The Child's Geography series was started by Ann Voskamp, who was inspired by Virgil Hillyer's Child's Geography. Hillyer is famous for his conversational tone and engaging way of presenting facts. Voskamp wanted an up-to-date version of Hillyer's geography while still preserving his style and approach. Terri Johnson picks up where Voskamp left off in Explore the Classical World, taking you through the culture and geography of the countries around the Mediterranean while also incorporating ancient history.
How Does This Work?
This isn't a textbook so much as a history book for parents and children to read together, although this book could also be read independently by middle school students. Recipes and menus from the different countries or time periods are sprinkled through the text. At the end of the chapter students write "field notes" in a student notebook.
The CD-Rom contains most of the resources and activities that correspond to the text, including a "bringing it home" section that incorporates art, books, food, music, and poetry from the various countries.
Though suggested for grades 1-6, the writing style and activities skew a bit older. They would be appropriate for independent study, although they would probably be more fun done in a group.
Our Honest Opinion:
This a fun, friendly, engaging introduction to geography that's geared toward the parent wanting to teach multiple grades at once. It's more laid-back than a lot of other geography curriculum you'll find, which means the scheduling is more flexible.
In formatting, this volume is not as well-designed as volume I, but it's an improvement from volume II. Terri Johnson's writing style is for an older audience than Ann Voskamp's, but it's equally engaging. It captures the geography and culture of the classical world, and we think it'd be a great jumping-off point for more in-depth study later on.
Review by Lauren Shearer
Lauren Shearer writes words for fun and profit. She also makes films, but everyone knows you can't make a profit doing that. Her other hobby is consistently volunteering way too much of her time. You can read more of her reviews here.
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