First timeline is designed to introduce your first grader -- and anyone else -- to the history and geography of the world in terms of 36 biographies (or so). It consists of a mural 4.5" by 81" to be colored and either fan folded as a booklet or displayed as a mural, accompanied by a booklet describing the lives of the chosen characters within a single narrative of human history. Large-format cards are also available.
Pictures by Ana Braga-Henebry
Text booklet & mural: $13.00
Mural: $8.00 alone
Large Format Cards: $5.00
World history goes from Adam and Eve to yourself. World geography is also introduced in that characters are chosen from Europe, China, India, and Japan as well as America. The background figures of major American holidays are introduced, including Thanksgiving, Christmas, President's Day, Valentine's Day, and others. Several characters are chosen for their contributions to literacy, a fundamental interest for those learning to read; Pangur Ban the cat has his place among those.
It is not intended that the text stand alone for a year's curriculum, but it provide a simple and continuous narrative for elementary world history. Then you may use it to suggest topics for your weekly visit to the library.
I don't have space for a mural...
It comes fan-folded as a booklet, and you can keep it that way. It's length is intended to be comparable to the reach of your family couch. You may want to laminate it after coloring.
One mom chose to speed through the narrative in 40 days instead of a full year, using the internet to find supporting images and information. In this way, she introduced her children to world history during March and April, when they needed a fresh perspective in their education. Instead of coloring the mural she copied the images onto dividers for a history notebook where future studies may be filed.
The image set is available on white 5.5 x 8.5 cards which may be colored and mounted on dividers. Alternatively, color the images as you complete the biographies, then shuffle, and practice laying them out in sequence.
Why another timeline?
Timelines have become commonplace, but their value can be lost in the desire to be comprehensive. So many objects are sometimes included in one set of images, that the result is no longer visually striking. Ana Braga-Henebry has made very simple drawings, more to bring the personalities to mind than to portray them. It is hoped that in the act of coloring the images on the mural, a child will become accustomed to the order in which various personalities appeared in history, and that these images will remain the "pegs" on which the timing of many events and many other personalities can be hung.
An eagle's eye on history
I once gave this text as a talk to a mixed audience including a bright little 8-year old and some grandfatherly types. I used a globe as I spoke, to keep track of the homes of my characters; it took about an hour and nobody fell asleep. The possibility of covering world history in such a short presentation is exactly the intent of the program. It is a child's landscape of history.
My mother worked on the Thorndike Barnhart dictionary, and she used to say that anyone can write a better definition using another line of print; the question is, who can write a short definition that's really good?
So with world history. Many could do better than I have with twice or four times the space, and many have. But I wanted to get through the story so fast that even a child would have an eagle's eye view of human time. That is what I lacked all through school. I never saw, never even glimpsed, the whole picture; I never knew where I was going or where the dates I learned fit into that larger picture.
You see, I write what I wanted to read!
When you are done with this, I highly recommend The Story of Mankind by Willem Van Loon and, a trifle older, A Child's History of the World from Calvert School. (This may not be available as a stand alone from Calvert, but check with friends or second hand book sources.)
But if it's your first time through world history, why not let everyone work together? While the littlest ones learn one or two famous events connected with each personality, the eldest may investigate scholarly biographies chosen from your library, perhaps using the reading list posted by love2learn.net at: