What’s taken me so long to try TruthQuest History??? I have had the mistaken impression that TruthQuest guides were only glorified book lists that I could develop myself. While it’s true that I could come up with an appropriate list of living literature for a specific time period, these guides are SO much more!
- First, you get a complete look at the era, covering all of the important people, places and events in a general order of occurrence.
- Second, you get a full listing of appropriate living literature which will immerse your child into the era, its people, and its events.
- Third, and most important to me, Michelle Miller offers deliciously written commentary throughout the guide to give you an overall picture of the era, as well as tying seamless transitions from one important event to another.
Using a living literature approach to history as a Charlotte Mason style homeschooler, I have often felt a slight disconnect in moving from one thing to another in a particular era. In other words, when we’ve read a wonderful book about Martin Luther, another about the Holy Roman Empire, then another about King Henry VIII, I haven’t always known how to give my children the “whole picture” about how they fit together.
With TruthQuest guides, I now have the “missing ingredient” I’ve been searching for – a living literature approach to history PLUS a non-textbook, complete overview in between the living literature to tie everything together for me! (Boy, was that a long, drawn-out description!) Michelle Miller’s writing style is living itself – sometimes humorous, sometimes tongue in cheek, always interesting.
Don’t get the impression that you are totally off the hook as the teacher using a TruthQuest guide. You will still be responsible for attaining all the living literature and may want to occasionally throw in a project or two. However, there are open-ended question sprinkled throughout the guide called ThinkWrites which can be used for discussion and/or writing assignments.
Speaking of the literature, each section includes several book choices, many of which should be available at your library. Your child isn’t expected to read everything on the list, but instead you choose one or two, then move on to the next section of the era. Additionally, since many of the guides can be used with various age levels, the book lists not only include brief descriptions, but appropriate age levels, too.
To give you a picture of how in-depth and thorough the guides are, I’ll give you the table of contents from the TruthQuest History – Renaissance, Reformation & Exploration guide I am using. These are just the main headings, as each contains several specific lessons with literature choices and overviews.
- John Wycliff and Jan Hus
- Growth of Towns
- Northern Art Begins to Change
- Dawn of the Renaissance
- Early Renaissance Art
- Exploration Begins
- Fall of Constantinople
- A Visit to Italy
- The Princes of Prints
- War of the Roses
- Think Like a King
- Artists of the High Renaissance
- Ferdinand and Isabella
- Holy Roman Empire and France
- Christopher Columbus and Other Early Explorers
- Church Leaders
- Machiavelli and His Prince
- Reformation Rumble
- Francis of France
- Charles V and His Spanish Holy Roman Empire
- Ottoman Empire
- Spain’s New World Empire
- Early Native Americans of the Southwest
- King Henry VIII
- Reformation Spreads
- Science Takes a Leap
- Russia and Ivan the Terrible
- The French in the New World
- The Counter-Reformation
- Later Renaissance Art
- Queen Elizabeth
- John Knox
- Mary, Queen of Scots
- England Gets into the Race for the New World
- Spanish Armada
- Walter Raleigh
- William Shakespeare
- Later-Counter-Reformation Figures
- The idea War
- Holland Yearns for Freedom
- Battle of Lepanto
- El Greco
- Mystery of the Roanoke Colony
Wow. See what I mean? You might not be able to tell from the list above, but a focus on Christianity is prevelent throughout the book. The author strives to make God’s Providence a main focus, as history is HIS story.
This particular guide is appropriate for grades 5-12, but TruthQuest guides are available for all grades in all eras of history. Check them out! If you’re a living literature, Charlotte Mason or Classical kind of mom, you’ll be glad you did!
(Cindy received TruthQuest History: Renaissance, Reformation & Exploration free for review. As always, she only writes her honest opinions.)