Every time I hear people say what’s best for this country, I always wonder about the source of their advice. What would you say this country needs right now? More of God? Less government? Fewer taxes?
There are lots of answers to these questions, but if the future and success of the United States of America is in question, wouldn’t the best advice be from those who founded the country? Whether the question is about our government, our liberty, or our future — it’s already been answered.
When you buy a product, and something goes wrong, don’t you immediately go searching for the instruction manual? The creators of the product have anticipated future problems and written the solutions. They are the best source for the information you need.
The same is true of the USA. The creators wrote down why they declared Independence and also how to keep it. So, if we know that the solutions to our problems were presented at the foundation of this country, why don’t we simply follow them?
The answer to that question is easy and disappointing. There are many that don’t even know what those instructions are. They don’t know the how or the why, and they don’t know about the real people who were there. This is the result of a decline in teaching the foundations of our government and our nation. If you don’t believe me, quiz an average student.
Throughout the American Revolution, the freedom fighters were very vocal about the offenses of the King of England, human rights, and the basic principles of freedom. They wrote newspaper articles, pamphlets, books, and letters. They gave speeches, preached sermons, and appealed to the authorities. The Declaration of Independence outlined the King’s tyranny, and explained the rights of humans given by God. The Federalist Papers and the U.S. Constitution defended the need for a limited government that protected the rights of citizens by consent of the governed.
The instructions are all there. All we need to do is go back to the basic principles in the instruction manuals of our country. But as I said above, so few Americans even know that those instructions are and how we got them.
If school students across the nation had a book like America’s Struggle for Freedom, I can say with certainty that this would not be a problem. This history book is a unique textbook that walks students through the background and story of the American Revolution and the people that waged that battle.
I love this section from the very first chapter:
The Founders clearly believed that they were not in rebellion to God’s ordained institution of civil government; they were only resisting tyranny and no the institution itself. In fact, Rev. Jacob Duche (a supporter of the British) argued from the Bible in favor of the American position, explaining: “Inasmuch as all rulers are in fact the servants of the public and appointed for no other purpose than to be “a terror to evil-doers and a praise to them that do well” (cf Romans 13:3), whenever this Divine order is inverted – whenever these rulers abuse their sacred trust by unrighteous attempts to unjure, oppress, and enslave those very persons from whom alone, under God, their power is derived – does not humanity, does not reason, does not Scripture call upon the man, the citizen, the Christian of such a community to “stand fast in that liberty wherewith Christ…hath made them free!” (Galatians 5:1)
Abut The Curriculum
America’s Struggle for Freedom is a unique history textbook written by Rick & Marilyn Boyer. The subtitle accurately describes it: Understanding the Foundations of Freedom. It is a 36 week study designed for grades 4-6. A 141-page teacher guide is included. (In our family, we study history as a group, and not in grade levels. We also tend to set our own schedule. This book, while it includes a suggested schedule for 1 school year, can easily be adapted for your own time frame and for most age groups.)
The first chapter lays the foundation for why a Revolution came to happen, and Chapter Two picks up the timeline of events, beginning with the Stamp Act of 1765. In 34 chapters, the complete story of the American Revolution is told.
While the book does a great job of covering the Revolution, it doesn’t end there. There is a detailed chapter on the Constitution. For upper elementary and middle school students, it does a thorough job of explaining what the framers were addressing with the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
Two more chapters introduce the signers of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution, complete with a short bio of each man. This is followed up with an Appendix, including the Declaration text, Bill of Rights, some of Washington’s speeches, and a vocabulary list.
The Teacher Guide provides detailed quizzes, worksheets, and activities for each chapter, as well as a Timeline of the Revolution, quarterly review quizzes, hymns and poems to memorize, and answers to the worksheets and quizzes. A list of suggested extra reading is also included. The textbook is non-consumable (I LOVE non-consumables!). The Teacher guide has perforated, 3-hole punched pages (for our family, this is perfect for keeping in a binder and making multiple copies for my children.)
While too many history books dedicate a few chapters to this fight for freedom, this is an entire book dedicated to what the war for Independence was and why.
About the Author
From the book: “Rick and Marylin Boyer have a decades-long love affair with American history. Marilyn is the author of the highly acclaimed book, For You They Signed, an in-depth study of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Rick is known to thousands of children across America as “Uncle Rick the Storyteller” through his many historical audio books and storytelling CDs. The Boyers are nationally known homeschool speakers and authors. They are also among the pioneers of the modern home education movement. Beginning in 1980, they have homeschooled all of the 14 children from kindergarten through high school. They have also written around a dozen parenting books and are in demand as speakers for homeschooling and parenting conferences. Their speaking ministry has taken them to nearly every state in the union and several foreign countries.”
I have followed Rick Boyer on Facebook for some time, and his love of American history and his understanding of the founding principles are highly evident. It is so important to me that children learn to love history, and what better way to teach it than with a book written by someone like Rick and Marylin? This is not a book put out by a textbook company, but by parents and Christians who loves their country and want your children to love it, too.
Why I Loved It
The American Revolution is one of the most exciting times in our history, and with all the heroes, battles, close calls, and underdogs, it’s a wonderfully exciting story for people of all ages. This curriculum does a great job of bringing the real story to life with descriptive text, color illustrations, period engravings and prints, true story excerpts, battle scenes, short bios, and battlefield maps.
Famous hymns and poems written during the Revolution are reprinted and explained. The Acts and Bills of Parliament are explained in detail, but simply. The differences in parties are easy to understand.
It’s a truly multi-sensory experience that keeps the pages turning. Almost every page has a short snippet called “Storytime with Uncle Rick,” inserting a true story of a person or event. This is a great way to bring the fight for freedom alive with the regular people and places around the colonies, illustrating its effect on everyday life in the colonies during the war.
I love history and read everything I can get my hands on. And do you know I still learned some new things from this book?
In my opinion it is incredibly thorough for elementary and middle school. I would go further to say that it’s a great book for all ages, whether as a read-aloud for large families, or a basic course for young high school students. It is not childish in any way, but is still engaging for multiple age groups.
I received a free copy of this product from Master Books in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write an positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with FTC regulations.
You may purchase this curriculum from Character Concepts at this link, or…
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Nicki Truesdell is a 2nd-generation homeschooler and mother to 5. She loves books, freedom, history and quilts, and blogs about all of these at nickitruesdell.com. She believes that homeschooling can be relaxed and that history is fun, and both can be done with minimal cost or stress, no matter your family’s circumstances. Nicki is a member of the Texas Home Educators Advisory Board and The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Review Crew. You can also find her on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
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