Our goal at Milestone Books is to help Christian parents to bring up their children “in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” Education does not take place in a vacuum, and our children face a culture increasingly saturated with ungodliness.
We are grateful to be able to offer Rod and Staff curriculum, a seriously Bible-based approach that nurtures a Christian worldview in all subjects. It is an excellent choice to help you build godly values in your child and prepare them to withstand the darkness by carrying the Light into every sphere of life.
With over 50 years of experience in no-nonsense education, Rod and Staff’s traditional textbook approach delivers proven results for families who appreciate its time-tested methods. Well-designed teacher’s manuals containing clear, scripted lessons and in-context answer keys help to relieve the stress even for parents fresh on the teaching field. Reviewers have acclaimed its thorough treatment of language and math.
Furthermore, considering the value given, the curriculum is welcome-ly affordable. Most full grade programs containing both student and teacher materials are available for under $300. And the reusable hardback textbooks offer long-term savings.
With a full line of courses, read on to see what Rod and Staff offers you in each subject. This curriculum may be just the answer you’ve been seeking to help shape your child’s future!
The general category of English language arts is divided into the subjects of Reading (including phonics, comprehension, and literature study), Spelling, Penmanship, and English (grammar and creative writing). Each of these, as well as all the other Rod and Staff subjects, are taught independently, so you can select just the ones that will benefit your family the most.
- Social Studies
Do you want a more Bible-centric reading program that not only teaches your child the timeless stories of our faith, but also encourages a love for the Word? Do you long for your student to experience the joy that comes with reading a well-crafted story? The Rod and Staff reading curriculum accomplishes that and so much more.
The Bible Nurture and Reader Series introduces your child to the wonderful world of reading. As they are given the keys to the mysteries of the written word, they have the privilege of reading for themselves from the greatest Book ever written. The carefully-prepared readers present Bible stories in an easy-to-read-and-understand format for children reading from the ground up. Each lesson includes thought-provoking questions that not only help build effective comprehension skills but also teach valuable life lessons. Your children will enjoy their progress as stories from both the Old and New Testaments “come to life” through their growing ability to read.
The Rod and Staff Bible Nurture and Reader Series...
- enables mastery of unfamiliar words through orderly instruction in phonics
- builds vocabulary and provides practice in writing sentences to show how much the student comprehends
- reviews previous stories to help build long-term memory
- encourages independent reading
After laying this foundation in basic comprehension and Bible knowledge through the first four grades, the student is ready to tackle new skills. Beginning in Grade 5, the Rod and Staff reading curriculum leads the student in new directions as they now study a variety of literature that includes poems, essays, and selected Bible passages. As grades progress, reading selections increase in difficulty, preparing students to be able to understand a more diverse range of the writing styles they may encounter in academic or personal reading.
Comprehension questions at the end of every reading passage encourage students to seek the deeper meanings in what they read. This motivation and training to concentrate and focus ultimately benefits them in every subject they study, both present and future.
Upper grades will also participate in essay writing assignments throughout grade levels, giving them the opportunity to showcase the components of good writing and storytelling they are learning. This curriculum acts as a supplement to the students’ core curriculum; assignments can easily be completed during the standard school day, broken down over several days’ time, or given to be completed as homework.
With a focus on healthy and Christ-honoring relationships—centering on God, family, and community—each reading assignment is carefully selected to echo Biblical values and encourage students in the practical, daily application of their Christian faith. Reading assignments, both fictional and nonfictional, of radical faith, simple trust, and God’s grand omnipotence will plant themselves in your students’ hearts and encourage them throughout life’s temptations, valleys, and battles to come.
As parents, we want our children learn how to spell correctly, but it’s hard to find a curriculum that teaches spelling in a way that our students find enjoyable and easy to understand.
With Rod and Staff’s Spelling by Sound and Structure, learning how to spell is made both simple and enjoyable. By teaching the rules for spelling sounds as well as the patterns for word-building, students in all grades will be able take satisfaction in conquering the complexities of English words.
Easy-to-understand lessons are filled with different exercises for the student to learn how to use the new words in sentences and memorize the spelling rules. Bible words, characters, and stories are woven throughout the exercises and illustrations. In the upper grades, students will discover Latin and Greek roots, and learn about some of the intriguing developments of our English language. The “aha!” moments of enlightenment help transform spelling class from a chore to an adventure.
The teacher’s manuals provide not only the answer keys, but also full sentences to read to the student during a test to help them choose the correct spelling word from context. Suggestions are given for scheduling the weekly lessons, and a complete list of all the spelling words is included for convenient reference.
Rod and Staff Spelling by Sound and Structure is a great curriculum to help your children learn how to spell well—and love it too!
In our digital age, handwriting is often abandoned as a dying art, but a student who has learned the skill of writing clearly will discover that it is still much appreciated.
Penmanship for Christian Writing is a great curriculum to teach your children the joy of good handwriting. It includes fun facts, short stories, and Bible verses to help your student stay focused and take the boredom out of just plain writing.
Rod and Staff makes it easy with step-by-step instructions that students can do independently. Each lesson provides enough space for the student to practice and can be completed in a short amount of time.
Grade 1 teaches straight print (or “manuscript”) lettering. Cursive is introduced in the middle of second grade with practical letterforms that promote readability while imparting a simple elegance. Students who complete the course through grade 4 will be well-prepared to take on higher skills such as calligraphy and lettering art.
Penmanship shouldn’t be boring, but should encourage excellence in writing. Holding good communication with one hand and artistic expression in the other, Rod and Staff Penmanship teaches in a way you and your student will enjoy.
Being created in the image of God, children have a wonderful ability to absorb the rules of language simply through exposure. However, every parent knows that plenty of correction occurs along the way as their child’s vocabulary increases. And just like with every other skill, taking time for diligent study of language will boost young Tom and Susie’s competence beyond any natural ability—or apparent lack of it. Being able to communicate effectively is an essential skill in any time and place.
Rod and Staff’s Building Christian English curriculum is well-known for its thorough and systematic instruction in English grammar and composition. This traditional-style language arts course prioritizes mastery of the simple building blocks of English, and encourages a high standard in using language for the glory and kingdom of God.
The foundational language elements that students are required to master—including the parts of speech, sentence structures, and punctuation—are later built upon in the studies of diagramming, listening skills, letter writing, poetry, and effective researching methods, among others. Varying by grade level, students have the opportunity to learn how to write several different kinds of essays, research papers, book reports, and even oral speeches. The Rod and Staff English curriculum will guide your students through the entire journey of essay writing, including choosing a topic and researching it effectively by note taking, organizing and outlining, drafting and editing, and helpfully instructing in the details of a good presentation.
Grounded in the Bible, with priority on a high standard of effective and purposeful communication, students will learn not only how their language works—the ins and outs that makes it tick—but also how their language can work. There is infinite potential in the word, both written and spoken, and the young person who properly understands and respects that potential, and harnesses it for the glory of God, will be a bright light impossible to ignore. The Rod and Staff English curriculum balances teaching English facts with purposeful English usage in the modern day, a powerful weapon in the hands of a diligent student.
To summarize, here are just a few of the reasons why you’ll appreciate using this course. Rod and Staff English…
- teaches the basics as well as advanced concepts
- consistently reviews to ensure understanding
- weaves Bible verses and values throughout the exercises
- provides teacher-friendly lessons and reusable textbooks
Building Christian English is more than just a subject in school, it’s the pathway to a well-spoken man or woman.
Rod and Staff’s Mathematics for Christian Living curriculum is a foundational mathematics course for grades one through ten, teaching Biblical values and useful math skills to benefit in everyday life. With a strong emphasis on the mastery of skills, extra practice sheets and speed drills are provided, prioritizing accuracy and then speed.
According to grade level, students will study concepts in counting, mathematical processes, fractions, percents, decimals, money, banking, measuring, geometry, graphs, tables, and algebra. The vision in teaching each concept is to make it practically applicable. Each lesson is broken down into three main sections:
- learning the math concept—be it simple addition up to ten in the first grade or computing a payroll in tenth grade
- practicing the computations
- and applying of the concept learned in real-world reading problems.
Students who dread doing math will be relieved by the multiple examples provided, with the order of steps broken down and explained one at a time. Believe it or not, the traditional tried-and-true teaching methods of the past still work in today’s generation! Along with the scripted lessons in the teacher’s manuals, this takes the stress out of teaching so that you can focus on where your student needs help.
Students will learn practical life skills such as…
- shortcuts to double-check their work for accuracy
- how to measure a diversity of objects and spaces accurately
- how to make and keep a budget
- how to file taxes
- and how to take inventory and keep books for a business or home.
Where other students might see math as a nightmare on paper, Rod and Staff will help make math a doorway to a whole new world of possibilities for your student. With a clear focus on Biblical principles and building Christian character, Mathematics for Christian Living will equip your students to face real-world problems with sound math practices and faith in God.
Are you looking for a structured Bible curriculum to plug into your students’ educational regimen? Do you desire that your students find a relationship with God deeper than trivial head knowledge of His Word—a personal relationship bearing spiritual fruit? Are you hoping for a curriculum that sets aside the candy-coated theologies of men and the world and gives your students a comprehensive view of the unadulterated Word of God? If so, Rod and Staff’s Bible curriculum might be just what you are searching for.
For the younger grades, Rod and Staff builds Bible knowledge through the integrated Bible Nurture and Reader Series (see overview above), where students absorb the Bible narrative through their reading experience.
The stand-alone Bible curriculum begins in grade 5, and consists of two consecutive series. In grades five through eight, The Story of God’s Chosen Family Series covers the scope of the entire Bible. This is followed by God’s Plan for His People Series in grades nine and ten, which surveys the Scriptures revealing God’s relationship with man, and man’s need for God.
Each lesson is broken down into four or five sections: gleanings from the Bible, vocabulary study, questions for discussion, and one or two changing topics to assist students in their personal Bible study skills. Over the course of all six grades, students will learn over a thousand vocabulary words from the King James Bible, in addition to practical Bible study skills, such as use of a Bible dictionary, a concordance, and a Bible atlas.
With the Bible being presented to students in such a raw fashion, they are encouraged and equipped throughout their studies to search out their faith for themselves. Bible customs, maps, and chronology is explained with the purpose of clarifying to the student the “tricky” parts of the Bible, that they might see the Great Story in the details, to the glory of God.
Wouldn’t you agree that science is one of the most exciting subjects—not only for a student to learn, but also for a parent to teach? Learning about this beautiful world that God has blessed us with is both awe-inspiring and intriguing. Science draws a deep appreciation for our glorious Creator, who not only controls everything we see and feel, but who also provides answers to the questions we ask as we explore the world we live in.
Rod and Staff’s God’s World Science Series is thoroughly based on God’s Word, and embraces the principle that we can better steward this wonderful world God has given us when we better understand how and why it functions. Based on belief in a literal, 6-day Creation and the fact that it was all brought into being for the purpose of glorifying God, these courses point students back to the origin and purpose of Creation throughout their studies.
Students will master the basic concepts of astronomy, earth sciences, physics, chemistry, biology, anatomy, health, technology, and stewardship. Each topic is presented through the lens of a Christian worldview and Biblical references are made throughout, as appropriate. Science being only limited by God Himself, no topics are delved into fully, rather the variety of scientific subjects the students will be exposed to leaves much room for potential growth in anything specific the students decide they want to explore and study further in the future. Exploration, in fact, is highly encouraged, and many hands-on experiments and projects are presented in every grade, encouraging students to develop hypotheses and figure things out for themselves.
With the emphasis of stewardship, students can and will learn the practical essentials for proper and thoughtful care of the amazing Creation God has placed within our power. Topics such as recycling, natural resources and energies, conservation, and environmental health, among others, are thorough, bringing practicality into the study of the sciences. Whether or not your child will pursue higher studies, God’s World Science Series will help awaken the awe and wonder that motivates a lifestyle of discovery.
Rod and Staff takes a non-biased approach to social studies as it seeks to present a Biblical perspective for looking at mankind’s actions in history and geography.
Children will learn about landforms, climates, and regions of the world in the context of Creation, and of mankind’s role as steward of the resources God has provided on our planet. Mapping is clear and understandable, and students will master not only reading maps, but drawing them as well, skills that are sure to benefit them later in life.
Cultures are introduced in ways children will be able to relate to, as they discover the wide variety of lifestyles between people groups. Stories in the younger grades immerse your child in the daily life of children in other countries, while older ones study the factors that shape individual societies and civilization as a whole.
Rod and Staff’s Understanding God’s World Series cuts through the turmoil of politics to center on God’s purpose for man and the place of His people in history. Political movements and social changes are presented as clearly as the facts are known, without dramatizing war or exalting military heroes and whitewashing the deeds of privileged societies. Injustices are clearly seen when actions are evaluated in the light of the gospel of Christ. Nationalism and violence are put in proper perspective and nonresistance is esteemed.
As students observe how “Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people,” the refreshing focus of Rod and Staff social studies will inspire students to radiate the light of God’s kingdom in the culture today.
Singing praises to God fills an important role in a child’s life and is also a vital part of the Christian life. The message of song should not be hindered by poor-quality singing. Don’t miss the great opportunity to teach children the fundamentals of music and good singing in school!
Rod and Staff’s Christian Music Series is designed to teach a cappella singing (without instruments). Learning shaped notes has helped many to sing tones accurately, which enables them to quickly learn new songs without musical accompaniment. This curriculum teaches the 7-shape (Aiken) system which is the one most commonly used in shape-note songbooks. The upper courses teach how to read conventional round-note music, so students will be prepared to use any style of songbook.
Simple workbook exercises are available for young beginners that introduce them to the basics of tones, the general “feeling” of the scale and its associated shapes, note and rest values, and the staff.
Older students are provided with expanded courses featuring more study material. After reviewing all the fundamentals, to establish students who have had no previous music instruction, the series will build an understanding of the various elements of music, including time signatures, scales, dynamics, and patterns. Together with gaining an awareness of various styles, moods, and forms of music, the maturing student will be well-prepared to “sing with the spirit, and… sing with the understanding also.”
Teach your children to draw… with a purpose!
Art with a Purpose offers eight Artpacs, to cover approximately first through eighth grade, depending on the skill of the child. It’s best if each person, including the teacher, has their own Artpac. Straightforward and self-explanatory, the art sheets in each Artpac are ready to go, and each packet lists needed materials and instructions for all activities. With some art supplies and an Artpac, your children are ready to become competent artists!
From learning to cut in Artpac 1 to Scherenschnitte (German paper cutting) in Artpac 6, crayon shading in Artpac 3 to pen-and-ink shading in Artpac 8, and everything in between—grids, painting, calligraphy, perspectives, and more—Art with a Purpose will teach your children how!
And, just as important as knowing how to use art supplies to the fullest, Art with a Purpose is sure to explain how to care for them properly, to get the best and most effective life out of your pencils, pens, and paintbrushes.
Not only will your children draw faces and animals, they will also color and letter Bible verses and Christian mottos. It is almost impossible for these verses and mottos not to stick with a child when they’ve been sticking to coloring in the picture or lettering it out in calligraphy. And once their effort has produced a work of art worthy of the refrigerator or wall, everyone will find themselves remembering, in the words of a verse lettered in Artpac 5, “Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might.”