Bookworm Fridays: The Door in the Wall

Door in the Wall @ Three Cornered Hug

As I understand it,  The Door in the Wall is one of those “love it or hate it” sort of things. I remember having to read this book as a young person, and at the time, I wasn’t completely sold on it. However, my education didn’t exactly provide me with a good grasp on History, which I feel is helpful to have when approaching this story. As an adult, I devoured this lovely read.

Set in the Middle Ages, this tale follows Robin, a noble’s young son who has lost use of his legs while his parents are away. The servants have succumb to the plague, and Robin is alone until he is taken in by a loving monk.

The Door in the Wall is very much about Robin’s personal triumphs as he learns to find the openings to pass through the difficult walls that life has erected in his path. It’s also useful for learning historical “lingo”, although some complain that the author presents a somewhat “romanticized” version of this time period.

This is recommended for grades 4-8 and while this group should be well able to handle the reading level and events, I’d say it would be more appreciated the the upper age limit and beyond–armed with a dictionary for a few of the older words.

It would be hard to imagine a library that doesn’t carry Marguerite De Angeli’s timeless tale, but just in case yours doesn’t, you can find it here.

Advertisements
Video

Eric Liddell: Olympian and Missionary

“God made me fast. And when I run, I feel His pleasure. ” Chariots of Fire

Eric Liddell @ Three Cornered Hug

___________________________________________________________

Even if you’re not familiar with Eric Liddell’s story, you will certainly know the tune to the movie, entitled Chariots of Fire, made about this Olympian.
(If not see the vid below!)

The Olympics of 1924 were held in Paris, and Eric Liddell’s main event was the 100 meter dash. This Christian athlete made history when he withdrew from this event, due to the fact that it was scheduled on a Sunday. Instead, he signed up for the 400 meter dash.

When asked about his plan for the race, he replied, “The secret of my success over the 400 meters is that I run the first 200 meters as fast as I can. Then, for the second 200 meters, with God’s help, I run faster.”

His plan worked; Liddell, “The Flying Scotsman”, went home with a Gold medal, having set a new record for the event.

While some may know this part of his story, many do not realize that Mr. Liddell went on to be a missionary in China. To begin with, he taught chemistry and sports at a boys school. After getting married he was a traveling evangelist, going from village to village.

In 1940, when Japan invaded China, the dire situation caused Liddell’s wife and children to flee to the safety of relatives in Canada.  Liddell himself was placed in an internment camp, where he died of a brain tumor not long before the liberation.

In a nation full of “American Idols”, we need to teach our kids about heroes who had more than just talent. People who gave it their all, who risked their lives for what they believed- those who’ve run without looking back.

There is a wonderful free ebook I found about Liddell’s life, which is basically a beautiful picture album with narration all throughout to tell the story. You can go there by clicking here.

You can also go to the Eric Liddell Website for more info.

Below, the first clip contains actual video of the race, followed by a clip from the movie, Chariots of Fire. Enjoy!

Bookworm Fridays: The Bronze Bow

Bronze Bow @ Three Cornered Hug

The Bronze Bow, by Elizabeth Speare, is another book we included in our history studies. It follows a young zealot, Daniel, living at the time of Christ. After his father was crucified by the Romans, Daniel lived in the mountains with a band of Zealots until some young people from town discover him one day. He is eventually compelled to rejoin his community and care for what’s left of his family. While this book is not religious, it uses the commandment to love to challenge the hate that’s in Daniel’s heart for the Romans. It also highlights the conflict that must have been in the minds of many Jewish people of Daniel’s time: how could this man, Jesus, who teaches love possibly be the savior they hoped for? Find The Bronze Bow here.