Archive for the ‘History for Homeschoolers’ Category

As many PHR readers know, I created HistoryAtOurHouse–the ultimate history resource for homeschoolers–over five years ago.  It has grown by leaps and bounds in that time, and even spawned two (and soon more) associated product lines. Here are some relevant links to explore, for those of you interested in the potential for an educational revolution through sound pedagogy and the distance learning paradigm:

HistoryAtOurHouse Links

ScienceAtOurHouse Links


MusicAtOurHouse Links

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HistoryAtOurHouse podcast #4 features a segment from the High School class on the topic of what I call the “Thucydidean” approach to history.

Thucydides is the first historian to explicitly identify that history should be pursued for the purpose of instruction, as I discussed recently here.  As a tribute to Thucydides, I thus refer to the objective pursuit of knowledge about the past–as opposed to the intrinsicist and subjective approaches–as “Thucydidean.”


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Want a tiny dose of what a history class could and should have been like when you were young?  Excerpts from the ongoing History At Our House ancient history program are now available via Podbean and iTunes.

This week’s segment:  A discussion with high school students concerning the value of history — especially a crucial contrast between the Founding Fathers and nineteenth century German intellectuals.

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The past year has been an incredibly busy time for me, with the launch of new products and a trip around the world, but I’m back, with some exciting announcements for the coming months!

For both those of you new to Powell History and those who’ve been around from the start, let me get you caught up on the history of Powell History, as well as recent goings-on.

For over five years Powell History has provided an unmatched educational experience for history students of all ages.  In 2006, the first sessions of “A First History for Adults, Part 1 (The Story of America)” were offered to students across the United States and the world.   A year later, History At Our House—the ultimate history resource for homeschoolers—was launched, making live professional history instruction available to homeschooled children of elementary grades everywhere.

Both products have grown by leaps and bounds.  Over the the past four years, A First History for Adults has expanded to include:

Part 2 – Europe: Context and Foil
Part 3 – The Islamist Entanglement
Part 4 – The Ancient Background,

…and European History Through Art for adults!

HistoryAtOurHouse has grown even more rapidly along side, as a fully integrated curriculum, offering a three-year program rotation of ancient, European, and American history for students from second to twelfth grade.

In 2010, the HistoryAtOurHouse model was adopted to begin making a wider range of homeschooling products available with the launch of MusicAtOurHouse, a music history and appreciation program taught by composer M. Zachary Johnson.

ScienceAtOurHouse was added to the growing array of programs available in 2011, and is currently enjoying great success thanks to work of curriculum director Dr. John Krieger of VanDamme Academy and life science instructor Rachel Miner.  Based on early progress in this venture, we plan to expand ScienceAtOurHouse into a three-year program rotation of life science, physical science, and earth science for students from 2nd to 9th grade.

2012 promises to be the best year yet with new curriculum offerings for children and adults alike.  Plans are in the works for literature, math, and physics in the coming years.   And for students of history — both homeschoolers and life-long learners — the coming year will be extremely exciting:  our focus will shift to the history of Asia.  A First History for Adults, Part 5: Japan, China and India – will begin this summer! — exploring the theme of the subordination of the major eastern cultures to western civilization and the evolving responses of each of them, which will play a crucial role in shaping the world we live in.

History At Our House will also focus on Asia in the coming year, breaking from its fundamental three year program rotation of ancient, European, and American history for a unique spectrum of courses on Asia, including units on the history of India, China, Japan, and the Middle East.

2012 is also the year when Powell History’s product lines will move to a new on-line platform developed by Cando.Com.

The new PHR blog and newsletter will serve as the vehicle for news on these exciting developments. It will also serve the broader purpose of promoting the unique value of history using Powell History methods.  Please look for the upcoming feature articles on The Five “I“s of the Powell History philosophy of history, and a stream of articles in which that philosophy will be put into action!

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Powell History is now offering five amazing options for adults who want to make up for lost time and gain the mastery of history that public education and academia just can’t offer you. 

The following five options can match any level of interest, expertise, and any budget!

  1. A First History for Adults, Part 1: The Story of America (Reviewed Here, special payment plans available until August 1!)
  2. History At Our House, the Junior High program (a great way to get the education you should have when you were younger!)
  3. History At Our House, the High School program (a unique presentation, including seminars on “primary sources”)
  4. History At Our House, History Through Art (an amazing way to enjoy history and visual art, for only $10/month!)
  5. A First History for Adults, Special Course: The Islamist Entanglement (Learn the crucial context that brought us to the “War on Terror”.)

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My lecture on “The State of History,” offered to an audience of homeschooling parents on July 23rd, is now available on-line at: www.historyatourhouse.com.

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This Monday, July 23, I will begin hosting a teleconference lecture series for homeschooling parents and educators.   I would like to invite anyone who is interested to learn why the quality of history teaching has continually declined since the early twentieth century, and why, as a result, children now almost universally complain that history is boring and irrelevant, to attend.

The dismal state of history today can be explained, ironically enough, by history. 

A proper, critical analysis of the changing trends in the philosophy of history, which underpins and guides the activities of historians, shows how, during the nineteenth century, history ceased to be a science that instructs humankind through reasoned example, and was remade into two different, but equally flawed pursuits: 1) a “pure science”–whose investigations are divorced from any practical application, and 2) a weapon for propagandists, who wish to wield it solely for political purposes.  

Homeschoolers and history teachers cannot afford to wade unknowingly into this ideological arena. They will either present their students with a body of knowledge, the significance of which they cannot validate, or fall prey to a slanted presentation whose aim is to inculcate values that they would not otherwise chose to transmit. In these approaches history does not serve its actual purpose, which is to demonstrate the causes and consequences of ideas in the world.

History can be a science. It can be an invaluable science. For that to happen, however, history has to be restored to its proper role in the education of young minds, and that requires an awareness among history providers–whether experts, or moms taking over for the experts who aren’t doing their job–of how things went wrong in the first place.

“The State of History” is the first installment of a monthly lecture series, courtesy of HistoryAtOurHouse. Interested parents, homeschool teachers, and educators can sign up by contacting seminars@historyatourhouse.com.

Further information on the lecture series, including the sure-to-be-controversial ‘Lies a Liar Told Me About My Teacher!” (coming in August) can be found at: www.historyatourhouse.com/main/freeseminars.html.

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