Apologia Educational Ministries is an elemental part of education for many homeschooling families like mine. They are at the forefront of support, encouragement and first-choice materials for educating tomorrows leaders.
One of the absolute diamonds over there is the four part What We Believe series. This is a student-directed, Bible based curriculum that teaches the essential beliefs of the Christian faith, giving kids ages 6-14 a solid worldview in which to navigate the waters of this crazy world.
Each book in the series can be used as a stand-alone study, but they all flow together nicely building the House of Truth. This visual model constructed one step at a time helps kids see how each worldview truth studied fits together to form the framework of a Christian life.
Our family has been greatly blessed with the opportunity to review the first two books in the What We Believe series, and now we are working through the third, Who is My Neighbor. Let me just go ahead say if you are looking for a series to help you teach your kids about the Christian faith, worldview, Biblical truths and character, look no further. I can wholeheartedly recommend this series and will even go out on a limb and guarantee you won’t be a bit disappointed.
As with the other books in the series, Who is My Neighbor is organized into lessons with key components:
*The Big Idea is an introduction to the main topic and a brief review of what’s been covered so far.
*What You Will Do is the learning objectives for the lesson.
*Short Story features characters with children around the same ages as yours from other cultures, containing different worldviews allowing for ministry and Bible teaching in action to be modeled. My family LOVES these stories! Each book has shown a glimpse of another culture, with book three being a story about a Chinese family. It’s really good!
*Think About It offers some great thought-provoking questions which open a doorway to understanding on a deeper level through discussion. My family LOVES to talk and offer opinions, but if yours doesn’t this is a super-great way to get that started!
*Words You Need to Know gives a useful list of important vocabulary words every young minister of Christ should know and be able to use!
*Hide It in Your Heart gives two specific Bible memory verses (among the many that are contained in the study) that should be internalized and put on a shelf for lifelong ammunition and understanding.
*Integrated Learning truly makes this book a hands-on, exciting, never-boring adventure. Throughout the book is a wide array of topics related to the main text using concepts of art, math ,science, history, literature, current events, popular media, characters, biographies, cartoons, ideas, inventions, events, you-name-it random thoughts. It’s truly a fun way to learn some pretty cool concepts that help concrete in understanding of the concepts being covered, and you never know what might pop up here!
*What Should I Do? highlights a specific godly character trait for students to consider how it applies to their own lives.
*Prayer ends the main body of every lesson. Personalized, reinforcing and relevant, just as prayer should be!
*Encounters with Jesus is the final portion of each lesson which is a story adapted from Scripture about a person who encountered Jesus during His ministry on earth. These stories are beautifully illustrated and full of rich culture and geography, helping students understand and explore how Jesus showed God’s love to people in need.
*Take a Closer Look is a group of discussion questions stimulating kids the think about how they can serve as Jesus’ hand and feet in a similar situation today.
*House of Truth is a visual model being built throughout all four books in the series, with four lessons in this volume ending with addition of a new part.
The theme of Who is My Neighbor, which is the third book in the What We Believe series, is developing a Christlike servant attitude. As they cover the Biblical truths taught in the 8 lessons, they will begin to understand what it means to be the salt and light to the world.
Who is My Neighbor can be purchased for $39.00 on the Apologia website.
You can pick up the Who is My Neighbor Notebooking Journal for just $24.00
And don’t forget the Who is My Neighbor coloring book for $8.00!
~Who is My Neighbor at Gunn Ranch Academy~
Apologia’s What We Believe series has been a hit at our house. We were hooked after the first book, but it just got better from there once they added the notebooking journal and coloring book. Those two additions just couldn’t be more perfect for my 11 and 6 year old! Taylor (my 11 year old) was already familiar with the notebooking style from using them with the Apologia Young Explorers Science books, and absolutely LOVES them. I love that they give her some practical and fun activities to reinforce all that the book covers. Even my 15 year old couldn’t resist listening in as we snuggled together to read.
The format of the book is just perfect. It’s absolutely the best attention-holding series for the can’t-sit-still kid that we’ve used (besides the Young Explorers Science series which is a very similar format). The stories are awesome, lending themselves to some great discussions of other cultures.
I do think, however that the integrated learning boxes are our favorite parts, because as I said you never know what’s gonna pop up here. For instance in this book the first article covered Red Sun Rising giving us a pretty good history of China which went along with the story of a Chinese family making a dangerous escape from war in China. Next there is an article about freighter ships importing and exporting goods tying to the Chinese family’s escape. Yet another blurb went over the Buddy System.
Also within the text of the first chapter is a discussion of the Trinity, Adam and Eve, and NASCAR! The lesson ends with Encounters With Jesus, The Wedding Feast, and discusses not only the popular slogan “What Would Jesus Do,” but recreates or fictionalizes the very real story of Mariam and Rachel in a up-close-and-personal memorable way.
Given the variety of topics discussed in the very first chapter, can you see how exciting this study is?!
From the aesthetically pleasing layout of the book, to the beautiful illustrations, to the famous quotations, this book is an amazing treasure!
I recommend not only this book, but the whole series with no reservations, two thumbs up, you-gotta-have-it, don’t-miss-out urgency!
And by all means if you’re not ultra-familiar with Apologia Educational Ministries, I urge you to spend some time getting to know them. You’ll never believe all they have to offer and it’s all straight from the heart. I know my family’s journey would have NEVER been the same without them. You can find Apologia products mentioned endlessly throughout my blog because we use a lot of them!
THANK YOU APOLOGIA!
Check out my Crew Mates’ adventures with Apologia’s Who is My Neighbor over at the Crew Blog!
*Disclaimer~We received the products in this blog post in exchange for an honest review as members of the Schoolhouse Review Crew. No other compensation was received and opinions are my own.