One of my favorite companies I was so blessed to have been a part of reviewing last year through the Schoolhouse Review Crew was Heirloom Audio Productions. In fact, we were so impressed with their audiodrama of G.A. Henty’s Under Drake’s Flag there was such annticipation, waiting to see if we would be blessed again. Sure enough, here we are with their newest audiodrama, even better than the first.
We received In Freedom’s Cause Single Package. This includes a physical CD of In Freedom’s Cause and digital downloads of their study guide, the audio soundtrack, and a printable copy of William Wallace’s prayer. We were also blessed with access to some great bonuses that come with other packages that are available. Our favorite was Behind the Scenes of In Freedom’s Cause; my oldest loved being able to see the actors in the recording studio and was in awe of the process of creating this production! For my younger son it simply made the story even more real! And I myself loved having the In Freedom’s Cause Soundtrack containing all of the original music by Emmy-winning composer John Campbell. (John also composed the original score for C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia). It’s amazing – trust me.
If you have never heard of Heirloom Audio Productions you simply must check them out! This is an amazing company with a passion for making history come to life. Even more this is a resource that is so valuable for teaching Biblical values. Throughout the story are examples of what it means to walk in faith and trust God. We see the value of freedom and the This is so much more than just history; this is about building character and faith. Learning about true heroes, and the sacrifices they made as they served their God. It is refreshing and inspiring to share stories like these with my children.
In case you don’t know, in this family we are HUGE history fans. And we love the works of G.A. Henty so when we see something like this, it realy gets us excited. If you are not familiar with the story, let me give you a brief summary:
In Freedom’s Cause is the story of William Wallace and Robert the Bruce; this is a tale of their fight for Scotland’s independance. The story begins in the present day with Ned and Gerald who meet with an older friend,Mr. George, and while visiting his study they find an amazing number of historical artifacts. Mr. George begins telling them about the claymore, and William Wallace, casting them in the very story he tells. As the story goes on and Ned learns more about his father, he begins to take up his father’s cause against their English oppressors, as his own. He begins to learn sword fighting (my boys hads a blast re-enacting this with swords they made out of legos), and as tine goes by he meets young Scottish revolutionary, William Wallace. It gets quite exciting from here (my boys listened to this part again and again…). As the men of Scotland begin to band together, we see how a common cause brings about a greater purpose. We see the development of brotherhood, loyalty and love as well as the ongoing battle for freedom. Ultimately this tale follows the fight for Scottish independence from England, through Bruce’s victory against the English and Scotland’s entrance into a time of independent rule.
In Freedom’s Cause provides lots of great opportunities for learning for all ages too! The In Freedom’s Cause eStudy Guide and Discussion Starter is a 49-page document that helps you to use this recording to go deeper, into the story and the many lessons within it (this is available as a download included in the CD packaging). It offers suggestions for walking younger children through the story or helping older children complete related written assignments. There are 37 lessons provided, covering different segments of the story. And each lesson contains three pieces.
- Listening Well (narrating what happened in the story)
- Thinking Further (encourages further research, goes deeper into certain aspects and events)
- Vocabulary (define these words from the story)
There are also some great Bible study materials included here to help identify and better understand those concepts that are a part of this tale. And history – to help us better understand the context of the story itself, in Scotland, at that time. Plus a list of suggested reading materials. As an avid bookworm, my heart always skips a beat when I see a list like this! 😛
Yet again the quality of this production was so much more than I can express with any words; from a full symphonic score to actors and sound effects. Some of the actors were: Billy Boyd (Lord of the Rings), Joanne Froggatt (Downtown Abbey), and Skandar Keynes (Chronicles of Narnia). While I was not familiar with any of these names myself, I am now, and was quite pleased with their performance. Plus, this is great for super cold winters (such as ours here in Wisconsin) and long car rides too (my oldest travelled to Missouri for a Bible Quiz tournament and something like this really helps make the journey go by). I cannot speak enough to how wonderful this is; how it inspireds curiosity in children of all ages. In fact mine are listening to this again right now as I write this.
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