This month our homeschool had the grand opportunity to review a book from the By the Way Book Series collection. Bear, our eldest, chose to read Florida’s Treasure Coast Here We Come because his aunt recently moved there and he wanted to learn about the area. This book is one of six, currently available, that showcase the adventures of two children named Alex and Lexi. Every book is hardcover and features a different location on the globe, fun facts, scripture references, and beautiful pictures. To see a few pages in this book, check out our February Homeschool Wrap-up via my recent video.
First, let me say I was so excited to check out this series because it offers a biblical worldview and acknowledges God as the creator of all the amazing places the children visit. The beautifully written parent letter on the inside cover explains how our lives are to be “one gigantic teaching classroom where faith is passed from one generation to another,” which is the basis for this series. Throughout each page you will see your faith being shared within the scenarios as well as the science, geography, and history facts. I also love that this book was filled with many interactions, portraying that the wisdom of God and his praises can be shared at every age.
In our story, Alex and Lexi leave their snowy abode to visit grandparents in West Palm Beach, Florida. FYI: I’m 100% jealous of these fictional characters because I’d definitely trade cold air and snow for sandy beaches right about now. While in town these two visit the beach where they (and the reader) learn about various trees, climates, sand, hurricanes, birds and how God cares for them, and the ocean. The book also gave detail about various sea creatures, the history behind Treasure Coast, and Native American Tribes from that area. Various parts of Florida’s wildlife, bugs, insects, animals, and reptiles were also discussed in detail along with local historical figures and landmarks. The tale flows seamlessly and every mention made sense and added to the story in a great way.
Here are my suggestions for reading this series in a school (homeschool) setting.
- Look through the book to see the variety of topics included and decide on what you want to cover. Since it is filled with so much information, you can choose to focus on certain topics and skim over others.
- Take your time reading the book with your students. For example, we spent a week reading this book and focused mostly on the story and marine life. The historical portions of the book can definitely be used as a separate study or to enhance a history curriculum you are already using.
- Create age appropriate activities based around the topics you’ve decided on so these books can be used with every grade you teach. For 3rd grade, I had Bear summarize the pages read on the previous day and asked him questions about the facts included. This was great practice for public speaking and reading comprehension. He also practiced writing by sharing a schedule of his perfect day in West Palm Beach, FL. For our preschoolers, I used the animal an marine life photos to share how God created so many amazing things.
All in all, I was happy with the outcome of our experience in Treasure Coast with Alex and Lexi. Florida’s Treasure Coast Here We Come is the first book in the By The Way Book Series. According to the teaser on the last page, the children’s adventures continue in the Smoky Mountains wherein these two are sure to fin more of God’s wonderful creations. As of now, there are also adventures written for Pennsylvania, Ohio, Washington, and Colorado. In late April, you will be able to find books about their newest journey through New York City and the first international trip by the pair to Ireland. These books are currently only available as physical copies; however, you can expect to see news on eBook versions in the near future.
Make this week adventurous,