Roger and Breck Wheelock have created two versions of a biblical Christian worldview course for students in grades seven through twelve as well as college students and adults. (Parents can learn alongside students if they want to.) Thinking Like a Christian is video-based and You Are What You Think is book-based.
Thinking Like a Christian
Thinking Like a Christian is a worldview (Protestant) course presented via 14 hours of video and two Study Guide workbooks. The videos are available via streaming, a thumb drive, or DVDs. The videos are split into two sets, labeled Volume 1 and Volume 2, each with a Study Guide workbook.
The complete Study Guides are available only in print, although an abbreviated version of each Study Guide is included in a digital format with the purchase of Volume 1 and Volume 2 sets of DVDs.
The course begins by defining worldviews and explaining why they matter. After the introduction, the course divides the discussion under 11 topics: history, theology, philosophy, economics, science, psychology, ethics, sociology, law, politics, and education. The entire course is modeled (with permission) on the work of David Noebel’s book Understanding the Times (now out of print) and the course titled Thinking Like a Christian by David Noebel and Chuck Edwards (published in 2002).
Each topic is presented from a biblical-Christian (Protestant) worldview that includes a limited-government and free-market perspective. The course draws heavily upon the Bible, frequently referencing passages for students to review at the end of a day’s lesson.
Most of the sessions are presented by Roger Wheelock, and some are presented by Breck Wheelock. The videos are lectures presented against a backdrop of images, illustrations, and occasional text. The frequently changing backdrops make the videos interesting to watch. References within the video content would identify them as being recorded sometime between 2010 and 2018, so they are relatively current.
Sometimes lengthy video segments are inserted between the Wheelocks’ presentations. For instance, Economics: Part 2 includes a segment titled “Wealth Creation” from Bill Whittle's YouTube® channel that runs about ten minutes.
The complete Study Guides lay out the course in 126 daily lessons, telling students when to watch the pertinent sections of each video. Students will sometimes be told to watch the same section of a video twice, waiting to take notes or answer questions in their Study Guide until the second viewing.
While the Study Guides contain some instructional information, they consist primarily of questions for students to answer. Most questions require critical thinking based on the material presented in the course. Students need to understand the information presented, analyze it, and apply it. Clearly, some questions have an apologetics flavor since they ask students to make arguments for Christian-worldview-based positions.
Occasionally, the Study Guides direct students to read from the Bible, primary-source documents, or articles not included within the Thinking Like a Christian course material, and I also spotted one instruction for students to watch a YouTube video (about “Irreducible Complexity”).
The Study Guides were published more recently than the videos. The Study Guide for Volume 2 includes an assignment for students to research both Republican and Democratic party platforms for the 2020 election to determine their positions on abortion. Most of the Study Guide questions will be answered based on the material presented in the videos, the assigned reading, and students’ thoughts and opinions. The Study Guides are attractively formatted with images and graphic design.
Students taking this course would benefit greatly from a group meeting one or more times a week to discuss some of the questions, but it will still work for students who need to move through the course on their own.
Free digital answer keys are provided through the website.
You Are What You Think
Students who prefer to read rather than watch videos can use the two-volume You Are What You Think (YAWYT) course. It follows the same outline as the Thinking Like a Christian course (TLAC). However, the lessons within each topical section are broken down a little differently, and there are lessons for 97 days rather than 126.
The publisher’s website says that the two YAWYT volumes have 20% more material than the video series. While there is more material in many sections, some sections seem like material in the videos has been omitted, particularly when video content from other sources was incorporated into the TLAC course.
The YAWYT books are significantly larger since they contain both lesson presentations and questions. Many questions are identical in both courses, but there are numerous differences. Also, the YAWYT books have much more material on each page and are printed in a smaller font than the TLAC Study Guides. While they include some images, they have fewer graphic-design features and less space for writing out answers to the questions. Free answer keys are available on the publisher’s website for YAWYT.
You can use YAWYT on its own, but you might want to order the YAWYT books to have on hand as an easier means of reviewing content in the TLAC course. Students can look up information in the YAWYT books much more easily than they can locate it in the videos.
TheYAWYT course also offers parents a way to become familiar with the material more quickly than if they watch the videos. Parents don't need to work ahead of students, but these books make it easy if they wish to do so.
Homeschoolers wishing to teach a biblical Christian worldview to their children in junior and senior high have had few practical, up-to-date choices in recent years. These two courses now offer excellent, affordable options that don’t require parents to prepare or present the material.