Sunday, October 30, 2011

Another George Washington? Marshall Publishing - George Washington Carver: His Life and His Works DVD - A TOS Review

George Washington Carver:  
His Life and His Works DVD


Marshall Publishing & Promotions, Inc.

Click here to purchase

2009 Marshall Publishing & Promotions, Inc, A Kaw Valley Films Production 
KVFD-106  Length 29 minutes, Color DVD
Subject Areas :  U.S. History, American Biographies
Age Level 4th Grade through Adult
ISBN 978-1-9636134-12-0 UPC 894190001868

Regular Price $24.95
Web Sale Price  $19.95

As a member of the TOS Review Crew I recently received a free copy of the DVD George Washington Carver:  His Life and His Work from Marshall Publishing.  Let me share a bit about this biographical DVD to give you an idea of it's content and quality.

First, a little bit of background about Mr. Carver:

George Washington Carver, often referred to as the "peanut man", was born into slavery during the Reconstruction years in the South and lived a life filled with poor health (whooping cough while young), poverty (when he finally did put his money in a bank he lost it all) and prejudice (due to his Negro heritage).  Carver is known for his research into and promotion of alternative crops to cotton, prompted by the destruction of crops by boll weevils and depletion of soil nutrients caused by not rotating crops.  He's considered an expert in  agriculture and horticulture and is an accomplished artist of the beauty of nature.  While researching and teaching at Tuskegee Institute in Alabama he worked with land management and compiled a list of over 300 uses for and by-products of peanuts (cosmetics, dyes and paints, plastics, gasoline and even nitroglycerin). 

George is an example of what hard work, a positive attitude and a good education can produce, even under hardship. George is commemorated on January 5, George Washington Carver Recognition  Day, the anniversary of his death. 

**Interesting tidbit:  George W. Carver only used the "W" to be recognized because there was more than one George Carver.  Although asked about the "W" and jokingly accepting the suggestion that it must mean "Washington", the W didn't mean anything--George never even used it.  Like our president George Washington, George W. Carver was, however, a man of many important firsts in his family, his race, and the agricultural field.

The first thing we noticed about the DVD started at the very beginning -- lots of bright, colorful nature pictures, especially flowers.  As we learned about George we found out that he was an artist and won a prize for his picture of a flowering yucca.  George's story unfolded, in chronological order, with a sprinkling of George's words and thoughts.  We also learned about the struggles George went through as well as opportunities he encountered.  Who knew peanuts could be used for so many things? 

We like historical and biographical books and stories of all kinds.  This DVD is a keeper.  At about one half hour long, it captures your attention, is informative, and is easy on the eyes with wonderful images.  There is pleasant music in the background too.  When it finished my daughter even said "That was neat.  It was good." (We also talked about how this story reminded us of a book we read about Elizabeth Blackwell, the first female doctor.  My husband commented that he had seen a different TV special on Mr. Carver but thought the Marshall DVD was much better.  We'll be watching this again.
In addition to the DVD there is also a Study Guide (see the website) which gives additional information and discussion questions. 

Keep or toss?  We will definitely be keeping this DVD.  The suggested age is appropriate.  The price is reasonable for the quality of the DVD.  I'm thinking this will be a good start to a science project at some point too -- something like 101 Things To Do With Peanuts.  Marshall Publishing has done a great job, and I'm interested in checking out some of the other DVDs they offer.

Marshall Publishing also offers books and DVDs about animals, fire trucks, jets and planes, monster trucks, motor sports, rockets, space ships, trains and trucks.  Music CDs are also available.  Other educational and historical DVDs include Lincoln and Gettysburg, the History of the Oregon Trail and the Pony Express, the Historic Expedition of Lewis and Clark and several more.  Go here to see more choices.

Interested in seeing what other TOS Review Crew members thought?  Click here

Disclaimer:  I received a free copy of the above-mentioned DVD in return for a fair and honest review.  I did not and will not receive further compensation for this review.  All comments and opinions are my own.  I am not obligated to provide a positive review.

1 comment:

Phil Reed said...

George W. Carver was one of my favorite biographies that I read as a child. He attended Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa. Best of all, he recognized that God was His source!!

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