Notgrass Exploring American History

by Lisa
(Bear, DE)

Product: Notgrass Exploring American History
Subject: History, Literature, Bible
Levels Used: High School, Grade 11
Dates Used: Current year (2009)

Likes: Notgrass Exploring American History is an overlooked curriculum which deserves more attention.

The Notgrass family has assembled this integrated high school course comprised of American History from Columbus to the Present. The course fits into a bit more than 180 days of 30 Units with 5 Lessons each (one each day), 1 of which is Bible, a Quiz for each Unit, an Exam for every 8 Units (total of 4), and daily readings from a few extra sources.

On first glance it may appear that this is a simple study due to the fact that each Lesson is only 2-3 pages in length. However, the rigorousness of the material studied is beyond any materials I have encountered due to the following:

In my opinion, the best part of this program are the extra source books incorporated as required reading with almost every Lesson. They are: The World's Greatest Speeches and A Documentary History of the United States.

The titles speak for themselves and are very thorough in providing the student with a firsthand account of historical events through speeches and primary source documents throughout American History. You cannot complete the program without these two source books and they are what really "makes" the course. The student must analyze the speeches and documents in the writing and free-response questions included in each lesson's Review Section.

There is also a Literature component of historical fiction relevant to the periods studied, such as the Scarlett Letter and Uncle Tom's Cabin to name a few. Or you may opt to view these particular topics in video format.

Lastly, there is a Bible component every 5 Lessons (one per Unit) which corresponds to the historical time period being studied. Again, this is no elementary study and truly takes the student through the scriptures to examine a particular issue from a Biblical world view.

I really can't rave enough about Notgrass Exploring American History and am convinced that it was no coincidence that we "stumbled" upon it at a used curriculum sale.

Dislikes: Currently, the books are only sold in spiral bound format and with the amount of time spent each day in these books, I am not sure they will last through the rest of my children intact.

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