Tuesday, May 5, 2009

My History Mystery?

"History" is a Greek word which means, literally, just "investigation."
~Arnold Toynbee

I finally received my copy of Timeliner XE from Tom Snyder Productions that I had purchased through Homeschool Buyers Co-op last month. I write "finally" because the co-op order was so big that it went on back order for a time. I am going to be busy typing in quite a bit of information and playing with this program for a time, I think.

I have been wanting to do a history timeline, which will probably be set up on the wall of our hallway, but I just could not "see" it in my mind. I played with a free Excel timeline template, but it was so time consuming. When I came upon Timeliner, I thought it was amazing. Not only could I see the timeline arranged before we set it up by hand with artwork on the wall, but I can use it for arranging and accessing information through websites on the Internet!

While I am excited about setting up a history timeline, I have had to examine why I have been holding back on history in lessons with the Princess, especially since getting this program was the last excuse I would allow myself about this. It is not that she has not learned some history, it is just that I have not placed the emphasis on it as I had originally planned to do, particularly since I am following the classical model of education.

Why have I been resisting history? I think, in part, it is because when I think of history lessons, I think of how history was taught to me in school: BORING!!! I did have one teacher for one year in high school that made it fun, but all those other years, I would learn the facts to pass the tests and promptly forget most of them.

I think the Princess likes history--perhaps that is where I get all up tight about it. I don't want to squelch her love history by teaching it in a way that bores her. I have to remind myself that I actually love history now--really, I do! After I began reading books based on or about historical events and people (instead of textbooks with memorizing dry facts so I could pass the test), I have been hooked. I think that I will like learning world history in sequence along with the Princess, teaching the way I wish I had been taught, but it seems I have to often remind myself of these things right now.

It seems overwhelming to teach all that has taken place in the world since You created it, my Lord. It is impossible to know it all as You must, so please guide us in our lessons to learn what You would have us learn about things man has done through the ages and show us, my Lord, Your wondrous handiwork in it all.


  1. One word for you ~ Sonlight. Sonlight, Sonlight, Sonlight ~ or Veritas Press. Their reading lists are history based so without * learning* history a kid will pick up most of what they need to know in an interesting way. My love of history stems from my reading, not from what I learnt in school. lol. Enjoy!

  2. I have another source I like also called "All Through the Ages," but I have some wonderful out-of-print living books that would not be considered for a modern curriculum because they are not readily available.

  3. I think school history was only bearable because I had so much *living history* to fill in the gaps. Even now it's people that intrigue me ~ not the politics or the archeticture, but the why of the people who lived with those things.


Thank you fellow travelers for walking and talking with me along this journey.