Tuesday, August 21, 2012

I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist (Schoolhouse Crew Review)


Sometimes when I see Addison's high school curriculum options, I get a little jealous. There's a certain nerdy part of me that wouldn't mind going back and relearning Calculus, redoing Chemistry labs, or rereading classic literature. Her latest Bible curriculum is a great example. When she's not reading I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist, I'm stealing the book so that I can read a little more of it. I've always been impressed with Apologia's homeschool curriculum options, and these materials are no exception.

PhotobucketAccording to Apologia's description, the authors of I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist argue "that Christianity is not only more reasonable than all other belief systems, but is indeed more rational than unbelief itself." Addison describes the book as "logical, thorough, and well-thought through." She says that it requires thinking, not just reading.

I'm excited to hear that she's thinking about her faith and not just taking it at face value. I'm glad that she is being introduced to the three major worldviews -- theism, pantheism, and atheism. She is learning not only what she believes but what other people in our world believe.

Although the original book is excellent on its own, Apologia has taken it a step further and developed a companion workbook. The curriculum takes a powerful book and turns it into a challenging high school level Biblical Apologetics course. From their website: "During this course, your student will tackle the question of absolute truth, demolish the follies of postmodernism, debunk moral relativism, and march logically and surely toward the inescapable truths of the Christian faith."


I was worried at first that Addison would see the workbook as merely busy work.  She admits that some of the questions repeat information from the book, but then adds that working through them helps her get a better grasp on the concepts. Many of the questions require her to think about the concepts and make practical applications. For instance, one question in chapter 2 asks, "What do the authors mean when they say, 'Contrary beliefs are possible, but contrary truths are not possible'?"

She praised the curriculum workbook for adding extra information that enhances the concepts introduced in the book. She specifically mentioned the biographies that she has read so far -- Augustine, Carl Sagan, C.S. Lewis, Friedrich Nietzsche.

Each chapter in the workbook is approximately 15-20 pages long and consists of additional information, thought provoking questions and research assignments. We've chosen not to do the longer research and writing assignments included in the curriculum workbook. If she did the longer research and writing assignments in each chapter of the workbook, she would spend two or three weeks studying each chapter and it would easily count as a full year of Bible credit. Instead, she's working through the materials at a brisk pace of one chapter per week, and she'll earn a half-semester of Bible credit.

One great thing about Apologia is the way that they provide generous online samples so that you can find out more about the products before you purchase them. The entire introduction and first chapter of I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist is available here, and the first chapter of workbook pages are available here. The book costs $16 and the workbook costs $33. (The book is currently out-of-stock from Apologia, but we've been assured that they will have more soon.)

Even if you don't have a high school student that needs a strong Biblical apologetics curriculum, I'd still recommend I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist. It is a challenging book that will give Christians the tools they need to defend their faith.

Disclaimer: I received the I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist book and workbook as a member of the 2012 TOS Homeschool Review Crew, and I received no other compensation. In return, I agreed to give an honest review of the materials and how they worked for my homeschool family.


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