Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Mystery of History: Vol. 1

Last year we used The Mystery of History for the very first time. Isabelle and I both fell in love with this book and its approach to history. While I have always been a fan of history, this book really opened my eyes to many new things that had never occurred to me before. I think it would be safe to say that I probably learned as much last year as Isabelle.

I think Isabelle was instantly smitten when she heard about the timeline we would be working on every week. Then, when she heard that each day also included an activity, she was over the moon. As a child that really loves and learns best with hands-on projects, this was a perfect match for her.

We both really enjoyed the way Linda Hobar writes. She makes history seem familiar and understandable, even for an 8 year old. I am impressed with her ability to write in a way that neither talks down to nor above her readers. Because each book is meant to be read three times, she really had to make it relatable for all age levels, and she did that remarkably well.

I am excited with the prospect of being able to use this book (and the other two in the series)with all the children at the same time. After each days lesson, there are several activities listed for each age group - younger, middle, and older students. There are also lists of additional resources and book suggestions in the back of the book that are age-specific, which will make it that much easier when we are all learning together. The geography and time-line sections that coordinate with each week's lessons are also easily adaptable to all ages.

My style of learning is very different than Isabelle's in that I've always been a take notes, copy everything down, kind of girl. And you know what? That is part of MOH too! Each week there are memory cards to be written out based on the three lessons from that week. There is also a follow-up quiz/activity each week.

I honestly just can't say enough about this program, and I'm excited to get our supplies for next year so that I can start reading through Vol. 2. You can read more about The Mystery of History on their website.


A Grammatical Disclaimer

I freely admit to consistently using improper grammar in the following areas:
1. I like run-on sentences.
2. I have a tendency to end sentences with a pronoun. (I really do. I can't help it.)
3. I always seem to use passive voice in my sentences. (See?)

I've been trying to break this habit, unsuccessfully, for years, so now I just accept that as my writing style, and since I'm not writing for grades anymore, I embrace it. (Again, see?)

Hence, I invoke Blogger Artistic License for this blog!

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