Friday, August 31, 2012

Historical Child Role Models - A New TOS Review!

Reading is a very common activity to happen in our little household.  I have ALWAYS  been one to love a great book and I'm always on the lookout for a new author or just a plain great book.  And it seems that my children are following in my footsteps.  Arianna is an avid bookworm who reads everything and anything in her path. So when we had the opportunity as a Crew member to review one of the books from Golden Prairie Press we took it!
The Product:
Amy Puetz, the creator of  Golden Prairie Press is a homeschool graduate herself, and choose to start this online business after a chronic illness. Her testimony tells the story of how Golden Prairie Press came to be and I'd encourage you to read more about her. As you will tell, she is passionate about history, and has built up her business by increasing the number of historical type books she offers as well as has authored.

Most of the books are those that are living history books which are great as stand alone books (either in print or as e-books), curriculum, and even devotionals. She also has books on how to make period costumes and clothing.  As you travel around her site you will find FREE stuff (and you all know I LOVE my FREEBIES)  

Our Experience:
We were given a choice of books and we chose 10 Girls From History.  This book was written by Katie Dickinson Sweetser.  She has written a number of historical books with the goal to inspire children.  She was the cousin of Emily Dickinson, known for her compilations and children's fiction.  She died in 1939.  Her books have been able to live on thanks to Amy's preservation of their stories.

We received this book as an e-book and I was able to choose PDF, mobi, or EPub.  We went with the PDF version and quickly downloaded it to both the computer and onto my Android Tablet.  Having it on the Tablet made it easy for Arianna to grab and read during "reading time."  Once we had it downloaded I just let Arianna start reading.  These books were written for age 10 and above, but because of her love of reading and her ability these weren't a problem for her in the least.  

The 238 page book consists of 10 stories of female heroines, most of whom were children or young adults, who were brave, full of faith and devotion - truly great role models.  At the end of the book there is a glossary of words that had been highlighted in the reading selections. Most of the definitions were taken from the Webster's 1828 Dictionary.  There is also a Biographical Facts page that tells a little more about each of the girls that were highlighted. And there's a Timeline that shows where they were within history and even when some of them 'overlap' each other.

Arianna has chosen to read the stories in order, but  it would be easy to read them in any order that you wish.  I also think that you could easily turn each story into a mini unit that could last as little as a week or as long as a month.  We will probably do that throughout the year, but for now we were just reading through the stories.

Some of Ari's favorites included Cofachiqui, Molly Pitcher, and Virginia Reed.  She says that Cofachiqui, the Indian princess was her favorite so far (she has 2 to 3 stories left).  Cofachiqui was her favorite because it was about Indians - which she is fascinated with - and because the princess showed strength and beauty throughout the story even when others were treating her wrongly.  "I also liked Molly Pitcher because her story was about how she was able to actually go to battle and be a part of the war.  She was a major part of why they won even when all the men around had been killed or injured.  She was very brave."

Among the ten stories you will also learn about Clara Barton, Dorothy Quincy, Ida Lewis and even Louisa May Alcott.  Each one a unique and telling adventure of how they were true heroines of their day.  Some of these girls or stories I had never even heard of, but I can't wait to delve more fully into them to discover all the nuances they have to offer on what a real role model looks like.

This book can be purchased both in E-Book format ($15), in print ($25), or even as an MP3 audio version read by Jim Hodges (also for $25).  If you want you can take a look at the table of contents as well as some sample pages from the beginning of the book.

My Thoughts:
I have loved the stories we have read and I am going to work these in as mini units.  I know that these will be treasured stories that all my children will be drawn to and read again and again.  Once Arianna has completed the book we will probably choose one as a family read aloud.  I have already read Cofachiqui to Audrie in our reading time and she was able to keep up with the story.

I think some additions to truly make these each into a unit study would be a great asset - like worksheets, coloring pages, etc.  I can't wait to read more of the books that Golden Prairie Press has to offer.  

 Make sure you read what other Crew members thought about this book, as well as the others that were reviewed - Heroines of the Past Bible Study, Costumes with Character, and Uncover Exciting History - by clicking the banner below.


*** I am a member of The Old Schoolhouse 2011-2012 Crew and receive free products and services in exchange for a thorough and honest review. Though I am compensated with free products (and a one year premium membership to this program), I am not compensated in the form of money for any of my reviews. My reviews will always reflect my honest opinions, findings, beliefs and experiences with the products and services that I receive.***

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