Truthquest History is a literature-based history study created by homeschool mom Michelle Miller. It is a biblically-based program that focuses on revealing God and His truth through the study of history. There are multiple guides for a parent to choose from, and the good thing is, the guides can be used with students of multiple ages (which is always a bonus in our house…to me it just seems easier keeping us focused on the same topic for history, as my boys use resources aimed at their grade level).
For this review, I used the Beginnings guide, which covers Creation, the Old Testament, Ancients and Egypt. These guides are recommended for grades 5-12, and my boys are in 5th and 8th grades. However, within the guide there are recommendations for books that you can use with students in the K-3 range!
I have experience with other lit-based history programs, and most of them are very…structured. Depending on your personality and how you homeschool, this can be good or bad. For me, I seem to do a lot of “tweaking” with the prepared schedules in most programs. We are eclectic homeschoolers, but we tend to lean in a Charlotte Mason direction, and I like to have the freedom to go at our own pace.
For that reason, I really like that the Truthquest guides are not set up in a gridded, daily format. Each lesson has an introduction you can read with your student (or have them read alone if you want), followed by suggestions for books and chapters to read (again, aloud or individual reading for each child). Since the lessons are biblically based, you will always have sections of scripture to read as well. The best thing about Truthquest to me, was the fact that I could pick and choose which books to read to my kids (the majority of the books were readily available at the library), or I could even choose my own books and read those instead! Also listed in the guide are various audio and visual resources, as well as suggested activities students can do.
Included in the guide are various “Thinkwrites”. These are writing prompts designed to get students thinking about the material. Thinkwrites were a great opportunity for discussion in our house!! My youngest still struggles with writing, so the three of us always read the thinkwrites together and talked about them first, which gave him a chance to get his ideas in order before he started writing. Again, there are no rigid directions for the thinkwrites, parents are free to use them as they choose. With younger students, you could simply discuss them if you wanted to. I asked my boys to write a paragraph (for the 5th grader), and 2-3 paragraphs (for the 8th grader) and we stored these in our history notebooks.
Speaking of notebooks, there are some additional resources you can use if you like lapbooking/notebooking etc. I did not use any of these items personally, but we do enjoy these types of activities in our house, so I would seriously consider ordering them if I had the money. You can check these out at the Truthquest website.
Truthquest was truly a hit at our house. At first, it does sort of look like merely a guide and booklist, but that is so far from the truth. We found this to be a VERY meaty study that really fit our style of homeschooling. I loved the depth and, especially, the flexibility it provided. My boys liked the conversational tone of the author and the short lesson length, which allowed them time to explore topics of interest on their own more deeply. The cost of this Truthquest guide is $29.95 for a hard copy, and $23.95 for a PDF download. I think they are definitely worth the price, and I will be looking into purchasing from them in the future. You can find out more about Truthquest here:
To find out what other members of the TOS Crew had to say about Truthquest, check out this website:
*Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this guide in exchange for writing this review. All opinions expressed are my own.