“New” homeschool discoveries from the conference

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Continuing my reflections on the Minnesota Catholic Home Education Conference, I want to share with you some new resources I discovered. They might not all be new to you, but they were to me.

God’s Covenant with You: The Bible Tells a Story by Scott Hahn and Stratford Caldecott, with illustrations by David Clayton, was published in 2009, but this is the first time I’ve come across it.  You are no doubt familiar with Bible scholar and convert from Presbyterianism Scott Hahn. This book presents his perspective on the Bible as the story of God’s familial covenants with man in language children can understand.

David Clayton is an artist in residence at Thomas More College. He has filled the book with outline drawings that evoke icons and master painters. Your children can color the pictures or, as I prefer, try to copy them.

As a fan of both Hahn and Clayton, I snatched this book up. I plan to use it to review the Bible after we finish the New Testament next year. It’s suited for the middle to late elementary years.

It appears from Thomas More College’s website that there are more books in this series, which I am eager to look into.

Front Cover Great Decisions Series by Nathan Aaseng is a secular (not in a negative sense) series of books that put your students in the place of famous men and women in history. You are the President, for example, presents dilemmas faced by Theodore Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon and five others. After reading background material on the situation, the students must choose from among four options. “You are the president. What is your decision?” Then they learn what the actual president chose to do. The results of the decision follow, then historians’ analyses.

The series includes two books on the presidents, others on jurors, Supreme Court justices,  generals, explorers, and more.  Editorial reviews say the books are appropriate from grades 7-9. My sons aged 9 and 11 are enjoying them as our summer read-alouds. (Note: not all the books are appropriate for younger kids. I haven’t looked at the whole series yet, but You are the Juror deals with some adult themes. I advise you to preview each book before handing it over to a child to read on his own.)

This is a great way to learn and remember history, especially for those children who like to be in a charge of everything.

Those of you who use a classical curriculum will want to look at Classically Catholic Memory, which has been out for a while but was acquired by Ignatius Press last year. Even though I’m not a classical homeschooler, I was tempted to buy this book. There are four levels, each covering facts to memorize in eight subject areas. You can have all your memory work–including catechism/religion–in one volume. I saw lots of moms pouring over this one.

Finally, Catholic Icing has published A Picture Book of the Mass. It’s a Mass book for children with the new translation. Paintings by the masters illustrate each two-page spread. The booklet is printed on vellum paper and staple bound, but don’t let that stop you from buying it. I bought a copy for C, who will make his First Communion next year. He was eager to bring it to Mass right away. A fellow parishioner asked to see it that day, wanting to know where he got it. If you want your young ones to participate more fully in the Mass, this resource will be a great help.

That wraps up my reflections on this year’s homeschool conference. If you’re still yearning for more, see this post by Kristina at Sweet Mercies, or you can buy recordings here. Looking ahead to next year, I hope you’ll consider joining me at the conference. I’d love to meet you!

Connie Rossini

Share with us: If you have blogged about a conference in your area, or know someone who has, link to it in the comments box.

Note: Don’t forget to download your free e-book on the Carmelite saints. If you have subscribed to my post through the WordPress toolbar, you can email me for a copy at crossini4774 at comcast dot net.


8 Responses

  1. Theresa


    So wonderful for you to share these resources! I am interested in the Bible one by Scott Hahn…you think it isn’t too young for a 4th grader? Also, the Classically Catholic Memory….you have to buy different levels of that one?

    Thanks for any info.

  2. Theresa

    Connie…I have tried multiple times to order this from TM College but there must be something up with their Paypal account. I emailed…just waiting to hear back. I was wondering if you know of any issues with ordering it? It’s the only place that carries it.

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