This week's product review is for an e-book published by Soli Deo Gloria Resources "William Tyndale: God's Smuggler". This product is a unit study - but not your typical unit study - trust me, I've done a few unit studies in my 13 years of homeshcooling. This one caught me attention and held it 'til the end. In it's 21 pages, this study covers history, science, geography, character, Bible, art, and language arts. The only thing you need to add is math. I found that each of the above topics is covered thoroughly, but not in an overwhelming-how-can-I-possibly-do-everything-in-this-unit-study way (if you have attempted many unit studies, you know what I mean by that!). Even though the company says that the William Tyndale study is shorter than most of their other unit studies, I found 21 pages to be just about right for a short-term project. AND it's written to work for ALL grades and ages - yup, that means K through 12. Big bonus for the multi-level homeschooling mom :)
The 15th and 16th centuries are the setting for this study - and when you consider all the amazing things happening in the world during this era of history, it's incredible they packed so much into this e-book. I found it meaty enough to keep us interested, but not so "full" of facts that we wanted to avoid using the product. They managed to strike a nice balance with this William Tyndale unit; one of the ways they accomplished that was their incorporation of a timeline. The key players surrounding Tyndale's life are "right before your eyes" with the timeline and students are free to explore in depth whoever they take an interest in. It's always best to keep history interesting and to link key people and events so that no one country or people group becomes isolated from everything else taking place in the world at that time. Some of the key players represented on the timeline include Gutenberg, Columbus, Luther, Erasmus, Calvin, and King Henry VIII. So students see the vast and incredible changes taking place - the development of the printing press; discovery of the Americas; Luther's thesis; the librarian who measured the earth; Calvinism's advent; "I'm Henry the Eighth, I am"; Da Vinci and Michaelangelo from Italy; the Black Plague; and so much more! This is a fascinating time in history and this study of William Tyndale is a wonderful piece of that era. I cannot stress enough the importance of understanding history and our place in it as Christians in 2010; and frankly, we would not be where we are right now without William Tyndale. His prayer just before he was martyred was answered by King James (he took the throne following Queen Elizabeth's death in 1603). Whether you take a break from your normal school routine for a week or study the 15th and 16th centuries in depth over an entire school year, this e-book will be a benefit to you. You even have the opportunity to do a little translating and scribe work for yourself - it gives you a small idea of the daunting task William Tyndale took upon himself to accomplish. The wrap up activity options are a nice way to end the study and gives the students the chance to share what they have learned with friends and/or family.
You won't need too much in terms of supplies. The book and movie list at the beginning of the unit is thorough and the resources aren't difficult to obtain. The e-book itself is internet linked and it is available for purchase at the publisher's website for $8 or at The Old Schoolhouse Store for $9. As always, I must mention that I received this product free of charge for review purposes.
Check out this unit study; dig into the history of the Bible as we know it and read it today; study William Tyndale with your children and give them a real hero to look up to.
Take time to read your Bible today and give thanks to the Lord for His blessing us with copies of our very own!
Day 47 done :)
Jan L. Burt