A couple of days ago, PBS.org posted an article, “10 Interesting Lessons from Creationist-Inspired Textbooks.”
The article providers quotes from various textbooks to illustrate the point. The article ends with a short video of examples from the A Beka Book and Bob Jones University Press curricula.
A couple of thoughts. First, I can understand if some creationists might feel misrepresented in this article. For example, likely not all creationists think killing native Americans (Trail of Tears) and the African-American saga of slavery are justified because of their evangelistic side-effects (even typing that sentence made me throw up in my mouth a little). But, there ARE some who clearly do think like that, enough to perpetuate such thinking in widely disseminated textbooks.
Second, reading the distortions of truth (I don’t think I can put it more kindly) catalogued in the article is yet another reminder for more informed Christian groups to work on an alternate curriculum for their children.The problem, of course, is that any such curriculum could only gain traction among those with a non-literalist approach to reading the Bible. A different kind of curriculum could only influence the population presently attracted to A Beka and Bob Jones (etc.) curricula if a theological shift happens first in that population. I wouldn’t look for that any time soon.
For those many Christian families out there who want to educate their children differently, there is no science curriculum at present (to my knowledge) that does it well. (Please correct me if I am wrong!!) Still, there are resources out there for those who want to train their children’s minds, which is the best way to prepare them for a life of independent, critical, thought that may put some of these propagandist curricula out of business eventually.