Tuesday, March 31, 2009

History!!!

So you will probably get tired of me blogging about what is interesting me for next year's curriculum. I guess it's just that time of year! Recently, I've been doing a lot of thinking about history. Should I do a 3 year cycle? A 4 year cycle? It's all very confusing!

Of course, my first source of educated opinions comes from the boards over at The Well Trained Mind. I've been on those boards for about 3 years now! It's an excellent source of information. Of course, lurking on a homeschool board is only going to give you new ideas, new temptations, etc. Lucky for me, when I do lurk...I have specific things I look for. Lately, it's been history.

Today I came across an interesting post that mentioned History Odyssey. I've heard about it, but was never interested since I've been using SOTW. Well, it turns out that History Odyssey uses SOTW as a spine! Not only that, but they also use A Child's History of the World as well as Usborne's Internet Linked Encyclopedia of World History. These are all excellent and I like that they offer different view points.

So my history curriculum research has begun! Here is what I have gathered about PandiaPress's History Odyssey curriculum. These are the main reasons as to why I'm even considering it.
  • The program uses several books as spines. This gives a broader perspective on each topic being discussed. Because you have 3 different books to reference, the need to add additional books from the library is minimized (although you still have a book list to add to the reading if you wish).
  • History is still being taught chronologically, but with a twist. Instead of jumping from country to country, you spend more time on a particular topic before going to the next. For instance, you would study all of ancient Egypt before moving on to ancient China and so forth. This could be good if you want to actually delve into the country without having to worry that you'll be studying something entirely different the following week.
  • The program is heavy on literature, writing, notebooking, outlining, researching, and timelining...especially as you progress through the levels. For me, this is really important so it's a big plus!
  • Lessons are made out for you, so all you have to do is check off assignments as they are completed. This includes which activities are recommended, maps, coloring, readings, etc.
You can always Google History Odyssey and you'll come up with so many sites that offer reviews to this program. I particularly like Cathy Duffy's review. Being Catholic, she made sure to point out that the SOTW volume 2 is the only book with a Protestant slant and all the others are strictly secular.

So there is the latest curriculum review that I'm obsessing about. I'm sure that I'll end up purchasing the e-book version of it just to be able to review it myself without going off of all the wonderful things I hear about it! If you are interested, check it our here. They have a wonderful option where you can actually preview the first 10 lessons for free!!

3 comments:

Juli said...

OK, I don't really want to add more stress and make you tempted in another direction, but if you do like Story of the World, but would like a more Catholic History program then there is RC (Roman Catholic) history. It is chronological like Story of the World. Their website is www.rchistory.com
You may find you like them as well.

Liz said...

Juli-
You don't know me!! LOL! :) I have already looked at, drooled over, and even purchased RC History!! I even correlated it with SOTW. You can look under my history tabs and you'll find my schedule there. I'm not sure if we'll keep using it...especially if we continue with History Odyssey. But I do like the Catholic perspective!

RC History isn't really a spine, as they use a variety of books. They are more like a planner. It tells you what books to use when and in what order. You can't pick it up and read it to your child. I don't have complaints about their program, as they have done the best job in utilizing different resources to create a Catholic history curriculum. But I do wish there was a Catholic history program like SOTW. Something you can just read to your child and not worry about adding in anything else. That would cut down on so much work of putting things together.

Anyways, thanks for adding more ideas to my brain! ;)

Liz

Juli said...

I haven't read through your archives, so I guess I didn't know that. We use Mother of Divine Grace for our history. RC history would be a little too complicated (and expensive for one subject) for me. I just thought you seemed more able to do something like that then I would be able to.