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December 06, 2012

Updating a Classic

Updating a Classic

This is a historic week at Summit. We’ve received a substantial investment to completely overhaul the Understanding the Times curriculum — first produced in 1992, twnety years ago this fall. The centerpiece of the curriculum, which has been used by hundreds of thousands of Christians and which made the term “worldview” mainstream, is David Noebel’s Understanding the Times. With around 500,000 copies in print it is far and away the best-selling worldview text of all time, perhaps one of the best-selling textbooks of any kind.

So . . . after a year of planning, this week our team began the writing process to update this classic. The new curriculum will be released on a proprietary digital platform designed by Summit that enables iBook-like functionality on multiple platforms (so far we’ve tested every Mac and Windows product and it works great). Understanding the Times will actually be four books instead of one, each about 300 pages if they were printed out:

  • Book 1: God and Revelation
  • Book 2: The Battle of Worldviews
  • Book 3: Apologetics
  • Book 4: Cultural Engagement

Each book will have cool features such as embedded video clips, clickable definitions, and biographies of key personalities, study notes, etc. I can’t wait to show you some samples — we’re hoping that the content along with the cool format will get a whole new generation excited about understanding the times and knowing what America ought to do.

As the lead writer, I’m responsible for organizing each book, making it interesting and accessible to the reader, ensuring that it is factually accurate and up-to-date, and doing this while maintaining the spirit of the original book and curriculum — to cultivate the rising generation to resolutely champion a Christian worldview.

Thanks for your prayers — stick with this blog for updates and opportunities to give input along the way!

This post has earned 11 Comments so far.

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  • December 06, 2012 // 10:50 am //  # 
    Tom Swieringa's avatar Tom Swieringa

    Looking forward to the adventure!

  • December 06, 2012 // 10:58 am //  # 
    Marty Riley's avatar Marty Riley

    Can’t wait to use it in the classroom!

  • December 06, 2012 // 11:03 am //  # 
    Nathan Magnuson's avatar Nathan Magnuson

    Wow, Jeff - this is quite an undertaking! Can’t wait to see it!

  • December 06, 2012 // 02:14 pm //  # 
    Debra Bolton's avatar Debra Bolton

    Look forward to seeing the new curriculum.  Will it be available in print?

  • December 07, 2012 // 06:34 am //  # 
    Daryl's avatar Daryl

    YES! YES! YES!  Thank you!!!

  • December 12, 2012 // 06:21 pm //  # 
    Zachary's avatar Zachary

    I have been having a hard time getting through Understanding the Times.  It is a great book, but it is so information-intensive it can be hard to digest at times.  I think a digital curriculum would be great!  I hope it would be available as an e-book that could be read on portable devices and tablets as well—then it would be just as accessible as my Bible!  In my personal opinion, that’s where things are going very quickly…

  • December 13, 2012 // 10:35 am //  # 
    Dan Coggins's avatar Dan Coggins

    Having taught this for highschoolers I welcome the breakdown and inclusion of video illustrations. This has been one reason I haven’t used it for adults in our church except for citing as reference.

  • December 13, 2012 // 11:47 am //  # 
    Karen Davis's avatar Karen Davis

    Very excited that you are updating - pop culture keeps changing!

  • December 13, 2012 // 08:59 pm //  # 
    Lisa Schneider's avatar Lisa Schneider

    I just purchased the entire curriculum in May 2012 at the NC Homeschool Conference. I’m doing it with my 16 year old son who wants to go to Summit next summer. We’re loving it. Is there a way to get a discount for people who like me who just recently purchased but might like the new approach as well? I have 3 more kids who will be using this for college credit.

  • December 16, 2012 // 06:53 am //  # 
    kelly mcphillips's avatar kelly mcphillips

    What a valuable undertaking!  Great stuff; used it for Jr. Highschoolers.  Please consider making it available for kindle and Android devices as well.  May God richly bless this endeavor blossoming from what God blessed through Doc.


  • February 06, 2013 // 07:32 pm //  # 
    Gloria's avatar Gloria

    I’m excited to read about what you are doing to update the curriculum.  I have taught the course in the past in home school co-op classes about every other year.  I’m hoping the new version will be available for this fall. smile

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