Tuesday, March 4, 2008

History Hassles

My son hates history. He hates to read. If he could spend his whole life doing science experiments and speaking in numbers, he'd be one happy young man!
But life doesn't work that way, does it?
I've tried a few different approaches and now feel totally disorganized. He must be totally confused by now but I think I finally found what will work.

On Ebay, I won the bid on a series of historical fiction books for kids. They're written either at, or slightly below his reading level (well, school tests claim his level is about college but they're so wrong); this seems to be giving him the history boost he needs. Instead of struggling to comprehend the reading on a level that he has trouble with at the same time as absorb new information that he couldn't care less about than he does now, we've got slightly easy to read stories that impart the information while he enjoys an adventure story about kids his own age. I'm hoping that adding a timeline and corresponding lessons with simple worksheets will make it all clear for him. I admit, it seems like all I can concentrate on is history, annoying, but I have to tweak it until I find what works the best for him and for me. The hardest part so far is keeping the lessons and the stories at the same place. It really isn't working yet, that's why I buy so many workbooks! The book series should arrive soon and then I can plan better. I really want this to work. I've read a review that says this series (now out of print, The American Adventure) has some anachronisms, some poor writing, etc., but that will be fine, that will be fodder for some language and writing instruction! The other reviews and the two books from the series I've read are just fine. I've noticed some of the dialog from the adults sounds more like a textbook but you know what? My boys' dad always lectured (he really should be a history professor) so as far as they know, that's how dads talk!