educents, we’ve created a lively marketplace where small businesses can showcase innovative education products—from books and curricula to crafts and science kits.
Dr. Heather Manley is one of our small business entrepreneurs. Dr. Heather is a practicing naturopathic physician and a homeschooling mom of two children. She is also the creator of the Human Body Detectives books and curriculum.
Doctor, Homeschool Mom, Small Business Owner
As a naturopathic physician, Dr. Heather emphasizes preventive care. She educates her patients about nutrition and about making healthy lifestyle choices. The slogan on her blog sums up her philosophy: Be proactive. Be confident. Be healthy.
According to Dr. Heather, “The best key to prevention is education and information. If children learn how their bodies work, they are more apt to make healthy choices that will give them a head start on a long, healthy life!”
But when she tried to find materials to educate her patients and her own children about nutrition and healthy lifestyle choices, Dr. Heather came up empty handed. There are countless authoritative books that examine the science of nutrition and the chemistry of the human body, but she was looking for kid-friendly resources that would engage and even entertain her children and her patients.
Dr. Heather with her 2 daughters
Dr. Heather finds these subjects fascinating, and she was convinced that there was a way to make them interesting and accessible to kids, too. So she created these resources herself.
A Mom-Made Science Curriculum
The Human Body Detectives books explore and explain essential physical systems — including the circulatory, digestive, immune, skeletal, and nervous systems — and do so in an interactive and compelling way. Each Human Body Detectives book comes in a package that includes an audio recording of the book, worksheets, labs, activities, and other materials. The books and lessons are aligned with the Common Core national education standards.
Dr. Heather's daughters appear in her science curriculum
In each Human Body Detective book, Dr. Heather tells an engaging story as she follows her main characters (based on her two daughters) on an adventure through the human body.
In Human Body Detectives Go Into the Digestive System, students learn about the mechanics of the digestive system, and examine essential but invisible parts of that system, like the salivary glands and the gall bladder.
Not only do Dr. Heather’s daughters, Merrin and Pearl, appear as characters in Human Body Detectives, they are also among the first to take the books and lessons for a test drive. As a homeschooling mom, Dr. Heather uses the Human Body Detectives series to teach her own children. “This is very personal for her,” says Educents accounts manager, Hillary Ungson.
“Her own story is tied in closely with the product she has created. As a physician, she knows how important this information is. She created Human Body Detectives for her daughters and her patients, and now she wants to share it. I love that she makes the lessons so fun, too.”
Dr. Heather even recruits her daughters to answer science questions that your kids might wonder about.
Why Homeschoolers Love Dr. Heather's Curriculum
Dr. Heather, who lives with her family on the Big Island of Hawaii, won a Moms’ Choice Award for Human Body Detectives, and is also a winner of Parent Tested, Parent Approved.
She has created books and curricula for older children as well. Girls Curriculum: The Scoop on Being Me, helps girls 10 to 14 years-old understand puberty and other aspects of female anatomy and physiology. Functional Nutrition, geared to high school and college students, examines food, nutrition, and the digestive system.
Many of the small business owners who offer products on Educents, like Dr. Heather, are homeschooling parents. “A lot of our sellers are parents who created an educational tool for their own child, and recognized a need out there that wasn’t being filled,” Ungson says. “They’re dedicated to helping other parents, too.”
The Human Body Detectives series is popular with both teachers and homeschooling parents, according to Ungson, particularly the latter group. Each lesson is rooted in an engaging adventure, and the activities provide interactive ways for parents and teachers to help kids explore the subjects more deeply, and to understand the links between their nutrition and lifestyle choices and their own physical health.
And that’s Dr. Heather’s goal—in her naturopathic practice, on her website (which features health and wellness tips as well as recipes), in her books and curricula, and at home with her family—to give others the information and tools they need to be proactive, confident, and healthy, too.