The World’s Story 1: The Ancients – A New Book Review Crew at NLPG review

History…possibly the most important subject taught in school. Although mathematics and reading are vital to function in everyday society, history is the story of who we are as a people and how we came to be where we are. Many in the world today are looking to gloss over hard things in history, pretending it never really happened. Some countries even have leadership which denies certain provable and documented aspects of history. We need quality resources like The World’s Story 1: The Ancients by Angela O’Dell from Master Books.
The World's Story 1: The Ancients
The very first year we homeschooled our curriculum covered the story of the Pilgrims in very great detail. This was first grade. It became increasingly apparent to me that I was given a very minimalist view of history, one that did not include the God of this universe. My dad loves history and he supplemented my school learning with wonderful facts and stories. I decided I wanted to teach my children as my dad taught me, with living history. The problem I came across was a lack of God-centric living world history books. The most commonly used world history book in homeschool circles started with evolutionary teaching and put all religions on an equal playing field. We are very open about other religions on our home, but we do not say they are equal and viable options. While I have used this book, and others, I always have had to stop and teach the biblical view of false religions. Yes, it has provided some excellent conversations, but I felt there must be a better way! I was right.

This history book is by far my favorite I have ever read. So much so I’m reading it through for myself first which I honestly don’t do that often! Angela O’Dell writes in a beautifully conversational way, just what those of us who love living history like. Beautifully vibrant art graces nearly every page and delights your eyes. The most important aspect, however, is that the author believes the Bible is the true, historical account of God’s story, preserved by Him through time. She does not shy away from hard things like evolution, ancient mythology, or even the belief some hold onto of early alien visitations! The key to teaching and learning these hard things is to do so with the Bible beside you as your guide. 

One concern I have with some history books which are labeled as Christian is the decided European perspective. They basically center their teachings in the Europe. While European history is important, so are African, Asian, and Ancient American histories. I really love the inclusion of all of these cultures which gives a very different view of what was happening world-wide after the tower of Babel than any other world history book I have viewed. 

This coming fall Grace will dive into world history with me. She will officially be in 3rd grade and we will still be using our core curriculum. The difference from her sisters will be that we have a solid Bible-centered history text to draw from and I can’t wait to dive in with her! 

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the New Book Review Crew at NLPG in exchange for my honest review.  I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.  All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations.

In the Reign of Terror from Heirloom Audio Productions: A TOS Crew Review!

Heirloom Audio Productions

One of our favorite activities is listening to radio dramas. There is something captivating about listening to a story without visual stimuli which captivates a unique portion of our imagination. It is a beautiful form of drama I adore so much I create a radio drama with the homeschool English class for junior high students I teach. Although I have read rave reviews of the company, In the Reign of Terror is our first opportunity to hear a production from Heirloom Audio Productions. We were thrilled to hear the tale from G.A. Henty and it exceeded my expectations!
In the Reign of Terror

The story is set at the start of the French Revolution. I remember reading about this event when I was in high school and I’ve read a few novels with the same setting, but honestly nothing really stuck out in my mind about it. I suppose I equated it with the American Revolution. Through this incredible story I heard more about the horrors of what occurred during this time and realized the two “revolutions” were completely different. My interest is also peeked and I am excited to study further about the French Revolution. 
As you listen to this fabulous drama you will be transported to a time very different from our own. You will feel the fear as the family tries to escape the horrors brought about by those leading the French Revolution. You will anxiously await the fate of the family and earnestly wish you could help them. You may even cry, as I did, at certain moments where bravery in the face of certain peril shines forth. I can’t tell you anymore because I don’t want to spoil it for you!
We listen to a lot of high-quality radio drama from a variety of companies. I was so incredibly impressed with the excellent acting, fabulous sound effects, and incredible music! This is a professionally made drama with well-known actors helping create it and we even recognized some voices from other things we have heard. We were all thoroughly absorbed throughout the story. While we listened the girls colored and drew most of the time. This is a great way to spend time together in the evenings as a family.
One note of caution is to be aware this is a very intense story. My youngest, Grace, is seven. We had been listening for about an hour when she came over to me and asked if she could go into another room. She struggles with nightmares and we are cautious with what she listens to, reads, and watches. I did not think about this being scary for her, but it was very intense. We had not even gotten into the most intense scenes yet, but she was starting to feel nervous. I was happy to allow her to slip out of the room. I say that just to let you know that this is so realistic and emotional that sensitive children may have difficult time listening to it. Both Beth (10) and Rose (11) absolutely loved it and was not bothered by the intensity of the scenes.
A really neat aspect to this production is the availability of a study guide. There is more historical information which I found to be excessively balanced and more informational than what I was taught in traditional schools. Each track has a set of “Listening Well” questions to help students (especially the younger ones) better understand what they are hearing. There are also “Thinking Further” questions that are excellent for older students. Each track also has a set of vocabulary words which may be unfamiliar. The “Expand Your Learning” sections provide even more opportunity to learn about the cultural, social, and political aspects of this time. There are also many other activities to go along with this section to further learning and discussion.There is also a beautifully outlined Bible study available. This could be a great small-group opportunity for youth and would be very unique.
One of my favorite extra resources is the chart comparing the American Revolution and the French Revolution. I was always led to believe they were incredibly similar, but nothing could be further from the truth. This logical chart shows the spectacular differences, many of which are alluded to in the drama.

If you  want to get even more out of your experience, the Live The Adventure Club is a great place to go! Here you can access even more content such as the original e-book, the official sound track, printable posters, and the official script. There are so many wonderful features you can use this as a spring-board for a fabulous unit study.

Check out this incredible preview! 
We can’t wait to hear another production from Heirloom Audio Productions!

Don’t forget to check out what my Crewmates have to say!

In the Reign of Terror {Heirloom Audio Productions Reviews}Crew Disclaimer