Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Nosemonkey gets wrong end of stick

Nosemonkey at Europhobia has a post up slagging off "Our Island History", the classic English history for children recently reissued by Civitas. Apparently Civitas are
trying to promote Our Island Story as a proper history book, providing copies to as many primary schools as they can.
He goes on to quote a section from the book which demonstrates quite clearly that the book is no such thing. Which is the point rather. Our Island History is a "heavily fictionalised" account of English History. It includes chapters on King Arthur and the fairies bringing the stones to Stonehenge for heaven's sake. That's the whole point - to make it accessible to children so that they get interested in how we got to where we are today. Children don't actually care about its "doggedly whiggish, teleological approach to history" or whether the story of the princes in the tower may or may not be true. They want good stories.

And it works too. My eldest loves it - it's helped her to develop a good sense of chronology. Especially since Daddy put her right on his date of birth not being around the time of the Roman conquest.