Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Review- Asia: It's People and History (Homeschool History & Geography)

Have you studied about Asia in your homeschool? Each year in our homeschool we study more about this Continent of Origins (and the other continents) as a part of our homeschool. This year, we are reviewing Asia: It's People and History by Bonnie Rose Hudson to aid our studies. 

Bonnie Rose Hudson has created this wonderful homeschool history and geography curriculum which teaches a Biblical worldview. I think you will appreciate reading her author interview as it will help you become even more acquainted with her heart and motives behind writing this curriculum.

What Asia: It's People and History Covers

Bonnie (of Write Bonnie Rose) has developed this meaningful curriculum which takes us around a variety of locations of Asia in 16 weeks. We visit Laos, Bangladesh, Nepal, China, Iran, and Vietnam. 

Sounds kind of typical, doesn't it?

There are a couple of things that make this curriculum stand out above the rest. Through it, we learn about the 10/40 window and about modern day persecuted Christians in Asia. The result? Our hearts are encouraged and prompted to continually pray for Asia.

Through short stories, we get to know our brothers and sisters in Yeshua and their devotion to Him through the persecution they endure. This is handled sensitively for younger children, I think, while showing children of all ages faith and courage in the face of danger.

The history of each location is shared to help students see how each countries' forms of government and core accepted beliefs have come to be for these people groups. This sets us up to discuss the cause and effect for the peoples. Conversely, we see what a difference faith in and salvation through Yeshua makes for these persecuted Christians.

Included are activities such as cross word puzzles, word searches, puzzles, and discussion questions. There is also a list of suggested readings to branch out farther. You can also find geography-themed copy work for each country to help supplement the activities at Bonnie Rose’s blog, http://writebonnierose.com/asia-its-people-and-history-bonus-content/.

How We Are Using Asia: It's People and History in Our Homeschool

I'm reading the curriculum aloud to our children in 1st-8th grades. Each of us are impacted by how our brothers and sisters in Yeshua are standing fast... how they are extending our Lord's love to those who hate and persecute them. It is quite contrary to how many people may expect believers to respond... but that is how many people become receptive to the message of salvation through Yeshua.

We're also using some of the activities provided in the curriculum. This works for some of my children and not so much so for others. As with other curricula, we can be flexible with what works for our children individually.

We Add Documentaries:

To better help our children become more acquainted with the people of these places, we have watched some documentaries. This is especially helpful for our younger ones and suits some of our children's learning styles.

We Add Selected Readings:

Among many wonderful recommended reading resources found in Asia: Its People and History, there are downloadable books which expand more on the countries, people and history that we study in the curriculum. I'm having our children work on reports for these books.


Our older ones are also learning more about people of Asia through Gospel for Asia. I'm also reading aloud... and crying through... No Longer a Slum Dog. I share some of this content with our younger ones, too. I have owned my copy of this book for some time and it remained unread... until I was reminded of it when going through the lessons in the curriculum.

You may get your free copy of No Longer a Slum Dog through Gospel for Asia by clicking here

Another resource we are using in conjunction with this curriculum is, So What's the Difference? by Fritz Ridenour. I'm using this book with our 7th and 8th graders to help them gain a more in depth understanding of the religious beliefs many people have. This book also helps us to contrast the primary worldviews of these people groups with that of what the Bible teaches us.

How Asia: It's People and History Has Impacted Our Family

Anytime we learn about our brothers and sisters in Yeshua the Messiah being persecuted, it reminds of us of several things.

For me: I think about how these persecuted followers of Yeshua do not take for granted the Word of God. They cling to Him and study His Word intentionally because He is their life line.  

Our persecuted brothers and sisters around the world take seriously their faith in Yeshua the Messiah (commonly known by Jesus Christ which is a translation of a translation of a translation). These new believers refuse to "worship the spirit of their fathers". They want to take care to walk according to the teachings found within the Scriptures; they don't mix their cultural religious practices with the teachings of the Bible and they don't rename their traditions to "Christianize" them.

Another thing that I appreciate is how these new believers are instant missionaries within their own country. They bear witness to their surrounding area. Not everyone is called to travel afar from their country as missionaries. However, all believers are called to the Great Commission and that, too, can be fulfilled right where one lives. Your current location is also "going into all the world to preach the Gospel". And that is what these new believers do among their countrymen.

For our son, Scientist: "It helps me to learn about the different religions. When we compare and contrast them to the teachings of the Bible, I see how strong God's Word and love is."

For our daughter, Artsy Girl: "When learning about how people are mistreated and how they are viewed at different levels of worth, I feel sorry for them. I want to show the love of Christ to them. I'd like to help supply food to help with their nutritional needs and warmth."

For our daughter, Song Bird: "It helps me to be more thankful for the religious freedoms we have in our own country."

For our son, Explorer: "I'm thankful that persecution like that is not happening here. I want to tell people about Yeshua and help get Bibles to them. I also want to help get food to them. I am praying for them."

Caring for Our Persecuted Brothers and Sisters in Yeshua (Jesus Christ)

Is praying regularly for persecuted Christians something you follow through with? 

Often times when people hear about Christian persecution in other countries, adults come to mind. Asia: It's People and History shares about how children, too, are persecuted for their faith in Yeshua. 

Our family prays for persecuted believers around the world. But children praying for children... being able to see another child... to learn his or her name and interests... somehow it seems to help young children identify more personally with people they have not met. 
Do you know that if it isn't in your budget to financially sponsor a child at this time, your family can visit Gospel for Asia and choose a boy or girl (or more than one!) to pray for? Prayer is vitally important!

Somethings I Would Like to See...

I would appreciate coloring pages for younger children that correspond with the brief studies. It would also be nice if there were some recommended documentaries listed. It would help to keep their focus. It would also help them to visually relate to what and who we are reading about as we go through the curriculum.

Asia: Its People and History Book Release Trailer

Where to Buy It

Asia: Its People and History is geared toward children who are between eight and 12 years old. However, it can be read to and enjoyed by all age ranges. 
  • Save 25% (between now and March 15th) on the book through the The Old Schoolhouse store for $6.95, by using the promo code, 02asia14!. 
  • The Kindle version is available today on Amazon for $6.95 as well.
  • It is also on SmashWords which supports Amazon Kindle, B&N Nook, iBooks, and Sony reader. 

Tell Bonnie...

What countries would you like to see in Bonnie's Volume 2 about Asia? Won't you please leave a comment below telling us what country your family would love to study? I'm sure Bonnie Rose Hudson would love your input!



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