Sometimes we get to review products that checks all the right boxes. I am about to tell you about one such product. We are currently using (and loving) Drive Thru History Adventures by Drive Thru History. Winner, winner, chicken dinner!
Drive Thru History is not an unknown entity in most homeschool circles. In fact, last year Josiah and I got to review the wonderful DVD series, The Gospels. It was just plain awesome. (Just following a little rabbit trail here, but Drive Thru History is offering a special deal right now for anyone who purchases a one year subscription of the very product I’m getting ready to tell you about. The special deal is the entire set of The Gospel DVD’s. You can grab the code here.)
It is also fairly common knowledge to readers of the blog that we have a special place in our hearts for history in this house. In other words…we kind of dig it. So obviously isn’t wasn’t a long stretch for us to fall in love with this product.
So what is the Drive Thru History Adventures experience all about? For the purposes of this review, we received a one year subscription to this online site.
There are three different adventure paths you can explore:
Bible History Adventures
American History Adventures
Ancient History Adventures
All contain the excellent videos we have come to expect from Drive Thru History. However, in addition, users have access to a complete history curriculum. This means worksheets, discussion questions, additional articles, primary source material…just a bunch of great stuff.
The videos can be used with the entire family, but the majority of the curriculum is intended for ages 12 and up.
You will need access to a computer, set of headphones and speakers, a good internet connection and possible printer if you wish to print off the assignment sheets. One of the great benefits of Drive Thru History Adventures is that you are not locked into one single computer.
You can do history at the library. You can do history at Grandma’s house. You can even do history at your favorite fast food restaurant on your trusty laptop. (not that fast food ever happens at our house!)
How We Used It
For our review, we decided to focus on American History. And because I love you, I will give you just a little glimpse of a typical lesson.
Each video episode is between 20 and 30 minutes long. There are 12 episodes of American History. The first begins with the discovery of America and the series ends with the Revolutionary War.
Our host for the series is the ever entertaining and informative, Dave Stotts. Josiah is a forever fan.
More on that in a minute.
Mr. Stotts doesn’t just stand in front of a green screen or out in a random field in Pennsylvania (though I’m fairy sure there is a random field somewhere in the series). He travels all over the world to bring the sights and sounds of historical events to life.
I am going to use my favorite screen shot method to share from Episode 6: Founding Fathers of Philadelphia.
Mr. Stotts takes us all over Philadelphia. In this shot we see the American Philosophical Society Held at Philadelphia for Promoting Useful Knowledge (now just known as the American Philosophical Society). It's first president was none other than Benjamin Franklin.
I'm hoping their useful knowledge was a bit more helpful than the philosophy class I took in college.
And, of course, it wouldn't be a trip to Philadelphia without a Philly Cheese steak sandwich.
One of the best and more unique things about any and all of the Drive Thru History videos is the humor. They just have a fun way of presenting history. In this little scene, Mr. Stotts told of how Colonial Americans were forced to house British soldiers. This "British Soldier" has taken up residence in Mr. Stotts' hotel room. I'm dying here.
I have to tell you that the whole family was ready to take a road trip to Philadelphia after this episode. The Muffin (also known as my husband) has been itching to go take in the Revolutionary War sites for years. I wonder if we could stow away in Mr. Stotts' tricked out jeep?
After the video, students are then given options to read primary source material (such as the Declaration of Independence). You can read it online or print out the PDF download.
There is also famous artwork to enjoy.
And a worksheet to download with thoughtful discussion questions.
There is also always an option for Digging Deeper.
On this day, we checked out The History of Groundhog Day.
Just. Plain. Funny.
This little side trip took us to another fun part of our subscription, Adventures TV. Users can download an app or view these fun and informative little videos. Sometimes Dave talks to us about what's going on in current events and how they fit into historical events. He often gives us just a peek into his personal life.
Poor Mr. Stotts and his family were even hit by the flu bug. Which led to a little visual lesson on the hazmat suit
So I mentioned about Josiah being a genuine fan boy. He absolutely loves this curriculum. And he's 16. It takes a lot to impress a 16-year-old boy. For one, he's dyslexic. The methods and content of Drive Thru History makes such a big difference for him. He doesn't have to struggle to learn. Even the extra reading can be adjusted. He is truly curious about history.
When Josiah learned I was part of the "secret" Facebook group for Drive Thru History Adventures he freaked out just a little. I didn't tell him that anyone who has a subscription can join.
My cool mom credentials instantly rose and I just felt that I needed to ride this thing as long as I could.
But immediately, Josiah had some questions for Dave Stotts. I was going to make him write them out in the form of a friendly letter (because most Homeschool Moms are cool that way). However, I thought that perhaps he could use my review to ask away. In list form. The extra commentary is all me.
1. How old are you? (not weird, at all)
2. How old are your kids and how many do you have? (I think he's hoping you have a teenage daughter)
3. Where do you live? (I hope I'm not raising a stalker)
4. What led you to want to do this for a living? Were you bored? (Josiah is still trying to sell me on his plan to play video games for a living. Maybe he's thinking about producing an adventure style TV show for his "plan B")
5. Do you plan the funny stuff or does it just happen? (asking for a friend)
So there you have it. I'm sure you got more than you bargained for when you decided to read my review. You can see that we are BIG FANS! This has really been Josiah's favorite curriculum in a long time. He is always sharing something with me he learned during one of the lessons. He's excited about history and oddly enough, Cheese in a Can.
You will just have to being a subscriber to understand what Cheese in a Can has to do with anything, at all.
Before I send you on your way, I also need to tell you about the Drive Thru history special advertised in the Winter Edition of The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine.
There is a code featured on page 19 of the magazine. This code will give you 20% off an annual subscription of Drive Thru History Adventures!
Here is the link to the digital issue of the magazine. Enjoy!
You can connect with Drive Thru History via the following social media outlets. Don't forget to click on the banner below to read more reviews.
- Facebook: http://facebook.com/drivethruhistory
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