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Thursday, April 2, 2015

Why I Love The Mystery of History

When I was preparing for my oldest daughter Kat to enter High School, it took quite a bit of searching to find the right History curriculum for her.

I found it in The Mystery of History 

Volume 1. 

The Mystery of History Volume 1 covers world history from Creation to the death and Resurrection of Christ in chronological order. My daughter loves how it incorporates biblical history into world history. She was able to use this curriculum for credit in both Ancient History and Bible.

How the Curriculum is Laid Out:

1) "Around the World" Summaries: this is a summary of events from each Quarter's time period. We personally do not use these.
2) Pretests: These are meant to make the students interested in what the week's lessons are about. We started the school year using these, but found them to take up time that they needed to complete other activities. We stopped using them halfway through the year.
3) Lessons: There are 108 lessons in Volume 1. Doing 3 lessons per week will accommodate a 36 week school year. These lessons are well written and easy for my 8th and 9th grader to read, understand and learn from.
4) Activities: every lesson has a corresponding activity. These are broken down into age groups - Younger (K-2), Middle (3-5), and Older (6 and Up). We do one activity a week to help reinforce the lessons.
5) Memory Cards: these are index cards that the students make for each lesson. They write a few sentences about each lesson on the card. These memory cards are meant to be used as a study tool.
6) Reviews: this includes a Timeline Activity and a Map Activity. My kids are older so we used the Timeline Notebook pages found here. For the Map Activities there are outline maps in the back of the book for you to copy. I recommend purchasing The Student Bible Atlas and Rand McNally's Historical Atlas of the World. We didn't purchase them at first and found it very difficult to complete the map activities.

7) Exercise or Quiz: after the 3 lessons for the week there is either an exercise or a quiz. Students are allowed to use the book to answer exercise questions but not quiz questions. The questions are from previous lessons as well as that week's lessons. This is where the memory cards come in handy.
8) Quarter Worksheets: at the end of each 9 weeks students are asked to complete a worksheet using the lessons to answer questions.
9) Semester Tests: at the end of each semester the students are given a long test. This test covers all the lessons in that semester which covers one major time period.
10) Student Notebooks: this is a binder with dividers for each of the seven continents and one for miscellaneous. This notebook is where activities and maps will be filed.

My 9th grade daughter loved this curriculum! There were very few changes we made. My 8th grade son seemed to grow bored during the second semester. Instead of asking him to do the activity in the book, I had him write a paragraph about what he found interesting in the lesson and why. I also found a You Tube video that pertained to one of the lessons each week. That seemed to help interest him again.

I highly recommend this book! It is easily customized to fit the needs of every family. We have already purchased Volume 2 and will be using it next school year.

You can read more about The Mystery of History Volume 1 here.

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