I love finding curriculum that I can share with my viewers that is worth their investment and time to consider. You also know, I love to find curriculum that is homeschool parent created. BiblioPlan is one of those such curriculums. I reviewed the BiblioPlan Companion Year One Ancient History, along with their corresponding Family Guide and Craft Book for the same time period. This history curriculum is literature based and comprehensive, yet not overwhelming. Let me walk you through this curriculum and then you can enter to win your own FREE e-book version of the BiblioPlan Companion Year One for Ancient History, at the end of this post - so don't miss it!
This literature based history curriculum can be purchased as a one year bundle or a la carte, which gives flexibility to the homeschool parent looking to build their curriculum to meet their family's needs. They have the following available:
- The Companion - These Christian Worldview textbooks and enrichment supplements are an historical narrative beginning in Creation and going through Modern Times. These books help children to see the big picture of history and fit their historical events into a timeline framework. They are color coded and filled with lots of interesting historical facts younger students will enjoy, along with older students. Basically, a spine without tying you down and lots of flexibility. They focus on Biblical history in year one, Church history year two, missionary studies year three and four. They do a good job of tying Church history into world history and have a strong missionary focus.
- Ancients Family Guide - This three day a week reading guide, lays out the best history and literature readings based on their four groupings of grade levels (K-2, 2-6, 6-8 and 8-12). Book lists are presented in two different format options, checklist and annotated. There are also memory work options provided in the book. Weekly lesson plans (already written!) that include readings from Story of the World, Mystery of History, Bible, Usborne History and Victor Journey of the Bible, as well as their own Ancient History Curriculum (and the Bible). The weekly lesson plans also provide literature readings, writing ideas, optional reading and resources, family read a-louds, as well as hands-on activities. There are movie and video options too and Veritas timeline cards referenced and the old CC timeline cards using Veritas, are also included.
- The Discussion Guide - A parent/teacher aid to guide Socratic discussion, providing succinct summaries and thought provoking questions.
- Supplemental Materials available are inclusive of the following: Cool Histories, Hands-On Maps, Timelines, Hands on Notebooking, Coloring Books, and Craft Books.
Strong Features of BiblioPlan
Some of the strongest aspects of this curriculum are:
- Lesson planning is all done for you! Who doesn't want that??? Flexible enough that you can follow all or part of the plan. :)
- Biblical History is covered side by side with secular history, which makes it ideal for helping to shape your child's worldview and defend it.
- Color coded history curriculum to help with teaching multiple ages and assigning lessons.
- Students of different ages can work together on this curriculum -saving parents money and time.
- A classical curriculum with it's literature base, built in review, and memory work.
- Wide scope of offerings to build out history that can be as large or narrow as you would want to delve into with your children. You could read everyday or once a week or just do the crafts, notebooking or coloring books or use it as a geography program. There is a lot of flexibility in this curriculum.
- A good balance of historical fiction and non-fiction.
- Inexpensive, comparatively, for what you get.
- You can purchase components separately to meet your family's specific needs.
- You can choose e-books instead of hardback - which allows you to have it on your iPad and to avoid shipping costs. You can also print only what you want to have on hand.
- Would fit very well for families pursuing Classical Conversations using Story of the World.
- Hands on activities bring the time periods and curriculum to life.
- They offer both a private Facebook Page and a Yahoo Group for families using their curriculum, where you can find support and ask questions.
- Their webpage has great recommended book lists for FREE. A wonderful resource and they have direct links to their Amazon store to purchase any that may interest you.
In the short time I have had to look over the materials and read through them, as well as show them to my daughter, I can see that this is a great find. It is very helpful to read the beginning of the Family Guide book to get an overview of how the whole program is intended to work together and which pieces are optional and which ones are needed to truly execute the curriculum plan. I do love how they have an extensive offering of history related literature to read both in their plans and online, and they have obviously done a lot of work to find all these books and align them as they have. I really liked the annotated book lists, so I could get a good glimpse of the story and figure out what I really would be interested in having my child read. I love the flexibility of multiple options to read for your history books. Their strong missionary focus and Church History is excellent. My daughter liked their fascinating facts throughout the history spine (Companion) book. Their craft book is laid out by week and has material lists for each project. The projects are not junky paper crafts - they are good quality projects to bring the time period and history to life for the kids.
The only drawback I found is regarding the referenced materials that are no longer available. Specifically, Hands-n-Hearts materials they recommended sound amazing (and I tried to find them but the best I could come up with was some folks selling kits they didn't use from years ago), their website isn't in use any longer.
This curriculum is thorough, flexible and well thought out. Their textbook is meaty without being "too wordy" with a multi-age level appeal and color coding to serve it's purpose. The treasure trove of literature books, movies and activities recommended could keep anyone busy for years to come. I love that you can continue with your current readings (Story of the World or Mystery of History etc.) and use this to tie it all up neatly for your student, by providing a framework to understand where everything fits in the timeline of history, as well as provide a Christian Worldview parallel for those non-Christian worldview materials such as Story of the World or Usborne, for example. I think this is a worthwhile curriculum for history that is easy to use and easily tailored to your individual family's interests. Overall, I think this is an excellent curriculum and for the price, it's well worth considering.