Noble Experiment: History and Nature of the American Government is a comprehensive, student directed, one semester high school government course. It covers all the national standards for both a high school civics and government course of study. Best of all, the information is presented from a conservative Judeo-Christian foundation.
The heart of the study lies in the nearly 7 hours of DVD teaching, which are subdivided into 24 DVD lessons. The DVD lectures vary in length from 8-32 minutes. The presentation style is engaging, with ideas and information presented clearly. While much of the lecture time you are observing the speaker in an up-close format, varied graphics are also intermingled which correspond to the lessons. The DVD lessons correspond to the consumable student workbook (available separately).
The student course syllabus is organized around a 3 lessons per week/16 week schedule. While it is flexible, the author suggests limiting the weekly lessons (especially during units 3-7) so students have ample time to complete the readings and assignments. While not specified, I would anticipate students needing forty-five to ninety minutes to complete the lessons, with equal time on the "off days" for assigned homework.
In this robust course, students will learn the foundational principles of government, survey the various types of government, as well as trace the significant people, events and documents that lead to the creation of the United States. The U.S. Constitution is studied in-depth-- article by article, alongside a lesson on Constitutional interpretation. Also explored are the United Nations Organization, U.S. Foreign Policy and the impact of immigration and globalization on our nation. The final lessons promote responsible citizenship and include independent state and local government specific research projects. Students wrap up the study with a viewing of the classic movie, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (item #055423). The appendix found in the student text contains various activities condensed from the publisher's Z-Guide to the Movies. While this is optional, I believe most families would find it a beneficial and enjoyable way to end their studies. Movie resources include a topic overview, movie synopsis, review questions, filibuster research project, art project, family discussion questions, filmmaker's art, and many others. Also included with the DVD set is the Teacher Resource CD-ROM. The CD contains pdf printable copies of the course outline, course syllabus, a valuable transcript description, complete course transcripts, answer keys for all graded assignments, and a grade book to record student scores.
The Student Workbook (sold separately) offers the breadth of the assignments. This vital part of the course contains all the primary source readings, required and optional student activities, and unit assessments in the form of quizzes, tests, and exams. Student activities are diverse and include fill-in-the-blank and short answer questions, plus test study guides. Research projects and critical thinking activities are also incorporated to solidify the student's application of his valuable role in our government. Workbook pages are 3 hole punched, making it easy to remove the test assessment pages and place them in a binder. 233 pgs, pb.
You may be wondering how this course compares to Notgrass Exploring Government. The essentials of a conservative government based on Judeo-Christian principles are at the heart of both of these student directed courses. The main difference lies in the teaching modality. While the focal point of this program (Noble Experiment) is the DVD lecture teaching, Exploring Government is centered more around the highly readable, engaging textbook. Both offer high school level activities and projects. Exploring Government provides more essay assignments and optional exams, while Noble Experiment uses quizzes and exams as vital assessment tools (along with the varied workbook assignments). If meeting national standards is important for your family, Noble Experiment meets the national standards for both a high school civics and government course of study. Both programs meet a stirring need for homeschooling families seeking to provide a foundational understanding of our government from a Biblical worldview. ~Deanne