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Thread: Please help with decisions about history spines

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    I'm trying to make decisions regarding spine history books for Y4. It is so difficult to make decisions about big purchases without seeing the books. For Rhetoric, I am confused by the descriptions in the resource list. In the weekly assignment sheets it looks like the Jennings "Century" and Johnson "History of the American People" are the overview for each week. But the Glennon book is described in the resource list as: "If you can only buy one time-line type book, buy this one and read to younger students." I assume that this comment is comparing the Glennon book to DK's book suggested for the grammar levels. Do I need a timeline book for the Rhetoric level? Also, should I buy both the Jennings book and the Johnson book? If I assign both, my students will not have time for any in-depth reading. Is it better to go with those two and not worry about the in-depth assignments as much? Also which would you assign for a 10th grader doing Rhetoric for the first time (maybe???) who is a very slow reader and has a difficult time understanding things? I really don't know if he will be able to handle the R level history or literature. I have 2 upper grammar daughters, the one D/R son, and a strong R son. (and a 2 year old!) Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Vice President
    Lampstand Press

    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Kingsport, TN
    For Year 4, *if* you can find the Jennings book at a good price, that's the one I'd suggest. However, it is out of print and I've seen the price as often astronomical. The Jennings book is also not as dense as the Johnson one and has some great pictures too! I would assign only one of them with a smattering of other titles for in-depth reading.

    Your D/R son who is a slow reader...I'd use the Idiot's Guide to the Twentieth Century and some upper grammar books. If you end up not finding an appropriate rhetoric spine book, you could also use this for your strong rhetoric son as long as you throw in plenty of other books. (By the way, we sell the Idiot's Guide at the Bookshelf.)

    No, you don't *need* a time line book. If you are going to assign time line work, you can just have them type the dates on the computer, use a time line book, or time line software. My oldest two just typed theirs in Word and my youngest has used the software. So, it's according to what you want to spend your money on, and the make up of your students.

    Hope this helps!
    Dana C. in TN
    Vice President
    Lampstand Press

    "Let my teaching fall like rain and my words descend like dew,
    like showers on new grass, like abundant rain on tender plants.
    I will proclaim the name of the Lord. Oh, praise the greatness of our God!"
    Deut. 32:2-4

  3. #3
    I picked up the Jennings book at the library last week for my own reading. it's great. The library also had The Century for Young People by P. Jennings.

    I haven't looked to buy it anywhere. I just looked at Amazon Mktplace and it looks like you can find it for a good price there.

    Who is very antsy to start studying the 20th C.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    South Bend, IN
    I would second the recommendation on using the Idiot's Guide. When we did Year 4 last time, my Dialectic student was using Idiot's, and he was the one who knew the events, etc.. in our discussions, and his 2 Rhetoric siblings were floundering. I eventually had them read Idiot's first, to get the basic idea, and then they read more deeply.

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