Secular history curriculum beginning with, well, the beginning (The Big Bang)? - Mothering Forums

 
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#1 of 11 Old 05-23-2008, 01:22 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I need some help. I have looked at so many books and different curriculums that I am about to see stars. I want a secular history curriculum that begins in the beginning with the Big Bang. I have a 6 yo DS and we are currently not quite unschooling, but pretty darn close. Actually, that's probably what we are doing, I just don't really like labels. Anyway, DS has been asking questions and we have been talking and he is asking for more structured learning in some areas. This is one of them. I am having a hard time finding what I want. Can anyone help?

Thanks in advance for any guidance,
Amanda
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#2 of 11 Old 05-23-2008, 01:40 AM
 
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Well, it's not a curriculum per se, but I really really like the Usborne Encyclopedia of World History, for exactly the reason you mentioned. It starts with how earth was created and goes from there. It is organized really well and easy to follow. It is internet linked, so you could probably carve out something resembling a curriculum just using their references.
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#3 of 11 Old 05-23-2008, 08:22 AM
 
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Other books (not a curriculum) that might help with pre-history are Born with a Bang by Jennifer Morgan (and the other two in her series) and an old book, Life Story, by Virginia Lee Burton.

Just a side note: We have a friend who is an astrophysicist--very bright and well-respected in his field--and he thinks the Big Bang theory is flawed. While the other theory he described (held by a minority of astrophysicists, I believe) didn't seem to account as well (in my very amateur opinion) for the uniformity in the universe, it is always good to tell children that scientific theories are still theories. They are the best explanation we have at the time, but they are not necessarily fact.
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#4 of 11 Old 05-23-2008, 09:54 AM
 
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if you'd like something a little more curriculum-ish that can go from Big Bang and get you through the fall of Rome, you could take a look at April's Mosaics curriculum. go to lunablog.net, click the Free Curriculum Project and find the Story of the World, Prehistory included version. she uses the Usborne book the PP mentioned as a primary spine and supplements with Story of the World. if you don't like SOTW, you could easily leave that out and still use her general plan as a decent outline.

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#5 of 11 Old 05-23-2008, 04:19 PM
 
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We are using the Cartoon Guide to the Universe. It is written in comic book style but it is written for adults. Sometimes I have to skim over some of the humor.

Each time we get to a particularly interesting part we go off on a tangent and then come back when we are done.
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#6 of 11 Old 05-23-2008, 04:37 PM
 
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OP - I could have written your post! We are going to start Story of the World but I wanted to do pre-history first. I put together my own using Usborne Internet Linked Encylopedia as a spine and lots of books from the library.

Here's what we are doing:

Timeline of the earth p. 13
How much is a billion website
How Much is a Million - Schwartz (a really great book to show just how big a million is. I learned a lot!)

How do we Know? Fossils! 14-17
Fossil jigsaw – pg. 17 internet link
Fossils Tell of Long Ago – Aliki
Digging Up Dinasours – Aliki
Monster Bones, the Story of a Dinasour Fossil
Timeblazers show on Archeology

Big Bang Theory 20-23
Born With a Bang

Origins of Life 24-25; 18-19
Tree of Life (about Darwin)

Early Life – p. 26-75 UILE
From Lava to Life

Dinasours/The end of Dinasours
The Day the Dinosaurs Died (I Can Read)
What Happened To The Dinasuras – Let’s Read And Find Out About Science
Where Did All The Dinosaurs Go? (Natural Disasters)
Mammals Who Morph

Ice Age – p. 76
Magic Tree House – Sabertooth
Sabertooths and the Ice Age (MTH Research Book)
Wild and Wooly Mammoths (Aliki)
When Mammoths Walked the Earth

Human Evolution p. 78-81
The Human Body: How We Evolved (Cole)
Life on Earth: The Story of Evolution

Early Humans p. 82-101
Who Were the First People? Usborne

Pre-History vs. History

There is also a series of books called PreHistoric World and they have one on all the different time periods. I had ordered some but found the graphics to be too violent for my very sensitive son (animals eating other animals or shown looking fierce). But, if your child isn't sensitive to these images, these would be good. Also, I don't have a lot of supplemental reading toward the end because we haven't gotten there yet and I don't have any listed on dinosaurs because there are SO many. The only things we bought were the Born With a Bang, From Lava to Life, and Mammals Who Morph series because they are so great. Everything else has come from the library or we have it here (magic school bus, magic tree house, etc.)

OH, and we are going to the Museum of Natural Science as a field trip.

I hope that helps. Good luck. I've learned A LOT!!

And we are actually off to go read about the beginning of land animals.
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#7 of 11 Old 05-23-2008, 07:39 PM
 
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Mackysmama,
You made my day! I wanted something but wasn't sure exactly what...and then I saw your list and fell in love! I have it printed and I'm making my shopping list. It sounds ideal!
Thank you

WOHM to DS11 and DD9, both T1Ds

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#8 of 11 Old 05-23-2008, 08:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ALittleBitCrunchy View Post
Mackysmama,
You made my day! I wanted something but wasn't sure exactly what...and then I saw your list and fell in love! I have it printed and I'm making my shopping list. It sounds ideal!
Thank you
Oh, I'm glad! I don't often make someone's day. I will try to remember this thread add titles as we get farther along this summer. Please let me know if you find any good ones that I'm misssing!
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#9 of 11 Old 05-24-2008, 02:51 AM
 
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Thanks for starting this thread! :

Could any of you recommend books of the same subject material, but for a four year old's level of understanding? He already likes Usborne books, do you think the encyclopaedia would work for him?

Thanks!

Reneé, 34 year old mom to Antonin 8/04
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#10 of 11 Old 05-24-2008, 03:02 AM
 
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Oh good thread for when the time comes. I might get that Usborne book as a resource around the home, sounds great.

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#11 of 11 Old 05-24-2008, 05:50 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AntoninBeGonin View Post
Thanks for starting this thread! :

Could any of you recommend books of the same subject material, but for a four year old's level of understanding? He already likes Usborne books, do you think the encyclopaedia would work for him?

Thanks!
I'm not sure about the Usborne book. My son liked that stuff around that age but I can't see my daughter being ready for it for a while. I think it depends on your child. As for other books, the Lets Read and Find Out About Science series would be appropriate (they have different levels) and also a lot of the books by Aliki would also be great.
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