Thursday, June 1, 2017

Theodore Roosevelt: An American Original

If you've read our blog at all, you might know that we're a family of readers and love reviewing books. Reading is important in our home school and the foundation of our education. The older kids are required to read to themselves a substantial amount of time each school day (and a shorter amount on weekends). In addition, my husband or I will also read to them. We like all sorts of books for our read-alouds, but everyone's favorite is biographies. We like reading about the lives of people, knowing that that events actually took place. The kids are fascinated to study the actions, vocabulary, foods, dress, and thinking of past periods and seeing they ways in which our lives differ.

The books from YWAM Publishing are our favorites for biographies, and I often recommend them to others. We like them so much, in fact, that we've purchased several of the books ourselves and own over 30 of them. I knew my kiddos and I would enjoy reading Heroes of History- Theodore Roosevelt and incorporating the accompanying Digital Unit Study guide. This book is part of the Heroes of History series by Janet and Geoff Benge, which contains exciting biographies of men and women who shaped the course of history through their remarkable stories.

The book begins with Theodore Roosevelt as young boy during the Civil War. His parents, who were originally from different regions of the country, supported opposite sides. His mother, grandmother, and aunt secretly sent supplies to the Confederate soldiers, while his father spent much time away holding rallies across the country  for Union soldiers urging them to take advantage of the bill to send money home to their families before they foolishly spent it all. After the war ended and tension in the home ceased, his father continued his philanthropic deeds, teaching young Teddy to care for all classes of people. His father's influence help to mold him into a man that cared for others.

Roosevelt worked hard to overcome his severe asthma and weak heart. He loved plants and animals and spent much of his life studying them on his adventures. His integrity and regard for others allowed him to serve in many high-ranking positions, from state representative in the New York State Assembly all the way to the 26th president of the United States. More of his accomplishes include winning the Nobel Peace Prize, protecting national parks, writing books, organized the Rough Riders, and making the construction of the Panama Canal possible. He experienced heartache as well as joy. He was a well-respected man as a leader, soldier, naturalist, explorer, and soldier.

Along with the book, we received the digital unit study guide. The guide helps to further your study including geography, social studies, and history, to name a few. It designed to benefit all learning styles, group and individual study, and a wide range of ages.  

The guide includes the following:
  • Key Quotes - six well-known quotes that can be used for memorization, understanding meaning, and displays
  • Display Corner - a list of objects and maps from the time period that could be gathered and displayed to bring life to learning
  • Chapter Questions - six questions for each chapter: vocabulary, factual, comprehension, and interpretation
  • Student Explorations - essay writing, creative writing, hands-on projects, audio/visual projects, arts/crafts 
  • Community Links - meaningful field trips, guest speakers, service projects
  • Social Studies - reproducible maps, geography, terms/vocabulary, conceptual questions, critical thinking
  • Related Themes to Explore - politics & law, math, history, science & medicine, geography
  • Culminating Event - project displays, cultural food, music, activities, oral presentations
  • Bibliography or Related Resources - books, movies, documentaries, magazine articles, websites

Since the recommended age is 10 and all but one of my kids are younger, some of the study guide was a little advanced for them. There are many different activities that reflect a wide range of learning styles, so there's something for everyone. We discussed the comprehension questions at the end of each chapter. The first question is always a vocab word (succintly, impeding, forlorn, chagrin, etc.). I'd ask the kids what the word meant. If no one knew, I'd use it in a sentence. They'd tell me the meaning after that. I personally loved that part. It's very important to me to read my children rich literature that incorporates vocabulary that is above their level.

I also enjoyed discussing the questions with them. It helped us to review the story and got them understanding it more fully. We also practiced cartography, made a timeline, and observed animals like Teddy did. I fully intend to read this book again with them many years from now so we can partake in the other great activities in the guide. We can recreate the isthmus of Panama out of plaster of Paris and write a newspaper advertisement to recruit men for the Rough Riders. We can act out a play about Roosevelt's life, write essay questions, make a replica of wire pince-nez glasses, design our own cattle brand, create a diorama of the trip down the Little Missouri, and more. The study guide is filled with activities, projects, and ideas to greatly further your study. There is even a bonus section that includes additional word puzzles, crossword puzzles, coloring pages, video interviews, and more extras.  

As always, we enjoyed these materials immensely. Theodore Roosevelt: An American Original was well-enjoyed by our family. The book alone is full of learning, but the study guide is a must for delving deeper. Along with the Heroes of History books they offer, YWAM Publishing has Christian Heroes and Heroes for Young Readers, too. Not only does a purchase give you quality books at a great cost, it helps support missions around the world.

You can connect with YWAM Publishing on the following social media sites:

You can read more reviews of many different titles (like C.S. Lewis, Benjamin Franklin, Laura Ingalls Wilder, and many more) on the Homeschool Review Crew blog.

Crew Disclaimer
Pin It

No comments:

Post a Comment