My homeschool teaching style tends to fall in the Charlotte Mason
camp with lots of "classical" influence thrown in for good measure.
I definitely see the benefits of making the most of the three stages
of learning, and I do value a systematic approach to education.
I have read The Well-Trained Mind (WTM) by
Jessie Wise and Susan Wise Bauer several times and found it to
be chock-full of practical and academically sound principles and
suggestions. Therefore, when I had the opportunity to review Easy
Classical's Early Modern History (Explorers to 1820) by
Sandra Williams, who structured the framework of schedules around
the foundations and recommendations of the WTM, I figured
it would be great. I was right!
The Early Modern History curriculum spans 36 weeks and
is laid out in a five-day assignment sheet for each week, which
makes it very easy to follow. The sheets are straightforward and
include assignments in history, writing, geography, projects, and
read-aloud choices. In addition to the notebook binder containing
the main history curriculum/schedule, this bundle also includes
three wire-bound books with clear vinyl covers: Geography with
History, Writing with History, and Early Modern
History Copybook, which is based on the Getty-Dubay Italic
The book covers Explorers, Colonies, Colonial America, Road to
Independence, and Revolution. This particular volume continues
the formal study of history that began with Easy Classical's Old
Testament and Ancient Egypt. According to information in
the introduction, "This cycle repeats again in seventh through
twelfth grades. This first cycle serves as an introduction to history,
and should focus on providing a foundation or a building block
for future studies in history. A combination of Veritas Press'
History cards, H.A. Guerber's History series, Joy Hakim's A
History of US series and Story of the World history
volumes are used to guide the year."
I really like the resources that Mrs. Williams chose to use as 'spine'
books, and the read-alouds are wonderful as well. There are explanations
and reminders at the bottom of each weekly schedule, a shopping
list for the next week, and a weekly comprehension quiz on the
next page. Simple--yet thorough!
Another thing I like about this curriculum is the cost! For the
price you pay for the complete Early Modern History bundle
($135.95 for print or $95.95 for digital), you get a lot of value
for your dollar. Mrs. Williams has done all the research, selecting,
integrating, and correlating to create a fantastic curriculum that
pulls together history, geography, writing, and copywork--not to
mention fun projects and great literature. All the work has already
been done for you, so you can spend your time teaching!
The Geography with History book helps bring the history
to life as students 'travel' around the globe learning about the
places, regions, physical systems, environments, and cultures of
the peoples covered in the main history curriculum. Excellent text
and fun projects!
The Writing with History book is a companion guide to
the Institute for Excellence in Writing resource Teaching Writing:
Structure and Style. This guide helps integrate Easy Classical's
Early Modern History schedule with concepts taught by IEW. The
components included in this book make for a comprehensive writing
plan, and students are taught to use specific tools and methods
in order to learn effective writing skills--all while the history
lessons and topics from the main curriculum are expounded upon
The Early Modern History Copybook (Cursive Edition Grades
4-6) contains three days of copywork per topic covered in the main
history curriculum. It is based on the Getty Dubay Italic handwriting
method. Each assignment is usually a short paragraph. There are
also other grade level books available on the Easy Classical website.
I highly recommend that you visit www.easyclassical.com and
look around at all the resources, samples, links, downloads, and
testimonials. You can purchase this Early Modern History set
as a bundle, or you can purchase resources individually. There
are other full curriculums (history and science) available as well.
I found this particular set listed in the 5 th grade section, but
I think it could be used with both older and younger students.
I highly recommend this curriculum--very well done. Kudos to Easy
Classical and Sandra Williams!