Wednesday, March 11, 2009

When "Patriot" Meant Something

I struggle sometimes with what to write about here because I'm not sure what anyone would care to read. I'm still amazed that anyone cares to read any of this at all! But since you do (at least people keep telling me that), I guess I'll just continue to write about what's on my mind and what's happening in our family.

And what's on my mind . . and what's happening in our family these days . . is THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION!!!

Love this history unit! This is our favorite historical period to study and so we're prolonging it as much as I can justify (including a 2 1/2 week "field trip" to the east coast to see all the pertinent sites -- and a few friends while we're at it!). The American Girl "Felicity" books. Plus several "Sisters in Time" books from the time period. Every relevant biography I could find at the library.

I purchased the DVDs of the "Liberty's Kids" series that was on PBS when Leslie was younger -- she LOVED it and it does an awesome job of giving the big picture and getting kids excited about the period. And one of the things I like best about it is that it shows all sides of the issues. The patriot rebels were wrong in what they did sometimes -- the Redcoats weren't all evil -- it was a complicated time. (I wish all children's entertainment was this good.)

Leslie and I are also going through a Critical Thinking curriculum focused on the time period -- examining and evaluating different interpretations of the Boston Massacre, the Lexington Green battle, the primary cause of the Revolution, etc. We're also going to be talking a lot about the principles involved in the fight for independence and in the writing of the Constitution later. (This is why I homeschool!)

But Eastin asked a fascinating question this morning as we read about the Boston Massacre. "How do we know this happened? What if someone just wanted to make up a good story?" Hmmm. Given the discussions I'm having lately with a friend about the factuality of the Bible, I thought it a rather timely question.

So, how do we know the Boston Massacre really happened? Well, there are lots of written historical documents about it -- from many different sources, with many points of view. Which means, of course, that we don't know for certain all the details about what happened at the Boston Massacre . . various people would have had various reasons to lie about various details of the event. But the idea that that many people lied about the fact that the event took place, that it was just a good story someone wanted to make up -- well, I supposed that's possible, but . . . nah, I'm not even sure I'll acquiesce to that being a possibility. The Boston Massacre happened. End of story.

(Now, my friend's going to read this and want to hear how I relate this to our Bible discussions. I said it was a timely question -- I didn't say I was ready to answer it yet.)

Right now, I'm just glorying in George Washington . . Benjamin Franklin . . "Give me liberty or give me death" . . and "We hold these truths to be self-evident." We're an imperfect nation and always have been, but we have had our moments of glory and I intend to celebrate them with my daughters!


Meredith said...

I have trouble with the Bible stuff did Jesus and the Apostles REALLY do all those miracles? Could he really turn water into wine? etc. Could Abraham and Sara rEALLY have a baby at 100 years old?? When I start thinking like that, I try to turn my gears off. There's no point questioning it. Whether it's true or not, it's the principles, ideas and morals that count. There are still lessons we can learn! Like Jesus, if he was just a crazy guy and not really the Son of God, and we're all following him and doing what he that really such a BAD thing? I mean, the guy taught us to be good people, we could all be a little more GOOD! Whether it has eternal ramifications or not.

Ona Marae said...

Take your time, Gwen, take your time and when you are ready...LOL

But it's a great post and I hope you have a FANTASTIC time studying it!

E said...

Hey! This is a great blog report I do love liberty kids and that question still haunts me. Eastin