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Can an 8th grader use Notgrass American History?

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Just wondering if someone used or is using Notgrass American History for gr 8. I won't be using the literature books but instead will be using the books that goes with Sonlight Core 100. This is for my rising 8th grader soon to be 13 ds.


Or BJU American Republic +DVD or Boorstin's History of US?


I appreciate any input.





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We used it in 10th for our son, who was at that time a really slow reader. The thing I like about Notgrass is that the text is a pretty easy read while the original documents are tougher. So, for us this worked well in that he got the core information from the text and then was challenged to read the more advanced material. We did not use the bible or lit portions of the course. We did add in the lecture series from the Teaching Company, The History of the United States 2nd Ed. While these are college profs lecturing, they are so passionate about their subjects that I think even a bright 8th grader could enjoy them.


I've also heard some folks recommend starting with Notgrass World History if you wanted to start a little younger. The readings for it are not supposed to be as intensive as those for American History.


BJU is supposed to be a good course, but I've also heard it can be a bit more boring and is very text-bookish. The Notgrass stuff is said to be a more enjoyable read.



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Thank you Sharon for taking the time to respond. I can't fathom ds sometimes but when I got a hold of a cheap copy of Notgrass' Exploring Government, he made it his bedtime reading for sometime. This was when he was into polical structure, government and cartoons. His interest since waned and disappeared but that's where I got the idea that he may be able to use the Exploring Government as a text but supplemented with Core 100 readers.


Thanks for the heads up on BJU American Republic. I think I will pass on this option for now and glad that that's out of the way because it will save me money. I also thought of Hakim's History of US but he already went through vols. 1-5 two years ago.


So many choices out there but the thought of eight grade being the last year before he goes into high school made me a little bit more cautious in my choices. This is the first time I'm actually planning in detail with prereading books, thinking how to throw in books, movies, and writing paper into the fold.


As always, I'm so thankful for the collective wisdom of dedicated moms in this board.


Thanks so much.


By the way, this is the response I got from Notgrass when I inquired of the same question:


Thank you for writing. We designed Exploring America

for high school students, so it deals with some mature

topics and requires some advanced thinking. If you want

to use it as a spine and supplement with other

literature, I think that will work okay. However, I

think you child would benefit more from our course by

waiting a year or two and doing the whole

program--text, original documents, literature, and

writing assignments.


I'm sorry that we don't have a better recommendation

for 8th graders. Mom is currently working on a middle

school American history course, but it looks like it

won't be ready in time for this child. :-)




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