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kfeusse
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We are winding up our "official school year" and I am on a exhaustive search for a new history series, program, curriculum...whatever for us. We have given SOTW a good try, I think...but my kids just moan when I say we are doing History...and I don't want them to consider history boring, like I did as a kid...so I am looking for something different. SO, please, if you have any ideas for me to explore this summer, I am all ears...I want to use this summer wisely and have it all figured out before fall comes (and as we all know...it will come all too quickly). Some ideas I am exploring are: Child's History of the World, All through the Ages by Christine Miller, Mystery of History Series, Truthquest and Christian Liberty Press. I have also considered just reading Historical Literature to them for a year or so...but I don't know. So if anybody has any pros and cons to any of those, please share. By the way, my kids are 8,7 and 4. Thanks. so much

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We are doing Mystery of History with our 7th and 3rd graders, with our Kindergartener sitting in for some of it. While it says that it can be "tweaked" for younger kids, it is designed for 4th-8th grade, so it might be a little too much for your kids since they are all on the younger end.

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Guest bookwormmama

Have you checked out Sonlight? My kids are ages 8 and 7 and we use Sonlight curriculum for History and they love it. History is their favorite subject here.

Currently, we are doing Core 1 which is the 1st part to a 2 part World History. We will do Core 2 next year and finish up World History along with a great geography program. They have a timeline, great comprehension questions that we don't always use but sometimes we do, also we have read alouds that are great historical fiction. I have always been pleased with the book selections and my kids always beg for "one more chapter". Sonlight is a literature based curriculum and though they will use textbooks at times... such as Child's History of the World this year and next, it is interspersed with great literature.

 

Their website is http://www.sonlight.com .

 

I looked into SOTW a few times and so far it looked boring to me, so I knew my kids wouldn't like it either. We are sticking with Sonlight for history. WE love it.

 

Good luck with your decision.

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Perhaps it would help us if we knew exactly what you dc disliked about SOTW. Too many activities, not enough activities, too many books, not enough books?

 

I second Sonlight. I also really like Winterpromise. I think either would be a great choice. My dd hates A Child's History and MOH is a little "old" for your dc. I'm not familiar with TruthQuest, so I can't help you with that one. All Through the Ages, I believe, is just a list of books per time period.

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Guest bookwormmama

What about Sonlight? I don't know if you have ever checked into Sonlight before but History in my kids' favorite subject and we have used Sonlight going on 4 years now. We are finishing up Core 1 right now which is the 1st part of a 2 part World History program. Next year we will move into Core 2 and finish up World History with a bunch of geography as well and we get to study Vikings, Knights, Medieval Times, etc and they can't wait. We are really into Ancient Greece right now and loving it! I love it too. Basically, Sonlight is literature based learning so there is a lot of reading aloud involved. But it is broken up into chunks and they have historical fiction that goes along with our history spine and it makes things very exciting! right now as we are studying Ancient Greeks we are reading a Greece newspaper article book with news articles as if they were written back in Ancient Greece called "Greek News" and we are reading a book about Greek Myths. I also added in the Magic Tree House book called "Hour at the Olympics" which my kids love. They always beg me to read "one more chapter"! We have a timeline book from Sonlight and we always put famous people and places in the proper place with the stickers that correspond. My kids love this.

Anyways, Sonlight works for us. I have perused SOTW myself and honestly I was bored reading it so I know my kids won't like it. So I am sticking with Sonlight for history for now. :}

 

Good luck with your decision.

Something else you might want to consider is Winter Promise or My Father's World.

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I have been looking at this, too, and wondering if the biblical worldview is totally pervasive? I got the impression from reading posts and their website that it is history through the lens of Christianity. This is not necessarily a problem, I just wanted to clarify from anyone who has used it.

Thanks!

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Story of the World never worked here for us for our eldest. He just didn't like it, even with the activities and extra books. He has *adored* learning American history, however. Just absolutely loved it.

 

We've done all three TruthQuest guides and they worked fine but I wish I had found Heart of Dakota's programs earlier. They use a number of the Christian Liberty Press books, btw. It's all laid out so well and at the same time easy to adjust. There is a lot of info on the website and forums.

 

We'll be doing Bigger Hearts starting next week. It has a biographical approach to American history with a focus on character traits.

 

Here's the website... I'm seeing more and more people using their programs and the ladies at the HOD forum are very, very helpful.

 

Heart of Dakota

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DD loves reading Ancient History books, but I have not attempted to read SOTW to her.

 

She has enjoyed leveled readers and picture books. Good Times Travel Agency Adventures in Ancient Egypt and You Wouldn't Want to Be A Sumerian Slave were the first to spark her interest, and the Usborne Beginners book from Egyptian Kid Kit (she liked the projects too). The Usborne book Who were the Romans was another hit. Those are the favorites that stand out.

 

The unschooling approach to history with the books being strategically placed by me has been working well, and I don't think a curriculum would have.

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If your dc didn't like SOTW there's a big chance they won't like CHOW. Could it be they don't like narrative histories? Would they prefer a workbook, textbook? Some kids like these, believe it or not. Sonlight is a lot of reading aloud as well. How old are your dc?

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I have been looking at this, too, and wondering if the biblical worldview is totally pervasive? I got the impression from reading posts and their website that it is history through the lens of Christianity. This is not necessarily a problem, I just wanted to clarify from anyone who has used it.

Thanks!

 

This question would take me a long time to answer well. Might be a thread hijack? But just this morning, I will say something as I type quickly.

 

There are many types of Christian curriculums. MFW is written by a woman who was a missionary in Russia for 9 years with 6 kids, part of the time in Siberia. Their mission in Russia was simply to get the Bible to people in their own "heart" languages, and let the Bible speak for itself.

 

MFW includes God as if He were, well, part of everything :) Reading & copywork may come from the Bible. Character role models may be missionaries.

 

But MFW presents things honestly. As my pastor once said, if you want to read about real folks with real problems, read the Bible. Lots of mistakes in there. Same with all of human history.

 

I know nothing is unbiased -- even the proverbial two people witnessing the same accident. But I think MFW makes a sincere effort to just present the truth, with all its warts. And to inspire by showing those who succeeded in glorifying God at least in some small way.

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I third HOD programs. We are doing American history with Bigger and overview of history with LHFHG. LHFHG uses CLP books and BIgger uses Eggleston books as spines. Beyond also uses CLP books. Preparing uses CHOW as the spine. CTC uses a variety of living books for the spine, incl the Diana Waring CD's (this is 4th grade +). There is a great variety there and the beauty of HOD is you can substitute something else if what's planned doesn't work (a little harder to substitute history spines but doable).

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I have been looking at this, too, and wondering if the biblical worldview is totally pervasive? I got the impression from reading posts and their website that it is history through the lens of Christianity. This is not necessarily a problem, I just wanted to clarify from anyone who has used it.

Thanks!

I cannot use MFW past the Ancients because I am under the impression that they believe that God controls history. I believe that time and unforeseen occurance along with Satan ruling the world are concepts taught in the scriptures and that seeing God's hand throughout history is not an honest portrayal of God's purposes and personality.

 

I don't know if I am correct in this impression, or if this belief shows up in the curriculum. Maybe someone can clear that up.

Edited by Lovedtodeath
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You sound just like me this year. I finally decided on HOD for history as well. I've heard nothing but good about them.

 

Yep - same here. I let go of the history cycle. (Honestly, at times I felt like a slave to it.) We'll be starting HOD in August and fwiw, she incorporates a lot of Christian Liberty Press titles as well as carefully chosen literature.

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I have a few littles. We have been enjoying reading from Fifty Famous Stories this year. Next year, we are going to do the BF unit study on American History for primary grades. We will mostly be reading the books in the suggested sequence and using the unit study materials for some suggestions.

 

Then we will be using the VP cards and 5-yr chronological study and pull many reading selections from various sources: the Bible, AO's lists, VP, ATTA. We will be looking at maps and making a century book/timeline sort of thing, too, and adding in a few fun crafts/projects here and there.

 

Ou family really enjoys great quality literature and the wonderful "pageant of history," so that's what we will be emphasizing. When reviewing various curriculum/programs, I fear that the programs may detract from the fun and the learning. I don't want to be a slave to a program and lose the forest through the trees.

 

That is my general perspective regarding marketed curriculum. There are some areas where I am more needful of direction, like math and Latin, so I rely more heavily on the curriculum in those subject areas. History, though, is one of those subject areas that, for us, is mostly dependent on what we read. I don't need a big program, just a few helpful organizational tools. Thus, the VP cards with maps and timeline resources.

 

My suggestion is to determine what level of support you need for your family and evaluate curriculum from that perspective.

 

HTH!

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Yep - same here. I let go of the history cycle. (Honestly, at times I felt like a slave to it.) We'll be starting HOD in August and fwiw, she incorporates a lot of Christian Liberty Press titles as well as carefully chosen literature.

 

 

:iagree:

We are using HOD too. We used Sonlight last year, and love it, but I wanted a pace that was a little less intense with a little more "simmer time". HOD seems to be perfect, not too much, not too little.:)

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I know that they say that they teach history providentially, but I don't know how it plays out while using the curriculum.

 

I wonder if you meant to say "they say that they DO NOT teach history providentially"? That is what MFW says. Being as they have lived many years in Russia, they do NOT see the world thru the lens of the US only.

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I cannot use MFW past the Ancients due to their belief that God controls history.

 

I wonder if you meant to say "they say that they DO NOT teach history providentially"? That is what MFW says. Being as they have lived many years in Russia, they do NOT see the world thru the lens of the US only.

 

The belief that God controls history is providential. It has nothing to do with patriotism or the belief in American as God's country. I do know that some take it to mean that. I should have been more clear.

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The belief that God controls history is providential. It has nothing to do with patriotism or the belief in American as God's country. I do know that some take it to mean that. I should have been more clear.

 

But there are differing viewpoints on just what "providential" means. To some, it DOES mean patriotism (of varying degrees), or the belief that America is the New Israel or "God's country". Others can believe in God's providence without believing that America is a specially chosen nation for any special purpose beyond spreading God's Word, just as it should be. So for you to state that MFW does something that they state very clearly they do NOT, according to known differences with some other curriculum providers on this topic, and especially when you haven't used their curriculum in the history years, is an unfair statement. You are giving an inaccurate representation of the facts.

 

For the record, for others who may now be wondering, here are links to MFW's Statement of Faith, as well as their response to the U.S. history/patriotism question:

 

http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1100

 

http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1362

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But there are differing viewpoints on just what "providential" means. To some, it DOES mean patriotism (of varying degrees), or the belief that America is the New Israel or "God's country". Others can believe in God's providence without believing that America is a specially chosen nation for any special purpose beyond spreading God's Word, just as it should be. So for you to state that MFW does something that they state very clearly they do NOT, according to known differences with some other curriculum providers on this topic, and especially when you haven't used their curriculum in the history years, is an unfair statement. You are giving an inaccurate representation of the facts.

 

For the record, for others who may now be wondering, here are links to MFW's Statement of Faith, as well as their response to the U.S. history/patriotism question:

 

http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1100

 

http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1362

 

Thanks for trying to clear it up. So does MFW take the stance that God has controlled history or not? I thought that they emphasized how "God has had a hand in history". I could be wrong, since I cannot find it now and I do have a fuzzy memory. Those links didn't help with this in particular.

Edited by Lovedtodeath
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Donna-I think lovedtodeath's warning is fair. I'm largely Native American (my grandmother was chief of our tribe) and I steer clear of any history program that uses any form of Manifest Destiny.

 

But Manifest Destiny has to do with the U.S. right? And that is what MFW is claiming they do not do.

 

So are you saying that they use some resources that teach this, though their overall worlview is not that of America being chosen by God?

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But Manifest Destiny has to do with the U.S. right? And that is what MFW is claiming they do not do.

 

So are you saying that they use some resources that teach this, though their overall worlview is not that of America being chosen by God?

 

I haven't used the program in question so I cannot speak to that.

 

However, to *me* the idea that God *actively controls* history and everything done on earth is His will more or less equals manifest destiny.

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But Manifest Destiny has to do with the U.S. right? And that is what MFW is claiming they do not do.

 

Manifest Destiny? MFW does NOT teach manifest destiny. Period.

 

So are you saying that they use some resources that teach this, though their overall worlview is not that of America being chosen by God?
That is correct.

 

If one reads through those links I gave, as well as this one discussing the teachings of multi-ethnicity and various books used in the curriculum that come from differing perspectives (Reformed, Baptist, secular, non-specific), one may begin to understand that their overall worldview is NOT that America was chosen by God *specifically* or *specially*.

 

http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?t=3203

 

Carmen, I'm not trying to convince you that MFW is the right curriculum for you. I'm simply saying that you're inaccurately defining a curriculum which you haven't used for in-depth history in such a way that implies you know what they're teaching within the curriculum. The thing is, I remember a former discussion that you and I have had in the past, and I know we are not going to agree on this. I think that comes not only from a difference in how we define "providence", but a difference in our beliefs about the basic tenets of Christianity in general. Obviously, if we believe different things about who Christ is/was, we are NOT going to agree about just how "involved" God was or wasn't involved in the founding of America. Therefore, I think we need to just agree to disagree on this and let it go. ;)

 

I've provided several links for other readers to follow if they're interested in getting more explanation from actual users of the curriculum, as well as from the author/owners themselves.

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The thing is, I remember a former discussion that you and I have had in the past, and I know we are not going to agree on this. I think that comes not only from a difference in how we define "providence", but a difference in our beliefs about the basic tenets of Christianity in general. Obviously, if we believe different things about who Christ is/was, we are NOT going to agree about just how "involved" God was or wasn't involved in the founding of America. Therefore, I think we need to just agree to disagree on this and let it go. ;)

 

I think she is asking: do the authors of the curriculum believe everything in history is according to God's will and/or that history is controlled by God? I don't think she's soliciting personal opinions or trying to influence anyone in their opinion on that matter. But it is an important question for people, either way.

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I need to go back and edit, don't I! DUH! Will do!

 

So can anyone answer my question/ correct my belief?? (Thanks Mrs. Mungo.)

 

Sorry, I thought I already did that. NO, MFW does not teach manifest destiny.

 

Again, I provided several links for anyone who's interested to read numerous discussions amongst both users and the author/owners of the curriculum as to what their beliefs are and what they teach with respect to the position of America.

 

The question regarding MFW's view of America has been answered. If one reads those discussions I linked, one will see that MFW doesn't get into discussions of personal doctrinal differences. Users of MFW come from many different denominational backgrounds.... Even the staff within the MFW company don't all come from the same denominational background.

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The belief that God controls history is providential. It has nothing to do with patriotism or the belief in American as God's country.

 

Carmen, this is a curriculum board and not a theology board. As far as I know, all American curriculums that declare themselves "providential" have to do with America. If you know of others, I'd have to know their names.

 

I thought that they emphasized how "God has had a hand in history". I could be wrong, since I cannot find it now and I do have a fuzzy memory. Those links didn't help with this in particular.

 

If the links that Donna gave don't help, it must be because you are searching for a denominational statement. Yet MFW tries NOT to take a denominational view. As Bible translators, their goal is to get the Word into the hands of all of God's children.

 

Of course, it's impossible to say ANYthing is totally unbiased, but that can still be their GOAL, including piontedly avoiding anything that might cause division between Christians. MFW schedules the Bible, they do not schedule their own interpretation of such.

 

:banghead: I am not talking about America. Does MFW teach that God has a hand in history of .... the Middle Ages for example??

 

You would have to state your particular brand of theology that you are driving at here. Yes, MFW believes the history of the world is the history of God's plan to redeem man following the fall of man. It is also the story of man's failure to follow God's plan, IMHO. But there is no book written by MFW. There isn't even a specific Bible translation that MFW requires. As far as the books they gather together and schedule for you to read, to me, there is quite a good balance in the materials. You will rarely read from just one source - which is the only way to do history, IMHO :001_smile:

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Okay, so what I am getting is that MFW schedules books and stays out of any commentary on them. That is why my statement/question seems ridiculous?

 

Well, no question is ridiculous :) but maybe that's why the repeats after several folks tried to answer didn't make sense? Whew, this cybertalk is hard sometimes.

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I have heard of several flavors of Providential history.

 

The most extreme one that I am aware of says that God controls all history bit by tiny bit, and that He picked the USA to be His new implement to set an example of Godliness on earth and to be the dominant force for good in the world. So, it would then follow that Manifest Destiny is God's will and that America's rise to power is God's specific design and will. It would also follow that a lot of the events in our history were designed by God specifically to purify us or to purify the world.

 

Carmen, are you asking whether MFW is like this?

 

I have never seen MFW, so I don't have any idea. And I have not followed the links, I'm just trying to clarify the question.

 

BTW, for the record, I am uncomfortable with history taught as above. I believe God can and does act in history, but am reluctant to say exactly when He has done so, unless it's stated in the actual Bible. Just for the record, not wanting to debate this. Don't mean to hijack the thread, but would be sorry if the first paragraph I wrote, above, was interpreted as my opinion when it's not.

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BTW, for the record, I am uncomfortable with history taught as above. I believe God can and does act in history, but am reluctant to say exactly when He has done so, unless it's stated in the actual Bible. Just for the record, not wanting to debate this. Don't mean to hijack the thread, but would be sorry if the first paragraph I wrote, above, was interpreted as my opinion when it's not.
:iagree:If MFW were to stray from the above, then it would be a problem.
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Guest sagerfam

Hi - I'm looking to switch history curriculums next year so I'm researching. My 2 girls will be 1st & 3rd grade. We are finishing up Adventures in My Father's World. It has been ok, but I'm looking into Sonlight or Veritas Press. I thought I was sold on Sonlight but then I got the Veritas catalog today. The more I look, the more confused I get! What do you all think of Veritas? Can I jump in...should I start with the 2nd grade material since it's OT/AE? Will this work with my 3rd grader? Can anyone compare the 2 curriculums - the good, the bad, the ugly?? My girls LOVE books by the way - both look heavy on good books which is great. I was going to go with SL Core 1, but i'm not thrilled with the Usborne that we've used thus far and it appears to have several Usborne books. HELP!!!!!

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I'd almost certainly decided on Sonlight for the long term when I got the Veritas catalog as well! I've decided on Veritas because it has a little more of a classical bent to it in terms of chronology of history. That being said, I really want to do Sonlight Core 3 and 4. Grrr. I love both Veritas Press and Sonlight, but will probably go with Veritas Press and supplement read alouds from Sonlight, since overall I like VP better. I like the idea of singing songs to remember history, and the fine art cards, too.

 

I've heard that the program can be as full as you want it, or just the cards, so it's very *tweakable* :D VP also *looks* like it has more literature than Sonlight, overall, too.

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