Book of Years

We keep a Book of Years and add to it at the end of each history unit.  I love teaching history in the right order, and making a Book of Years has helped us to see the overall context of the world and make connections even more. I made our Book of Years using an oversized 11″ x 14″sketchbook.  We used rubber cement to adhere blue card stock to the cover, and then I printed out some cover art I designed to adhere to the card stock.  Here is our printable  Book of Years Cover if you’d like to use it. Next I used a ruler and measured 3 inches down from the top of each page and drew a light line, then cut along it, leaving it attached at the binding. This allows us to record our timeline along the top pages and our entries in the larger bottom section. … Keep on reading

Veterans Day Learning

Use these activity ideas for Veterans Day or to celebrate our soldiers any time. Veterans Day was first known as Armistice Day and celebrated the day the treaty was signed ending WWI, November 11, 1918.  In 1954 the congress declared the day be renamed Veterans Day and that it would be celebrated to honor all those who had served in time of war in the United States Armed Forces. Veterans Day Learning Here are some meaningful Veterans Day learning activities to do with kids: Timeline of the US Military Make a timeline showing the major wars, conflicts, and engagements of the United States military since the Revolutionary War.  You can get the printable American Wars timeline by clicking on the text link or on the picture below. There were many more wars and engagements than are shown on this timeline.  You can find all of the US wars here. Fact Hunt Have kids do an online scavenger hunt to … Keep on reading

The Boston Tea Party

The Boston Tea Party was dramatic. Everybody knows the basics. A bunch of citizens of Boston, fed up with the tax on tea, went into Boston Harbor, climbed aboard three vessels and tossed all the tea overboard. Those are the basics, but there’s so much more. The problems between America and England began fifteen years earlier, in 1760, when King George III became king of England. The problems didn’t start because he became king of England it just, happily for him, was a time of upheaval and crisis. The French and Indian War was nearing its end. The Seven Years War was over. (The French and Indian War and the Seven Years War were the same war, just one was fought in America and one was fought in Europe.) And the English needed money. Simultaneously they realized that the American colonies were becoming quite populated and quite wealthy. The obvious … Keep on reading

Glue Resist Spiderwebs

Some things just won’t mix with water – oil, wax, and glue are a few.  You can use that fact to make some really cool glue resist art.  In this project you’ll mask out areas of the paper that will stay white by “drawing” with  white school glue in a design on your paper.  We decided to make a glue resist spider web design as a Halloween decoration. Here is Isabel drawing a spiderweb using glue: We practiced sketching a couple of spider webs on paper before we started.  The kids each chose their own design, but I showed them some spider webs so we could see their regular patterns.  They chose a point to begin from, then made lines emanating from the point.  After that, they made the cross webs.  We also placed a little glue down falling down the page that we’ll put the spider on later.  Elizabeth … Keep on reading

Women’s Suffrage

Here’s a great video to get kids interested in the subject of voting rights in the United States: Women’s Suffrage in the United States In the United States voting laws are made by each individual state and not by the federal government.  So while most women in America before 1920 could not vote some could, especially in many of the western states such as  Wyoming and Utah. In the 1840s there began to be a national movement for women’s suffrage.  Suffrage is another word for voting rights.  In 1848 a conference was held in Seneca Falls, New York to talk about women’s rights.  At the conference a resolution was passed to favor and campaign for women’s suffrage.  Many people at the convention thought this idea was too radical, but Frederick Douglass, who attended and spoke at the convention, argued forcibly for including voting rights for women as a focus. Women began … Keep on reading

Federalist Paper Number Seventy-Eight

This is a guide for teachers or parents to use with teens when learning about the Federalist Papers. This is part of a series on the Federalist Papers.

This post is part of a series to help students of all ages understand the Federalist Papers and apply them to today’s political arguments. The introduction to this series, which contains links to all of the Federalist Papers posts, can be found here. Summary of Federalist Paper Seventy-Eight Federalist Paper Number Seventy-Eight explains the role and powers of the judiciary branch. Publius explains why judges are to sit for life on the bench and why their role in reviewing laws and striking down unconstitutional laws is such an important safeguard for the people. Read Federalist Paper Seventy-Eight Read the Seventy-Eighth Federalist Paper, highlighting passages that stand out to you and writing notes in the margins. The notes you write in the margins can do one of these things Restate the argument Publius makes (Publius is the pen name of the authors) State a question you have about the argument Give … Keep on reading

Federalist Paper Number Sixty-Nine

This is a guide for parents or teachers and teens to use in studying Federalist Paper 69. This is part of a series on the Federalist Papers.

This post is part of a series to help students of all ages understand the Federalist Papers and apply them to today’s political arguments. The introduction to this series, which contains links to all of the Federalist Papers posts, can be found here. Summary of Federalist Paper Number Sixty-Nine Federalist Paper Number Sixty-Nine compares the powers of the president to the powers of the king of Great Britain as an answer to charges that the Constitution made the president into a king. Publius goes item by item comparing the powers of each office. Read Federalist Paper Number Sixty-Nine Read the sixty-ninth Federalist Paper, highlighting passages that stand out to you and writing notes in the margins. The notes you write in the margins can do one of these things Restate the argument Publius makes (Publius is the pen name of the authors) State a question you have about the argument … Keep on reading

Federalist Paper Number Sixty-Two

This is a guide to Federalist Paper 62 for parents or teachers and teens. This is part of a series on the Federalist Papers.

This post is part of a series to help students of all ages understand the Federalist Papers and apply them to today’s political arguments. The introduction to this series, which contains links to all of the Federalist Papers posts, can be found here. Summary of Federalist Paper Number Sixty-Two Federalist Paper Number Sixty-Two explains why the senate is arranged the way it is. Senators are chosen by the state legislatures to represent the states in the federal government and to create a tie between federal and state government. Senators are older, have to be citizens for a longer term, and serve for six years instead of two like the House in order to provide experience, loyalty, wisdom, and stability to the government. One major purpose of the senate is to purposely slow down the process of law making so that proper deliberation might occur and the laws might not be … Keep on reading

Federalist Paper Number Fifty-Seven

This is part of a series of discussion guides for the Federalist Papers.

This post is part of a series to help students of all ages understand the Federalist Papers and apply them to today’s political arguments. The introduction to this series, which contains links to all of the Federalist Papers posts, can be found here. Summary of Federalist Paper Number Fifty-Seven Federalist Fifty-Seven is about the election process of the representatives and how this process protects the people from abusive or power hungry politicians. Read Federalist Paper Number Fifty-Seven Read the fifty-seventh Federalist Paper, highlighting passages that stand out to you and writing notes in the margins. The notes you write in the margins can do one of these things Restate the argument Publius makes (Publius is the pen name of the authors) State a question you have about the argument Give your own opinion of the argument Discussion Guide Now that you have read and highlighted Federalist Paper Number Fifty-Seven for … Keep on reading

Homeschool P.E.

Most homeschoolers don’t really do P.E..  P.E. seems to be one of those things that just gets left out of homeschool pretty often; it’s just one more thing to do in an already busy day for mom and kids.  Even though it requires some effort, I’ve found that not only do my kids really enjoy it, but it also wakes them up a bit when we’ve done a lot of studying or sitting still.  It has become one of the BEST time of our homeschool day.  Getting moving gets our brains jumpstarted. Here’s What We Do For P.E.: We spend about a half hour to an hour (if it’s an outing) every afternoon doing P.E., which at our house just means active play, fun, and exercise. We often go to the park down the street, . . . or rollerblade in the driveway. My kids love to go to the skate … Keep on reading