I had never had any experience with materials from YWAM Publishing, but when I saw what was being offered as a possible review, I really wanted to give this one a try.
I was curious as to what YWAM stood for, and before I had the chance to find out, my husband (who puts all of my review deadlines into my phone calendar with reminders for me) looked it up.
We were given the choice between HEROES OF HISTORY George Washington: True Patriot
along with the Heroes of History Unit Study Curriculum Guide: George Washington to go with it . . .
After taking a look at the descriptions for both, I decided that George Washington would be the best choice in our family, for a variety of reasons. First, we have been studying early American, and also, because my kids are very interested in the period covered by this book because of some other things they have been doing.
I received this book as a pdf download, along with the curriculum unit study guide, which came as two separate pdf downloads. The book is available as a paperback, for the current price of $6.99 (regularly $$8.99), and the curriculum unit study guide for $7.49 (regularly $9.99). The book HEROES OF HISTORY: George Washington: True Patriot is also available in a Kindle edition, a Nook edition, and as an audiobook edition.
You may click here for a sample of the unit study curriculum guide.
We received both the book and the curriculum unit study guide in pdf format, and have been using the book as a read-aloud. It is actually amazing to me (though it really ought not to be!) how much even I have been learning (especially about George Washington’s early life) while we have been reading this book together! I have read a great deal of it to my kids, but some of them have taken turns at the reading as well, including my reluctant reader, “Mr. Loquacious”, who actually ASKED to have a turn after listening to “The Puzzler” read for a bit, lol!
Here is “Mr. Loquacious” reading a portion from the book . . .
Here is “The Puzzler” reading some of the book . . .
The Curriculum Unit Study Guide came in two parts. First, there was a four page download with a fact sheet, two outline maps and a timeline, and second, a 64 page unit study guide with a good number of possible activities which included things like:
Key Quotes (for copy work or memorization), but which WE used orally, to get discussions going.
Ideas for doing a display corner (this was not a good fit for us, but would be great in a class room, or for a family with access to artifacts having to do with this story)
Student Explorations, which included things like essay questions, creative writing, hands on projects, audio/visual projects, and arts & crafts projects.
There is also a section called Community Links, with suggestions for field trips and other resources, such as having a guest speaker come into a classroom.
There is also a Social Studies section in the study guide, with suggestions for incorporation social studies using the five different categories given:
Places . . . covering significant places related to the story and mentioned in the book
Terms/vocabulary . . . ideas for studying some of the terms used in the book
Geographical characteristics . . . suggestions for mapping some of the physical characteristics of places where George Washington lived
Timeline . . . so the students can, if they like, choose to research the time period in which George Washington lived
Conceptual questions . . . that a teacher (or parent) can use to have their students write a paragraph or two in response to a given question, present an oral report, or discuss the question as a group.
Related themes to explore (to make this into a cross-curriculum study)
Culminating events (which we have yet to attempt)
There is also an appendix listing many additional books and resources, and an appendix which gives the answers to the chapter questions.
As we generally do, because of the various special needs in my group, we did these things orally. I was surprised (and very pleased!) at how enthusiastically my boys got into answering the chapter questions and discussions, as well as the many times, especially once we got past the section of the book which deals with George Washington as a child, my boys frequently exclaimed about what they thought was about to come next, because they recognized what was happening. This was because of their obsession with a certain animated series set during the American Revolution, which we own in its entirety on DVD. 🙂
We have very much enjoyed reading HEROES OF HISTORY, George Washington: True Patriot, and I believe we would most likely enjoy many other of the books offered by YWAM. I also believe that the price for them is such that they are very affordable to use as read-alouds, and although I am not sure I would use the unit study curriculum other than orally at this point in my children’s lives, I also believe they are a good value for the price.
To read what other Schoolhouse Review Crew members thought of George Washington: True Patriot and matching curriculum unit study guide, and of the YWAM book and study guide for Jim Elliot: One Great Purpose book and study guide, please click on the graphic below!
As always, I would just love it if you would join me on all of “My Journeys Through Life”, by simply going to the “sign me up” button at the top of the page. Just enter in your email information and never miss another update! 🙂