Sunday, November 8, 2009

American Heritage Education Foundation: America's Heritage, and Adventure in Liberty

History~ once again~
Why is history important? Why should we study history? What can we learn from history?

In my previous review for the Mystery of History, I mentioned that studying history can provoke interesting ideas and discussions. In the case of American History, it becomes more personal, and we hope that our children will understand more about our country, and about OUR roles(and their future roles) as citizens of our country.

Governments, at least representative governments, do not run themselves. They require interest, knowledge, and action on the part of the people that live under them. Because many people, laymen as well as experts see the undeniable decline of our country, from a social, economic, cultural, educational, philosophical, and governmental viewpoint, the American Heritage Education Foundation (A non-partisan, non-profit educational foundation) has written and produced a curriculum (at three seperate levels: elementary, middle, and high school) which is "dedicated to the understanding and teaching of America's factual and philosophical heritage to to promote constructive citizenship and Freedom, Unity, Progress, and Responsibility among our students and citizens."

I highly recommend reading the entire forward and preface in order to appreciate the position we as Americans find ourselves in today. The common lack of education is astounding, and it is particularly important to understand WHY our Founding Fathers based our government on Judeo-Christian values, rather than any other form of government. It was not an arbitrary decision based on the specific backgrounds of the people involved.....

The lessons we used included the introduction to the American Heritage Themes of Freedom, Unity, Responsibility, and Progress, and a variety of lessons from the units focusing on the foundational documents (The Declaration of Independence, The Bill of Rights, and The Constitution) of our Country.
While some of the reading was a little dry and difficult for my 9 year old to follow, the discussions that they inspired were great! Definitely got my kids' wheels turning!

(For more thoughts on the problems our country is facing, from a variety of viewpoints, including The Bradley project, Georgie Anne Geyer~ Fulbright Scholar, Bruce Cole~Chairman for the National Endowment of the Humanities, Dr. E.D. Hirsch~ Founder of the Core Knowledge Foundation, Dr. James H. Billington~ Author, Library of Congress and former Professor of History at Princeton University, Hans F. Sennholz, Economist, as well as other authors, historians, professors, and more.... check out this page )

The entire curriculum is downloadable for free from their website. The TOS Crew received a CD containing all the lessons (Also available for free), or you can order a printed binder for $19.50 (per level ordered).

Visit the TOS Crew if you'd like to get some more opinions on this product. (But, really, as a freebie, what do you have to lose? I recommend checking it out yourself! :) )


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