Archive for America
Of course, I took history classes in school. I even knew how to memorize names and dates, pass tests, and make good grades. A love of history was not instilled in me, it was just something I had to learn, to get the credit, to move on.
Of course, I’ve taught history. Well sort of. I admit, it hasn’t always seemed important and I haven’t always made time for it. I had reasoned that it’s not even one of the subjects tested for college entrance, how important could it be. I’ve had hints of it’s value, hearing lingering quotes like Edmund Burke’s,
“Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it.”
My older children and I have had more of an interest in the history of America, over the last few years, as they’ve reached voting age. We’ve dug into books about our founders and Constitutional law, or watched documentaries based on specific periods of time, looking for truth or the answer to a question. We’ve enjoyed sharing what we’ve learned, insights, and conversations.
Until recently, it didn’t occur to me that this is actually how some people teach and learn history. What a wonder! My younger children’s historical education will be vastly different than their older siblings, because Truth Quest History found its way to our home.
But that’s not even the most significant wonder about the TruthQuest History guides. The author, Michelle Miller, completely changed my outlook of history. Yes, as a Christian believer, maybe I should have seen it all along, but she made it clear to me, and now I can make it clear to my children. Learning our history, as mankind, should not just be man’s interaction with man, but man interacting with God. It is HIStory, because He is involved, and without Him there would be no history, because there would be nothing.
There are Christian based, chronological, World History guides available, written for grades 5 – 12, from Creation and The Ancients to the Present (2000.) American History only, is available for the 1st through 5th grades. I started with Age of Revolution: America/Europe, 1600-1800 and what I thought would be more than 300 daunting pages of history.
The author speaks to you, she doesn’t lecture on the topic she’s presenting. She’s conversational and witty. She comments on the story, and sets the stage for the time, people, events, and culture. Always connecting, and reconnecting the historical responses or reactions, the consequences or blessings, in light of one’s belief about God – whether true or untrue. TruthQuest History was written to teach “spiritual cause-and-effect lessons of history which teach Godly wisdom.”
Within the first chapter, I was struck by the truth of this paragraph:
“Don’t ever think spiritual matters are insignificant and only personal or you’ll miss the very hand of God in history! You’ll be blind to the deep beliefs which drive human action and you’ll think history is merely a boring record of famous people, deeds, and dates… History is really about what God is doing in the earth and that’s the most compelling story of all! History is about His truth, which is so powerful that it changes government, law, science, art, economics, literature, and the quality of life for people and their descendants…”
History is important! Throughout time we have all generally asked two questions – Who is God? and Who, then, is mankind? Michelle Miller points to these two questions, that she calls the Big 2 Beliefs, throughout history. Our answers to these questions influence our thoughts and actions, yesterday, today, and I expect, forever.
TruthQuest History is so much more than a curriculum with lists of living books. It does give us structure, but it also bends to that sweet flexibility that I crave. I’m reminded that the abundant resources listed are options for my discretion, not obligations. There is no set schedule of completion. We have the freedom to follow an interest, a particular person or event, much like we’ve done with unit studies, in the past.
A printed guide is $29.95 and each guide is now available in PDF format, for $24.95.
P.O. Box 2128
Traverse City, MI 49685-2128
Online Discussion Loop
May crew mates have had the opportunity to review many of the guides and you’ll find their reviews by clicking the graphic below.
Disclaimer* A copy of this product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog. The opinions expressed are my own.
“Congratulations! Today is your day. You’re off to Great Places! You’re off and away! You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go…”
Where to go? Where to go? How to get there – do you know? Bright Ideas Press has WonderMaps that’ll get you there in a blink and two snaps!
The creative potential just boggles the mind. There’s nearly a map for every thing-a-ma-kind!
This brand new program, available as a download or CD, is a “customizable collection of over 350 different maps.”
60+ maps of the world
60+ maps of the USA
125+ historical maps, including 25 Biblical maps
WonderMaps is teacher, parent and student friendly.
The video below will give you a better idea of all that WonderMaps has to offer –
Bright Ideas Press
P.O. Box 333
Cheswold, DE 19936
877.492.8081 or email – contact@BrightIdeasPress.com
We like it! It’s true! $49.95 – for me or for you. I really must say, though I’d rather not, we found an error on a map, maybe two, maybe more. Made corrections, changed directions, and didn’t keep score. Saint Paul isn’t happy that Minneapolis would dare, to take the title of capital heir. The mappers will fix it, of this I’m quite sure, too much confusion for Minnesotan’s to endure.
Reviews by The Crew, you can read them with ease. Click the banner to see what they think, if you please.
This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog. I also have no affiliation with Dr. Seuss, Seussville, or the Dr. Seuss & Friends Book Club and receive no compensation for references to them. The opinions expressed are my own.
One would think, that having homeschooled my children for as many years as I have I would have already met Bright Ideas Press, but the truth is that our acquaintance is quite new.
As a member of The Old Schoolhouse homeschool crew, I was recently given the opportunity to use and review A Young Scholar’s Guide to Composers, written by Melissa E. Craig and Maggie S. Hogan, and published by Bright Ideas Press.
This is set up as a full year’s curriculum in 32 lessons. It is likely, we will stretch it into 2 year’s. Our house is a Kindergarten-to adult house. We are using A Young Scholar’s Guide to Composers at a more relaxed pace, because we are using it as a family course and including everyone. This tends to lead to longer discussions about each composer, his life and music. It is designed for 4th through 8th grades, but all of us have learned something and want to continue this study.
…Composers, begins with ancient music, moves through the Middle Ages and The Renaissance, then flows into Classical and Modern music. The authors cover composers and their music from The Baroque Period, The Classical Period, The Romantic Period and The Contemporary Period. 26 biographies in all, including the life and times of each composer, from a Christian perspective, as well as appreciation of their music.
There is nearly no teacher prep time and, since I never seem to have enough time in a day, I appreciate the thoroughness of the authors. The only thing not included to complete this study, is the music, but Craig and Hogan have compiled a section of Listening Suggestions with YouTube links that correlate with each composer. Our local library offered many of the suggested selections, too.
You can view sample pages before you decide to purchase this curriculum. I can recommend this investment. $29.95 for the book on CD-Rom or $34.95 for a 298 page paperback. I chose the paperback. I still favor holding a real book in my hands. I did take my nicely bound book to a local printer and had it gently taken apart, and hole-punched. Personally, I would still choose the paperback over the CD-Rom, but I found it inconvenient to copy the student pages from the bound book. I now have easy access, from a three-ring binder, to the note taking and student review pages, time lines & maps, games and detailed coloring sheets.
If you’re still not convinced to look at this curriculum, consider this –
Why even teach an appreciation of Classical music in this age? The website lists these reasons:
- Music is from the Lord. He created it, and He created us with the ability to both make and appreciate music.
- Classical music is uniquely part of our Western civilization.
- Research suggests that both listening to and playing classical music aids brain development.
- Even rudimentary exposure increases one’s level of enjoyment and understanding.
Bright Ideas Press is also the publisher of Illuminations, The Mystery of History (World) volumes 1-3, All American History volumes 1&2, and Christian Kids Explore (Chemistry, Physics, Earth & Space; Biology); Hands-on Geography. These are covered in review by my TOS crew mates.
Bright Ideas Press
P.O. Box 333
Cheswold, DE 19936
This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog. The opinions expressed are my own.
I used to love going on class field trips, when I was in school. I had no idea, though, all of the pre-planning and preparation that went into it before the permission slip was even sent home for my mother’s signature.
As a home educator, the organization and planning of field trips is now my responsibility. Just to take this crew to the lake for a couple of hours, takes nearly 30 minutes to pack and then another half hour to unpack. Beach towels, life jackets, sunscreen, water bottles, volleyball, frisbee, snack, shovels, pails, sifter, blanket or chairs, etc. This is for swimming only; if there is any hiking or fishing planned, well… you can imagine. A day at the zoo… wow!
* Smithsonian National Zoo, Washington, D.C.
My children and I recently visited the Blue Creek Rainforest Reserve of Belize, Central America; Cloud Lake bog in Algonquin Park, Ontario, Canada and five deserts in the southwestern, USA.
I didn’t pack a thing! No bug spray, because there were no mosquitoes. No sunscreen, because there was no overbearing sun or drenching humidity. No umbrella; no rain. No water bottles, because we didn’t get thirsty. No leeches or waterbugs to contend with; yet, we observed them up close and we watched a jaguar, without fear of being pounced upon!
Thanks to Digital Frog International, and their Digital Field Trips on DVD, we were able to explore 3 eco-systems from the comfort and ease of our home. Scientifically sound, virtual reality field trips to the rainforest, the wetlands, and the desert.
We walked the forest floor, climbed trees and sat atop the canopy. We waded through swamps and suffocating mud. We crossed the arid lands of the Sonoran Desert, the Painted Desert and Cattail Falls oasis in Big Bend National Park; the Black Rock Desert and even Death Valley. On our way, we learned about the organisms; plants and animals that inhabit each eco-system.
Digital Field Trips is science at it’s best!
- interactive software
- stunning photographs
- detailed text
- integrated dictionary
- 360^ panoramas
- ambient sound
Try before you buy – download a free limited version at http://www.digitalfrog.com/club/demo_download.html
Call ~ 1-800-621-3764 (international)
Fax ~ 1-(519)-767-9994
Each of my children found these field trips fascinating. My elementary age and pre-reader needed some assistance to navigate the terrain, but my middle school through high school found the trek easy, but fully engaging.
I have no doubt, we will travel with Digital Frog International, time and again.
Many of my crew mates, from The Old Schoolhouse (R) Magazine Homeschool Review Crew, reviewed the 3 disc set, Digital Field Trips. Click below to read their reviews.
This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog. The opinions expressed are my own.
May God bless all those that lost/gave their lives for us, on 9/11/2001 and everyday. May we never take our freedoms for granted.