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History with a concentration on the World Wars

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My 13 year old and I are discussing what he wants to do for High School.  He had speech and reading delays.  He is catching up in Math and English.  So, reading History of the Ancient World style books is not going to happen.  It's just too much for him.  But, he does enjoy reading.  


So, I'm trying to come up with a Modern History Course for him.  We do tend to me more relaxed and child led.  So, sorry if that bums you out.  I'm just so happy this kid has had so much progress!!!


Any thoughts?  Books, movies, literature, literature/discussions guides?  I've been making a Rainbow Resource list and have a ton of stuff.  Any suggestions for creating your own course?  Like how many hours would you spend on reading?  How much writing?  I am hoping to make it a History and Literature Credit.  


He is very hands on. Loves to draw. Can learn from videos but doesn't really like to keep looking at online links.  I would prefer to spend money on a resource than use a free online resource.  He has ADHD and going back and forth on the computer just leaves him distracted.  



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I've mentioned here several times that I'm a huge fan of Dan Carlin's Hardcore History podcast. His most recent episodes are available for free on iTunes podcast, and you can purchase previous episodes from his website or on iTunes. These are not your typical 30 minute podcasts. These are more on a par with an audiobook. His series Blueprint for Armageddon, which is about WWI,  is simply amazing.  These are extremely appealing podcasts and might be quite engaging for your son. 


Here is a link to the first of five episodes of that series: 



He also has a recent podcast on the Cuban missile crisis that was fascinating. If you go to his website, he lists many of the books from his research that he quotes during the podcast. You can get some ideas there. He's an extremely engaging speaker, and the amount he packs into podcasts is probably why he's always rated in the top charts for iTunes podcasts. 


I love the WWI period, so if that's something you would like to cover I would suggest The Guns of August by Barbara Tuchman as a possibility for your reading list. 




Not sure if this will link right, but I believe this is the listing for the available iTunes podcast episodes. 


Edited by texasmom33
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HI Oakblossoms!  It's nice to see you!   :seeya:


I would look at Ambleside Online for a ready made list of primary documents / speeches, many with links (possibly year 11?).


Also, we are really enjoying the Albert Marrin books this year.  For WWI, he has The Yanks Are Coming.  He also has books on FDR, Hitler, and Stalin.  Also, though it's not highschool level, the Winston Churchill biography by Quentin Reynolds is enjoyable.  (It's  Landmark, out of print, I think).  


Happy planning! and Congrats to you and him on all his progress!

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I would highly recommend the book Truce when studying WWI.

It's a short book with excellent photographs that highlights the truce that was called on Christmas, 1918. There is a lot of background about the war itself, with tons of primary source material. For me, it's been the best explanation of trench warfare I've read to date.


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My DS did the World Wars for 9th grade history. For spines, we used


A Short History of WW1 (Stokesbury)

DK's Visual WW1

The Second World War (Keegan)

DK's Visual WW2


Side reading was


WW1, The Rest of the Story and How it Affects You

The Guns of August

To the Last Man

The Chosen

The Hiding Place

Albert Marrin's books


For projects, he


watched documentaries

created a map or timeline for each war

visited a museum

completed a creative project

wrote two 1000-word papers


He also did the "Flying Home" art project from Creating a Masterpiece.


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My DS is a military strategy/war buff as well. He has really enjoyed the Great Course lectures: History of the Ancient World (Aldrete) & Great Battles of the Ancient World (Fagan). 

He's read "The Art of War", and we are using a pretty light spine...but it's not in front of me right now..

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This is what my son had in school, a class called Conflicts in  U.S History.  They watched movies, read historical fiction, and wrote papers.  I wish I could remember all of the books they read and movies they watched.  Some of the movies I recall are:   The Patriot and Gone with the Wind.      This was one of my son's favorite classes because it  wasn't reading a textbook and watching documentaries.  There are so many movies about the major wars the U.S. has been in.   



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