Tuesday, May 30, 2017

YWAM Publishing Heroes of History Meriwether Lewis: Off the Edge of the Map Review

My family had the privilege of trying the Heroes of History - Meriwether Lewis from YWAM Publishing for this review to use in conjunction with our own homeschool curriculum. This is a Homeschool Review Crew Review. All opinions expressed are my own or those of my family.

YWAM (YOUTH WITH A MISSION) Publishing is a nonprofit organization that produces and distributes books that help Christians make a difference in the world by giving a portion of every dollar spent to buy books through YWAM Publishing to children and adults in other countries that are in need. Their books focus on evangelism, educational training, prayer, discipleship, and mercy ministries.

YWAM Publishing has two popular book series; one called Heroes of History and the other called Christian Heroes: Then & Now; in which true stories are told of real people that lived in our history. In the Heroes of History series we learn about great men and woman who changed the course of history. In the Christian Heroes: Then & Now series we learn about ordinary people who have put their trust in God and in doing so accomplish extraordinary things. Both of these book series help us as: parents, teachers, and caretakers; give our children wholesome biographies to read or be read to that teach good character traits, values, and virtues.You can read more about them at: http://www.heroesthenandnow.com/.

Meriwether Lewis: Off the Edge of the Map Book

Meriwether Lewis: Off the Edge of the Map by Janet & Geoff Benge is part of a series of 28 biography books called Heroes of History by YWAM Publishing. This series covers the years 1451 to 1951. This book tells the true life story of Meriwether Lewis, President Thomas Jefferson's private secretary that was sent by him to be the leader and Captain of the Corps of Discovery (The famous Lewis and Clark Expedition of about 33 men) to explore the lands West of the Mississippi. With the help of his friend William Clark and later Sacagawea/Sacajawea and Sacagawea's husband, Touissant Charbonneau, they made the journey to the Pacific Ocean. This Christian biography book from YWAM Publishing about Meriwether Lewis teaches great character traits, values, and virtues too. This book covers the years 1774-1809. It chronicles his life from his birth to his death in 1809. It is a total of 18 chapters and 231 pages long. I had previously heard bits and pieces of his life and the expedition in history class at school while growing up, when I was visiting the Louisville Kentucky Frazier History Museum "The Lewis and Clark Experience" with my son, Jaedan; and reading about the history of Oregon and Washington before I read this biography book.

Meriwether Lewis Unit Study download page tab.

The Unit Study Curriculum Guide that is paired with the Meriwether Lewis: Off the Edge of the Map book that I received was in the digital downloadable format and opened as an executable file. The digital version is downloadable in a zipped format, so you will have to unzip before you use it. After selecting where it will go on your computer, unzip it, and find the folder it placed it all into. Find the file version you need: __MACOSX for Macintosh and the other for PC. Click on the file that has START HERE in its title and it will open in a new window in your browser. You can then read a very short synopsis of the biography under the Meriwether Lewis tab, download the unit study under the Unit Study tab, etc.

The Unit Study downloads in PDF format. It also has a 12 page guide for classroom and homeschool as well as one for a small group that tells you how to best use the unit study. This shows how flexible you can be with the unit study. You can do the whole study or just parts of it. It is all up to you how you use it. The unit study goes in depth to help you go above and beyond the book and explore other areas that pertain to the material like: crafts, cooking, art, and writing assignments; has questions to ask your children to see if they comprehended the reading, and quotes to use as copywork to enhance handwriting or memorization. The unit study is broken into two parts.

Here is the Unit Study Curriculum Guide Contents:
Part 1 -
Introduction (how to use the study)

  1. Key Quotes (great for copywork, memorization, theatrical presentation, or art display)
  2. Display Corner (an area designated for hands on display of items relating to the reading)
  3. Chapter Questions (questions that enhance the reading: vocabulary, factual, 2 comprehension, and 2 open-ended)
  4. Student Explorations (essay questions, creative writing, hands-on projects, audio/visual projects, arts & crafts)
  5. Community Links (field trip ideas)
  6. Social Studies (places, journeys, terms/vocabulary, geographical characteristics: mapping, timeline: plotting historical events, conceptual questions)
  7. Related Themes to Explore (science, literature, folk culture, geography, history)
  8. Culminating Event (sort of a show and tell ending, ideas include: literary, clothing, music, food, oral presentations, displays)
Appendix A: Books and Resources
Appendix B: Answers to Chapter Questions

Part 2 -
Appendix C: Social Studies Reproducibles

How We Used This and Our Thoughts:

I read the book to my daughters who are 6 and 9. Teela, my 9 year old wanted to read it herself, but we needed time to get through some of the study guide too. My sons who are 15 and 16 are reading it to themselves on their own time and have been doing some of the projects from the study guide. My girls enjoyed listening to me read about Meriwether Lewis.

After each chapter my girls and I did the first three questions from the study guide which are geared toward the younger students. They include a vocabulary question, a factual question coming from the reading, and the first comprehension question. The study guide is geared toward ages 10+. So I had to help them with the some of the vocabulary because of its advanced nature. We would look up the words in a dictionary and thesaurus as well, for more understanding. My boys, Jaedan and Delbin, who are 15 and 16, had no problem with the reading and vocabulary, but that is because they are voracious readers. I had my boys do all of the chapter questions. Besides the chapter questions I had my girls do copywork from the key quotes and I had my boys memorize them and say them back to me. I will have my sons do an essay as suggested in the study guide under the student explorations and essays. They also will be doing some creative writing.

We also went to other websites in the books and resources section of the study guide to learn more about the Indians, places the expedition traveled, food, etc. I loved especially learning about Meriwether's journal entries about plants and animals from these other resources. I love botany and this was great to see pictures and read about the first specimens of these plants preserved within the pages of his journal.

Sunrise Over Lewis and Clark Bridge, taken on March 13, 2015.

The town of Rainier Oregon, where I live, is across the Columbia River from Longview Washington. The bridge that connects our two cities is called the Lewis and Clark Bridge. It is of course named after the two explorers. In Longview there is a Lake Sacajawea Park which has a very nice statue of Sacajawea and Pomp. We visited there to learn more and have a homeschooling field trip.

Lake Sacajawea Park in Longview Washington

There was so much to learn and explore in this unit study. We were amazed at the very complexity of it all. We didn't even begin to scratch the surface and were still very engaged in the lengthy unit study.

The YWAM Publishing biographies are historical and true. These true stories along with the unit studies are great for homeschooling families. I highly recommend them!

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YWAM Publishing Heroes of History - Meriwether Lewis: Off the Edge of the Map book:
Regular Price: $9.99 YWAM Price: $7.50

Read other homeschool curriculum reviews for YWAM Publishing...
Christian & History Heroes {YWAM Publishing Reviews}

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1 comment:

Jennifer said...

We loved this book too! I love when we can combine history and field trips :-)