The Classical Historian- Review

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My latest product review comes from The Classical Historian and in all honesty, this has been a very difficult post to write. I am currently homeschooling my five children, who range  in age from 3 to 15 years old. We tend to gravitate towards unschooling and eclectic teaching methods, which is probably why I found this product a bit too structured and overwhelming for us. It just wasn't a good fit for our family. Having said that, I do think that it could be an excellent resource for other homeschooling families! 

One of the products I received for review was the Ancient History Go Fish card game pictured below. I was very surprised to find that this game was intended for ages THREE and up as it seemed to be geared more for older kids than pre-k students.

Click on picture to enlarge.

I tried playing Go Fish with my 3 and 5 year old children, but they quickly lost interest. They did enjoy looking at some of the pictures on the cards,  like the "Pyramids of Giza", "Tipi", and "Stonehenge" but other cards like "Attila the Hun"and "Emperor Qin" actually scared them. The "hints" written on the cards meant nothing to them (and I even had a hard time with a lot of them). They have asked several times to look at the cards, so perhaps in time they will come to be more interested in the game and enjoy learning more about ancient history.

I do love how the Go Fish Game is actually 4 games in 1 and includes instructions for:

1. Go Fish

2. Collect the Cards

3. Chronology

4. Continents 

I was very pleased with the quality of this deck of 50 jumbo cards and in my opinion, they will hold up well. If your child is a visual learner and loves ancient history, I think you might have found a match! 

The Classical Historian carries another ancient history product that I think my younger children might enjoy very much, and that is the Memory Game, available for $14.95.

Right now, the Go Fish and Memory games can be purchased together for $19.99! Great deal!

I also received part of the Classical Historian Ancient Civilizations Curriculum, which is one complete year of study for grades 6-8.

It includes:
    The entire curriculum is available for the purchase price of $168.99.
    To view a curriculum sample, please click here.
    Like I mentioned earlier, I found this curriculum to be too structured for us and not a good fit for the learning style of my children. I do love how the lessons ask questions that involve some in-depth thinking on the part of the student, but a lot of writing is involved as well. 
    Having to go from lesson guide, to DVD, to one book then another was very overwhelming for me. The lessons are very well thought out and I can tell that a lot of time and effort were put into each and every one. The discussion questions and research subjects are excellent and thought provoking. If you like structure, this might just be the curriculum for you!
    The Classical Historian has available reading guides, primary sources, textbooks, and discussion questions for the five specific periods of ancient, medieval, early American, modern world, and modern American history for students in grades 3 and up, including year-long courses for students in grades 6-12.

To learn more about the Socratic teaching method, visit the Mission Statement page. 

Interested in Online Classes for your Junior High student for the 2013-2014 school year? Click here for more information.

Just in time for Independence Day, The Classical Historian is offering a free summer lesson from American Democracy and Economics. 

Find them on Facebook or visit them at to sign up for their monthly newsletter to receive coupons and teaching tips.

To view a video sample of the dvds included in the curriculum, click here.

Apologia: "How Do We Know God is Really There?" Book Review

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Written by: Melissa Cain Travis
Illustrated by: Christopher Voss
ISBN: 978-1-935495-96-3

After taking some time off from my blog and from reviewing products, I was a bit excited (and relieved) that my come-back review would be something from Apologia! They have NEVER disappointed me and I have quite a few of their products on my bookshelf already. 

This time, I had the honor of reviewing "How Do We Know God is Really There?", a wonderful book that is the first of a new series of picture books designed for children as early as pre-readers. If the other books are anything like this one, I think they will do a wonderful job teaching children about the Christian faith with an understanding that can easily be grasped. 
Mr. B looking through the book by himself.
I read "How Do We Know God is Really There?" to my 3 and 5 year old children. I have to say, I was very surprised when they actually let me read the book to them and didn't interrupt every 5 seconds (which, being the inquisitive little souls that they are, is what they normally do). They were an enraptured audience, for sure, as they sat listening to the story of Thomas and his father and how they shared time alone in a tree house that they built together, just talking and watching the skies through a telescope. The relationship between father and son is touching.

Mr. B had many questions at the end of the story, some of which made me laugh. My favorite was, "Momma, can you really drive a race car on the rings of Saturn?" 

The illustrations by Christopher Voss are literally out of this world and pair perfectly with the story written by Melissa Cain Travis. My son's favorite question is "why?", and sometimes, I just don't have the answer. Usually, he will ask me to look it up on my computer because, the answers "Just Because" or even "Because the Bible says so," just doesn't cut it anymore. Travis and Voss do a WONDERFUL job in helping to explain "why" to my curious one and honestly, it is the best explanation I've seen yet. 

The one and only "con" for me is that scripture quotations are from the NIV. While not a huge deal, we do prefer the KJV 1611.

If you are interested in learning more about this book, visit the Apologia website and view sample pages here. This will open a pdf file containing 11 pages.

Find Apologia on FACEBOOK and TWITTER too!