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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Schoolhouse Review Crew: Apologia Educational Ministries (iWitness Books)

Apologia Review
Apologia Educational Ministries is well known in the homeschooling world for it's award winning homeschool science, but they also carry a wide variety of books to help and encourage the homeschol parent, and books on apologetics as well.   I have had an opportunity to review several materials from Apologia, and buy many others.  As a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew, we recently had an opportunity to use and review a new apologetics series: iWitness Biblical Archaeology, New Testament iWitness,and Old Testament iWitness from Apologia Educational Ministries. 

The iWitness series of books are paperback books with a reading level of 11 years old and higher, although younger children with an advanced vocabulary would be able to read them on their own or enjoy listening as someone else reads to them.  The series of books is designed as a stack of documents to allow the reader to follow a logical trail, thinking through the information to come to a conclusion about what has been presented to them.  The books present scholarly information in short chunks and by using many visuals to break up the text, making it more interesting for the reader.  

The books are designed to allow the reader to come up with their own conclusions rather then have the answers simply given to them.  The books will tackle topics many Christians have questions about or are ones they get challenged on.

The Old Testament iWitness covers questions such as: Who wrote the books of the Old Testament?  How were the books collected and decided whether or not to be included?  How do we know the copies are accurate?  How is the Old Testament different from the Hebrew Bible? 

The New Testamen iWitness covers questions such as: What was the criteria for being included? Were there other books? Who wrote the New Testament?  How was it copied? How do we know it is accurate?

iWitness Biblical Archaeology shows many of the discoveries archaeologists have made that shows evidence of events and people in the Bible are true.  The Bible contains many historical events that we should be able to find artifacts for. This book takes you to the sites and allows you to see and read about some of the most important findings.

You can purchase the books for $14 each.

I had thought when I found out we were reviewing these books that I would read them myself and then let my two older boys (10 and 12) read them.  But, I decided that my two younger boys (9 and 7) could enjoy them as well , so I did them as a read aloud.  We read 1-2 sections each day during our Bible time over the last several weeks starting with iWitness Biblical Archaeology then moving on to Old Testament iWitness and finishing up with New Testament iWitness. 

The iWitness books present a lot of information to the reader, but they do it in a way that is broken up and easily understandable.  We learned many things that we never knew before.  I love the visual effects in the book.  They are many beautiful illustrations and photographs.  The size of the books surprised me because I was picturing them in my mind to be bigger and thicker, but they are the perfect size to take along with you somewhere and are packed full of information without the reader being intimidated because the book is too big.  Our favorite was iWitness Biblical Archaeology.  It is full  of interesting Biblical artifact information and photos.  The children loved seeing what we were reading about.  These books are not just good for children, but adults as well.
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