Monday, April 18, 2011

Mystery of History, Week 1-ish

If you have stopped by via the Homeschool Round-Up,
I do hope you'll stick around and see what else is here!  Have a blessed day!

We have begun our leisurely stroll through history using Mystery of History, Volume 1.  For those who have followed our Adventures in Living & Learning on my last blog, this may be a slight surprise.  I have tried to work through Story of the World, Volume 1 no less than 3 times, but I always get stuck, and just
And then, Mystery of History showed up.  A friend on Facebook recently asked me why MOH over SOTW.  Two words:
Christian Worldview.
Author Linda Hobar does not mince words:  it’s all about God, from beginning to the end, and everything in between.  She makes sure that the users of her books know full well where she stands.
{and so begins my own little review of MOH, V1}
This is precisely why I chose this book.  While there are many wonderful things and pretty good things about Story of the World, God was absent from the story.  We believe that God authored time and He should be a part of it all.  It saddens me -and my husband hears me go on about this on a regular basis- that we have “church knowledge” and “everywhere else” knowledge.  You know what I’m talking about, right?  A puny example would be geography, specifically names of places.  Names for locations used in the Bible are not all the same as they are now.  In a church setting, we use one set of names, and everywhere else, we use the other.  As a kid, I never connected the two.  Sad, huh?  Like Iraq.  Just a couple weeks ago, it dawned on me the connection of Iraq and biblical locations we had talked about in SOTW!    (oh, dear readers, please don’t leave me for my lack of knowledge!)  Oh, thank goodness I am homeschooled, so my kids can teach me something!  Oh wait….
SA is working on her animals from the Garden of Eden.  Homemade playdough just begs to be eaten, though.  And so it was. 
There are other little bits that I am liking about MOH over SOTW.  I like that I don’t have 8 different activities.  I know full well I don’t have to do them. . . but if you know me, you know that I “need” to do those 8 activities.  MOH has one activity for each age group.  I like that.  And really, I check out upwards of 75 books from the library at a go (I know, I need a 12-step program.), and a fair number of those are history related, so if I am not keen on what is listed in the book, I can find something else.  And with Internet, the options are nearly limitless.. Time, however, is another beast!
Speaking of age groups, another thing I really REALLY like about MOH is the division of ages.  She breaks the activity portion into three age groups, depending maturity and skill.  I like that!  It makes it SO much more usable for the long term for us!
Another perk?  One book!  It can be the downside, too, as it doesn’t “feel” like a real book and is weird on your lap.  But for now, having one book, not 3, is so nice.  Besides, I end up adding my own commentary and telling more than reading anyway, so I’m not sweating it.  I also read from the Bible during our lesson, so I think that balances it all out, don’t you?
Would you like to hear what we did this week?
We began Week 1 (lessons 1-3) during the Weeks of Sickness and Mastitis, so it was MOH Lite to be sure.  I was cozied up in my bed with the girls while I read the lesson.  We talked about things, read from the Bible, and just spent time enjoying one another’s company over this.  The book had us one day 1 make a creation book.  We’ll get to that.  Maybe.  Lesson 1 was creation (hence, the book), Lesson 2 The Creation and Fall of Man, and Lesson 3 was Jubal and Tubal-Cain.
The stories were read, as I said, with a very informal aire, and then I asked the girls to narrate.  MG is good at this.  EK definitely needs to work on listening.  I do move away from CM thoughts on this a bit.  I believe, from experience, that asking them immediately to retell what I just read will elicit some information, yes.  However, when we talk that afternoon, or even the next day, I am much more likely to hear a narration with better understanding and more information, so I don’t sweat it too much in the moment.
As far as activities go, it was super simple. 
The girls – and HR for a couple bits – made these circular booklets about Creation. For them to use permanent markers made the whole thing.  Me?  Let my children use PERMANENT markers?  : )  (below is a set of pictures…I don’t think they are in order, but I am still learning how to use Live Writer!  Thanks for bearing with me!)
The gang (read: the two big girls) also drew themselves (EK drew her whole body, and MG drew her face – she has been working on drawing faces) and titled it “Made in the Image of God”.
Below is the other activity we did: plants and animals in the Garden of Eden.  We have Adam and Eve, a dinosaur, a spider, a tree, grass, a flower, as snail, and a couple inventive designs from the mind of HR. Smile  MG thought to add more, and make a diorama of the Garden of Eden!
(Note: the playdough recipe I always use is the Magic Onions’ Playdough!)
We will do more with writing, map work and a timeline, now that we are all breathing well and not sick. Once we figure out our groove, I will share with you what it is!
I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into our history lessons!

This post is part of the Homeschool Curriculum Review at The Happy Housewife!


  1. Sally,

    Thank you SO much for the insight into MOH. I had been debating what to use with Hope and since we talked I am for sure going with MOH.

    We have been doing Answers in Genesis at church and Ken Ham says the very same thing about relating every subject to the bible. When we seperate the bible from everything else we are not giving our children a christian worldview. How will they ever be able to defend their faith and not fall for ungodly lies unless we teach them the truth in all subject matter?


  2. Great, great post!
    A very detailed review of this and i'm thankful you took the time to do so.

    It looks amazing and the children look like they are enjoying it too.

    I'm not sure I remember what school even looks like, but hopefully soon:)

  3. Thank you for sharing. I have been considering using MOH also. My reasons for looking at MOH were the same as yours, I prefer a biblical approach to history. I also like the fact we can reuse it years later when we cycle back through that time period and do the older projects. I look forward to hearing more about how you use this program.

  4. thanks for the review. I wanted to do MOH this past school year but alas they did not have the volume out that I needed. We've been working through SOTW and I needed volume 4 of MOH. Now my two olders are too old. I'm going to check it out again for my younger one...he's just going into 4th grade so I think it'll be perfect.

  5. It's funny you should post this. I have been thinking of using MOH when we finish our American History. I like it for the same reasons that you stated especially the relating everything to the Bible. My oldest seems very interested in studying it also. I'm glad you posted this. It has helped me solidify my thoughts.

    And Sally, I was literally laughing out loud on the "good thing I homeschool so my kids can teach me something". I pretty much say that all the time too! :0)

  6. I was so excited to read your review - I have been debating between MOH and two similar currics for next year. This does sound very much like what I'm looking for in a history/bible program, and very simple use Your post was very helpful, thank you for sharing!

    Love your crafts, too :)

    And I promise this is my last comment for tonight, lol!

  7. Hey Sally! Thanks for this! I had seen MOH in one of my curriculum books and had wondered about it for a while. This sounds like what we've been looking for!


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