Story of the World Vol. 1 2nd Edition: Ancient Times (Hardcover)

Story of the World Vol. 1 2nd Edition: Ancient Times (Hardcover)

# 036454

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Item #: 036454
ISBN: 9781933339016
Grades: 1-5

Subtitled “From the Earliest Nomads to the Last Roman Emperor,” this volume covers early writing and farming, ancient Egyptians, Sumerians, the Hebrew people, Babylonians, Assyrians, ancient India, ancient China, ancient Africa, Phoenicians, Ancient Greeks, Persia, the Roman empire, the collapse of the Roman empire, early Christianity, Attila the Hun and other barbarians. Volume One was revised in 2006 and now features more illustrations, maps, several timelines and additional parent/teacher notes. The text is available in either paperback and hardcover, and the Activity Book is a bound paperback.

Elementary Homeschool History perfect for the younger child to understand.

In the quest to cover a little of everything from a particular time period AND present it at a level that a younger child can understand, most elementary history texts are, well, lacking in the "fascination" department. I found textbooks very dry as a youngster, but in my case, it led me to do a lot of library reading on my own. Susan Wise Bauer attempts to remedy this boredom by presenting a chronological history to elementary students using a classical approach and an engaging narrative.

The Story of the World consists of a text and a curriculum guide each for four eras of history.

The readings in the text provide a base of knowledge for the time period covered, and is augmented by the use of the guide, which contains review questions, suggestions for supplemental readings, recommended literature selections, map activities, coloring pages, as well as an abundance of projects that span history, art, and science that are sure to excite the student.

Homeschool History in a story-like format, great for short attention spans

The text itself serves as the starting point and backbone of each unit. Each chapter covers a particular time period, and is placed in chronological order. For example, in Volume One: Ancient Times, Chapter One begins with "The Earliest People" followed by chapters detailing periods of Egyptian, Sumarian, Jewish, Babylonian, Assyrian, Indian, Chinese, African, Egyptian, Phoenician, Greek, Persian, Native American, Roman, Christian, Celt, and Barbarian history. The book goes in strictly chronological order, so one time period of a civilization will be covered, and then a different civilization may be covered, returning to another era of the first civilization later to encompass a significant historical event of that civilization. Each chapter is further split into smaller, more bite-sized amounts that lend themselves well to a short attention spans. History is presented in a story-like format that young readers or listeners will appreciate. The author emphasizes that the book is not intended to give a complete overview of the time period, but rather to give the student a chronological order of major events and an appreciation and understanding of different cultures while presenting it in a way that will foster an enthusiasm and enjoyment of the subject matter. So, while they wont learn the name of every ruler of a civilization, they will absorb highlights from an era along with particularly notable people and events. Parents often comment on exactly how much their children "pick up" from Story of the World, often impressing adults and other children with their historical knowledge! Mythical stories as well as historical fiction-type passages about young children from different cultures are woven into the narrative to stimulate further interest.

When a chapter has been read, you and the students would then turn to the curriculum manual/actvitiy guide. At the beginning of each chapter in the guide, page references are given for four recommended supplements: Kingfisher History Encyclopedia, The Kingfisher Illustrated History of the World, The Usborne Book of World History, and the Usborne Internet-Linked Encyclopedia of World History. These selections further flesh out the history lessons, particularly for those periods or civilizations where less supplemental reading is available. When all the chapter reading has been accomplished, the next order of business are the reading comprehension-type review questions for each chapter section. Following the questions, the student is asked to summarize the chapter in a few sentences. The author again stresses that important facts be included in this narrative, but not necessarily every one. A few sample narrations are also supplied. The students narrative is then written and can be illustrated with his/her favorite part of the lesson. You may wish to collect these and place them into a loose-leaf binder, to create the students own world history. After these activities have been completed, you may wish to explore the lesson further, using the list of additional history readings and corresponding literature suggestions. Author, publisher, copyright date, and a sentence summary of each book are provided to help you locate these resources.

A hands on approach to history

Now for some real hands-on work! The activities commence with "Map Work," where a map of the appropriate area is supplied, and the student identifies and marks pertinent areas, routes, and features. The geography section is normally followed by a coloring page, highlighting some aspect of the history lesson, or some other word activity. The consumable student pages provided for these "pencil and paper" activities are found at the end of the activity book. These consumable pages may be reproduced by individual families only - not by schools or co-ops. Finally, the chapter closes with a selection of projects to do to really "get into" the featured civilization or time period. These may be arts, crafts, writing, or science projects, or just fun supplemental activities. Most require only common household supplies and art supplies such as paints & paintbrushes, boxes, newspaper and waxed paper, self-drying clay, etc. Several projects are provided for each chapter, covering a wide range of activities. These could include anything from building your own hut to making your own cunieform tablets, mummifying a chicken, brick-making, baking an African or Greek feast, purple dye, an erupting volcano, an olympic wreath, a Native American sand painting, a Roman chariot, making paper, and LOTS more. Some activities are denoted with a "C" to highlight its use as a good co-op or classroom activity. When youve covered the chapter content as much as is desired, move on.

Story of the World test packets and audio CDs

Other supplementals include test packets and audio CDs. Test packets offer some structured review for chapters covered, and the audio CDs allow you to listen to the content of the texts on the road or wherever a CD player is available. The chapters come alive as they are read by Jim Weiss, a professional storyteller. Tracks run from three to five minutes each to make it easier to track your progress or find a specific section.

Basic Packages include soft cover text, activity book and tests. Complete packages include these items plus the audiobook CDs. You can also get a set of the 4 audiobook CDs, all 4 hard-cover texts and all 4 soft-cover texts.

While the breadth of activities and readings may seem overwhelming, keep in mind that not every suggested book needs to be read, and not every single project needs to be completed. (But Mom, cant we embalm the chicken today?) Spend as much time in an era as suits the students, pacing yourself to cover everything that is of interest. The structure of the curriculum makes it especially easy and enjoyable to use with several children in this age range, and Im sure even older kids would love to get in on some activities too! - Jess

Primary Subject
Grade Start
Grade End
Trade Cloth
2nd, Illustrated
Series Title
The Story of the World: History for the Classical Child Ser.
General Adult
Jeff West (Illustrator)
Susan Wise Bauer
Brand Name
Peace Hill Press
1.25 (lbs.)
8.5" x 5.5" x 1.06"
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Why did you choose this?
Rainbow Resource Center Store
Mandatory for Co-op
Sarah M on Jul 27, 2022
school curriculum
Haley S on Jul 18, 2021
Mandatory for Co-op
Sarah M on Jul 27, 2022
I bought two copies so both boys could have their own since they were such a good price. I'm looking forward to the narrative history myself.
Nikki on Aug 13, 2021
school curriculum
Haley S on Jul 18, 2021
A wonderul introduction to ancient history!
Daisy S on Jan 3, 2021
We have the audio version and LOVE it! I use SOTW and the activity book and parent book with my 5th grader, 4th grader, and Kindergartener. The older ones are just the right age for this information that is told in interesting ways. They BEG to read "just one more chapter." The kinder is learning too and does activities with us, but not map work yet. The book does include biblical stories (which we use) but it would be easy to just skip those chapters, as they are self-contained.
Lori C on Nov 21, 2020
recommended by homeschooling parent
Grisel M on Aug 8, 2020
This is recommended by The Well-Trained Mind.
Anne C on Jul 6, 2020
Great book; buying a gift for friend’s kids.
Cedric R on Dec 23, 2018
I thought we would try this out. It sounds much better than Notgrass History, which we did not enjoy at all.
Dawn L on Oct 1, 2018
We have the ebook and I want the real book to read from
Kristina G on Dec 30, 2017
This resource was recommended to me by multiple, trusted resources.
Dan W on Dec 23, 2017
Daughter said she wasn't excited about the history we are doing. Want to try a different version. Have a lot of friends using this so decided to try it.
Hanna N on Nov 4, 2017
Follow along with audio CD
Christopher N on Sep 12, 2017
We previewed this book as a digitally borrowed book from our local library. After doing so I feel there is a very good chance that this will be an excellent history curriculum for our family. Since I intend to use it multiple years I opted for the hardcover version. I hope to add the other volumes as we go.
Heather H on Jul 10, 2017
My daughter will be using this book in her home school co-op class.
Linda S on Aug 11, 2016
I've heard great things about it. We love it!
User on Mar 25, 2016
We chose SOTW since it came highly recommended with our History curriculum (History Odyssey).
Jacqueline W on Mar 7, 2016
Using it for our homeschool, where we use the Classical Method of teaching
Jennifer B on Nov 14, 2015
A Well Trained Mind
Michelle S on Sep 29, 2015
I bought two copies so both boys could have their own since they were such a good price. I'm looking forward to the narrative history myself.
Nikki on Aug 13, 2021
A wonderul introduction to ancient history!
Daisy S on Jan 3, 2021
4.8 / 5.0
4 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
Rated 4 out of 5
Great overview, sometimes a bit too dark
I have a very sensitive 1st grader who read this with me. It was by far his favorite subject, and the writing style certainly is engaging, however, there were some parts that made him cry. Yes, it's history and reality and I don't want to shield him from that, but, be aware that there is a lot of death in this book. Your child may not be ready for all the gruesome tales of cyclops, or Julius Ceasar's murder, etc. If your child is sensitive, then you may want to wait a year or two to do this series or plan to preview what parts you might want to skip/soften.
September 29, 2017
over 7 years ago
Rated 5 out of 5
Story of the World is authored by homeschooling graduate/homeschooling mother Susan Wise Bauer The series consists of a four volume set of "storybooks" which tell the history of the world from the earliest nomads to the events of the late 20th century The series is written in a narrative tone reminiscent of the late VM Hillyer's style of writing Volume 1 covers the time period of the earliest nomads to the last Roman emperor Volume 2 covers the time period fall of Rome to the rise of the Renaissance Volume 3 covers the time period from Elizabeth I to the Forty Niners Volume 4 covers the time period from Victoria's empire to the end of the USSR To round out your history curriculum I would highly recommend purchasing the activity books which accompany each volume The activity books correspond with the chapters in each of the four volumes For each chapter there are review questions narration exercise additional history reading writing/craft/art projects and an activity In the back of each activity book there is a section titled student pages which consists of maps coloring pages and review cards to create a world history notebook Science is not included in this study but you can use Jim Wiese's book "Ancient Science" as a starting point Based on our experience with this series and the content of the curriculum I would recommend it for Grades 5-8Overall I am pleased with Ms Bauer's approach to world history and look forward to using this as a unit study in our homeschool
October 23, 2009
Rated 5 out of 5
I guess I am a dissenting voice with regard to this curriculum but I hope a reader will understand my intent SOTW has plenty of information but it is important for a person to know that the author goes out of her way to be VERY NONSECTARIAN For example in the section on the ten plagues of Egypt the first nine are covered but the 10th (and most important) is given no time When two major world religions hinge on this one plague (Judaism with Passover and Christianity with the blood that saves us) you would imagine that this would be covered It is her right to be non-sectarian but I think a potential user should know this ahead of time We believe that history is HIS STORY so I don't believe that this fits our family as well I know there are thousands of people that love SOTW but I respectfully submit that it tries too hard to be all things to all homeschoolers with the end product being watery with regard to Biblical authority
August 28, 2009
Rated 5 out of 5
"Story of the World" is a four volume set of "storybooks" in which tells the story of world history from the time of the nomads through events in the 20th century Susan Wise Bauer writes in a narrative tone reminiscent of the late headmaster of Calvert School VM Hillyer To accompany the four volume set there is an audio recording by actor Jim Wiess and activity books to enhance your studies which can be purchased separately The grade range listed for this series is grades 1-8 However based on our own experience and the content of the books I would recommend the following scope/sequence: Volume 1 Grade 5 Volume 2 Grade 6 Volume 3 Grade 7 and Volume 4 Grade 8 If you would like to introduce your younger child to world history I highly recommend VM Hillyer's "A Child's History of the World" for Grades 1-4
April 23, 2009

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