Part of our daily learning is scheduled reading of biographies. We have a shelf full of these wonderful living history books and Heroes of History from YWAM Publishing are som e of our favorites! We also greatly enjoy the Christian Heroes: Then & Now series. Grace was very excited to read Heroes of History- Alan Shepherd for her current study. Because the series are written as living history books (telling historical fact in a story-like way) they really feel more like novels than they do history books. Our mostly Charlotte Mason style of learning lends itself to these types of books and really makes learning more meaningful. If you don’t typically include living history books in your studies these are a great place to start! We typically just read and discuss when studying biographies, but this series also includes a Study Guide to further enhance learning. With 108 to choose from you will certainly find someone interesting to read about!
I really like how these books delve into the individual’s childhood. This helps to see what brought them to the point in history for which they are known. It is interesting to read about a famous person’s childhood because many times they are just like our own kids with diverse interests and unique skills, yet children just the same. This type of learning can greatly influence and impact our children as they dream of what they might do one day.
Grace said she really enjoyed this biography and it is one of the few more modern stories we have read. I liked learning about the technological advancements over the years and how they impacted Alan Shepherd.
Grace is 8 and sometimes had trouble finding the information to write down on her study guide. Some of the pages included vital statistics, a timeline, and mapping activities. It was a good way to talk about how to locate information in a book you are reading and how to read for answers. I think this struggle came mostly from not typically completing study guides while reading biographies. I personally prefer to opt out of additional writing activities because we have so many other writing based things going on, but I love that it is an option if we want to use is.
Another idea is to use these books as read a aloud and complete the study and a unit together. We rarely do “together” learning (as my girls call it!) so studying material in this manner is always a treat. This is one of the things I intend to do over the summer when we take a break from our traditional coursework.
We will always highly recommend these studies! If you aren’t sure where to start I would suggest Christian Heroes- Corrie ten Boom, Christian Heroes- C.S. Lewis, Heroes of History- Milton Hershey, or Heroes of History- Clara Barton. Grace had a particular interest in Milton Hershey and Clara Barton because she absolutely adores Hershey’s chocolates and dreams of being a nurse one day! She previously read these titles and enjoyed them so much she was very ready to dive into this book. As with our study, each of these comes with a companion study guide.
Which title would you choose first?