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I am debating between the Mystery of History and The Story of the World to start some world history with my 3rd grader and 4 year old. Can anyone let me know their experiences? I am looking for something that ties in Biblical history, reads like a non-twaddle book, and has added activities.
Thanks, in advance, for any help!
My experience is limited, but I have been reading The Story of The World (Volume 1) with my 3rd grader and 5 year old. They enjoy the added activities (great maps, colouring in activities, word-finds, etc) and I love the supplementary reading list. In fact we are moving at a snail’s pace through the book because when we got to The Jewish People (Chapter 6) we started reading Old Testament Stories and my girls can’t get enough of these….. we’ve been reading old testament stories whenever we can ever since.
I think it is a great example of a living book. The times come alive and are written in an easy-to-understand way that is not patronising at all.
We are not homeschooling yet, but my girls love reading this book and doing its activities when we can.
Hope this helps a little.
Hi Faith ~
We have enjoyed SOW’s activity book for craft ideas, maps, coloring pages, narration ideas etc. However, we were disappointed that it did not tie in very much of biblical history except for only a few chapters. One chapter on the Jewish People, one on the Exodus and one chapter on Jesus and that’s basically it. Because of this we were disappointed. However it sounds like Karas girls have been drawn to Old Testament stories through it – so God can use anything He wishes to bring our children closer to Him. 🙂 We are in the same boat with trying to find something that is from a biblical worldview. I pray that the Lord gives you and your husband wisdom in what would be the best for your family.
Hugs in Christ,
(Wife to Tim for 15 years and Mamma to 3 beautiful blessings)
Thank you, ladies, for your input! That seems to be the concensus when I’ve spoken to anyone. Is Mystery of History too new for anyone to be using it?
P.S. What is your feeling about starting with Book 1 or starting wherever I want?
With the age of your girls I would suggest going light on world history and focus more on biblical history. Some of the things in ancient times get too dark with egyptian and greek gods/godessess etc and might confuse the younger ones-spiritually speaking until they are well gounded in the Word of God. This, however, is just my personal opinion as I’ve learned from experience with my younger son. I would start wherever you and your girls have the most interest at this age. Have fun and enjoy history together. Have you checkout Truthquest History guides by chance? They have great guides for that age. The website is http://www.truthquesthistory.com I’m sorry that I can’t help you with Mystery of History.
Blessings to you 😉
I have the first recommended book from Truthquest which focuses on American History. I thought this was enough, but it seems everyone is also doing World history along with it. We do like the Truthquest very much. Maybe I should get the first World history book as well? Any thoughts, Heather?
If you think doing American History is enough and enjoy it, then why not just camp out there for awhile? 🙂 That is what we did and loved it. It doesn’t matter what “everyone else” is doing, right? The TQ World History, starting at Ancient Egypt/Greece, is more targeted for 5th grade and up. They recommend getting a really firm foundation in creation and early biblical civilizations before you begin. I’m sure you’ve done a lot of Bible study with them but if not that is the perfect place to begin for World History, wouldn’t you say? 🙂 Have you thought of using Simply Charlotte Masons handbook “Genesis through Deuternonomy”? I’m sorry I’m not much help other than that because my experience only goes that far. Anyone else have any suggestions? Blessing to you, Faith.
Can you tell me the age that might be applicable for Truthquest? We are starting w/ SOTW also- and I have many Christian friends that use it- however, after spending much time in the Bible I feel that the ‘world’ part is just not something DS is ready for at the moment. He has a heart for Jesus and wants all the people in the past to come to know him bless his heart!! At this point I just don’t want him to know the whole truth about the falling of mankind..past and present. (He is almost 8 but socially quite behind…autism.) The Truthquest look interesting and will read with him but he will likely pick it up and read thru it himself as well. just trying to gage the reading level.
also- where does one start? I was looking at the various ‘levels’ (I hate choosing which is why i liked SOTW…not much to choose from LOL!) We have been doing world but i see for grades 1-5 you start w/ american…. thoughts??
Here is the guideline on the web site. Here’s what I copied off the site. I really enjoy the Truthquest.
The American History for Young Students guides (three volumes which together cover the scope of American history) were written with elementary students (Grades 1-5) in mind. The commentary is gentler, the issues lighter, the lessons more positive. The wealth of living literature about American history designed for students to enjoy during this ‘window of time’ is phenomenal! You’ll have a rich memory of the books shared together while snuggled on the couch, as well as the dress-up plays the kids create in response! The ThinkWrite™ exercises lead young children to internalize the most foundational understanding of history and God’s active role in it.
These guides are ideal for the majority of young students who best relate to their own national history. They feel connected to pilgrims and pioneers, cowboys and Indians, Pocahontas and Sergeant York, George Washington and George Washington Carver. Your little Kit Carsons and Harriet Tubmans will have such fun! And we’ve gone to great effort to highlight the don’t-miss books, especially those which engage rambunctious boys!
Key lessons of early American history begin with a positive tenor: good things happen when some people seek to obey God. This is a gentle and meaningful place to begin your child in his first connected study of history, even if he has already dabbled in American topics. As the guides progress through American history, and the issues get more involved, the gentleness of approach is measured to the child’s advancing maturity. In fact, “American History for Young Students III: 1865-2000” is actually ideal for Grades 1-6; it offers more than enough meat for older elementary students.
Occasionally, families choose to put older students in the “American History for Young Students” series because they want to easily introduce students new to the topic or to move through American history more quickly. Or, they may want an older sibling to fit in with what the younger children are doing. In any case, the reading recommendations are still helpful because though they are targeted for Grades 1-5, all books which can be read by a fifth-grader are included, and most of those are appropriate for Grades 5-12! Thus, there are rich reading recommendations right at hand for older students, as well.
America History for Young Students I
American History for Young Students II
American History for Young Students III
Can you give me some more personal insight? I did read the website- including some samples. the sample i saw though were just basically book lists- not a bad thhing- but not a ‘spine’ in and of itself. it still recommened CHOW and SOTW. so is this just a list (comprehensive) of books or is there more to it? thanks amyRachel WhiteParticipant
It’s not a spine on it’s own, but there is more to it. There is an intro. by the author of each new section in time. It is a summary, connecting with G-d’s Hand in history. It does give you spines and then individual choices for different grade levels.
I like it because it gives me the freedom to move at the pace our life requires. I don’t like a rigid schedule. At the same time, it gives me a G-d centered guideline w/book suggestions (taking away some work)specifying an anti-Christian bias in a book when necessary, so I stay on track and have the confidence of knowing that what needed to be covered is covered. It provides order w/in a literature based style, without what I would call “bondage” to a schedule. So there is the biblical worldview because I’m choosing the books and the summary is from the same view. Definately twaddle-free. As far as activities, you can check out Dover’s coloring books, go online and print out coloring pages (google the subject). Hands of a Child (www.handsofachild.com/shop/) is a lapbooking company that has many different titles. I’m going to do Explorers at the beginning of Fall and will use the Time Travelers Project packs from Knowledge Quest. A friend of mine used the Colonial one last year and loved the weeks of activities.
They’re at -http://knowledgequestmaps.com/timetravelers.htm
Also, price wise, you can’t beat it. One guide lasts years and is non-consumable. I get all the books I use from the library except my spine book which this year will be from Yesterdays Classics.
Thanks Rachel for the additional info. i am just so drawn to this because I like also to make my own schedule. I ‘can’ do that w/ SOTW and the extra activity guide w/ literature ideas in it- but still it didn’t feel quite ‘right.’ (We did SL for a year and I ended up tearing apart the whole guide because we never did it as planned.) And DS loves books…but not so much the textbooks- even SOTW was too textbooky. but I need a ‘guide’ even w/ the great resources on here to help choose books. I am familiar w/ HOC and will check out the other link. I also did just join the yahoo group for TQ. Thanks again for your thoughtful response.
We’ve used and loved SOTW 1 & 2 so far. When we did SOTW 1 we read a Bible storybook along with it to fill in most of the Biblical history. The author of SOTW says that she left out most of the Biblical history on purpose so that parents could teach it themselves however they liked. My dc have all loved history and SOTW has been part of the reason.
I have tried to like Mystery of History but every time I have paged through it in the bookstore I had to put it back on the shelf as it just wasn’t for us. I also don’t like that the series is not finished yet nor will it be available for the years that I would need it.
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