{Review} The Classical Historian: History Games and the Socratic Discussion in History

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I review a wide variety of books, curriculum programs, and resources throughout the year. It is such a tremendous blessing to connect with new companies such as The Classical Historian, which I recently reviewed for the Mosaic Reviews team.

Since this was my first introduction to The Classical Historian resources by John and Zdenka De Gree, I spent some time working through the website. I was pleased to discover the mission and method behind the curriculum. Additionally, my husband and I are huge fans of Adam and Missy Andrew's Center for Literature. One of the first things I noticed on The Classical Historian website was the endorsement of resources by the Andrew family, which encouraged me to have high expectations for the resources.

I received three products to review from The Classical Historian:
Go Fish Game: Ancient History (all ages)
Teaching the Socratic Discussion in History set (6-12 grade)
Modern American History set (9-12 grade)


Go Fish Game: Ancient History


What I enjoyed about the Ancient History Go Fish Game:
  • The cards are a sturdy card stock
  • The pictures are colorful
  • Each card gives three historical hints
  • You can play four different games with the card set
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What you need to know before purchasing:
  • This resource can be used with any history curriculum
  • Once you have one game, you will want to get all of the history levels!
  • The games are suitable for all ages
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Product Details:
Title: Go Fish Game: Ancient History
Format: Flash Cards
Publisher: The Classical Historian
Retail Price: $11.95

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The kids LOVED playing the four different games for Ancient History! We are studying Medieval History next year and they asked me to order the Medieval History Go Fish game and the Medieval History Memory Game. I am adding these to my curriculum wish list for this coming year!

Publisher Description:


This one deck of 50 cards with the answer key teaches the following skills through four fun games: Basic historical facts, Chronology, Geography, Association, and Social Skills required to follow the rules and play games with others. 

Includes Four Games in One:
A. Go Fish
B. Collect the Cards
C. Chronology
D. Continents

Teaching the Socratic Discussion in History


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What I enjoyed about the Teaching Socratic Discussion in History set:
  • This program can be used with any chronological study of history
  • The Classical Historian has several history sets that correspond with this method
  • Solid critical thinking, analysis, logic, and discussion skills are emphasized
  • An option is included to become a Certified Teacher of The Classical Historian method
What you need to know before purchasing:
  • Teaching the Socratic Discussion in History can be used more than one year
  • This program can be used in homeschool, co-ops, and school settings
  • The strengths of this program are best brought out in a group setting
  • You can substitute a suitable group setting through family discussion
  • This program requires a committed parent facilitator of learning
  • If you love resources from Institute for Excellence in Writing and Center for Literature, you will appreciate the structure of this method
  • View the Table of Contents
Product Details:
Title: Teaching the Socratic Discussion in History
Format: Spiral-bound Softcover Guide with 3 DVDs
Publisher: The Classical Historian
Retail Price: $79.00

Publisher Description: This is not a history content curriculum but a teaching and learning method that is essential to teach your child how to be a critical and independent thinker, speaker, and writer in History.  This DVD course does not cover content but teaches the student how to approach all history.  If you want your student to become an independent thinker and an effective communicator, this is the program for you. After this DVD course, the student will know how to distinguish between fact and opinion, make good historical judgment, analyze primary or secondary sources, use quotes effectively in argumentation, how to paraphrase historical text, how to analyze and answer interpretive questions in history, how to conduct research, how to participate in a Socratic Discussion in History, and how to write analytical essays including: Writing an Outline, Writing a Rough Draft, and Revising. The complete DVD course includes over seven complete hours of instructional taping, 13 class lessons, a student course booklet and parent guide.

Modern American History Set



What I enjoyed about the Modern American Set:
What you need to know before purchasing:
  • This is a large set of materials which explains the cost investment of the program
  • You can order individual items that are included in this set
  • Teaching the Socratic Discussion in History can be saved to use for future years with other chronological studies of history
  • This program requires a committed parent facilitator of learning
  • This set is primarily for 9-12 grade
Product Details:
Title: Modern American History Set
Set Includes:
Take a Stand! Softcover Student Workbook
Teaching the Socratic Discussion in History Spiral-bound Softcover Guide with 3 DVDs
Spiral-bound Curriculum Guide (32 Weeks)
Textbook and Primary Source Book
Publisher: The Classical Historian
Retail Price: $179.00 for set

Publisher Description:
The Classical Historian teaches students to think independently, make decisions, read, write, and speak effectively, AND learn history.  The Classical Historian uses a Five Step Method:

1. Students Learn the Tools of the Historian.
2. Students are Challenged with Open-Ended Questions.
3. Students Research in a Variety of Secondary and Primary Sources.
4. Students Engage in a Socratic Discussion.
5. Students Write an Analytical Essay.

Read more about The Classical Historian Mission and Method.

I thoroughly enjoyed reviewing The Classical Historian resources! I plan to continue to work through the Teaching the Socratic Discussion in History through this summer as we prepare for our Medieval studies in the fall.

I began the product review with high expectations and I was not disappointed! I will add the caveat that we are a geeky, bookish, classical family and that we adore classical educational methods. This educational approach may not suit every family. If you are a relaxed unschooling family, this curriculum may not be up your alley. However, any homeschooling method and approach could make use of the enjoyable Go Fish and Memory history games.

Connect with The Classical Historian:
Website
Facebook

Disclaimer:
I received a complimentary copy of this product from The Classical Historian to help facilitate the writing of a frank and honest review for Mosaic Reviews. This author was under no obligation to offer a favorable review. All opinions shared about the product are the honest responses of Sharra Badgley. Your results and opinions may vary.

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