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Janie

Questions about Worldview curriculum for logic stage (X-post)

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What are your choices for teaching worldviews in logic stage?

 

I am looking for a excellent, solid curriculum that combines the study of Bible with worldviews in logic stage.

 

Our school teaches worldviews/Bible in high school using Understanding the Times and we want to explore doing the same thing for logic stage.

 

Those of you familiar with Understanding the Times.....is there a "junior" version?

 

Thanks!

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Short answer:

Lightbearers, a worldview program for 8th grade, put out by Summit Ministeries.

See it at: http://www.summit.org/store/home.php?cat=71'>http://www.summit.org/store/home.php?cat=71'>http://www.summit.org/store/home.php?cat=71'>http://www.summit.org/store/home.php?cat=71

 

Long answer:

In general, I think middle schoolers are still developing those questioning skills (logic stage), and haven't quite begun to develop the analyzing / comparing / formulating conclusion skills (rhetoric stage) needed to reach the complex understandings needed for learning about worldviews. HOWEVER, I think there are some worldview materials out there that you could adapt for use with middle schoolers. And there are definitely some materials you could use to help middle schoolers develop the mental "tools" that will help them better tackle wordviews, such as logic, analysis of theme, exposure to facts about other religions and cultures, and especially, a good foundation of Christian tenets and Biblical truths (so they will have something solid for comparing worldviews). Below are some ideas for resources. BEST of luck! Warmly, Lori D.

 

 

 

FOUNDATIONS OF CHRISTIANITY

I imagine your school already has a Bible foundations class in place, but here are a few titles that *may* work for middle school:

- Know What You Believe (Paul Little)

- Know Why You Believe (Paul Little)

 

These are more at an adult level, but might be workable:

- Mere Christianity (CS Lewis)

- More Than a Carpenter (Josh McDowell)

- Evidence That Demads a Verdict (Josh McDowell)

- The Case for Christ (Lee Strobel)

- Christian Life (Sinclair Ferguson)

- The God Who is There (Francis Schaeffer)

 

 

 

COMPARATIVE RELIGIONS

Understanding the founding of, the history, and the basic practices of other major world religions is very important in being able to compare worldviews -- what practices stem from what beliefs. Also, it's a very good idea to see how those religious practices work out in the reality of everyday life by also studying some of the cultures, since hinduism, buddhism and islam especially intertwine the religious beliefs with the everyday social and political practices. We found this secular resource to be helpful by showing how the religion was founded, its history, key figures, major sects, major beliefs / rites / ceremonies. These are geared for middle school:

 

- Milliken book series, The World's Great Religions, "Inside ..." (Hindusim, Buddhism, Islam, Judaism, Christianity)

see the series at: http://rainbowresource.com/prodlist.php?sid=1235240471-248731&subject=13&category=3677

 

A series of brief pamphlets comparing Christianity with other beliefs is put out by Rose Publishing. Here are some titles you may find helpful (along with the item # for the Rainbow Resource catalog):

 

- Worldviews Comparison Pamphlet -- Item #: 029439

- 10 Questions & Answers on Atheism & Agnosticism Pamphlet -- Item #: 040937

- Answers to Evolution Pamphlet -- Item #: 033895

- Creation & Evolution Pamphlet -- Item #: 017371

- Christianity & Eastern Religions Pamphlet -- Item #: 029389

- Christianity, Cults & Religions Pamphlet -- Item #: 017370

- Islam & Christianity Pamphlet -- Item #: 033899

- Essential Doctrine Made Easy Pamphlet -- Item #: 029393

- Why Trust the Bible? Pamphlet -- Item #: 039583

 

 

 

LOGIC

Basic introduction to logic, especially in spotting fallacies, and seeing the logic conclusion of choices or statements is a great thing to develop in middle school. Looking at/discussing ads and commercials is a great way to find fallacies, or determine how companies use one thing ("sex", "good feelings", "freedom" to sell their product, by visually implying that purchase of their product will lead to the other). Two gentle Christian resources designed for middle school:

 

- Thinking Toolbox

- Fallacy Detective

 

 

 

ANALYZING LITERATURE AND FILM

Seeing underlying themes (an author's worldview), and predicting the outcome/consequences of a character's choices are very helpful in understanding how worldview plays out in everyday life. Worldview Academy instructors Jeff Baldwin and Mark Bertrand have written a number of literature studies based on worldview and comparing to Christian worldview. Though written for high school, some of the works could be done in middle school:

 

- The Great Books = http://www.thegreatbooks.com/index

 

Progeny Press guides are also from a Christian perspective, and while not as specifically based around concepts of worldview, usually have some good questions to get students comparing the work with Biblical, Scriptural truths.

 

- Progeny Press = http://www.progenypress.com/

 

I've not yet found a good film analysis resource, especially regarding worldview, but below is a homeschool curriculum on analyzing film as literature, plus Christianity Today which puts out a free weekly email newsletter called "CT at the Movies," with reviews of films by Christian film reviewers (usually with a few worldview type questions at the end), plus links to other resources, such as articles on film by Christians.

 

- Movies as Literature (by Katheryn Stout)

- CT at the Movies = http://www.christianitytoday.com/movies/

 

 

 

WORLDVIEW MATERIALS

I've listed what I think would be potentially accessible for middleschoolers. Most are available through Rainbow Resource. If not, then I've tried to include a website. You can also browse the materials available through Worldview Academy and Summit Ministries, both Christian worldview resources for high school students/adults

 

Worldview Academy = http://www.worldview.org/

Summit Ministries = http://www.summit.org/store/

 

Books

- How To Be Your Own Selfish Pig (Susan Schaeffer Macaulay)

- Seven Men Who Rule From the Grave (David Breese)

- The Deadliest Monster: Introduction to Worldviews (Jeff Baldwin)

 

Teaching DVDs

- Worldview Academy lectures on DVD = http://www.worldview.org/bookstoremedia.html

(WVA is a week-long summer camp for students ages 13 and up, so much of this material would be accessible to older middle school students.)

 

- The Truth Project = http://www.thetruthproject.org/

(Our church home group just did this adults and kids together, and even the 5th/6th graders really grasped much of the material and had great comments to add to the discussion -- a very worthwhile series!)

 

Bible Study Answering Worldview Questions

- Answers for Difficult Days (David Quine)

 

Worldview Curriculum

- Transforming Your Worldview: Thinking Like a Christian

(See it at Rainbow Resource:

Course = Item #: 016075

Student Journal = Item #: 020592

Textbook with Teacher Manual = Item #: 020593

DVD = Item #021584)

Introduction to philosophy/worldview from a Biblical worldview, for the high school student who has not studied this subject before: history of philosophy, epistemology, the philosophy of science, ethics, political philosophy, comparative religions, apologetics and the philosophy of culture. Each chapter is designed for a five-day week, thus completing the book in 18 weeks, with each day having approximately ten study and review questions.

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Wow, Lori D!!

 

I really appreciate your answer. You gave great thought to this. I agree about logic stage students' abilities of analysis are just barely beginning. Good point.

 

I believe I've got Transforming Your Worldview stuffed in one of my bookshelves.

 

I've not yet found a good film analysis resource, especially regarding worldview....

Are you acquainted with Hollywood Worldviews by Brian Godawa? This book delves into some of the major films in the past decade to examine its worldview. I heard Godawa speak at the Society of Classical Learning conference a couple of years ago.

 

Also, The Universe Next Door by James Sire is an excellent high school text. When my own kids were still under my home education direction, I cobbled together a worldview course using Sire's book, plus his book How to Read Slowly.

 

Thanks again, Lori, for such a thoughtful post!

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Short answer:

Lightbearers, a worldview program for 8th grade, put out by Summit Ministeries.

See it at: http://www.summit.org/store/home.php?cat=71

 

Long answer:

In general, I think middle schoolers are still developing those questioning skills (logic stage), and haven't quite begun to develop the analyzing / comparing / formulating conclusion skills (rhetoric stage) needed to reach the complex understandings needed for learning about worldviews. HOWEVER, I think there are some worldview materials out there that you could adapt for use with middle schoolers. And there are definitely some materials you could use to help middle schoolers develop the mental "tools" that will help them better tackle wordviews, such as logic, analysis of theme, exposure to facts about other religions and cultures, and especially, a good foundation of Christian tenets and Biblical truths (so they will have something solid for comparing worldviews).

 

 

We have been working through Lightbearers this year with my daughter (grade 7) and her friend (grade 8). Lightbearers is designed for this age of student. The material presented and the level of questions have all been more than appropriate for the age level. I am very impressed with the amount of information they give to students and with the assignments given. Out of everything we have done this year, our Lightbearers co-op has been the most valuable.

 

I think it's really important to present this kind of information to kids at this age so that they are constantly questioning. It equips them to recognize other worldviews, to see where other religions fit into these and to see how other worldviews influence law, politics, etc. I feel like my daughter now has her eyes open when she watches a movie or hears a talk at a museum. It has helped her develop thinking skills and the ability to question.

 

Sarah

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We used How to be Your Own Selfish Pig earlier this year. It is definitely workable for logic stage students. I have a study guide that goes along with the program (someone on this board sent it to me) if you decide to use this book.

 

We have also used the World View film series from http://www.worldview.org/ with mixed ages and all found them entertaining and useful.

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I am starting this book with my older kids and I read that you have a study guide. Is there any way I could receive this from you or that I could pay you for a copy of it?

Thanks for your consideration,

Carol Schneider

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We just did the Brimwood Press Worldview study and liked it. Short (4 lessons), hands-on, relatively simple but lots of fodder for thought and family discussion, just enough for us.

 

Nancy in NC

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Lightbearers (published by Summit Ministries) is a great worldview course for both junior high and high school. However, it is designed for group study.

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Lightbearers looks excellent but it's rather expensive. Did you really pay nearly $400 for this?

 

We did. Dh and I are teaching it to a group of 8 boys. We bought the Christian school version so we could have the DVDs that play on a TV.

 

There is a homeschool version with CDs that you can use on a computer that is quite a bit less.

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The homeschool curriculum for Lightbearers is only $125, which is an excellent price for everything you get. Same is true of the homeschool version of Understanding the Times.

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The homeschool curriculum for Lightbearers is only $125, which is an excellent price for everything you get. Same is true of the homeschool version of Understanding the Times.

 

Hey, hey, hey! Howdya end up here? Or have you been lurking for years and I never knew? You know a Jacksonville Lisa who used to live in Tallahasee, right?! :001_smile:

 

Hope all are well in your family. Good to see you here!

Lisa

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Piggybacking here.....

 

Our very small co-op at our church would like to do worldview as one of our courses for our older students. We have two groups that we would like to do this with, 5th-7th graders and then 8th-12th graders. The divisions are being made this way to keep the number students per class fairly equal.

 

Do you think we could use Lightbearers with our 5th-7th graders? We would have teachers gearing the conversation, can it be done? Also, do you think that Lightbearers will introduce topics that will be too much for the young minds? We surely do not want to harm their innocence.

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Since Lightbearers and Starting Points have both been mentioned for worldview curricula, could someone compare the two? From looking at them, it seems that Lightbearers focuses more one moral/ethical issues where Starting Points looks more literature based. Is that a correct assumption? Would there be too much overlap if students used both courses at different times?

 

I'm trying to construct our long term plan right now with the plan to begin Building on the Rock followed by Lightbearers for our Bible/Worldview studies and then transition to Starting Points and World Views of the Western World for high school. Any thoughts on that plan are appreciated as well.

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Since Lightbearers and Starting Points have both been mentioned for worldview curricula, could someone compare the two? From looking at them, it seems that Lightbearers focuses more one moral/ethical issues where Starting Points looks more literature based. Is that a correct assumption? Would there be too much overlap if students used both courses at different times?

 

I'm trying to construct our long term plan right now with the plan to begin Building on the Rock followed by Lightbearers for our Bible/Worldview studies and then transition to Starting Points and World Views of the Western World for high school. Any thoughts on that plan are appreciated as well.

 

 

I have not used Lighbearers, but my 9th ds is going through SP right now. It is not all literature based. We spent the first nine weeks doing Bible study and reading books like "Know What you Beleive", and "Know Why you Beleive". There are major writing assignments throughout the syllabus, so the first nine weeks is learning to understand what your own worldview is. Then the next nine weeks is literature based reading mainly C.S. Lewis, then you move into watching two movies worldviewishly. the last nine weeks is a study of the beginnings of our country from a Christian worldview. They suggest you give 1 credit for english, 1 credit for Bible/Philosophy, and 1 for US History. I feel like these are quite generous. We may not even do the history portion.

I have loved the program, but ended up buying hte IEW writing lessons to accompany it because there just wasn't enough writing direction for my ds. So we do the lessons in SP up until a writing assingment comes up and then we switch over to the IEW instructions for that lesson.

 

I would recommend this program.

HTH

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I have not used Lighbearers, but my 9th ds is going through SP right now. It is not all literature based. We spent the first nine weeks doing Bible study and reading books like "Know What you Beleive", and "Know Why you Beleive". There are major writing assignments throughout the syllabus, so the first nine weeks is learning to understand what your own worldview is. Then the next nine weeks is literature based reading mainly C.S. Lewis, then you move into watching two movies worldviewishly. the last nine weeks is a study of the beginnings of our country from a Christian worldview. They suggest you give 1 credit for english, 1 credit for Bible/Philosophy, and 1 for US History. I feel like these are quite generous. We may not even do the history portion.

I have loved the program, but ended up buying hte IEW writing lessons to accompany it because there just wasn't enough writing direction for my ds. So we do the lessons in SP up until a writing assingment comes up and then we switch over to the IEW instructions for that lesson.

 

I would recommend this program.

HTH

 

 

:iagree:My dh is leading a group of boys through SP this year and it's been great! I, too, recommend the IEW supplement; it's very helpful.

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I, too, recommend the IEW supplement; it's very helpful.

 

Is there a specific Starting Points supplement, or are you just talking about IEW in general? If so, can you use that supplement independent of the IEW program, or do you have to buy the whole thing?

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Is there a specific Starting Points supplement, or are you just talking about IEW in general? If so, can you use that supplement independent of the IEW program, or do you have to buy the whole thing?

 

It is a specific supplement. It can definitely be used independently of the whole program, but it would be helpful if you had a general understanding of IEW's system (i.e. dress ups, banned words, etc.).

 

HTH!

 

http://www.excellenceinwriting.com/SPB

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Cornerstone is having a sale and 15% off right now. I just ordered the Starting Points complete set:

 

Until March 1, there is a 15% sale. Promotion Code: thankyou15

 

From March 1 to April 1, there is a 10% sale. Promotion Code:

thankyou10

 

From April 1 to May 1, there is a 5% sale. Promotion Code: thankyou5

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However, it's a little too open ended for me, and as others have said, it seems like it would take up a great deal of time but not be really adequate for history and writing.

 

So I decided to go with the Contemporary Issues curriculum from the Voyages series from Concordia Publishing House. This is intended for 8th grade. I asked our experienced high school youth teacher at my church what he thought of it as well, and he really liked it.

 

CI is not as integrated, so we can continue with Spielvogel for history, and our various writing instruction approaches. DD has already done their one semester survey called 'Church History', which was a great follow on to her studies of world history over the years. So now we are taking up controversial social issues with a strong Biblical framework, and I think that for us, this is better. I get wistful over SP sometimes, but I would tweak it a lot, and CI I just plain agree with completely. It's more specific as well, which I think is helpful at this age, at least for my daughter.

 

I believe that it's intended as the last semester religion curriculum for students who are leaving parochial school to enter public high school the next year, so it's the 'now we are going to prepare you for what you'll be hearing about in the secular world' study. That's exactly what I want.

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