Monday, January 30, 2017

Teaching Liberty and Economics With The Tuttle Twins (Book Review)

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We are so blessed to be able to homeschool because it means we are able to teach our children about many things they would probably not cover if they were in public school like liberty and economics (at least not in elementary school). The Tuttle Twins books, which now have 5 books in the series, have been on my radar for about a year now but unfortunately I haven't had a chance to pick up a copy of any of them. I was recently contacted by the publishing company and asked if we would review the newest book The Road to Surfdom. Well now we are hooked and we will be definitely be adding the other 4 to our home library. And guess what fellow homeschoolers? The author Connor Boyack is a homeschool dad! He wrote this series of books after trying to find existing material that taught young children about the principles of freedom. After he realized there wasn't anything he stepped up to the plate in hopes of not only educating his own children but thousands of others!

A moms review:
As I mentioned above we received the newest book in the 5 book series The Road to Surfdom. This book teaches children about how government officials decisions, well-intentioned or otherwise, can sometimes harm others. Considering everything that has been happening recently with our country and politics this is such an important lesson for kids right now. This book is a very easy read. It is 60 pages long with full color illustrations and large text. The recommended reading age is age 5-11 years old. We chose to read the book aloud as a family so we could have a discussion afterwards.

This story is actually an introduction to F.A. Hayek's famous text The Road to Surfdom which was published in the 1940s and focuses on the dangers of central planning and collectivism and the importance of being an individual. Hayeks book however is a fairly difficult read and not one that parents would be able to easily pickup and read aloud to their young children. But the Tuttle Twins version of The Road to Surfdom takes these important lessons and boils them down to key basics, and wraps them in a fun story so that children and their parents can read and learn together about these important principles.

In this book The Tuttle Twins head to their favorite beach destination "La Playa" for a family reunion. They are eager to have the same amazing fun they always do which includes soaking up sun on the beach, surfing and snorkeling in the ocean and most of all shopping and eating at the boardwalk shops. But before they even arrive at the beach they notice things in town are not quite the same. First they have to take a long detour to get to the beach which was full of traffic and went through a neighborhood they had not seen before. Then after they arrive at the beach they notice that many of their favorite shops have closed down. Distraught and wanting answers The Tuttle Twins set out with their investigative reporter uncle named Ben, to solve the mystery.

After interviewing shop owners and the town residents they discover that a new roadway and beach town called Surfdom was to blame. The new roadway that La Playa residents thought would help their town instead brought them disruption, sadness and home and business loss. While spending the day at Surfdom The Tuttle Twins learned more about central planning, collectivism  and individualism as they built a sand castle with their parents. They learned that sometimes unintended consequences occur that were never anticipated and probably not even considered. You know how the saying goes, "be careful what you wish for"? The Tuttle Twins and Uncle Ben solve the mystery and Ben exposes the story on his news channel. But unfortunately this story has no happy ending for the town because the damage is done. But The Tuttle Twins hope that Ben's news story will go viral and provide knowledge to future towns about the damage of central planning. And the Tuttle Twins refuse to give into the new exciting stores and restaurants at Surfdom and chose to stay at La Playa and enjoy the road less traveled!

I cannot say enough good things about this book. As a mom who once had her real estate license I was very excited to see terms like eminent domain being introduced in the book. I know many adults who don't even know what eminent domain is. The story was engaging and educational and raised lots of questions, and any book that gets the kids asking questions gets 5 stars. In the back of the book there is even a glossary of terms and several discussion questions.

A kids review:
I really liked the book. It helped me learn about the responsibilities that I need to take when it comes to decisions about my home. It also taught me that even when things don't go as planned you should still never give up and should still work hard to continue to make your dreams come true. I liked the artwork in the book too. I hope mom buys the other books for us.

About the Author:
Connor Boyack is president of Libertas Institute, a public policy think tank in Utah. He is the author of several books on politics and religion, along with hundreds of columns and articles championing individual liberty. His work has been featured on international, national, and local TV, radio, and other forms of media. A California native and Brigham Young University graduate, Connor currently resides in Lehi, Utah, with his wife and two children.

For $4.99 you can get a a pdf workbook that compliments the book.

Links to follow:

The Tuttle Twins - a child's foundation of freedom

Where to buy:
The retail price is $9.99 per book or you can get all 5 plus bonuses for $41.99. You can order the books on the Tuttle Twin website.

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