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So I'm in love with these geography drawing books. I heard about them recently, and couldn't wait to get my hands on one. I started with the Draw Africa book because we're focusing on that continent this year in Cycle 1 of Classical Conversations. I've loved them so much that I've added them to my resource list for Foundations and Challenge A...and when I make my list for Challenge 1, I just might add the Draw the USA book for those who missed Challenge A. I'm so excited to share this great resource that I'm giving one away!!
In Challenge A, we worked on drawing the world, but I didn't have these resources by Kristin J. Draeger. Recently I recommended these books to a friend who will have a son moving up to Challenge next year, and she went home and ordered the Draw the USA book. Not long after, I received a text with her first stab at drawing the United States. About the same time, I showed another friend, who also has a son entering Challenge A, my Draw Africa book. She too went home and purchased the book. Then I heard the response of their experiences with the books along with pictures:
These are amazing drawings for a first stab!! My favorite part was the comments that came with the drawings.
The first mother said of her drawing: "So exciting to be redeeming my own education!"
The second mother said of her son's drawing: "Any book that helps my son do this is a winner. #WorthEveryPenny DrawingTheWorld"
My family sat down the other day to draw Africa. What I love about how the books are laid out is that she works through each continent one shape at a time. Additionally, each page only contains one single step. Tackling the entire continent can be overwhelming. Thankfully, she's made each step seem so easy, that you don't get lost.
I took my book to the office supply store and had them cut the spine off of the book. Typically I would spiral something like this because I'm addicted to spiraling. However, I thought that if I put these pages into page protectors, my youngest could practice some tracing with a dry erase marker, but it would also preserve a book that I foresee enduring a lot of kid handling. The binder above contains the Draw Africa book along with the Draw Europe book.
Starting with the Red Sea, the book leads the student across the northern section of Africa and then works its way down. This time I was only overseeing their drawings because I was also taking pictures! However, this also allowed a great opportunity to steer conversations as they drew.
Will: It would be cool to label all of these countries in the African language.
Me: Does all of Africa speak one language?
Will: I guess not. I didn't think about that.
Me: What languages do they speak?
Grace: French and German?
Me: Well, yes. That's true, but why do they speak those languages?
Grace: Because the French and the Germans invaded them.
Me: Exactly. Why did they invade?
Me: Were the only ones that invaded looking for slaves? Can you think of anyone else who invaded that wasn't involved in the slave trade?
Will & Grace: Umm
Me: Hey dad...can you think of anyone?
Will: Right - like David Livingstone!
Grace: And Mary Slessor...the one who took care of all of the kids!
Me: Yeah, and stomped through the jungle singing hymns at the top of her lungs so she wouldn't scare the locals or the jungle animals.
Our conversation continued, but you get the idea. A few good questions and all of the sudden drawing Africa isn't just a task to complete, but an experience rich with discussion.
Just because it's laid out for you, it doesn't mean there is no observation or drawing skills required. I loved to see my kids comparing proportion in order to get their drawings to look right.
Now my youngest (9) hung in there for a while, but she didn't make it through the whole book in one setting. I plan on taking the whole year to work on this drawing, so I'm not concerned. Similar to how she works on her Suzuki piano, I'll have her practice a little bit until she has mastered that section before she adds more to her drawing.
Everyone else finished their drawings in a short amount of time and with encouraging results. We were so blessed to find a resource like this that I couldn't wait to share it with you!
Here’s the details: the contest starts today (8/5/15) and ends next Friday (8/14/15) so that I can announce the winner on Facebook sometime over the weekend. If you win, I will email you, and you must respond within 24 hours, or I will choose a new winner. Use the rafflecopter giveaway box below to enter. There are several ways you can earn more chances: Visit us on Facebook and give us a "like" if you like, or tweet the offer, or simply leave a comment below why you should win this book!
So … enter already! This contest is now closed.
Betsy Strauss is an unexpected homeschooler, mother of three, who is in a relationship with a sweet man for life. She loves reading books, drinking coffee, and learning anything with her kids.