Tuesday, August 24, 2010

On the Nightstand, annotated version

The Five Languages of Apology, Chapman and Thomas (hard read, when one is looking at oneself)
Praying with the Psalms, Peterson (love Eugene Peterson)
The Myth of Laziness, Levine (haven't started it yet, but loved his "A Mind at a Time")
The Canon: A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful Basics of Science, Angier  (completely loved her book on women - anatomy and etc., but occasionally find her tone to be smug here)
Getting to Calm: Cool-headed Strategies for Parenting Teens and Tweens, Kastner and Wyatt (very good, this one may remain on the nightstand for the next fifteen years...)
The Art of the Public Grovel: Sexual Sin and Public Confession in America, Bauer  (I'm nowhere near starting this one since we're landing in the next round of studies here, but what a fascinating title, no?  I've so enjoyed her other works, I can't wait to sink into this one - maybe on that cruise I'm planning for two thousand and never...)

I also have The History of the Medieval World (Bauer) to read and I'm feeling terribly guilty about it.  I had received the advance e-version from the author with a promise (mine) to write about it when it released.  I did not (hangs head).  I hadn't finished it and felt, well, as if my gushing wouldn't necessarily add strength to her accolades.  Since I hadn't finished it.  Silly, I know, but there it is.  So I'll go ahead and gush now. 

My kids adore history and it's not just because I constantly talk about how cool it is.  It's not just because we read biographies and encyclopedias, or Genevieve Foster books.  It is in no small part due to the fact that we began reading The Story of the World series almost eight years ago.  (Can that even be right?  Someone tell me if I'm wrong.)  We've been through them all a few times now, and the kids can quote portions of the audiobooks.  They color maps with confidence (from the student pages), and have enjoyed staging a war while painted blue, as Celts, among other fun activities.  We had high hopes when beginning The History of the Ancient World and weren't disappointed.  G made a point of reading short passages to anyone he could get to sit still and he laughed and learned and enjoyed it immensely.  The timelines, maps, photos, footnotes, and well-told anecdotes have so engaged him.  The second book in her series, The History of the Medieval World, has similarly been a delight.  He's not quite into it yet, but I'm enjoying it thoroughly and he will too.  After all, history is cool.

Go buy the book - or books.  Could be that you personally aren't teaching children but haven't had a tour through a good history tome lately.  Shoo.  Find at least one of the series, maybe at your library, read it, and then come back and write comments.  I can't wait to hear what you have to say.

No comments: