Embracing a Healthy Family: YWAM Publishing Christian Heroes: Then & Now Douglas MacArthur Review

YWAM Publishing Christian Heroes: Then & Now Douglas MacArthur Review







History is an exciting subject that I've been interested in ever since I was a young girl. This is why I was thrilled to be able to review another book selection from YWAM Publishing and their Christian Heroes: Then & Now books. The many different people in the Heroes of History biography collection are vast, but this time, I chose Heroes of History- Douglas MacArthur. World War II is a topic I know well and since I already knew a lot about Douglas MacArthur, I wanted to make sure my daughters learned what a formidable man he was. Not only is the book full of wonderful educational information, but YWAM Publishing also provides study guides that assist in teaching the main points if you decide to utilize this as an educational resource.

Our first review from YWAM Publishing was Heroes of History- Milton Hershey which was a wonderful account of a man that many have no idea what made him special. After reviewing this biography, I knew that I would really enjoy any of the other biographies that YWAM Publishing publishes.

Preparing for the Course:

I've learned when utilizing the past curriculum from YWAM Publishing, it's best to print the study guide and alongside the book, I'll review everything first before getting started. I also printed the Douglas MacArthur Fact Sheet as it's a great way for students to journal key facts as they read the book. I'll start with the 224 page book first that is recommended for ages 10 and up. Written by Janet and Geoff Benge who are a husband and wife team. Janet is a former elementary school teacher and Geoff holds a degree in history. Combined, the book is perfectly suited for children to read and I must admit, I enjoyed it as well.



The Book:  Douglas MacArthur: What Greater Honor

The book opens up with a brief harrowing account of MacArthur having to decide whether to leave the island of Corregidor or resign to stay on to fight. I have to add that the book already caught the attention of my youngest as we also were stationed at any Army base in El Paso, Texas so that brought it a little home to her. Both my girls, ages 11 and almost 16, enjoyed reading about this great man of history and given that I'm a huge history fan, I'm constantly pushing this type of reading material on them. The book has 17 chapters that provided an in-depth look into his life.

  1. He Would Return
  2. The Life of a Captain's Son
  3. A Determined Young Man
  4. An Officer in Training
  5. Lieutenant Douglas MacArthur
  6. A Mexican Adventure
  7. On the Western Front
  8. Promotion
  9. Army Chief of Staff
  10. Corregidor
  11. Escape from Corregidor
  12. Island by Island
  13. "I Have Returned"
  14. Surrender
  15. Supreme Commander
  16. Korea
  17. What Greater Honor

They learned a great deal about MacArthur to include many things I didn't know such as him being promoted to the Army Chief of Staff thus becoming the youngest Chief of Staff in American history. The book not only details the great life of MacArthur, but it provides key time points in history such as the depression and events such as Bonus March. This was in response to those that served in the Great War not receiving bonuses that were promised. With the depression, the government was low on funds, but the Veterans were suffering more. After some time, some of the protesters left but about 10,000 remained. MacArthur kept a close eye on the situation in fear that Communists infiltrated the protesters and would subsequently cause an overthrow of the government. President Hoover ordered MacArthur to assist after the D.C. police shot and killed some of the protesters. As my daughter read this part of the book, she looked at me in disbelief and said, "MacArthur used tear gas on the protesters!" That was a good opportunity to discuss the passage.

Another key part was when MacArthur received the Medal of Honor by Australian Prime Minister John Curtin. This is the highest award of valor in action against an enemy. Upon being pinned, he recalled when his own father received the Medal of Honor. Both he and his father were the only father and son to receive such honor!

There are so many moments that can be shared about the life of Douglas MacArthur from the beginning to the end. It's hard to just pick some of the best as there were so many. When he received the Sylvanus Thayer Award for distinguished service to a nation in May 1962, he gave an unscripted speech that really summed up his life's work and dedication. The final paragraph was:

"Today marks my final roll call with you. But I want you to know that when I cross the river, my last conscious thoughts will be of the corps, and the corps and the corps. I bid you farewell." 

It's a beautifully written biography that provides so much educational material that captivated me. I loved teaching from this book and the guide was so helpful in ensuring my girls understood what they read.



The Unit Study Curriculum Guide

Once the Heroes of History Unit Study Curriculum Guide was downloaded and unzipped, we were instructed to click on the START-HERE.html link that opens to a screen like this:


From here, there are many menu options: 

  • The tab for Douglas MacArthur provides an overview of his life.
  • The tab for Unit Study provides the guides broken down for small groups, classroom and homeshool as well as the Unit Study that is broken into Unit Study - Part 1 and Unit Study - Part 2. Part 1 is the full body of the unit study and Part 2 is facts and mapping exercises.
  • The tab for meet the authors is under construction.
  • The Bonus Material tab includes word puzzles and more!
  • There are also tabs for reader's reviews (coming soon) and more.

The guide also contains a table of contents that first provides an introduction and a black and white sketch of MacArthur. The guide is for either a school teacher or the homeschooling parent. As I noted above in the review of the book, it does touch on more topics than just a biographical account. It covers:

  • History
  • Geography
  • Essay writing
  • Creative writing
  • Reading comprehension
  • Public speaking
  • Drama
  • Art



The guide recommends that the teacher or parent decide what works best for your child(ren) based on reviewing the various ideas provided. They also state that the guide is for a variety of learning styles, group or individual study and it can be utilized across grades with examples such as: one activity has the student making a Japanese doll. An older student might make a more complicated doll whereas a younger student might make a simpler version out of paper. All in all, the guide is comprehensive and versatile.



One of sections I utilized were Chapter Questions (photo above). They provide six questions for each chapter:

  1. A vocabulary question from the text
  2. A factual question arising from the text
  3. Two questions to gauge the level of the student's comprehension
  4. Two open-ended questions seeking their opinion or interpretation

This was a great example of how they incorporate geography into the curriculum:


We utilized one of the Creative Writing exercises to write a letter to MacArthur:



Overall, it was an exceptional introduction to General Douglas MacArthur. The girls and I enjoyed learning all that we did about such a great man in American history as well as world history given the breadth of his touch across the globe. I probably enjoyed it more than them, but I really hope their interest in history will continue to increase. YWAM Publishing does yet another great job with their Christian Heroes: Then & Now series about Douglas MacArthur.







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Check out what others on the Homeschool Review Crew a division of The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine thought by clicking on the (photo) link below:


Study Guides - Christian Heroes Then & Now & Heroes of History {YWAM Publishing Reviews}


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