Reviews of Our Government Curriculum
Basic American Government is one of the books I would put on my must-read list. Its combination of theory and practical application draws students into the age-old conversation about the proper structure of government and the challenge of balancing the government’s power with freedom for its citizens. The new course materials now make it much more usable for students and more practical for parents and teachers to administer.
This is not your public school’s government curriculum.
Remember how I said that my high school government class was dull? Well, the first sentence of the preface of the book that’s used in this curriculum, Basic American Government by Clarence B. Carson, says:
“It would be a considerable fraud to do a book on American government which talked as if the constitution were still being substantially observed, that pretended that when Presidents took the oath of office they intended to observe the bounds set by the Constitution, that Congressmen recited their pledges with the same intent, and that Federal judges were still construing the Constitution as it was written.”
Let’s just say that that one sentence sets the stage for a unique and interesting look at American Government and how it is run today versus how it was intended in the Constitution.
MAKE HIGH SCHOOL CREDITS EASY!
Take the stress out of finding the right high school classes and enroll in the Basic American Government Course this school year! It’s eye-opening, engaging, and will get your kids thinking.
I’m a child of Haitian immigrants and the first-born. Many times after school, I remember sharing my newfound knowledge of America with my parents. They came to earn degrees in Chemistry and Engineering and to offer their children new choices. Those goals were met! But everything from this country’s language, its customs, culture, and yes its government, was a brand new experience. . . .
In general, our homeschool focuses on American government from early on. . . . By the time my kids reach high school, we have covered basic facts. In this phase I feel they are ready for thought-provoking reading and ideas about America’s government. I’d like them to think about their place in society. I want them to learn to live their citizen role rather than being an observer. Worse yet, simply a consumer!
It feels like a tall order at times, but also important.Boundary Stone’s American Government feels a good way to meet this tall order of mine. I’m excited to share the curriculum with my 12th grader!
Another thing I love is that students will learn to discuss how our U.S. government has grown to what it is today and how that impacts us as citizens. They will also learn about policy issues, policy proposals, and how those decisions impact us as well.
Politics can be a very heated area of discussion, but this course will teach students how to keep up on current events: federal, state, and local and be able to discuss them in a civil and courteous manner. Boundary Stone recognizes the varying opinions of these topics and how students [can] have these varied opinions and still discuss them civilly.
This is a self-paced course, and they could complete it completely without my input aside from grading the study guide.
I wanted to talk this through with the kids. We’re in the middle of an election year, and in case you aren’t aware, the world has gone crazy. I’m typing on August 2 , currently, there is rioting in several cities over Black Lives Matter. There are protests over the measures for the Coronavirus, either it’s going too far, or not far enough. There are political ads popping up everywhere. EVERYWHERE!
But, the reality is, if I was busy and wasn’t able to work through this material, they could do it completely on their own.
If we as US citizens don’t learn the reasoning behind our Federal Government and why we have the documents, rules, and restrictions we do, we as a nation run the risk of losing what was left to us. This idea seems to be at the core of the Basic American Government course from Boundary Stone.
With this US Government course, high school students can easily work through the material independently at a pace that works for their busy schedules. The built-in checks (vocabulary and review questions) automatically check for both retention and understanding of the material presented before adding additional information.
So even though this course initially appeared to be more than we would normally use as semi-relaxed homeschoolers, over the last several weeks we have seen that even an in-depth study of basic American government can be done in a way that works for us. Which is good, because with two in high school, I need a course that offers both accuracy and dependability, along with flexibility and ease. Basic American Government from Boundary Stone appears to offer all of that, and then some!
I am sure, like many of you, the last thing you want to do is allow your children to leave home without an understanding of how our government should operate. My oldest is in 10th grade this year, and I felt like we needed to cover the American Government in depth. The meaty parts.
Luckily Boundary Stone has created an in-depth self-paced online course to help your teen learn all about American Government. I recently came upon this course, and I couldn’t be more impressed with the curriculum’s quality. Basic American Government is one that I feel incredibly confident recommending to you as a fellow Christian family.
After looking over the course, I decided to take it right alongside my daughter. I too, want to brush up on my knowledge of historical politics, our history’s valuable documents, and the context in which it was all designed for us the American people. I am so glad that we made a choice to take it together, we have had some wonderful discussions stemming from this course.
The Basic American Government Course is easy for students to use independently. Parents should plan to be available to discuss topics with their teens and to determine grades, but otherwise students can work through the course on their own. Great timesaver for busy homeschool moms!
An Overview of Boundary Stone’s Basic American Government
Okay! I have to be very honest with you. When I received this book in the mail, I was not at all impressed. It is over 475 pages of just text. . . . But, when I logged onto the online portion of the program, WOW! I was pleasantly surprised. This could actually be something we could work with. With the book as our core text and the online features we could make a go of this. Here are some highlights of the self-paced online program:
- Engaging Photos
- Videos (great explanations)
- Discussions Questions
- Study Guides
- Online Fill in the Blank Questions
Reviews of Our Economics Curriculum
Basic Economics: A Natural Law Approach to Economics is great for students (as well as adults) who want to understand economics at a deeper level and from a Christian perspective. This textbook covers the economics topics that you find in most high school texts such as markets, supply and demand, scarcity, monopoly and competition, and the stock market. It also teaches more personally-applicable topics such as rent, wages, savings, investments, interest, and home-based businesses that are sometimes not covered in economics textbooks.
Where this textbook goes deeper is in the amount of attention given to the history of economics, the different economic schools of thought, government actions and their effects, the morality of economics, and international economics. An entire chapter addresses “Society and Morality,” examining the Judeo-Christian roots of free markets, moral absolutes versus moral positivism, and utilitarianism.
Easy to Use:
By the time your kiddo is in high school, they should basically be teaching themselves. Basic Economics open-and-go approach makes it a breeze for me and easy to use for the kids. No need to plan out activities, assign reading material or do any of the dirty work: Boundary Stone has already done that for me! I just need to provide the textbook and login information and my kiddos can complete the curriculum on their own.
I love economics. It’s what I majored in. But let’s face it, economics taught straight from a textbook, regardless of the text, is usually dry and boring. A surefire way to kill what I think is a rather interesting subject.
Boundary Stone’s homeschool Economics curriculum is more than your bland textbook. Incorporating online lessons, videos, and outside reading, in addition to the use of the Basic Economics, 4th ed. textbook by Clarence B. Carson, students get a more engaging experience.
My daughter found the inclusion of videos, such as those from EconPop, added an element of entertainment which made her lessons more enjoyable. I even found her sharing the video explaining economic principles in the Lego Movie with her sister.
I have enjoyed being able to have economic discussions with my daughter as she works through the material. Allie confessed the class is more interesting than she was expecting. In fact, it’s become her favorite subject! She has also found working through the lessons has helped her to have a better understanding of the current issues plaguing the news. She has been able to see how a firm foundation and understanding of economics could curb many of the issues being faced. And more importantly why it’s vital to protect the rights of individuals.
She found the section which discusses The Law by Frederic Bastiat to be enlightening and was excited when she received a perfect score on the quiz. The Law is just one of the assigned readings in the course. Later on, she will also read, “Whatever Happened to Penny Candy?” by Richard Maybury. She also discovered she isn’t looking forward to doing taxes for real after working on the mini-budget project for the course.
The real-life budget project, offered as a free mini-course, is a great balance to the faith-based textbook. It can be used as a stand-alone project. However, using it alongside the online course you will need to account for one day per week in your schedule.
I also like that the course includes a hardbound book. He gets so much screen time as it is. I appreciate that he can read the assigned chapters the “old fashioned” way, in print. I encouraged him to take notes as he read and to use the Getting the Point questions to ensure he understood the concepts. We also went through the review questions at the end of each chapter together so I could stay abreast of his progress.
Easy to Use:
This is a meaty course. This isn’t one of those courses where the student reads a watered down chapter in a dumbed down book and then answers ten multiple choice questions at the end of each chapter. This course will require effort and time as it contains solid content at a higher reading level.
That’s a good thing because our kids need to be thoroughly educated in these topics. The textbook is Basic Economics – A Natural Law Approach to Economics (Fourth Edition) by Clarence Carson and Paul Cleveland. (It is super high quality!)