Wednesday, July 31, 2013

From Interest to Credit

Course development and content varies from high school to high school. The same is true from home school to home school. When developing a high school course for a student, a parent educator can access many resources as guides for content.

This year, due to the talent and interest of one our children, we will be developing a high school drawing and painting class. Drawing and painting? What would a drawing and painting class entail? My mind takes off, thinking of the possibilities.

My first quest, find out what a typical high school drawing and painting class might include. Visiting the DOE site I found Drawing and Painting I, a one-credit course. According the Florida DOE site, the purpose of this course is to "enable students to develop basic perceptual, observational, and compositional skills necessary to communicate a range of subject matter, symbols, ideas, and concepts using knowledge of drawing and painting media, processes, and techniques.The content should include, but not be limited to, the use of tools and materials, art vocabulary, elements of art and principles of design, critical thinking and analysis, historical and cultural perspectives, connections between visual arts and other subject areas, personal and social benefits, collaborative skills, and career opportunities."

I looked at the stated objectives for the course and immediately realized putting together an art class was possible. My daughter and I sat and brainstormed. What specific areas of art are of interest? What media and techniques would she want to experience? Where could we find information and instruction to create a high school level (or above) class? Who might be able to provide mentoring or instruction in this area of interest? What galleries might we be able to visit? How could we incorporate art appreciation and art history into her study?Where might she be able to display art pieces she creates? How is art, or one's knowledge of art, incorporated into various careers?

After our discussion, my daughter's interest turned to self-motivation. She began to dig and discover for herself. What resources we found! I realized her intrinsic interest in drawing and painting could be fostered at home as well as in the community. Real life. Real people. Real art media. Real learning. And, the best part, she had already begun her study...while I was busy finding ways and ideas to support her interest. 

*The information in this blog post is not intended as legal or educational advice. It is simply a journal of what worked for us. Parents are responsible to oversee their child's home education.

Monday, July 29, 2013

The Cumulative Folder: Organizing High School Records

Your high schooler has a unique story. 

No matter what home education philosophy you have chosen, the story of how your student turned the high school tassel will be unique. What he or she studied, courses completed, because of interests and gifting, will be different. The story will be told to employers and college admission counselors in applications, transcripts, and course descriptions. From where do we get this valuable content?

The cumulative folder. Records we keep.

Over the last several weeks as we have been walking with parents through home education annual evaluations, we have visited with many high school parents, or parents just about to embark on the high school journey. Each family choosing interesting teaching options, different curriculum. 

From our own experience of schooling a high schooler, almost 10 years and counting (2 graduated and one current high schooler) I learned I needed to keep important information handy, easy to access, before and after graduation. My experience leads me to encourage others so they may have the same success, with as little stress as possible.

I encourage parents gathering high school records to keep in mind that one day they may have to "write" the "stories" of their high school students. One mom might gather documents for employment, another called to prove her "good student" was eligible for reduced car insurance. Still another parent might be preparing a high school transcript and other necessary documents required for college admission. I encourage these moms to keep their high school records well-organized in a cumulative folder (hard copies and digital) making the high school story writing process less daunting as the last days of high school near, and potential new doors open. Accurate and organized record keeping is the key to being prepared to compile official paperwork any employer or a college admissions packet might require.

There are many ways to keep high school records. Research examples from parents who have journeyed high school successfully. Talk with them. Glean from their experience. Check important information from reputable sources, the primary source if possible. Keep up to date regarding current admission trends. Read when you can. Your high school "guidance counselor" hat, the one you earn while you have high schoolers, will serve you well!

We organize high school records as soon as our students begin taking (at home)  or enroll in high school level courses. For some that was eighth grade Algebra I and Drawing and Painting. We purchase a two-inch binder, fill it with notebook paper and plastic protector sleeves, and use dividers to create twelve sections, arranged alphabetically:

  • Activities (a listing of sports, scouts, band, choir, youth ministry, 4-H)
    • We keep a digital copy on the computer and print as needed or to "back up" records.
  • Awards (each award for Honors Student, Presidential Physical Fitness, Eagle Scout, Student Leader placed in a plastic protective sleeve)
  • Certificates (each certificate for Most Valuable Player, Band President, Varsity sports placed in a plastic sleeve)
  • College admission requirements (for the colleges we are considering)
    • More and more we don't need this section as requirements are all online. I do keep a document of current links for the colleges of interest to our students (especially if I have two high schoolers at the same time!)
  • College applications (the actual documents found online, printed out for easily reference)
    • Printing out the application makes for easy reference should the student want to work on essays- they make great English writing assignments.
  • Community service/volunteer hours (a log of hours and the supervisor's contact information from church, community, political, and service organizations where the student volunteered, as well as hours documented in letter format on the organization's letterhead with contact information, dates of service, and hours served)
  • Grades (for each subject completed or currently enrolled)
  • Letters of recommendation (letters, placed in plastic sleeves, from individuals/supervisors who know your student in an educational setting, church setting, work setting, or community setting who can speak to character, work ethic and academic ability)
  • Medical records (verification of shots and any important medical information, colleges will need this for admission)
  • Test scores (sent to your home from PSAT, SAT, ACT, CLEP and AP)
  • Transcripts (outside the home, perhaps online classes or correspondence programs)
  • Work experience (listing of employer's contact information, employment dates, advancements, job titles and description of responsibilities)
  • Writing samples (perfect references for college essays)

Important papers and information are filed in the appropriate section as soon as they enter our home (or shortly thereafter!). This system is easily expandable if we need it to be and there is no limit to what we can include. We consider all information necessary until we find out otherwise.

As our students journey through their high school years we file information into the notebook. Having the information in one place speeds the story writing process. To write a resume for a potential employer we reference the letters of recommendation for possible references and contacts. At the end of the student's junior year when he/she begins to write college essays, the writing sample section of the notebook is a valuable resource. To write a high school transcript, we format the document on the computer and fill in the needed information from the notebook. We also refer to the notebook as we complete community service and extracurricular sections on college applications. The notebook is a goldmine of nuggets!

Writing your high schooler's high school story is exciting! Whether you are creating a resume for a first job, calculating grades for reduced car insurance premiums, or compiling a college admission's package, your high schooler's notebook will lessen stress and frustration. All the information will be at your fingertips, in one place. The time spent with your high schooler writing his/her story will be a memorable one, one in which you can rejoice togehter. It is the culmination, the last chapter, of the student's homeschool journey. Enjoy writing it!

Please note: This blog article is not meant as legal advice or counsel, only a synopsis of what has worked for us. Every student's high school journey is unique, therefore their paper work will be unique as well. Colleges will ask for varied documents, some listed above, others perhaps not. Not all students will need every piece of paperwork above, however if you find you need the information you will be able to find it efficiently. 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Bird Adventures for All Ages

Spring passed, summer sunshine beams upon us. The morning comes alive with the bird chatter and song. Riding bikes or watering the garden, we are invited to stop awhile and listen. Our children notice the difference in tones. Some birds sound happy, others protect territory, still others mimic. What brilliant variety!

Sparked by interest, we gathered a few bird books from the library and listen on-line to bird song. Did we hear that bird? It's a dove! That sounds like the bird in our backyard? I know it is a blue jay!

Our adventures grow spontaneously out of our reading and listening together. After reading Cradles in the Trees: The Story of Bird Nests by Patricia Brennan Demuth, the girls gather found pillows, sheets and blankets, building three comfy bird nests throughout the house. They fly in and out of nests, visiting one  and bringing food to hungry hatchlings. Later we go on a "nest hunt" outdoors, taking the bird field guide to identify birds seen while on our hunt. One learner tries to build a real nest out of grass, sticks, string and mud. Oh, and while that was drying, it was requested we paint on giant paper with the feather duster. 

With the book list below, and the many other bird books waiting on the shelves of your library, you, too, can fly away on some exciting bird adventures.  

Watching Water Birds by Jim Arnosky

Cradles in Trees: The Story of Bird Nests by Patricia Brennan Demuth

Feathers for Lunch by Lois Ehlert

Owls by Gail Gibbons

Ducks Don't Get Wet by Augusta Goldin

Where Do Birds Live? by Ron Hirschi

A Nest Full of Eggs by Priscilla Belz Jenkins

Counting is for the Birds by Frank Mazzola, Jr.

The Bird Alphabet Book by J. Pallotta

About Birds: A Guide for Children by Cathryn Sill

Unbeatable Beaks by Stephen R. Swinburne

Our middle schooler, still eager for ornithology, wanders to the bookshelf and finds The Story of James Audubon by Joan Howard, a biography from our favorite Signature series collection. We also found The Boy Who Drew Birds: A Story of John James Audubon by Jacqueline Davies and Melissa Sweet at the library and some wonderful resources at the Cornell Ornithology lab site

Though we don't have children interested in high school level bird study, some high school learners might decide to study ornithology. Career study may be helpful to young adults interested in bird study. 

Families can continue study together through birding clubs in their area, sceduling a field trip to the local Audubon society, or dissecting owl pellets.

Additional resources:

Happy birding!

Monday, July 22, 2013

"Mom, I Want to Build Something!"

The most recent statement from our child who recently announced, 

"I want to be an engineer." 

How did that child come to that conclusion? Not certain we had ever done an "engineer" study. Must know an engineer? Did the child overhear conversation with an engineer? Hmmm. Where did the revelation come from? 

A child has a longing, a desire. Louis Pasteur asked questions and searched for answers. He got answers, and saved lives. The Wright Brothers wanted to fly. They experimented and they did. A child inspired. Where will that inspiration lead? Pondering how to fan the flames, like Jeanne Roqui, Susan Wright, and many other moms.

Another day another idea.

Finding some PVC pipes, elbow and connectors, a tent frame erected in the front yard. Same child.

Now, convinced this is more than a passing thought, I notice the common thread. Building is part of the unique design.

Almost immediately I remembered an older sibling designing with an extensive set of KNEX, 13 years ago. Dug out of the back of a closet, the set was reopened, rediscovered, pieces rumbling. Something was happening, like a mind-quake.

What is being built? The curiosity bubbled inside me. I couldn't wait to see the results of a imaginative mind, a curiosity.

Before long..

"Look what I built!"

Complete with a rotary dial, which was added after consultation with an older sibling.

"Mom, I want to build something!"  

What an ingenious builder you are!

How can I help you be the best builder you can be?


Friday, July 19, 2013

Problem. Solution. Others Benefit.

My daughter saw a problem. Our play set needed care in order for our littles to have any chance of enjoying it the way she did.

"Mom, what if make the repairs, add additional weather conditioning?" 

Not really how I wanted to spend my time, but she was right. I appreciated her initiative, her heart. I knew I needed to encourage and help in the process.

Our family embraced the idea. The littles would appreciate our efforts.

Off to the home improvement store. Call Pop for instruction.

In days, work started. In days, work completed. 

Ingenuity. Initiative. Collaboration.

Problem. Solution. Others benefit. 

In the process, relationships were deepened and my daughter initiated a project, saw it to completion while involving others, and learned new skills.

Where will this experience be documented in her high school accomplishments? Another day. Another blog.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Tampa Bay STEM Conference- August 22-23, 2013

Excited to be a part of this event

As a young learner, math and science were my enemies, or so I thought. Much later, I realized I really did like math and science, I just could not understand it as presented and taught in school. I needed to experience concepts, not just read about them.

Learning in my father's shop was a different learning experience. I could be innovative, creative, try new ideas. Experiment. Discover. Work toward new solutions. 

 Inquisitive, I wondered how things worked. Hours in my father's wood shop found me experimenting with pulleys, building "launchers" with wood scraps, using tools, collaborating with my brothers to find creative ways to "put things together".

As I peered out Dad's wood shop window, I pondered how I could pick fresh wild blackberries (as quickly as possible) to sell along the country roadside. So began my entrepreneurial pursuits. There were so many ways I learned math and science, from gardening and animal care to imitating Dad's bird calls and identifying plants.

Mom made math understandable, essential to cooking and canning sessions together. Then there was my hand-crafted beaded jewelry business, yet another entrepreneurial venture. 

My early learning experiences set a foundation for my future, from the way I process and apply information to how I educate my children. The experiences in Dad's wood shed and Mom's kitchen contributed to those abilities. I only thought math and science were my enemies.

That is why I'm

excited to be a speaker at this event!

Science, technology, engineering, and math can be real and meaningful. These topics can be understood. It just might not "look" how we thought it might. This event will encourage and inspire parents as they learn practical ways to teach these often intimidating topics.

Tell us about the meaningful learning experiences you have had in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and math. Or, tell us about a unique way you have taught concepts in these areas. Readers who leave a comment to this blog post will be entered in a random drawing to win a copy of my book, Geometry

Follow my blog and receive another entry to the drawing.

Comments or follows must be generated by midnight Sunday, July 21 to be eligible. Winner announced Monday, July 22.

Sunday, July 7, 2013


 A one-hour adventure with the beloved Swimmy by Leo Lionni

The preschool and elementary age fish in our school listened eagerly to Swimmy. After the reading, we chose white construction paper from our paper tray and brushed cool-hued watercolors lightly over the entire paper. We had our sights set on a mixed-media collage we found highlighted in 25 Terrific Art ProjectsBased on Favorite Picture Books by Karen Backus, Linda Evans and Mary Thompson.

As we created we strayed from the collage instructions in the book, adding our creativity with twisted tissue paper, sponge- painted seahorses, and torn paper rocks.  The results were amazing! 

My favorite moment of the adventure was the six-year-old's reaction to the fishes failure to cooperate. She sighed, "How sad!" What a character lesson!

Check out Swimmy by Leo Lionni for a powerful example of the importance of working together.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

America's Birthday

As we put the finishing touches on a vegetable tray for a Fourth of July celebration, our inquisitive three year old questioned, "Where are we going?"

I looked down at her bright smiling face and answered, "To Uncle Brian's party."

Immediately she responded with yet another question.  "Who's birthday is it?"

Of course a three year old might consider that every party is a birthday party.  I smiled and chuckled inside as I replied, "It's America's birthday."

Before I could get another word of explanation out of my mouth, she questioned, "Is America going to be there?"

Looking for July 4th teaching resources? Check out  The Teaching Nook.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Experiential Learning: ECHO

What an amazing day!

On a recent stay in Fort Myers, at the encouragement of our friends, we visited ECHO (Educational Concerns for Hunger Organization). What we learned was astounding!

Our morning began with a informational video about the organization. The guide explained the geographical barriers of cultivating food in such a way that our children understood the difficulty of growing food in urban areas or on mountain side villages, rendering farmers poor. Once we understood the geographical barriers, the guide escorted our small group out to the working farm where volunteers research and experiment to overcome geographical barriers with no waste. My children observed how problem solving skills, out-of-the-box thinking, can feed people. Their solutions, innovative.

The organization also provides seeds, plants, and agricultural knowledge to farmers struggling to provide food for their families. They research raising animals and finding ways to reuse or re-purpose everything, all in hopes to use what can be used naturally in areas where agriculture is difficult.

My children were introduced to turkens, a breed of chicken which can survive in tropical climates because their their necks are featherless. They stay cooler than the chickens with which we are familiar with.

Amazing agricultural engineering. Use what people have access to. Make is sustainable. Waste nothing.

The visit reminded me of my our friend John Drake whose creative genius, ingenuity, and determination brought self-sustaining windmills to Malawi. He recognized a problem. He surveyed the resources available to the people. He created a solution. Through his non-profit, African Windmill Project, John has not only designed a windmill to bring water to crops, but also has empowered the people of the area to use what they have available to sustain the equipment they install to help them solve their irrigation issues. Ingenuity.

At ECHO we learned geography, engineering, agriculture, science, and math. But perhaps the greatest take away was my children interacting and listening to people who were not afraid to ask questions, to recognize a problem, and then find a solution, using what was available. Reminds me of the biographies we have read about the Wright Brothers, Edison, and others who have used what they had available to them to make a difference: seeing a problem, finding a solution.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Landmark Books in Chronological Order (at least the best I could!)

Teaching history chronologically? Wanting to learn more details about the life of an inventor or reformer? Why not add some living books, real books about real events and real people, to your study?

I compiled this chronological listing of Landmark books for two reasons. First, we have always intertwined the teaching of American and world history, reading a piece of historical fiction or biography and posting a representative picture on our time line which stretches the length of our hallway. Most recently, however, we joined a small living history co-op which teaches world history chronologically, focusing on a specific time period each year. We were curious if any of the books we had on our shelves would fit into our upcoming school year. We thought of our Landmark books.

Having a shelf full of Landmark books, I decided to arrange them chronologically (as best I could) so we can research and read from the time period which we will be studying. For those children in my family who prefer the “this looks interesting” method of learning, this chronological listing will be used as reference, should he or she try to place a specific event or person on our family timeline. 

to 467 AD                               Ancient Civilizations                         The World

Book Number
The First Men In the World
Anne Terry White
Prehistoric America
Anne Terry White
Pharaohs of Ancient Egypt
Elizabeth Payne
Adventures of Ulysses
Gerald Gottlieb
The Exploits of Xenophon
Geoffrey Household
Alexander the Great
John Gunther
Julius Caesar
John Gunther
Cleopatra of Egypt
Leonora Hornblow
Jesus of Nazareth
Harry Emerson Fosdick
The Life of Saint Paul
Harry Emerson Fosdick

467 - 1453                            Middle Ages                                    The World

Book Number
The Life of Saint Patrick 
Quentin Reynolds
King Arthur and His Knights
Mabel Louise Robinson
William the Conqueror 
Thomas B. Costain
The Crusades 
Anthony West
Genghis Khan and the Mongol
Harold Lamb
The Magna Charta 
James Daugherty
Adventures and Discoveries of Marco Polo
(see also Age of Exploration and Discovery)
Richard Walsh
Joan of Arc
Nancy Wilson Ross
The Fall of Constantinople 
Bernadine Kielty

1400 - 1600                 Renaissance and Reformation         The World

Book Number
Leonardo da Vinci
Emily Hahn
Martin Luther
Harry Emerson Fosdick
Mary, Queen of Scots
Emily Hahn

1200 - 1750        The Age of Exploration and Discovery         The World

Book Number
Adventures and Discoveries of Marco Polo
Richard Walsh
The Vikings 
Elizabeth Janeway
The Voyages of Christopher Columbus
Armstrong Sperry
Balboa: Swordsman Conquistador
Felix Riesenberg
Ferdinand Magellan: Master Mariner
Seymour Gates Pond
Captain Cortes Conquers Mexico
William Johnson
Queen Elizabeth and the Spanish Armada
Francis Winwar
The Voyages of Henry Hudson
Eugene Rachlis
Will Shakespeare and the Globe Theater
Anne Terry White
Exploring the Himalaya
William O. Douglas
Pocahontas and Captain John Smith 
Marie Lawson
The Story of Australia
A. Grove Day
Chief of the Cossacks
Harold Lamb
The Flight and Adventures of Charles II
Charles Norman
The Barbary Pirates 
C. S. Forester
Famous Pirates of the New World
A. B. C. Whipple
The Explorations of Pere Marquette 
Jim Kjelgaard
Captain Cook Explores the South Seas
Armstrong Sperry

1500 - 1763          Colonial America         The United States

Book Number
Walter Raleigh
Henrietta Buckmaster
Pocahontas and Captain John Smith
Marie Lawson
The Landing of the Pilgrims
James Daugherty
The Story of the Thirteen Colonies
Clifford Lindsey Alderman
Peter Stuyvesant of Old New York
Anne Erskine
William Penn: Quaker Hero
Hildegarde Dolson
The Mysterious Voyage of Captain Kidd
A. B. C.Whipple
The Witchcraft of Salem Village
Shirley Jackson
Hudson's Bay Company
Richard Morenus 
The Mississippi Bubble 
Thomas B. Costain

1700 - 1850   Enlightenment, Revolution and Independence   The World

Book Number
Ben Franklin and Old Philadelphia
Margaret Cousin
Catherine the Great
Katherine Scherman
George Washington, Frontier Colonel
Sterling North
Paul Revere and the Minute Men
Dorothy Canfield Fisher
Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain Boys
Slater Brown
The Slave Who Freed Haiti: The Story of Toussaint Louverture
Katerine Scherman
Thomas Jefferson, Father of Democracy
Vincent Sheean
John Paul Jones, Fighting Sailor
Armstrong Sperry
Betsy Ross and the Flag
Jane Mayer
Rogers’ Rangers and the French and Indian War
Bradford Smith
Marie Antoinette
Bernadine Kielty
Evangeline and the Acadians
Robert Tallant
The Marquis de Lafayette: Bright Sword of Freedom
Hodding Carter
The Swamp Fox of the Revolution
Stewart H. Holbrook
The American Revolution
Bruce Bliven
The Winter at Valley Forge
Van Wyck Mason
Our Independence and the Constitution
Dorothy Canfield Fisher
Simon Bolivar, the Great Liberator
Arnold Whitridge
Hero of Trafalgar
A. B. C. Whipple
Napoleon and the Battle of Waterloo
Frances Winwar
The Story of Scotland Yard
Laurence Thompson

1783 - 1850    Post-Revolution and the New Nation    The United States

Book Number
Dolly Madison
Jane Mayer
John James Audubon
Margaret and John Kieran
Old Ironsides, the Fighting Constitution
Harry Hansen
General Brock and Niagara Falls
Samuel Hopkins Adams
Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr
Anna Erskine
The Pirate Lafitte and The Battle of New Orleans
Robert Tallant
The Erie Canal
Samuel Hopkins Adams
Robert Fulton and the Steamboat
Ralph Nading Hill
Clipper Ship Days 
John Jennings

1787 - 1900             Westward Expansion                The United States

Book Number
Daniel Boone
John Mason Brown
The Louisiana Purchase
Robert Tallant
The Lewis and Clark Expedition
Richard L. Neuberger
Sequoyah, Leader of the Cherokees
Alice Marriott
War Chief of the Seminoles
Mary McNeer
The Greatest Showman: The Life of P.T. Barnum
Joe Bryan III
Davy Crockett
Stewart H. Holbrook
Sam Houston, the Tallest Texan
William Johnson
Remember the Alamo!
Robert Penn Warren
The Texas Rangers
Will Henry
Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too!
Stanley Young
Trapper and Traders of the Far West
James Daugherty
Heroines of the Early West
Nancy Wilson Ross
Kit Carson and the Wild Frontier
Ralph Moody
The Santa Fe Trail
Samuel Hopkins Adams
Young Mark Twain and the Mississippi
Harnett T. Kane
Wild Bill Hickok Tames the Wild West
Stewart H. Holbrook
The Pioneers Go West to California by Covered Wagon
George R. Stewart
The Coming of the Mormons
Jim Kjelgaard
Wyatt Earp, U.S. Marshall
Stewart H Holbrook
The California Gold Rush
May McNeer
The First Overland Mail
Robert Pinkerton
The Pony Express
Samuel Hopkins Adams
The Golden Age of Railroads 
Stewart H. Holbrook
Geronimo: Wolf of the Warpath
Ralph Moody
Custer’s Last Stand
Quentin Reynolds
Up the Trail from Texas
J. Frank Dobie
Buffalo Bill’s Great Wild West Show 
Walter Havighurst
The Alaska Gold Rush 
May McNeer

1861 - 1865                       The Civil War                 The United States

Book Number
Abe Lincoln: Log Cabin to White House
Sterling North
Robert E. Lee and the Road to Honor
Hodding Carter
Stonewall Jackson
Jonathan Daniels
Clara Barton, Founder of the American Red Cross
Helen Boylston
Lincoln and Douglas: The Years of Decision
Regina Z. Kelly
The Monitor and the Merrimac
Fletcher Pratt
MacKinlay Kantor
Lee and Grant at Appomattox
MacKinlay Kantor

1837 - 1900           The Victorian Era and Imperialism         The World

Book Number
Commodore Perry and the Opening of Japan
Ferdinanad Kuhn
Queen Victoria
Noel Streatfeild
Florence Nightingale
Ruth Fox Hume
The French Foreign Legion
Wyatt Blassingame
Garibaldi: Father of Modern Italy
Marcia Davenport

1820 - 1900    Industrialization and Innovation         The United States

Book Number
The Golden Age of Railroads 
Stewart H. Holbrook
Andrew Carnegie and the Age of Steel 
Katherine B. Shippen
The First Transatlantic Cable 
Adele Gutman Nathan
Mr. Bell Invents the Telephone 
Katherine B. Shippen
The Building of the First Transcontinental Railroad 
Adele Gutman Nathan
Disaster at Johnstown, the Great Flood 
Hildegarde Dolson

1880 - 1920   Around the World at the Turn of the Century   The World

Book Number
Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough Riders 
Henry Castor
The Early Days of the Automobiles
Elizabeth Janeway
George Washington Carver, the Story of a Great American
Anne Terry White
The Story of the Secret Service 
Ferdinand Kuhn
The Man Who Changed China: The Story of Sun Yat-sen
Pearl S. Buck
The Wright Brothers
Quentin Reynolds
The Story of Alva Edison
Margaret Cousins
The Panama Canal
Bob Considine
The Story of San Francisco
Charlotte Jackson
The Conquest of the North and South Poles
Russell Owen

1914 - 1945          World War I to World War II         The United States

Book Number
The Mississippi Bubble 
Thomas B. Costain
Flying Aces of World War I 
Gene Gurney
Royal Canadian Mounted Police 
Richard L Neuberger
The Story of Albert Schweitzer 
Anita Daniel
The Story of Oklahoma 
Lon Tinkle
The Doctors Who Conquered Yellow Fever 
Ralph Nading Hill
The Rise and Fall of Adolf Hitler 
William L. Shirer
The Seabees of World War II 
Edmund Castillo
Combat Nurses of World War II 
Wyatt Blassingame
Medical Corps Heroes of World War II
Wyatt Blassingame
The U. S. Frogmen of World War II 
Wyatt Blassingame
Commandos of World War II 
Hodding Carter
The Battle of Britain 
Quentin Reynolds
The Battle for the Atlantic 
Jay Williams
The Sinking of the Bismarck 
William L. Shirer
From Pearl Harbor to Okinawa 
William L. Shirer
The Flying Tigers 
John Toland
Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo 
Captain Ted Lawson
Guadalcanal Diary 
Richard Tregaskis
Midway, Battle for the Pacific 
Richard Tregaskis
John F. Kennedy and PT 109 
Richard Tregaskis
From Casablanca to Berlin 
Bruce Blevin, Jr.
The Battle of the Bulge 
John Toland
The Story of D-Day: June 6, 1944 
Bruce Bliven, Jr.
The Battle for Iwo Jima 
Robert Leckie

1947 - 1991     The Cold War and Space Exploration         The World

Book Number
The Story of Atomic Energy 
Laura Fermi
The War of Korea: 1950 - 1953 
Robert Leckie
Dwight D. Eisenhower 
Malcom Moos
Americans into Orbit: The Story of Project Mercury 
Gene Gurney
Walk in Space: The Story of Project Gemini 
Gene Gurney

Please note: Historical eras and dates are debated, even documented and titled differently dependent on the source.  I did my best to list the books in the best chronological sequence possible based on the time frame and content of the book, which often spans many years. This listing is a guide and parents are encouraged to read the literature they intend to hand to their children.

Why do the names associated with eras differ? Why are certain eras labeled differently by different sources? What do different sources pinpoint a particular date as the starting or ending of an era? These are great questions to ponder and dialogue about with your children. Ask questions. Find answers together.

For children (or parents) curious about the military history of the United States, Landmark offers quite a selection. This list is not in chronological order.

1800 - Present                       The Armed Forces                       The World

Book Number
The Story of the Paratroops 
George Weller
The Story of the U. S. Marines 
George Hunt
The West Point Story 
Colonel Red Reeder
The Story of the U. S. Coast Guard 
Eugene Rachlis
The Story of the Naval Academy 
Felix Riesenberg, Jr.
The Story of Submarines 
George Weller
Flat-Tops: The Story of Aircraft Carriers
Edmund Castillo
The Story of the U.S. Air Force 
Robert Loomis
Medal of Honor Heroes 
Colonel Red Reeder
The U. S. Border Patrol 
Clement Hellyer
The Story of the Secret Service 
Ferdinand Kuhn

I hope this listing will be as helpful to you as it is for us, whether you study history chronologically or from a “this looks interesting” method. Enjoy these WONDERFUL literary treasures!