***CONTEST CLOSED. WINNER HAS BEEN NOTIFIED.***
Like most families, we’re gearing up for school at our house. And like many other classical schoolers, we’re using Susan Wise Bauer’s The Story of the World as our guide for history this year. Last year, we met the Ancients, and this year (as soon as our books come in from Rainbow Resource Center!) we’ll start our trip through the Middle Ages. By combining this resource with field trips, library finds (where I try to get engaging books they’ll read on their own) and audiobooks (my preferred method of making them read more boring or advanced books), we’ll have a pretty powerful history curriculum.
So, for my post today, I thought I’d share a link to our history spine, as well as the audiobooks I’ll use to complement it this semester:
1) The Story of the World, Volume 2 Audiobook: The Middle Ages by Susan Wise Bauer. This is the backbone of our history studies, but it’s engaging and simple enough that even kids who aren’t homeschooling might enjoy a listen. I love to start our homeschool day with this. I plop the kids down in the living room with a snack, and they listen to a chapter while I do a few chores around the house. Then they usually have ideas or questions about what they’ve heard, and I love how it sparks both their curiosity and imagination before we settle down to more “boring” subjects like handwriting and math.
FREE KIDS’ AUDIOBOOKS
2) Stories of Beowulf Told to the Children by H. E. Marshall. This is of course the same author who wrote Our Island Story, and I’m looking forward to sharing her stories of Beowulf with the kids. Here’s a bio from Amazon.com: “A widely read author of history books for children a century ago, Henrietta Elizabeth Marshall is now enjoying a resurgence in popularity. Her most famous work, Our Island Story, A History of England for Boys and Girls, was first published in 1905, followed quickly by Scotland’s Story in 1906 and Our Empire Story in 1908. She also authored A History of France, A History of Germany, This Country of Ours, and English Literature for Boys and Girls. In addition, she penned The Story of Napoleon and The Story of Cromwell for the “Children’s Heroes” series and contributed several volumes to the highly acclaimed “Told to the Children” series.” (Please note this link is to myaudioschool.com. The site is a great resource run by a homeschool mom who wanted her kids to be able to listen to books that were substantive, relatively well produced, and free. By all means, hop over to her site if you’d like more Middle Age audiobooks, as well as all sorts of classic Christian and classical audiobooks for kids!)
3) Robin Hood. There are a ton of free Robin Hood audiobooks out there for kids which may be found at Librivox, Booksshouldbefree.com, and others. The site I’ve linked to here, artsreformation.com/records, has been a treasure trove of mp3 recordings of old kids’ records. Other stories related to the Middle Ages books from this site include A Child’s Introduction to Shakespeare, Aladdin, Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves, and many more.
4) Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Like the link above, this site contains many free recordings of old kids’ records, but it uses a format that I’ve had trouble with on one of my computers. Still, the quality is very good if you can get it to work. And unlike a lot of free Grimm’s Fairy Tales (which were originally drawn from the fairy tales of the Middle Ages), all of the records here are for adapted for children. That’s not to say they are suitable for every child! I haven’t listened to them yet, so please use your judgement and let me know if you find any moral or technical issues you’d like to warn us about. But especially since these are free, I’m eager to give them a try.
WIN A FREE Middle Ages ENRICHMENT CD
**THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED**
My plan is to take the free resources here (excluding The Story of the World, which isn’t free!), convert them to .wav files which will play in a CD player, and listen to them on our long car trips as well as our weekly commute to homeschool co-op. Since I’m already doing the work for myself, I’d be happy to share a few copies with you all. Tell us your favorite history audiobooks or middle ages resources, and the three comments I find most helpful will get a CD in the mail!