Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Living Books by Level for Mystery of History Volume 3: The Renaissance, Reformation, and Growth of Nations

Key:  MOH = Mystery of History, SCM = Simply Charlotte Mason, SL = Sonlight, TT = Tracy's Treasury

I'm just going to jump right in to posting this book list. If you're feeling a little lost and want to know what this list is or how to use it... OR if you want to find my similar book lists for other history timeframes, click here! Without further adieu, here we go! 

Family Books...

·   Famous Men of the Renaissance and Reformation by Rob Shearer - While the previous Famous Men books were written for elementary students, this one was written with an upper elementary and older audience in mind. If you are teaching only grades 1–3, you may want to skip the readings from this book. Look at a sample online and decide for yourself. (SCM Family book. Rated 3.9 stars.)
·  The Man Who Laid the Egg by Louise Vernon
 - The story of Erasmus. (SCM family book. Not adequately reviewed. 3.7 stars. MOH lesson 15.)
· Thunderstorm in Church by Louise Vernon (The story of Martin Luther.) (SCM family book. Am grade 4 and up. Rated 4.5 stars. MOH lesson 18.)
·  The Bible Smuggler by Louise Vernon - The story of William Tyndale.
 (SCM family book. Am grade 4 and up. Rated 4.6 stars. MOH lesson 34.)
·  Master Skylark by John Bennett
A living picture of England during the days of Queen Elizabeth and Shakespeare, with appearances by both. Enough plot twists to keep the interest of the whole family, yet innocent enough for the young ones. Highly recommended as a Family read-aloud. (SCM Family book. Rated 5 stars. Around MOH lesson 38.)
·  Beautiful Stories From Shakespeare for Children by E. Nesbit – Nesbit (author of the Railway Children) tells 20 of Shakespeare’s dramas as stories for children as young as age six. This makes a good family read-aloud. (Rec. in CM Companion. SCM grades 1-12. Rated 4.6 stars. MOH lesson 49.) Alternately consider Tales from Shakespeare by Charles and Mary Lamb which has a more challenging vocabulary, borrowing phrases from the original plays. It retells 14 stories. (SCM Grades 4-8. MOH lesson 49.)
· Reformation Time Line from Rose Publishing - This inexpensive tool is an excellent resource. Its concise format provides a great way to review the men and events the students have read and narrated. It also contains lots of supplemental charts like Denominations that Arose from the Reformation, a Map of the Reformation, the Five Solas of the Reformation, plus the Five Points of Arminianism and the Five Points of Calvinism. (SCM family resource. Rated 4.7 stars.)
· GOAL Bible Study Journal by Sonya Shafer
 - This long-term journaling project walks your family through many of the epistles of the Bible and puts an emphasis on life application. Available here as a printed book or e-book. (SCM grades 1-12.)
·  Around the World in a Hundred Years by Jean Fritz (SCM family book, Am grades 3-7. Rated 3.1 stars. It sounds like the author’s bias is too much, affecting the accuracy of the text. I’d check it out at the library before buying it.)
· Christopher Columbus by Bennie Rhodes - Part of the Sower series, this Christian biography emphasizes Columbus’s faith. (SCM family book, Am grades 4 and up. Rated 4.5 stars.)
·  Stories of America, Volume 1, by Charles Morris and Sonya Shafer
Though written for the younger grades, this gentle introduction to American history will make a nice Family spine, contribute some additional biographies and information, and help tie together the different characters the older students will be reading about. (SCM Family book or grades 1-6, Exclusive to SCM, This book spans 1492-1850.) *AMHIST
· Stories of the Nations, Volume 1, by Charles Morris, Lorene Lambert, and Sonya Shafer
- Though written for the younger grades, these gentle introductions to famous men of the time period will make a nice Family spine, contribute some additional biographies and information, and help tie together the different characters the older students will be reading about. (SCM Family book or grades 1-6. Exclusive to SCM. This book spans 1550 to 1850.)
·  Story of the World: Early Modern Times by Susan Wise Bauer - Volume 3 in this series covers the major historical events in the years 1600 to 1850, as well as includes maps, illustrations, and biographies. This captivating guide to the history of other lands is written in an engaging, straightforward manner and weaves world history into a story book format that is entertaining and easy to read. (SL Core H for grades 7-9, Am grades 1-6. Read aloud grades 1-adult, read alone grades 3-adult. Rated 4.7 stars.)


· Picture Book of Christopher Columbus by David A. Adler – This is a short, informative biography with detailed, colorful, full-page illustrations told in a story-like format. (Am grades K-3. MOH lesson 7.)
· Leonardo da Vinci by Diane Stanley
 - Leonardo da Vinci was one of the most amazing people who ever lived. He grew up to be a great painter, sculptor, architect, scientist, and inventor. (SCM grades 1-3, Am grades 4-6. Rated 4.6 stars. MOH lesson 12.)
·  Leonardo’s Horse by Jean Fritz
 - Not only a biography of Leonardo da Vinci, it also introduces another artist/dreamer-Charlie Dent. Although separated by centuries, the two men had a common dream-to create a giant horse for Milan. War and rain helped to ruin Leonardo's original clay work, and he died mourning what might have been. By the 1990s, Dent's efforts to create the horse paid off and the statue, a huge wonder, was presented to Italy. (SCM optional book for grades 1-3, Am grades 1-4, Rated 4.4 stars. MOH lesson 12.)
· Michelangelo by Diane Stanley - Multiple award-winning account of Michelangelo's life and achievements. Includes large, full-color illustrations of Michelangelo's paintings and sculptures. Oversize. (SCM grades 1-3, SL Core C for grades 2-4. I’d prefer to view this one at the library first because it sounds like a good, basic biography but may not have good photos of his actual works. I’m thinking we’ll opt for SCM’s Picture Study Portfolio instead. MOH lesson 13.)

· Michelangelo’s Surprise by Tony Parillo - Piero, a page in the Medici court in fifteenth-century Florence, hunts through the palazzo for his father and finds him helping the artist Michelangelo sculpt a snowman. (SCM optional book for grades 1-3, Am age 3 and up. Rated 4 stars. MOH lesson 13.)
· Night Preacher by Louise Vernon - This story is told through the eyes of Bettje and Jan, children of Menno Simons, who lived almost 500 years ago. Menno Simons was first a Catholic priest. As he read and studied the Bible, Menno began to understand the Christian life in a different way. Eventually he became an Anabaptist preacher. It was against the laws of that time for him to preach so Menno's preaching was done in secret at night to small groups. Soon, Menno Simons became the leader of the Anabaptists, now known as Mennonites. (SCM optional book for grades 1-3, Am grades 4 and up. Rated 4.3 stars. Around MOH lesson 34.)
·  A Lion to Guard Us by Clyde Robert Bulla
Short, easy to read chapters based on a true story. The Historical Note at the end reveals that Shakespeare wrote a play about this event. (Set in 1609, between MOH lessons 56 & 57.)
· The Pilgrims of Plimoth by Marcia Sewall
 - Written as a personal account, Sewall's book not only conveys the spirit and conviction of the Pilgrim experience, but also provides a bounty of historical information and domestic detail about the settlement at Plimoth and the people who survived those arduous first seasons in America. Sewall's extensive research is evident in her text and in the rich, simple oil paintings that reveal so much about the Pilgrims. (SCM grades 1-3, Am grades 1-4. Rated 4.3 stars. MOH lesson 59.) *AMHIST
· Samuel Eaton’s Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Boy by Kate Waters
 (SCM grades 1-3, Am grades Preschool - 3. Rated 4.9 stars. MOH lesson 59.) *AMHIST
· Sarah Morton’s Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Girl by Kate Waters
 (SCM grades 1-3, Am grades Preschool - 3. Rated 4.8 stars. MOH lesson 59.) *AMHIST
· Tapenum’s Day: A Wampanoag Indian Boy in Pilgrim Times by Kate Waters - Chosen to become a special warrior prince in 1627, Tapenum prepares himself for the great honor by hunting, fishing, and sharing a day with friends and family, in a story that is complemented by photographs of Plymouth Plantation. (SCM grades 1-3, Am grades Preschool – 3. Rated 4.8 stars. MOH lesson 60.) *AMHIST
·  Starry Messenger by Peter Sis OR Galileo’s Leaning Tower Experiment by Wendy Macdonald - While both can easily be read in one sitting, Starry Messenger is more of an overview of Galileo’s life. Some of the illustrations may be a bit intense for sensitive children. Galileo’s Leaning Tower Experiment focuses on one incident in Galileo’s life. (SCM grades 1-3. Starry Messenger: Am grades 1-5, rated 3.9 stars. Galileo’s Leaning Tower Experiment: Am grades 3-7, rated 4.3 stars. MOH lesson 63.)
· Dangerous Journey by Oliver Hunkin
A shortened version of Pilgrim’s Progress, using John Bunyan’s original words. The illustrations are more on the cartoon side and a couple may be too intense for sensitive children, so use with discretion. (SCM grades 1-3, Am grades 4 and up. Rated 4.7 stars. MOH lesson 76.)

· The World of Columbus and Sons by Genevieve Foster
 - A narrative and interesting look at what was happening around the world during the lifetime of Columbus and his sons. (SCM grades 4-6. Rated 4.1 stars. This spans most of MOH Semester 1 but is centered around lesson 7.)
· The Very First Americans by Cara Ashrose - Long before Columbus landed in America, hundreds of groups of people had already made their homes here. But where did they live? What did they eat? How did they have fun? And where are they today? From coast to coast, learn about these first Americans! (SL Core D for grades 3-6, Am grades PK -3. Rated 4.6 stars. MOH lesson 7, 33, 59 & probably others.) *AMHIST

·  North American Indians by Douglas Gorsline - Profusely illustrated introduction to a broad range of North American Indian peoples. Shows the distinct cultures ranging from the Seminoles in the southeast, to the Nootka and Kwakiutl peoples in the northwest. (SL Core D for grades 3-6. Rated 4.5 stars. MOH lesson 7, 33, 59 & probably others.) *AMHIST

·  Pedro’s Journal by Pam Conrad - A fictional account of Christopher Columbus' first voyage. His discovery to the New World supposedly written by his young cabin boy. Delightfully realistic. (SL D & D+E for grades 3-7. Rated 4.6 stars. MOH 7.) *AMHIST

· Strangers in the Land by Louise A. Vernon - One of Vernon’s historical fiction works that bring church history to life. This one is about the Huguenots. (SCM grades 4-6. Rated 5 stars. MOH lesson 30.)
·  Good Queen Bess: The Story of Elizabeth I of England by Diane Stanley & Peter Vennema - The story of how Queen Elizabeth I came to rule England, and how she used her shrewd diplomacy, religious tolerance, and great love for her subjects to win the hearts of the people she ruled. Fabulous full-color paintings. Oversized. (SL Core C for grades 2-4, SCM grades 1-6. Am grades 1-6. Rated 4.6. Sounds good. MOH lesson 38.)

· Bard of Avon by Diane Stanley
 - This is a children’s biography of William Shakespeare from the same author as Good Queen Bess. (SCM Grades 1-6, Am grades 1-5. Rated 4.8 stars. MOH lesson 49.)
·  Pocahontas and the Strangers by Clyde Robert Bulla - A fictionalized account of the life of Pocahontas woven about the few facts known from historical records. (Reader in Core D & D+E for grades 3-7, Am grades 2-5. Rated 3.8 stars. MOH lesson  57.)
·  The Landing of the Pilgrims by James Daugherty
 - In England in the early 1600s, everyone was forced to join the Church of England. Young William Bradford and his friends believed they had every right to belong to whichever church they wanted. In the name of religious freedom, they fled to Holland, then sailed to America to start a new life. But the winter was harsh, and before a year passed, half the settlers had died. Yet, through hard work and strong faith, a tough group of Pilgrims did survive. Their belief in freedom of religion became an American ideal that still lives on today. (SCM grades 4-6, Am grades 3-7. Rated 4.3 stars. MOH lesson 59.) *AMHIST
· The Landmark History of the American People: From Plymouth to the West, Volume I by Ruth F. Boorstin Daniel J. Boorstin - A fascinating introduction to American culture as it has shaped and been shaped by events from the Pilgrims to the mid-1800s. Written by the former Librarian of Congress. NEW full-color edition, completely revised for readability. Now includes timelines, maps and more than twice the illustrations. Oversized. (SL Core D & D+E for grades 3-7. Not adequately rated. MOH lesson 59.) *AMHIST
·  Along Came Galileo by Jeanne Bendick - 
Note: Be aware that Bendick states that Kepler believed in astrology (p. 41) and explains that a nova was light from a sun that had exploded “millions of years before” (p. 42). The rest of the book is well worth reading, so just be prepared to discuss those two points with your child. (SCM grades 4-6. Rated 4.5 stars. MOH lesson 63.)
·  The Ocean of Truth: The Story of Sir Isaac Newton by Joyce McPherson - Joyce is a homeschooling mother and emphasizes the Christian beliefs of Newton. (SCM grades 4-6, Am grades 5-7. Rated 4 stars. MOH lesson 75.)
·  The World of William Penn by Genevieve Foster
 - Foster explores the wide sphere of the humble Quaker, William Penn. From the courtyards of the Sun King to the royal chambers of Charles II, Penn was a "Friend" of kings and princes, scientists and Native Americans. (SCM grades 7-12, Am grades 3 and up. Rated 4.2 stars. *Could substitute with Famous Men of the 18th Century for grades 7-12 to use in MOH volumes 3 and 4, if it’s available yet. MOH lesson 77.)  *AMHIST
·  Peter the Great  by Diane Stanley
- Gorgeous, full-color biography of the great Russian tsar. Oversize.. (SL Core C for grades 2-4, SCM grades 1-3. Am grades 1-6. Rated 4.6. It sounds good. MOH lesson 83.)

· The Apprentice by Pilar Molina Llorente - A boy's desire to become a master painter triumphs in the face of overwhelming odds. Set in Renaissance Florence, Italy. Wonderful historical detail and character development. A page-turner. (SL Core C read-aloud for grades 2-4, Amazon grades 5-9. Rated 4.5 stars. It sounds like a great family read aloud for at least young and middle students.)  
·  The King’s Equal by Katherin Patterson - An arrogant young king sets out to find a queen as beautiful, intelligent and wealthy as he is. Will he mature along the way? Simply told and gripping. (SL Core C reader for grades 4-5, Am grades 2-6. Rated 4.5 stars. Sounds good.)
·  The Light and the Glory for Young Readers by Peter Marshall - A history of how God worked through the founders of America to establish this nation. This series offers a different perspective and covers different key events than most other American history books. (SL Core D. This is the first of the SL American history spine books for this age, covering 1492-1787. Rated 4.5 stars. MOH volume 3.) *AMHIST
· Children's Encyclopedia of American History by DK Publishing - A groundbreaking guide to American history, this reference book explains events, moments, trends, patterns and people in concise articles designed to appeal to children ages 8 and up. Features more than 750 photos and artworks, plus extensive maps, charts, a state-by-state review, the complete texts of the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution, and much more. (SL Core D, D+E for grades 3-7. Reference book. Rated 4.6 stars. MOH volumes 3-4.) *AMHIST
· Also consider the Dover coloring books for grades 3-8: Tudor and Elizabethan Fashions, French Baroque and Rococo Fashions

· Leonardo Da Vinci by Emily Hahn - Engaging account of this quintessential Renaissance Man. (SL Core G reader for grade 6-8. Read aloud grades 3-adult, read alone grades 5-adult. MOH lesson 12.)
·  The Monk Who Shook the World by  Cyril J. Davey - The Story of Martin Luther. Get to know Martin Luther through this biography. You'll meet him as he grows up and follow him as he leads the Reformation. (SL Core G reader for grades 6-8, 5 day program. MOH lesson 21.)
·  The Prince and the Pauper by Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain)
 - This is the story of two young boys, one a prince and the other a pauper, who look identical. They meet and on a whim trade places. Unfortunately each ends up trapped in the other's world. The result is a great adventure story told by the master storyteller Mark Twain. (SCM grades 7-9, Am grades 4-7. Rated 4.2 stars. MOH lesson 26.)
·  Mary, Bloody Mary by Carolyn Meyer - Young Mary Tudor describes the dramatic rule of Henry VIII: including his affair with and marriage to Anne Boleyn, and the consequences of that relationship for her, his firstborn daughter. A compassionate historical novel about love and loss, jealousy and fear -- and a girl's struggle with forces far beyond her control. (SL Core G reader for grades 6-8, 5 day package, Am grades 7 and up. Read aloud grades 5 to adult, read alone grades 6 to adult. Rated 4.6 stars. MOH lesson 37.)
· The Shakespeare Stealer by Gary Blackwood - A heartwarming story from Elizabethan England. Afraid of his master's anger but not wanting to betray his friends, Widge, an orphan, faces a crisis. Should he obey his master who commands him to steal William Shakespeare's Hamlet? Or should he prove himself a true friend to those who have befriended him at the Globe Theatre? (SL Core G & W read-aloud for grades 6-9, Am grades 3-7. Read aloud grades 4 to adult, read alone grades 5 to adult. Rated 4.4 stars. MOH lesson 38.)
·  A Murder for Her Majesty by  Beth Hilgartner - Alice, after witnessing her father's murder, flees and takes refuge with the choirboys of a large cathedral. Full of intrigue. A great story set in the Elizabethan era. (SL Core H & W read-aloud for grades 7-9, Am grades 5-9. Read aloud grades 5 to adult, read alone grades 6 to adult. Rated 4.6 stars. MOH lesson 38.)
·   I, Juan de Pareja by Elizabeth Borton De Trevino - Juan de Pareja is slave to the great artist Velazquez. De Pareja learns to paint in secret and ends up having some of his paintings hung in art museums. An engaging story based on real people. (SL Core G read-aloud for grades 6-8, Am grades 5-12. Read aloud grades 4-adult, read alone grades 6-adult. Rated 4.1 stars. Around the time of MOH 65-71.)
· Out of Many Waters by  Jacqueline Greene - Two Jewish sisters are kidnapped and sent to Brazil for "reeducation" during the Portuguese inquisition. See this sad period of history through their eyes as they courageously escape back to Europe. (SL Core H read-aloud for grades 7-9. Read aloud grades 3 to adult, read alone grades 4-8. Rated 5 stars. MOH lesson 71).
·  Escape Across the Wide Sea by Katherine Kirkpatrick  - On a fall day in 1686, 9-year-old Daniel Bonnet's comfortable life is shattered when the king's soldiers destroy his family's weaving shop. Because they are Protestant and refuse to convert to the king's religion, the Bonnets must flee France. (SL Core H read-aloud for grades 7-9, Am grades 3 and up. Read aloud grades 3-8, read alone grades 5-8. Rated 4.5 stars. Around the time of MOH lesson 78.)
· Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson
 - A historical adventure novel originally intended for a young-adult audience, “Kidnapped” deals with true historical events relating to the Jacobite Rising.  (SCM grades 7-9. Rated 4.3 stars. MOH lesson 79.)


· The Second Mrs. Giaconda by E. L. Konigsburg
 - The Mona Lisa... Why did Leonardo da Vinci lavish three years on a painting of the second wife of an unimportant merchant when all the nobles of Europe were begging for a portrait by his hand? No one knows for sure. But this story of Leonardo, his wayward apprentice Salai, and the Duke of Milan's plain young wife, Beatrice d'Este, may hold the clue to the most famous -- and puzzling -- painting of all time. (SL Core G read-aloud for grades 6-8, SCM grades 10-12. Read aloud grades 4-adult, read alone grades 6-adult. Rated 4.1 stars. MOH lesson 12.)
· Famous Men of the 16th and 17th Century by Robert G. Shearer
 - 28 biographies from Queen Elizabeth I (who came to the throne in 1560) through King Louis XIV who died in 1715. (SCM grades 7-12. Rated 4.7 stars. MOH 34- 84.)
· The Iron Peacock by  Mary Stetson Clarke - Joanna Sprague's life is upended when her father dies on the voyage that was to take them to a new life in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Poor and alone, 16-year-old Joanna must summon uncommon courage to survive life as a bond servant in a strange new world. An unforgettable, captivating story. (SL Core H reader for grade 7-9. Read aloud grades 5 to adult, read alone grades 6 to adult. Rated 4.6 stars. Around MOH lesson 62.)
· Master Cornhill by Eloise Jarvis McGraw - Before the Great Plague swept London in 1665, eleven-year-old Michael Cornhill led a happy life with his foster family. Sent hastily from the city when illness strikes, he returns to find all his family and friends have perished. Combining a fascinating portrait of London in a time of crisis with a powerful story of friendship and courage, this is a book of lasting value. (SL Core G & W read-aloud for grades 6-9. Read aloud grades 4-adult, read alone grades 7-adult. Rated 4.7 stars. Between MOH lessons 74 & 75.)
· The King’s Fifth by Scott O’Dell
 - In this deeply affecting novel Scott O’Dell envelops the reader in the heroic world of the conquistadors—a world that is at once somber and many-colored. Though they may have been ruthless, these steel-helmeted young men of Spain lived their lives on the very edge of eternity with style and uncommon courage. (SCM grades 10-12, SL Core H reader for grades 7-9. Read aloud grades 5 to adult, read alone grades 7 to adult. Rated 4.2 stars. This seems to be set in the general time period of this entire volume of MOH.)
· Madeleine Takes Command by Ethel C. Brill - Teenager Madeleine de Vercheres takes up arms in defense of family, country, and faith in this realistic historical novel set in the 17th century Canadian frontier. A true story full of brave characters. (SL Core H reader for grades 7-9, Am grades 5 and up. Read aloud grades 4 to adult, read alone grades 6 to adult. Rated 4.7 stars. 17th century spans the time period of MOH lessons 52-77.)


·    Voices of the Renaissance and Reformationedited by Rob Shearer
 - A collection of original source documents from famous men who lived during the Renaissance and Reformation. (SCM grades 10-12. No reviews. MOH 1st quarter.)

· The Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson
 - Set in England during the fifteenth-century Wars of the Roses, this swashbuckling historical novel by the author of Treasure Island and Kidnapped tells the story of young Dick Shelton. Betrayed by his treacherous and brutal guardian, Sir Daniel Brackley, Dick seeks the help of John Amend-All, leader of the mysterious fellowship of the Black Arrow—and Brackley's sworn enemy. Pitted against fierce fighters, a treacherous priest, and Sir Daniel, Dick seeks to become a knight and rescue his true love. Brimming with adventure, suspense, and romance, this thrilling tale presents a classic portrait of England during one of its most tumultuous eras, as Dick is pulled by his loyalties to the houses of both York and Lancaster. He must make a crucial choice, for his fate and the fate of England hang in the balance. (SCM grades 10-12. Rated 4.2 stars. MOH lesson 1.)

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