This is a discussion on American History for kids within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Well, if you have the money and a wife with time you could try to enroll him in a good Classical school's home-school program, although ...
Well, if you have the money and a wife with time you could try to enroll him in a good Classical school's home-school program, although actually getting him in the school full time would be better. If you're near Colorado Springs, CO or Southern CA I can recommend quite possibly the best schools in either region(I am biased). I have a family member that teaches History at The Classical Academy in Colorado Springs and if I remember correctly they have a remote learning curriculum.
As for the Southern CA comment I made, I took a remote course from the VanDamme Academy's Physical Sciences curriculum(actually designed for elementary students) on recommendation from a friend that is a former HS teacher. I learned more from that course in the evenings over a few months on cd's/dvd's then I did in my entire public school education. As an example, the physical science course was taught in historical order. By that I mean that all of the sciences; mathematics, chemistry, physics, biology, etc... were taught in historical order of discovery and consequently continually built upon. There was no random useless facts or dates thrown about. Everything was taught in order and together/ intertwined and therefore easy to both understand and remember.
I don't intend on remaining the ever ignorant creation of the public school system so I've been reteaching myself as an adult.
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"Don't hit a man if you can possibly avoid it; but if you do hit him, put him to sleep." - Theodore Roosevelt
I found one of the sites I was looking for. Good history on a younger childs level. Cobblestone & Cricket: Educating Children for 35 Years. Very good selection of history materials for kids. Good for you to care enough to help your son like this, to many people think it's the schools job.
If your son likes to read, there are some great "I Can Read" books for that age:
Amazon.com: Sam the Minuteman (I Can Read Book 3) (9780064441070): Nathaniel Benchley, Arnold Lobel: Books
Amazon.com: George the Drummer Boy (I Can Read Book 3) (9780064441063): Nathaniel Benchley, Don Bolognese: Books
Amazon.com: The Long Way to a New Land (I Can Read Book 3) (9780064441001): Joan Sandin: Books
Amazon.com: John Adams Speaks for Freedom (Ready-to-Read. Level 3) (9780689869075): Deborah Hopkinson, Craig Orback: Books
Amazon.com: The Matchlock Gun (9780698116801): Walter D. Edmonds: Books (about Colonial America -- and a small boy's courage -- and a firearm)
When your son gets a little older, he might enjoy Amazon.com: Shh! We're Writing the Constitution (9780698116245): Jean Fritz, Tomie dePaola: Books -- all about the Constitutional Convention. (And I'll tell you a secret: books written for the 9- to 12-year old set are often the most enjoyable intros to history you'll ever find, especially those written a few generations back.)
And one more: Amazon.com: Guns for General Washington: A Story of the American Revolution (9780152164355): Seymour Reit: Books
Finally, if you enjoy reading aloud (to me, that was & is one of the pleasures of having children!), you might want to pick up the beautifully illustrated Paul Revere's Ride, the classic poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, set in a children's book illustrated by Ted Rand. My experience with this one was that the cadence of your voice tells the tale, and kids love that, though of course you'll have to do all sorts of explaining throughout -- it isn't a rattle-it-off-&-go-to-sleep read aloud, but a snuggle on the couch on a rainy day type of book. And as I said, its magic only works if you enjoy reading aloud.
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I would definitely suggest getting an age appropriate (or maybe grade or two ahead) history textbook. I remember when I was in grade school, I used to read my history textbooks for fun. I always finished them before Christmas. If you are into it, history textbooks are pretty good reading.
You could also try age appropriate historical novels. Those won't be so full of facts, but are very entertaining and get the child to think more about life in that time.
64,999,987 firearms owners killed no one yesterday.
Great suggestions guys and gals. Pax, thanks for taking the time to post all that! I'm creating a new favorites file now.
We read Longfellows poem tonight at bedtime. I'm not sure he really enjoyed it, the language was tough for him to grasp I think. But, he did have a ton of questions and said he was "going to think up some more" as he fell asleep.
Oh yeah... I totally take responsibility for my kids education. There is no way in hades I'd trust some liberal public screwl education camp to do such an important job.
"Just blame Sixto"
I reserve the right to make fun, point and laugh etc.
I remember enjoying reading, very much, starting in the 2nd grade. Especially books based on the life of Daniel Boone, Kit Carson, Davy Crockett, John Paul Jones, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Edison, et cetera. I distinctly remember reading Farmer Boy, by Laura Ingalls Wilder, in the second grade.
There was, at the time, a series of condensed novels such as Robinson Crusoe, War of the Worlds, The Swiss Family Robinson, etc., printed in paperback. I suppose they must still be available, and although not necessarily historical, they certainly would help to develop a mind in its formative years.
Oh! To be young again! And to have a library card. Sadly, I can only manage to read non-fiction, since the invention of 'book reports' in the fifth grade. They stole the joy of reading from me, and turned it into a chore.
p.s. It never hurt anyone to be familiar with the history documented in the Bible.
Here in town, the ladies at the library fall all over themselves to point out the best age appropriate books for kids. They are very helpful. It is free and the books can go back if the kids are not interested at this time.
I would start them reading ASAP; don't worry about the level, help them and they will catch up faster than you think. I draw on my own experiences with my boys this past summer. I went over to my Mom & Dad's where we were going through some old stuff and found a bunch of old books my Grandad used to teach me to read. I took these books home with me, and made it my mission to get my two older boys reading these books. The result:
My 8 year old is reading at a 7th grade level, far beyond his classmates, and is currently being tested for a G&T program.
My 6 year old is reading at a 5th grade level, and has been enrolled in a G&T program.
When we had our parent-teacher conferences with the boys' teachers, they asked me how we what private tutoring we enrolled the boys in to get them to read so well. I told them we didn't it was just the material we taught them to read. I related to her my own childhood, and the fact that my Grandfather did not allow me to read the "see spot run" books, and instead handed me literary classics to read, and sat by with a dictionary to learn the definition of any words I mispronounced or did not comprehend. When I was in second grade I had already read 20,000 leagues under the sea, Moby Dick & Tom Sawyer. Before I left elementary school I had read Sandburg's Lincoln and Shakespeare. In between, I had read many books on American History and did a book report on Thomas Paine's Common Sense in the 5th grade. The pure fact of the matter is that our kids have been dumbed down to the point that they know little or nothing of our nations' history and it is fixed so that by the time they do teach it, what they are taught is usually revisionist crap that blames American Imperialism for all the worlds' ills........
So don't worry, SIXTO. Young minds are hungry minds, they will absorb everything you teach them, that has been my experience......
"Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined". - Patrick Henry
When he is able to comprehend the book, the suggestion of "Private Yankee Doodle", by J.P. Martin is a great one... It was written by someone who was there! If you can wait till around Thanksgiving, when I get home (currently stuck in Florida for work till then), and I can get to my personal library I can make some better suggestions for the 1750 - 1800 period.
I'll also make the offer that when you get ready to look for a reenactment to go to if you think of it PM me and I'll see if there are any "good" ones coming up in your area. (We reenactors have a monthly newspaper that lists most of them.)
EOD - Initial success or total failure
I am not shocked that the schools have failed to mention these unimportant dead white guys, what with having to teach kids about having two daddies or two mommies. However, why haven't the parents taught these kids anything?
"If we loose Freedom here, there's no place to escape to. This is the Last Place on Earth!" Ronald Reagan
This site was just redone, and has some lesson plans and interactive stuff, Not sure it's at your son's level, but it can't hurt to take a look.
A Living Memorial To The American Revolution and Its Enduring Legacy | American Revolution Center
EOD - Initial success or total failure