“Who What Why”: A New Church History Series for Children

*This post contains affiliate links, see disclosure below*

I love reading books, finding wonderful books for my children, and sharing new books with my readers. In today’s world, books share many messages, and it can sometimes be hard to know which books to buy for your children. If you are like me, you want books that are fun and interesting. More importantly, you want books that share your Christian worldview.

I am excited to share a new series that is both informative and enjoyable. Not only does it share my Christian worldview, it even teaches children about protestant church history.

You may remember the name, Danika Cooley, from my recent review of “Help Your Kids Learn and Love the Bible.” Well, Danika has come out with a new series titled the “Who, What, Why Series”. It has blessed me to read and review the first three books in that series and I am excited to share them with both my children and my readers.

Who What Why Series

This series comprises brief chapter books geared towards students that are eight to eleven years old. The books are informative but engaging and sometimes humorous. I think that younger students could enjoy them and learn from them through a family read-aloud.

In addition, older students would find them to be very simple but still educational. I will read them aloud, focusing on my children from ages seven to fifteen, but the three-year-old will also listen while he plays.

Each book contains illustrations that help the reader understand the book (and are often quite humorous), a timeline of events, and a works cited section so that you know where she derived the historical information.

Who Was Martin Luther?

Many children know a bit of basic information about Martin Luther. They may know him as the man that nailed something to the church doors, or the one that fought with the Catholic Church. However, this book goes into so much more of his rich and interesting history.

It starts with Martin’s childhood, discusses how he became a priest, why he stood up against the Catholic Church, the political turmoil of the time, his wife, and so much more.

I think my favorite quote from this book was, “God’s truth never stays hidden for long. It’s a truth worth staking our lives upon, worth fighting for, and worth studying daily.”

I love that along side teaching the history of Martin Luther, this book is sharing important truths about God and his word. Through reading, children can understand the importance of the work of Martin Luther and the many men who worked alongside him and after him so that we could know and understand the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ today.

What Was the Gutenberg Bible?

In today’s world, it is hard to understand not having readily available access to a Bible, but that has not always been the case. Today, I have over a dozen print Bibles in my home in several translations.

 I regularly use an app on my phone that allows me to access the Bible in a tremendous number of translations, highlight verses, share scripture with others that use that app, and more. People hand out free Bibles at our state fair. We find them in most hotel rooms, and they are easily accessible by anyone in America that wants one. Today the Bible is translated into over 700 languages (more if you just include the New Testament).

Before the Gutenberg Bible, this was not the case. Most people did not have access to a Bible of their own or even a Bible in their language. This book shares about the Gutenberg Bible in a way that helps students understand the importance of this advancement.

In addition to learning about Gutenberg and his printing press, “What Was the Gutenberg Bible?” delves into who originally wrote the books of the Bible, the works of Wycliffe to translate the Bible, and so much more about the history of the Bible and how God has used it to share his word with people around the world.

Why Did the Reformation Happen?

Many Christians only have a basic idea or understanding of the Reformation. They might tell you it is when the protestant churches split from the Roman Catholic Church. They may know that involved Martin Luther, but often they cannot tell you about the other men involved or the many reasons for the split.

“Why Did the Reformation Happen?” explains the problems in the church at the time of the Reformation and Martin Luther’s role in the reformation. Additionally, it explains the changes that were made, the Five Solas, many church reformers, and information about various church movements that have stemmed from the reformation.  

The book presents all of this detail and information in a way that makes it easy for children to understand. While it is absolutely protestant in viewpoint, I think overall she does a good job of not favoring one particular protestant denomination over another.

 I need to point out that there is a statement about baptism that is worded in a way that does not align with my beliefs. However, I plan to read the book to my children and just stop and talk to them about our beliefs on baptism when we get to that phrase.  


The Who, What, Why series is a significant addition to any protestant family’s library. It can be used for teaching church history, geography, family read-aloud, and literature studies. If, like many adults, you feel you need to learn more about the Reformation and church history, you can learn right alongside your children. If you want to take the study a little further, you can get these FREE lapbooks that go along with the books. Lapbooks are a great way to extend learning.

These books are available to purchase at Thinking Kids Press (individually or save money and buy them as a bundle) or on Amazon.

Which title most interests you? What other titles would you like to see added to the series?

Resource Library and Affiliate Disclosure

When you sign up for the Schoolin’ Swag free resource library you will get a link and password to the library, we are adding to the library each month with new items. You will also get a bi-weekly newsletter email to keep you up to date on what we have going on.

Resource Library 

This post may contain affiliate or referral links, including Amazon affiliate links. As always I will never recommend a product that I don’t believe in and you will never be charged more for purchasing through our links. It does help pay for the costs associated with the blog.

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