What We Read Aloud this Winter

Still reading aloud here! Some new (to us) titles and some oldies we love. Well, at least I love them. One of the fun things about homeschooling so many for so long is getting to repeat read-alouds that I loved the first time around. Because our history study happens in a four-year cycle here, our read-alouds tend to reflect the period of history we're studying.




Tirzah is a wonderful book written about a family of Israelites who escape Egypt during the Exodus. Written in an engaging manner, Tirzah often illustrates for the reader the hard life and realities of those wandering the desert for so long. The story is redemptive and triumphant, just as the story of God's redemption of the Israelites is!

The Golden Goblet tells the story of an orphaned jeweler's son forced to work in his half-brother's stonecutting shop. While there, he learns of shady dealings and must put his life on the line to discover and expose the truth. A great ending to a suspenseful book.

Mara, Daughter of the Nile was a new read for me. Mara is a sharp and streetwise slave girl who finds herself working for Egytian royalty as a spy. Enter the mysterious man who bargains with her for her freedom and Mara is suddenly a double agent! Great, fast-paced storytelling with a small slice of romance; Mara uses her wiles to accomplish what she needs to accomplish, but if your kids can stand a little kissing, you should be fine.

The Ides of April I had also never read The Ides of April before, even though it's been around for a long time. I'm so glad I picked this one up to read this year. Full of suspense, intrigue, mystery, and drama, The Ides of April delivers a satisfying tale about a slave who must risk everything to save the slaves of his household after their master has been murdered. Chalk full of great examples of what Greek government and culture looked like.

Mission to Marathon By the time spring has arrived, I'm usually ready to turn on a recorded book and let myself enjoy being read to with the kids. Mission to Marathon, however, is a small book and a quick read, and we all enjoyed the story of how Philip the sculptor's son saves his family from the invading Persians.

The Bronze Bow is one of my favorites for this time period. Elizabeth George Speare is a master storyteller and she does not disappoint here. Daniel bar-Jamin is a young Israelite who is hell-bent on avenging the death of his father at the hands of the Romans. What he doesn't foresee, however, is the impact a particular carpenter from Bethelehem is going to have on his life.

Discovering Jesus in Exodus is a book we've covered before in our Circle Time, but I pulled it out again because we're going through Exodus in our sermon series at church and of course, we've been through Exodus in our history studies this year. I love this little series by Susan Hunt and Richie Hunt, and I love the discussions we have because of it. Christian is 5 and listens intently while the 12-year-old adds her two cents even though she knows it's quite beneath her. Good discussion points.