Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Movies for History and Literature by Date and Era

Although the primary means of learning history and literature with our Classical Education focus is with books, I do like to use movies occasionally to bring things to life.

This is a list of the movies in our personal collection, categorized by historic era/date that I decided to share. I have used a few of these with young learners and even more as they grew older and matured. My kids are now in high school and college. Since every family has their own standard to "age appropriate" please use your judgement as to when to view them. I like Plugged In, from Focus on the Family, for a Christian perspective of many movies. I also like Movieguide. Years ago a homeschool mom asked me to detail every movie, but I'm a busy homeschool mom too. =) These are all old links from my old blog. I hope to refresh the links to my new blog here, and to continue writing movie reviews as I have time. =) Meanwhile I am happy to share my list which is a work in progress, as we add new movies to our library. Our favorites are OLD movies! =)

Ancient Egypt
  • That The World May Know: God Heard Their Cry with Ray VanderLaan
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark-although set in pre-WWII fighting Nazis, Egypt, pyramids, and the Ark of the Covenant are part of the story line.
  • Pyramid DVD from Unwrapping the Pharoahs
  • The Ten Commandments starring Charleton Heston
  • That the World May Know: Fire on the Mountain with Ray VanderLaan
Israel during the Old Testament
  • That the World May Know: Faith Lessons on the Promised Land with Ray VanderLaan
  • That the World May Know: Faith Lessons on the Kings and Prophets of Israel with Ray VanderLaan
Ancient Greece
  • The 300 Spartans (The really old version, made before I was born)
  • Alexander the Great (1956 with Richard Burton)
  • Drive Through History-Greece
Ancient Rome
  • Spartacus (with Kirk Douglas)
  • Cleopatra (with Elizabeth Taylor)
  • Julius Caesar (with Marlon Brando)
  • The Jesus Film
  • Ben Hur with Charleton Heston
  • The Robe (with Richard Burton)
  • Demetrius and the Gladiators (sequel to The Robe)
  • Drive Thru History-Rome
  • Faith Lessons on the Life and Ministry of the Messiah
  • Faith Lessons on the Death and Resurrection of the Messiah
  • Faith Lessons on the Early Church
  • Faith Lessons in the Dust of the Rabbi
  • Faith Lessons Walk as Jesus Walked
Middle Ages
  • El Cid-11th century hero of Spain. Starring Charlton Heston and Sophia Loren.
  • Ivanhoe-1194AD Starring Anthony Andrews. 
  • Joan of Arc-1431 Starring Leelee Sobieski. 
  • Cinderella-Rogers and Hammerstein with Leslie Ann Warren and Ginger Roger
  •  The Agony and the Ecstasy-1508 Starring Charlton Heston and Rex Harrison. Renaissance movie about Michelangelo, Pope Julius II and the Sistine Chapel. 
  • The Taming of the Shrew-Starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. I haven't seen this since junior high English class. 
Colonial Era

  • Kidnapped-Starring Bobby Driscoll, made by Disney. Robert Louis Stevenson classic set in the 18th century. The classic pirate, Long John Silver, comes to life. 
  • Treasure Island-1746 Starring James MacArthur and made by Disney. Robert Louis Stevenson classic set in 1746 during the Jacobite Scot rebellion. 
  • Follow the River-Based on the true story of the escape of a pioneer woman from a Shawnee tribe during the French and Indian War.
  • When the Forest Ran Red-Documentary using footage of reenactors about Braddock's Defeat in the French and Indian War.

    George Washington's First War-Documentary using footage of reeneactors about the French and Indian War. 
  • The Sign of the Beaver-Set in the Maine wilderness in 1768. Based on the children's book. 
  • A Day in the Life-Produced by Colonial Williamsburg, it tells the story of different types of people who lived in the Colonial Era. I wrote a more detailed account at the link.  Available for purchase on line through CW. 
  • Johnny Tremain-Based on the Esther Forbes novel, about the Boston Tea Party and the Battles of Lexington and Concord. A Disney movie starring Hal Stalmaster. 
  • Williamsburg-The Story of a Patriot-1770's

    Drums Along the Mohawk-1777 Starring Henry Fonda and Claudette Colbert. We got to see in action General Herkimer, whom we had read about in our books! Here are lesson plans from the NPS to go with the Battle of Oriskany at Fort Schuyler in 1777. Where was Benedict Arnold? Who knew how handsome Henry Fonda used to be? 
  • Felicity-For the younger girls. Set in Williamsburg, Virginia during the American Revolution.
  • Drummers Call-Produced by Colonial Williamsburg, it celebrates the historic fife and drum corps, which were important battlefield messengers. Available for purchase online through CW. I've attended many of their events, which I've written about at the link. 
  • American Experience: John Adams-late 18th and early 19th centuries 

  • Jefferson and Adams: A Stage Play-Produced by Colonial Williamsburg, late 18th to early 19th century 
  •  Swiss Family Robinson-Starring John Mills, Dorothy McGuire and James MacArthur, made by Disney. A family flees Switzerland because of Napoleon conquering Europe. While en route to New Guinea, they are shipwrecked. They find themselves fighting pirates. They quote The Odyssey by Homer. 

19th Century
  • Pride and Prejudice (with Keira Knightley) Not accurate to the book. 
  • Pride and Prejudice (with Colin Firth) Extremely well done and accurate to the book. 
  • Becoming Jane
  • Sense and Sensibility (with Emma Thompson) 
  • Persuasion
  • Amazing Grace...official web site with loads of information! Excellent movie! About William Wilberforce who fights to bring an end to slavery. 
  • I am aware of some History channel episodes on Napoleon, portrayed by one of the reenactors from Colonial Williamsburg. This is an excellent actor who is also a historian, and he knows his characters forwards and backwards. I have no idea how to locate these episodes. If you stumble upon them, I trust that they will be great. 
  • In the meantime, you can see Thomas Jefferson and Napoleon in discussion at Poplar Forest, which was extremely interesting during our Napoleonic studies!
  • Davy Crockett and the River Pirates

    Davy Crockett: The King of the Wild Frontier
  • Dr. Dolittle-Although written in the 1920's, I think the era of the movie is 1830's.
  • Seven Brides for Seven Brothers...1850 Set in Oregon. Musical. 
  • Les Miserables...It is an old French made movie, 1958, nothing flashy, but it was extremely accurate to the book and therefore well done. Because of heavy material, I do not recommend it for young kids. 
  • Jane Eyre...The A&E version is the best we've seen so far. Written in 1847.
  • Wuthering Heights...Written in 1847 by Emily Bronte. 
  • The King and I-Starring Deborah Kerr and Yul Bryner. 
  • Third Man on the Mountain...This is a fictionalized story based on the first successful ascent of the Matterhorn of Switzerland in 1856. This action packed thriller, by Disney, will keep you on the edge of your seat with breathtaking views of the gorgeous alps which I have always dreamed of visiting! We read in our history studies that Theodore Roosevelt climbed the Matterhorn! The kids can appreciate this after watching the movie. 
  • The Love Letter...This is a wonderful time travel movie to the Civil War era, set in the years 1998 and 1863! I love time travel movies and this is one of my favorites because it is well done. A man in Boston in 1998 purchases an antique desk. Inside a secret compartment, he finds an old forgotten letter from a lady near Boston in 1863. Put up by his mother to reply to the letter with her carefully researched and gathered supplies historically accurate (I love this part) ink, stamp and paper, she even researches and discovers the only local Civil War era post office where he should mail it...at night...because it seems appropriate. One sleepless night , he replies and mails his letter, as per his mother's instructions. The next day this letter is delivered to the lady in 1863! Shocked, the lady realizes this man from the future read her secret letter that she had put in the secret compartment of her desk. Anxiously she looks for it but it is gone. Confused, she writes another letter, addressed to this mysterious man in the future, and puts that in her secret compartment...which the man from 1998 finds in his desk's secret compartment! This movie has it all...science fiction (time travel), romance, and history (the story climaxes at the Battle of Gettysburg). It even has a surprise ending! This movie is a family favorite! BTW, the actor is Campbell Scott, son of George C Scott (who plays Scrooge in "A Christmas Carol") and Colleen Dewhurst (who plays Murilla Cuthbert in "Anne of Green Gables") 
  • Hans Brinker or The Silver Skates...Written in 1865, the book not only has a great plot line, but weaves the history of Holland through a skating trip that the boys take. 
  • Florence Nightengale-Starring Jaclyn Smith and Timothy Dalton. 
  • Victoria and Albert 
  • Little Women 
  • The Apple Dumpling Gang...Just a lot of fun for the kids of the house! 

  • Wishbone Dog Days of the West..."A little dog with a big imagination", describes the Jack Russell Terrier who imagines himself in costume (I love this dog! We almost got to meet him.) as the hero of a classic novel. Here he portrays a cowboy in the midst of the West in a compilation of O'Henry stories woven into a hilarious tail (pun intended) of twists and turns! 

  • The Lone Ranger 

  • The Harvey Girls-A fictional musical based on the history of the Harvey Girls
  • Rough Riders 
  • Stars and Stripes Forever...Although capturing the main drama behind legendary March King, John Philip Sousa, the timing of the writing of this famous march is a bit off. Here's a bit of accuracy from the Library of Congress we used to match up the facts for our history presentation

  • An Ideal Husband...Preview this movie first, as a couple of scenes are a bit mature for young eyes. Otherwise it captured the essence of this terrific play that we studied in Rhetoric literature and brought it to life. The plot line, the focus on glitz, and the humor were well captured. We were laughing a lot! 
  • The Man From Snowy River...A cowboy from Australia. Also this is based on a famous poem, about a wild horse that only one man can capture. 
  • Return to Snowy River 
  • Oklahoma 
  • Anne of Green Gables...This site has lots of downloads, video clip, etc. 

  • Anne of Avonlea...Same site as above except specific to this movie. 
  • The Little Princess 
  • The Secret Garden 
  • Heidi 
  • My Fair Lady

    McClintock-This John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara Western remake of the Taming of the Shrew is a family favorite. 
20th Century-Progressive Era

  • Chitty Chitty Bang Bang-Set in early twentieth century, starring Dick Van Dyke. 
  • In the Good Old Summertime-Set in early twentieth century, starring Judy Garland and Van Johnson. 
  • The Seven Little Foys-Vaudeville was big from the late nineteenth century into the early twentieth century, and one of the best known performers was Eddie Foy. This movie stars Bob Hope (who himself got his start in vaudeville) as Eddie Foy who made his seven children part of his vaudeville show when his wife died. James Cagney also stars as George M. Cohan, the famous star of vaudeville and Broadway star. 
  • Easter Parade-Set around 1911, starring Fred Astaire and Judy Garland. 
  • Christy-Based on the true story of a privileged girl who left her comfortable home in Ashville, North Carolina, to teach the poor in the hills of Cutter Gap, Tennessee, in the years before World War I. Christy's daughter, Catherine Marshall, wrote the novel upon which this is based. Catherine Marshall was married to Peter Marshall, who was US Senate Chaplain in the 1950's. This television series was produced by their son, Peter Marshall, Jr. 
  • Fiddler on the Roof-Set in Russia on the eve of the Bolshevik Revolution, it tells the story of the change of traditions in the lives of a peasant Jewish family.

    Nicholas and Alexandria-Set in Russia before and during the Bolshevik Revolution, telling the story of the last czar of Russia
  • All Quiet on the Western Front-Set during World War I, the specific story of a German soldier that broadly tells the story of every soldier. Starring Richard Thomas. 
  • Anne of Green Gables: The Continuing Story-This movie is a complete departure from the traditional Anne of Green Gables books and movies with Megan Follows. Megan Follows reprises her role, this time caught up in intrigue and espionage. The ending of the movie delightfully comes full circle to the beginning of the first movie. However the movie itself shows the Canadian homefront animosity toward those who do not serve their country and the Canadian hospitals full of wounded show the need for doctors on the front, convincing Gil to join the war. When Gil's letters are returned, Anne goes to France as a Red Cross worker to find him, meeting the horror of war head on. When left with a motherless baby, she finds her best friend's husband as he loses his arm from a battle injury. She takes Fred and the baby to a "safe place" in London where she secures a job at a newspaper and gets entangled in espionage, which eventually returns her to France in adventures that seemed doomed to capture and death. After the armistice, Germany is seen in reckless disorder, as loved ones look for new hope
  • Lawrence of Arabia-Set in the Middle East during WWI 
  • Sgt York 
  • Cheaper by the Dozen-Set during the Roaring Twenties, telling the true story of a time management expert and his wife and their twelve children and their wonderful adventures while the older daughters try to convince their father to let them wear the new fashions. 
  • Belles on their Toes-Sequel to Cheaper by the Dozen, a tribute to the mother who is forced by necessity to succeed in the business world in the 1920's. 
  • Chariots of Fire-Paris Olympics 1924

    Singing in the Rain-Starring Gene Kelley, showing the difficult transition in Hollywood from silent film to sound. 
  • Spirit of St. Louis-The story of Charles Lindbergh's successful trans-Atlantic flight in 1927
  • National Velvet-Set in the late 1920's in England. 
  • Charley and the Angel-Midwest 1933-Great Depression, radio, gangsters, bootleg whiskey, Chicago World's Fair 
  • It Happened One Night-Made in 1934, during the Great Depression, this is a great movie made on budget. 
  • The Gay Divorcee-Made in 1934, starring Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire. 
  • The Journey of Natty Gann-A Disney movie set in 1935 Chicago during the Great Depression. Shows the poignant struggle of the father to find a job. When he succeeds at landing a job with one of FDR's works programs in Oregon, he heads west with instructions for the landlady to watch his daughter while he earns money to send her a train ticket to join him. Trouble causes Natty to flee west, while dangerously hopping trains and befriending hobos and a wild wolf
  • Top Hat-Made in 1935, a Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers movie, featuring the music of Irving Berlin. 
  • Lassie: Come Home-Set during the Great Depression in Great Britain, the beloved children's classic comes to life. 
  • To Kill a Mockingbird-Set in the deep South during the Great Depression. 
  • Swing Time-Made in 1936, starring Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire. 
  • Shall We Dance?-Set in 1937, a Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers classic, where they dance to Gershwin music, which we studied in music history. 
  • Sound of Music-Set in 1938 Austria. Shows the arrival of the German takeover of Austria, as we learn historically in TOG studies. 
  • The Inn of the Sixth Happiness-Set in 1930-1938. Based on the life of missionary Gladys Aylward from England to China. Not entirely accurate. 
  • The Story of Seabiscuit-Set during the Great Depression, this Shirley Temple version of the amazing racehorse, Seabiscuit, is told in a more family oriented manner than the more recent version which is too adult for children. For historical accuracy and great historical footage, some of which is also included in the Shirley Temple movie, check out this pbs documentary
  • The Philadelphia Story-Made in 1940 starring Katherine Hepburn, Cary Grant and Jimmy Stewart. 
  • Boomtown-Made in 1940, this movie covers 1918 to 1938. The movie begins in the real town of Burkburnet, Texas. We used to live a few miles from there when our children were babies. Historically, Burkburnett was truly an oil boom town, as represented in the movie. There really were oil derricks packed so closely together, you could walk across town on the tops of them. Towards the end of the movie, the plot thickens with violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act
  • Holiday-Made in 1938, starring Cary Grant and Katherine Hepburn. 
  • The Wizard of Oz-written in 1900 and aired as a movie in 1939, employing the juxtaposition of black and white versus color within the plot context of the movie. Also I think this has political overtones. 
  • Mr. Smith Goes to Washington-Made in 1939 by the infamous Frank Capra and starring the wonderful Jimmy Stewart, this movie is purposely and wonderfully patriotic in an era of Hitler's storming path across Europe. 
  • The Battle of Britain-Set in 1939-1940, the victorious struggle of the RAF against the German Luftwaffe. Recommended for Rhetoric. 
  • Broadway Melody of 1940-Fun musical starring Fred Astaire and Jane Powell, with a patriotic number at the beginning. Set in Broadway in New York City. 
  • My Friend Flicka-Made in 1943, starring Roddy McDowell, based on the book. 
  • Yankee Doodle Dandy-Made in 1942, this purposely patriotic movie tells the story of George M. Cohan, the infamous song and dance man. Many of his songs are classics, still played at patriotic performances today, even his medley of Broadway tunes. He won the Congressional Medal of Honor for his songs, "Over There" and "Grand Old Flag." Interestingly, there is a cameo appearance of Eddie Foy Jr., playing his vaudeville father, Eddie Foy. 
  • Casablanca-Set at the onset of WWII, Europeans attempt to flee to safety to America. 
  • Son of Lassie-Set in Norway during the German occupation of WWII. Joe now serves as a pilot of the RAF, who parachutes into danger with Laddie, in Norway. 
  • Tora, Tora, Tora-See my post at the link. 
  • Operation Petticoat-Set throughout the Philippine Islands during WWII, specifically Dec 10, 1941 through January 1942. Starring Cary Grant and Tony Curtis, about a pink submarine
  • Father Goose-Cary Grant movie set in the South Pacific during WWII, in early 1942 during the Japanese take over of the Dutch East Indies and the Philippines. Lighthearted story line about an unwilling sighter of Japanese planes for the British, a French lady and several girls from a girls' school. 
  • Midway-Set in the South Pacific, April-June, 1942, about the turning point in the war, the American victory over Japan at Midway.
  • Twelve O'Clock High- Recommended for Rhetoric.

    You Were Never Lovelier-Made in 1942, starring Fred Astaire and Rita Hayworth. This movie is a complete departure from other Fred Astaire movies, in that he rarely dances and his first dance was about an hour into the movie. Set in Argentina, this movie was hilarous. The love letters inspired by Napoleon...my kids couldn't believe it! Napoleon yet again! The scene with the dueling pistol that was converted into a lighter.The knight in shining armor arriving on a white horse (how romantic! This was to represent Lochinvar, written by Sir Walter Scott, which my daughter and I remembered reading in school last year), who fell off! Oh, and the dance scenes with Astaire and Hayworth were incredible!

    Victory-Set in Europe during WWII, POWs are challenged to a "friendly" football (soccer) match with the Germans, which becomes propaganda for the Germans and an opportunity to escape for the POWs. Soccer plays choreographed by one of the infamous socceer stars, Pele. 
  • South Pacific-Rodgers and Hammerstein musical set in the South Pacific, sometime during 1942-1944. Historically, the American's island hopping to reach Japan is shown. This can be used as a literature/fine arts extension. The theme is prejudice, which is portrayed in the use of shades of color throughout the movie and becomes a pivotal plot line alongside the dangerous scouting mission that takes place. 
  • A League of Their Own-1943 
  • The Glenn Miller Story-Set from the 1920's to 1944, this is one of our favorites, starring Jimmy Stewart! Glenn Miller is infamous for finding the "new sound" and revamping music for the troops during WWII. You might be familiar with "Don't Sit Under the Apple Tree" among many of his other hits. 
  • Courage of Lassie-Set in Canada and Pacific during WWII, the Lassie dog, named Bill, becomes part of the Army and suffers from battle fatigue. 
  • The Longest Day-Historically accurate movie, by the same producer who made Tora, Tora, Tora, about the DDay invasion, June 6, 1944. One of my favorite scenes was with General Theodore Roosevelt, son of President Theodore Roosevelt, who insisted he be in the first wave to go ashore at Normandy. He was the only general to do so. 
  • Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl-Made in 1959, the movie is set in Amsterdam, Holland from 1942-1945. 
  • Ghandi-Excellent movie on the life of Ghandi and his peaceful resistance philosophy. Ends in 1948. 
  • The Long Grey Line-Set at West Point from 1898 to 1948, starring Tyrone Power and Maureen O'Hara. The story of an Irish immigrant who serves at the military academy, becoming like a father to the cadets. Sworn in by Capt Pershing, he influences many greats we know today. Notable from the Class of 1915 were Omar Bradley and Dwight D. Eisenhower.
  • State Fair-Rodgers and Hammerstein musical made in 1945. The prize winning fruitcake that makes the judge tipsy, the pig that fell in love, she meets him, all at a state fair of Iowa.
  • Notorious-Set in 1946, the daughter of a Nazi traitor goes undercover with the help of an American agent (Carey Grant) to pursue information on Nazi agents. This is a great Alfred Hitchcock thriller! 
  • State of the Union-Made in 1948 with Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn. A man is encouraged to run for the presidency. References to Lafayette and Nappy, I mean Napoleon! Provides much fodder for discussion on political concepts: communism, dictatorships, constitution, Bill of Rights, goals of a nation, inflation, depression, and proposed solutions to these problems. Can become the basis for a persuasive essay or debate. 
  • Adam's Rib-Made in 1949, starring Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy, portraying lawyers who are married to each other. They represent opposite sides of a case. She uses it as a platform for the feminist agenda. For older kids. 
  • The Barkleys of Broadway-Made in 1949, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers portray a husband and wife dance team. They split up and she launches out into dramatic acting as Sarah Bernhardt. She doesn't do well, until her husband (Astaire) calls, disguising his voice as the director, to give her tips that make her a success. There is a great scene with several pairs of shoes dancing with Fred Astaire. 
  • The Stratton Story-Made in 1949, starring Jimmy Stewart and June Allison. True story of baseball player. 
  • Summer Stock-Made in 1950, starring Gene Kelley and Judy Garland.

    Harvey-Made in 1950, starring Jimmy Stewart. A man and his imaginary rabbit friend. 
  • Royal Wedding-Set in 1951 during Princess Elizabeth's wedding. Fred Astaire dances with a hat rack, dances with his sister while aboard a ship tossed to and fro by a storm at sea, 
  • People Will Talk-Made in 1951, starring Cary Grant and Jeanne Crain. Parallels the McCarthy investigations. 
  • The Quiet Man-Made in 1952, starring John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara. Set in Ireland. Celtic crosses. 
  • Just for You-Made in 1952, starring Bing Crosby, Jane Wyman and Natalie Wood. USAF and USO show ending. 
  • Monkey Business-Made in 1952, starring Cary Grant and Ginger Rogers. Hilarious story about the Fountain of Youth potion. 
  • Les Girls-Made in 1952, starring Gene Kelley. Different perspectives of the same story. Who is telling the truth? 
  • April in Paris-Made in 1952, starring Doris Day and Ray Bolger (scarecrow from Wizard of Oz). Lafayette painting prominently hangs behind Bolger's dance scene. George Washington and Abraham Lincoln step out of their paintings to join Bolger in dance. Great line-Doris Day: "Lafayette I am here." Reference to Marshall Plan. Great dance scene of Bolger on the kitchen table acting reminiscently scarecrowish. 
  • Mrs. 'Arris Goes to Paris-Set in 1953 during Queen Elizabeth's Coronation. An English housekeeper, portrayed by Angela Lansbury, saves money to purchase a Christian Dior dress in Paris. 
  • Roman Holiday-Made in 1953, starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck. A princess runs away to become a commoner. 
  • The Long, Long Trailer-Made in 1953, starring Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball. Hilarious. 
  • Rear Window-Made in 1954, Alfred Hitchcock starring Jimmy Stewart. (For Rhetoric, very thought provoking.) 
  • Strategic Air Command-Set in 1955, starring Jimmy Stewart. 
  • To Catch a Thief-Made in 1955, starring Carey Grant and Grace Kelley. References to the French Resistance in WWII. Alfred Hitchcock intrigue. 
  • End of the Spear-1943-1956 Based on the true story of Nate Saint, Jim Elliot and other missionaries killed by the South American Indians that they are trying to witness to. Much of the story is seen through the eyes of Saint's son, who returns to the area as an adult. This is a wonderful movie with a powerful message. 
  • Silk Stockings-Made in 1956 with Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse. Compares the beauty of Paris life (from the lights to silk stockings) to the Soviet Union (from censorship to drab clothes.) Preview before letting your children watch. You might want to skip the Napoleon/Josephine scene for younger kids. My kids said Josephine was pegged in this part. Hmm... 
  • Quiz Show-Set in 1957, based on the true story of a quiz show scandal. This is a very 1950's movie: Sputnik, tv viewing during dinner, quiz show mania, cars, costuming, etc. 
  • An Affair to Remember-Made in 1957, starring Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr. Set in Mediteranean, New York City and Boston. 
  • Funny Face-Made in 1957, starring Audrey Hepburn and Fred Astaire. Beatnick poetry and hangout featured. (some studied in R lit.) Great song and dance routine around Eiffel Tower with the words, "Lafayette We are Here." 
  • Houseboat-Made in 1958, starring Cary Grant and Sophia Loren. Set in and near Washington DC. 
  • Vertigo-Made in 1958, Alfred Hitchock thriller starring Jimmy Stewart. For R students, very thought provoking. 
  • Indiscreet-Made in 1958, starring Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman. 
  • Pillow Talk-Made in 1959 starring Doris Day and Rock Hudson. (party line) 
  • North by Northwest-Made in 1959, starring Cary Grant. Intrigue. For Rhetoric due to intensity. (Mount Rushmore)
  • It Happened to Jane-Made in 1959, starring Doris Day and Jack Lemmon. A widow who runs a lobster business in Maine, takes a railroad tycoon to court for destroying her business. 
  • Roy Rogers-Made in the 1950's. 
  • Charade-Made in the late 1950's, starring Audrey Hepburn and Carey Grant. Who is who? Who did what? Where is the fortune? Great intrigue. 
  • Shadowlands-1952-1960 Touching story of the woman CS Lewis loved.
  • Bedtime for Bonzo-Made in 1961, starring Ronald Reagan. Just had to set the stage for the future President of the US. The kids love this! 
  • Misty-Made in 1961, set on the islands of Chincoteague and Assateague Virginia.
  • Parent Trap-Made in 1961, starring Haley Mills. 
  • Breakfast at Tiffany's-Made in 1961 starring Audrey Hepburn. For rhetoric. Mature material, worldview. 
  • The Right Stuff-1947-1963 Based on the true story of the race to the moon. Starting with Chuck Yeager breaking the sound barrier, the movie traces the development of the astronaut program and the Mercury program. Although based on fact, some scenes are obviously contrived. 
  • That Touch of Mink-Made in 1962 starring Cary Grant and Doris Day. 
  • Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation-Made in 1962, starring Jimmy Stewart, Maureen O'Hara and Fabian. A dad spends his summer vacation solving problems. Many cultural ideas of the space race, rebellion, etc, so you might want to preview before watching with your kids. We look at the redeeming virtue of the parents who hang tough with their kids, helping them and drawing closer to them. (Party line) 
  • On the Wings of Eagles-Made in 1963, this is an accurate portrayal of a Strategic Air Command base and the stress involved. 
  • The Moon-Spinners-Made in 1964, by Disney. Based on a Mary Stewart novel (which I read one summer as a teen), Disney kept the intrigue, captured the beauty of the Greek islands and water, while lightening it up. Stars Haley Mills. (Greek isle, Mediterranean, Greek windmill, Greek wedding, Greek inn, Greek traditions.) I really like how Disney did this movie. It is a light romance. My kids have enjoyed it from a young age. 
  • That Darn Cat-Made in 1965 by Disney, starring Haley Mills. (drive in movie)
  • Glory Road-Based on the true story of Texas Western basketball coach, Don Haskins, who in 1965, set out to find his dream team. He looked beyond skin color, to recruit African Americans from across the country. Enduring racial discrimination and violence, Coach Hawkins has to not only protect the entire team, but build them up to keep focused on their winning streak to a potential collegiate victory. Despite the danger they have faced from experiencing racial bigotry, can they believe that no one can take away their dignity? Watch to find out.  My son got to attend basketball camp with one of these collegiate players, Nevel Shed who shared with the kids about his story with this team. 
  • Lt. Robin Crusoe-Disney movie starring Dick Van Dyke. Remake of Robinson Crusoe. Of course being a Dick Van Dyke movie, it has inventions and gadgets galore. (South Pacific, pilot, navy, space chimp) 
  • Driving Miss Daisy-Set in Georgia from 1953 through the Civil Rights Movement. 
  • Yours, Mine and Ours-Made in 1968, starring Lucille Ball and Henry Fonda. Based on a true story about a Navy officer, who is a widower with 10 kids, who falls in love with a widow of a Navy officer with 8 children. Elements of the hippie culture and the Vietnam War are shown
  • Apollo 13-Set in 1969 to 1970, the story of the ill fated Apollo mission. Directed by Ron Howard who made this as accurate as possible. All the things that go wrong really happened
  • The Girl Who Spelled Freedom-Set from 1979 to 1983, in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Based on the true story of a Tennessee family who adopts Cambodian refugees. Helping them transition into American society, they help one of the daughters prepare for the National Spelling Bee
  • Night Crossing-A Walt Disney movie based on the true story of two families who attempt to escape from Communist East Germany, in 1979, with a homemade hot air balloon. 
  • War Games-Made in 1983. A teenage computer hacker accidentally starts global thermonuclear war during the era of the Cold War. Revolves around the setting of the secure missile silo in Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

    Top Gun-Made in 1986, top pilots train to fight MIGs (some adult content) 
  • Short Circuit-Made in 1986, a science fiction type movie set in the Pacific Northwest. A robot comes alive. 
  • Cool Runnings-Based on the true story of the Jamaican bobsled team going to the Calgary Olympics in 1988. 
  • Baby Boom-Made in 1989, set in Manhattan and Vermont. Showcases the greed of the business world of the 80's, women's new role as successful business partners, and a woman who proved she could have it all, as in a successful family and business. 
  • Batteries Not Included-Starring Jessica Tandy and Hugh Cronin. A science fiction type movie set in New York City. An elderly couple and other residents of a tenement fight to keep their home when big business threatens to knock it down. Miniature flying saucers come to help
  • Field of Dreams 
  • Father of the Bride I 
  • Regarding Henry 
  • A Few Good Men 
  • Dave 
  • The Firm 
  • Mr. Holland's Opus-A composer takes a gig teaching high school music to have time to write his magnum opus...or will he have time?Spans key events learned in history from 1964-1990s
  • The American President-1995-Opens with review of all president's learned. 
  • The Beautician and the Beast-made in 1997-Starring Fran Drescher and Timothy Dalton. A beautician from New York City revolutionizes a dictator from an Eastern block nation. 
  • Father of the Bride II 
  • Sabrina 
  • While You Were Sleeping 
  • Return to Me-A heart transplant and a love story. Really great! 
  • Lake House-Time travel romance, Crime and Punishment, Jane Austen's Persuasion 
21st Century-PostModern
  • Kabul 24- Documentary by Michael W. Smith about the missionaries, Dana Cury and Heather Mercer and others who were caputured by the Taliban and Afghanistan against the backdrop of 9-11. I was bored with this myself and enjoyed the book, Prisoners of Hope, more. My daughter had read the book and my son had not but both enjoyed it. 
  • Come What May-Set in Patrick Henry College in Northern Virginia. A PHC student joins moot court and argues against Roe v. Wade. His mother goes before the Supreme Court to argue for Roe v. Wade. 
  • National Treasure I
  • National Treasure II
  • Star Wars

Monday, November 6, 2006

A Museum Style Dialectic History Presentation of Ancient Cultures

We studied a mix of ancient cultures last winter.  This time for our museum style history presentation, I had the kids choose specific people to become and prepare speeches for their chosen character.  I was Deborah (from Judges), dd was Ruth, and ds portrayed a Phoenician merchant of purple dye who came to know the one true God through some Hebrews he met while trading.  I had the dc write KWO (process of prewriting from IEW) and practice their speeches.  They wanted me to do it too, so I did my best to set a good example!

Ancient Culture History Presentation

After we introduced ourselves, we ate!

Food from the Ancient Cultures

I decided to feature some foods of the regions and spices to make the table prettier. My daughter made a list of foods that she found in the Bible and other books we studied. That list became our shopping list! 

After we ate, we had show and tell.  The dc showed off all their projects and answered all of the guests questions.

Here is the table on Ancient India:

Ancient India

  Ancient China:

Ancient China

Here is dd showing off her lantern after the history presentation:

Chinese Lantern

Ancient America:

Ancient America

The Hebrews:


Ancient Early Greeks:

Early Greeks

Monday, October 2, 2006

Ancient Egypt Dialectic History Presentation

Last year we had an Ancient Egypt History Presentation which my mom joined us for! This was the first time we had invited extended family so she had no idea we'd be wearing costumes. When we opened the door her jaw literally dropped to the floor while smiling from ear to ear!lol She was shocked to see us!(At this time, ds is 10 and dd is 12.)

Egyptian Family with Cat of Bubastees

Here we are with Slipper kitty.  Moments before Mom's arrival, ds suggested that we present a brief introduction of who we were, with a testimony that we had changed our faith to the one true God of the Hebrews.  Slipper posed as the Cat of Bubastees, one of our favorite books written by GA Henty that I read aloud to them. 

After our introductions, ds opened the history presentation with the shofar he made out of paper mache. That boy will find any excuse to make noise! 

Then we ate food typical of the various cultures we had studied.

Egyptian Food

Our favorite was the pomegranate.  I have never used these before.  I had to google instructions on how to use them.  They are full of seeds which are the part that you eat.  They are filled with a great liquid.  I also found a wonderful recipe!  First you roll the pomegranate on the counter top to smash the seeds inside.

Pomegranate Juicing

Then you poke a hole into the fruit with a skewer and insert a straw.  The world's first soft drink!  LOL

Sip a Pomegranate

Then we showed off our projects.  Here is one of ds' seven page flip books on Creation.  We made each page a different size and they increased by one inch as they got bigger.  This is the day the stars were created.  We already had a million foam stars someone had given the dc for crafts, so we pulled them out for this project.

Creation Books

 Here's his page on the day the frogs and turtles (more foam shapes) were created.

Creation Books

 Here is one of dd's pages.  Don't you love the flamingo?  I think she used a stencil for that, the cat and the flower.  And she used cotton for the clouds. 

Creation Books

Scanning the table from right to left you see...

Ancient Projects

Here are overlay transparancy maps.  We did these for the Great Flood. I used numerous Creation resources to study geology and the Flood.  From looking at recent big floods and volcanic eruptions (like Mt. St. Helens) Creationist Scientists have seen that big floods create huge canyons within days, not millions of years.  After all, when do you see the greatest erosion, over years of peaceful weather, or after floods?  When we first moved into our house, there was no grass and we had a hill.  That was fine, until it rained and the harder it rained, the more erosion I had.  I needed to hurry up and put grass down before my yard washed completely away!  We've had 3 different hundred year floods in our area since our dc have been born.  The one flood caused waters to go over the spillway of a dam for the first time ever...creating a new course of direction for the river and a new canyon. After the flood waters started to recede and the river road was passible again, we drove down and were shocked at the change!  Using this as the baseline for our theories, our transparency maps reflect these changes. 
Transparency Overlay Maps

 These are the salt dough maps of the Nile River.

Salt Dough Maps

My dc were just learning how to use IEW and KWO with simple paragraphs.  So we took one of our paragraphs and made a pop up book!

Pop Up Books and IEW

Another pop up book with a paper boat... 

Egyptian Boat
Our major art project was the tabernacle. Since this represents our relationship with God and is referenced over and over again in the Bible, I prioritized for us to understand this better by making a model.  I'll detail how we made it in the next blog entry.

Tabernacle Model

Here is ds lifting the different covers to the tabernacle, explaining the significance of each one.

Tabernacle Model

Here is the inside from the top...

Tabernacle Model

Today, we can sketch out all the pieces and what they are and what they represent!  This is an extremely meaningful project!

Well, at the end, Mom was quite impressed!  She said she was going to tell everyone they needed to come to the next one..when would that be she asked?  This was not fluff she said, as best as I can remember.  But she was really impressed and wanted us to do another one!