Category Archives: History

Home School in the Woods: Knights {Review}

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.With products like The Knights K-2 Lap-Pak  from Home School In The Woods,  it becomes so easy to add Hands on History to our studies.

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Home School in the Woods is a family owned and operated company, born out of Amy Pak’s time as a home schooling mom. Here is some of their own history.

My son enjoys the materials from Hands on Home Schooling, as you can see from the other reviews we have done on projects from this company here.

These studies are very versatile. You can put them into a lap Book made out of file folders, which we have done, but you could also put them into a binder, which “The Artist” chose to do this time.

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We received a zip file, and once opened, found the pdf files with the directions and all of the project masters. The first thing I always do with these products is to print out the project directions and the lap book assembly page. This way, I don’t have to go back and forth to find out which projects are to be printed out on white or colored paper or card stock, and how to put them together. The assembly directions show how they should be placed in your lap book.

There is a story which can be printed out in booklet form or full page, if you wish to put it in a notebook, which is what we did. Along with the printed out story, there is an audio file so you can just listen to the story, of read along while listening, which is what my boys did.

While the Knights (K-2)  pak is marked as being k-2, it really works for any age. I actually feel that children at the K-2 level would probably need an awful lot of help with the cutting and assembly.  “The Artist” chose it because he’s done a number of the other paks in the past, and he is interested in that period of history.

He enjoys the crafty aspect of the projects, and getting to use stuff from my paper crafting stash to do them.

“The Batman” did the coloring here. With his disabilities, he has very poor fine motor control, but he wanted to be included so “The Artist” did the cutting and assembly while “The Batman” did some of the coloring. He stopped when it got more detailed because it hurt his fingers and hands.

Here is the first project. This is assembled in such a way as to be able to lift the flaps to get to the information.

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Here, you can see someone being knighted with a moveable sword, a castle with a drawbridge which lowers, and a pop up scene under the castle.

Next, we have another interactive project. As you can see, the knight’s helmet moves to show you information about what a knight is.

Here we see information about the weapons a knight would use.

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More information about knights:

 

And here in this collection of projects, the student is instructed to design their own family crest.

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The blue background with the mitten and the fish (pike) is because we are originally from Michigan. The blue green and electric blue are our favorite colors, and the red is for the blood of Christ as our foundation, with a cross and the shed blood.

The other projects on this page are, as you can see, about the crusaders and famous knights.

Home School In The Woods has so many great projects! One that would be really good right now while we are in an election year, is the U.S. Elections Lap-Pak.

Amy Pak has a very good blog post about teaching with Lapbooks that is a must read!

As you can see, this is a wonderful hands on tool for learning history. We have enjoyed many of the lap paks from Home School in the Woods!

Please click on the banner below, and check out what 79 other families think about this and many other Lap Pak choices.

Home School in the Woods Collections - Lap-pak, Timeline Figures, History Studies & Activity-Pak {Home School in the Woods Reviews}As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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Alan Shepard Higher and Faster {Review}

(Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.)

YWAM Publishing offered us a number of choices from their Heroes of History series of books, and we were so happy to be given Alan Shepard Higher and Faster for the purpose of this review.

Alan Shepard

Alan Shepard was the first American to be launched into space, and one of the select few to actually walk on the surface of the moon. Can you even imagine having such a legacy? I certainly can’t!

This is a very entertaining and educational book, covering the time from Shepard’s boyhood dreams of flight all the way through to his death at the age of 74 after suffering with Leukemia. We read about his trading work for flying lessons on his quest to be a flyer, to his time in the Naval Academy, through World War 2. We read about his invitation to join NASA, and his journey through training for space flight. We get to read the exciting account of Alan Shepard being one of the preiviledged few to actually set foot upon, and walk on, the moon.  Alan Shepard has a wonderful legacy as one of the pioneers of space.

Along with this terrific book, we received the accompanying Heros of History Unit Study.

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This unit study will aid you in covering the following areas:

  • History
  • Geography
  • Essay Writing
  • Creative Writing
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Public Speaking
  • Drama
  • Art

Here, you can see just what has been included for your exploration!

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For our family, the chapter questions were key. This is what I primarily used at the end of each chapter we read together, as a means of seeing what was understood, and what was retained.

Ultimately, this book gave us a very good look at the history of space flight, without being a dry text book. We have truly enjoyed reading this and reviewing it for you, just as we have with other books and unit studies from YWAM. You can read those reviews here.

Please check out 74 other Crew reviews on this and other titles from YWAM by clicking the banner below!

32 Heroes of History {YWAM Publishing Reviews}As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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Goldtown Beginnings from Kregel Publications {Review}

I love adding historically acurate novels to our library for my boys so when we received the first two books in the Goldtown Beginnings series ( Jem Strikes Gold  and Jem’s Frog Fiasco ) for review from Kregel Publications, we were very happy!

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It is not always easy to find good novels in which the main character is a boy, so of course I jumped on this one because I have all boys. With their delays, these were a very good reading level, especially for “The Puzzler.”

In each of the books, written by Susan K. Marlow and illustrated by Okan Bülbül, there is a vocabulary section right in the front of the book, as opposed to being in the back where I more often see it (if there even is one!).

In book 1, Jem Strikes Gold, eight year old Jem is living in a gold camp with his family, Pa, Mama, and his little sister Ellie.

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Jem’s pa has a big gold claim along Cripple Creek, while Jem and Ellie each have a small one adjacent to their pa’s. People during the gold rush believed that heading to gold country would make them rich very quickly, but the reality was that panning for gold was terribly hard work. In fact, many people made more money selling services and cooking for other miners. Other miners would pay them in gold. Jem and Ellie’s Mama made pies and sold them to other miners, and to the cafe, and was paid in gold for them. When the children are delivering that day’s pies (blueberry, my favorite!) we are introduced to Will, the son of the town’s richest man and a real bully. He causes the pies to be ruined and Jem’s remembered Bible verses on dealing with bullies to fly right out of his head. When a fellow miner gives Jem a dog, Mama at first forbids it. But Nugget slowly worms his way into her heart after he helps to ensure that Will never picks on them again. You can read an excerpt from this book here, and coloring pages of the illustrations in this book at this link. There are activity pages and a schedule for this book here.

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In Jem’s Frog Fiasco, Jem gets a job catching Bullfrogs for the cafe owner’s menu. Unfortunately, Ellie and Nugget get in the way, and he and Ellie argue. When Ellie leaves, and doesn’t make it home, the searching begins. Jem and Nugget find and rescue her from a coyote hole dug by a miner looking for gold. You can read an excerpt of this book here, and download the coloring pages at this link. Activity pages with a schedule for this book can be found here.

At the end of each book is “A Peek into History” which gives a glimpse of historical facts related to the story.

These are fairly short books, 10 chapters over about 80 pages each. The chapters are quick paced and engaging, and my son liked the books very much.

I would love for you to read what other families thought of Jem Strikes Gold and Jem’s Frog Fiasco! To see the thoughts of 44 other Review Crew Members, please click on the banner just below.

Jem Strikes Gold & Jem's Frog Fiasco  {Kregel Publications Reviews}

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As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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Progeny Press Study Guide (Little House On The Prairie) {Review}

 I really like using a good unit study to go along with good books, and Progeny Press has a good number of them! We have been working through the Little House on the Prairie Study Guide.

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This is not our first study guide from Progeny Press. We have done a few others, which you can read about here.

My son chose the study guide he wanted to do. He has always really liked the television show “Little House on the Prairie,” and has been surprised at how different the book is from it, although I personally thought that the pilot episode came fairly close to this book!

“The Puzzler” has been slowly working his way through this one. I say slowly because he has real comprehension problems, and other learning delays. In the past when we have used study guides, we have mostly done them orally with all of the boys. This time, I thought we’d try having “Mr. Puzzler” use the interactive PDF, and type in his own answers.

This has actually been working fairly well! He doesn’t like to do a whole lot of hand writing, and he is very picky about how it looks, so usually it just takes forever with erasing and rewriting. Typing in the answers allows for him to more easily correct his errors (although I did just realize that he spelled griping with two p’s) This also has allowed him to work mostly on his own, which he’s been enjoying.

This study guide suggests reading the entire book and then doing each section of the guide, but since each section covers about five chapters which is an easier bite for “The. Puzzler,” he has been reading the book one section at a time and then answering the questions for that section. Admittedly, this is taking a good bit longer that suggested by Progeny Press, but the beauty of homeschooling is that we don’t HAVE to stay on schedule, we are able to work at the pace my kids can handle, and thus retain what is learned.

There are a variety of activities the student can do throughout this guide. One that I was able to catch in pictures was making Molasses Milk, which we’d never heard of.

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Pretty much all of them said it was definitely not something they’d ever ask for again!

This study guide covers a lot of things, not just language arts. We have looked at history, geography, social studies, Bible, etc. I specifically mention Bible because I so appreciate the Mission Statement of Progeny Press:

“To teach our children to think clearly, to understand literature, and to rely on the scripture for truth and values, and enjoy themselves while they do it!”

The Little House on the Prairie Study Guide uses the following as the format:

  • Vocabulary – he has been exploring synonyms, similes and personification.
  • Comprehension Questions
  • Think about the story
  • Dig Deeper – Thinking about the situations in the story with a Biblical perspective, with verses to look up and ponder.
  • Class Debate – We use as discussion questions.
  • Optional Activities

Having the option of doing the study guide orally, print the guide out and write the answers in, or use the interactive function and type the answers in has allowed more flexibility for us as my kids have moved from one to the next with the different guides we’ve used. Progeny Press is a wonderful choice for our family, and maybe it will be for you, as well! You may check out the sample here.

To see the honest and fair thoughts of 47 other Review Crew Members, please click on the banner just below.

Study Guides for Literature {Progeny Press Reviews}Crew-Disclaimer

As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

 

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Filed under History, home education, homeschool unit studies, homeschooling, Language Arts, Literature Study Guides, Liturature Based Unit Study, Progeny Press

Library and Educational Services LLC {Review}

One of my goals when we started homeschooling was to build a library of good books which would be of good enough physical quality that my family would have them for a very long time.  With Library and Educational Services LLC we are able to add beautiful Reinforced Hardcover Library Binding Nonfiction books, paperback books like the Who Was . . . series with titles like Who Was Anne Frank? and quality audio dramas on CD such as the one we received, Hiding In Plain Sight.
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For the purpose of this review, I was asked to choose One title from the Who Was … ? series, and I chose Who Was Anne Frank.

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I chose this book because although we have been learning about World War 2, up until now I have not really touched on the Holocaust in more than the most general of ways. Because of the special needs my boys deal with, I have thought it would be too tough of a subject for them. This book has allowed me to give them a gentler introduction, leading then into an expansion later on with more in depth materials. This book has 103 pages in it, which include a timeline of Anne’s life, a timeline of the world, and a 2 page bibliography. Later on when they are ready, I will have them Read Anne’s actual diary just as I did way back when I was a girl.

Next, we were asked to choose One CD from the Lifehouse Theater CDs series. I chose Hiding In Plain Sight, a 70 minute audio drama of the true story about William and Ellen Craft and their amazing and successful escape from slavery. Their escape from Macon GA to Boston MA where they lived for two years before fleeing again to foreign shores, is nothing short of astonishing! We listened to this in one sitting, not wanting to stop and wait between sections.

Additionally, we were allowed approximately $60.00 to choose any  Reinforced Hardcover Library Binding Nonfiction books.  I invited the boys to choose. “The Artist” and “The Batman” together chose the set of seven “Uncovering American History books.”

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“The Puzzler” chose a set of three “What You Didn’t Know About History” books.

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I barely got the books out of the box before they were being grabbed up!

Library and Educational Services LLC is a wonderful way to build your library with quality books! They are worthwhile books to read, and sturdily bound books that you would be proud to have on your bookshelves. There is an abundance of different resources on their website for you to choose from! Here are just a few examples!

And here is something I have LONG desired, and was able to purchase separately at an extremely good price from Library and Educational Services LLC, The American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster 1828.

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I have wanted this so that our children would learn the meaning of the words as intended when they read, for example, our national documents such as the Constitution.

All in all, I am so happy to have been given the opportunity to really check out Library and Educational Services LLC! I have seen their mail order catalogs for years, but hesitated to order, as I had no idea what sort of quality their products would be. Well i’m here to tell you that not only is the quality wonderful, but so are the prices! I will most definitely be ordering from them again! I mean, the 7 book set and the 3 book set were only about $60.00 all together! To me, that is not just fair, it’s amazing!

Counting me, there are 80 crew members who have been reviewing Library and Educational Services LLC. Please, click below and check out what the other reviewers think!Wholesale Books for Your Homeschool {Library and Educational Services LLC Reviews}Crew-DisclaimerAs always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

 

 

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Filed under education, History, home education, Library and Educational Services LLC

Homeschool Today . . .

Today, it’s all about History Channel, wall to wall. Each year “The Puzzler” asks if we can do this. He was only 4 months old on this day in 2011, and we wouldn’t even know him and “Mr. Loquacious” for another almost 8 years. I learn more things each year while watching these programs. I saw none of what happened when it did, with the exception of the first two planes when they hit the World Trade Center towers.

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September 11, 2001:
I was in Shipshewana, IN with a group of ladies from church. It happened just as we turned on the TV to check the weather before checking out of our B & B to go to the flea market before coming home. We prayed, I remember calling my husband to tell him to turn on network TV, as I knew the TV would be on a cable kid’s channel for My then little boy’s shows he liked. I remember the sick feeling when I did, in fact, within an hour, see gas stations raising their prices up well over $6.00 per gallon, I remember the eerie feeling driving through Flint, MI, past Bishop Airport and not seeing or hearing any planes in the air. I remember getting home to Port Huron MI, and finding out the border with Sarnia was closed. What a sad and horrible day… I do remember one bright spot, all that day in Shipshewana, I witnessed complete strangers letting others use their cell phones to connect with loved ones. It was a hopeful sight…
So, it falls to us as parents to ensure that our children learn history as it actually happened. Even though none of mine were old enough to understand it as it happened, year by year, they learn more while watching these programming hours. So do I.
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Never forget. Never, ever, ever forget!
As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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Filed under 9/11, family, History

Make-A-State Activity-Pak From Home School In The Woods {Review}

Adding in the Make-A-State Lap Book from Home School in the Woods‘sHands-on History Activity-Paks series has been the perfect hands-on addition for our studies. We have reviewed other products from Home School In The Woods, and you can read those reviews here.

We have been wanting to learn about all of the states we touched on during our big move from Michigan to New Mexico, so we chose to begin with Michigan, since we were all born and raised there.

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We like the Hands-on History Activity-Paks because while they are Lap Books, they are not HUGE Lap Books. This works for us because we deal with short attention spans around here.

The Make-A-State Activity-Paks come in more than just the Make-A-State Lap Book. Also available in this category are:

  • Artists
  • Composers
  • The Old Testament
  • The New Testament

Each Activity-Pak is available for download at the price of just $18.95. This is an excellent price, as it gives you the opportunity to print as many copies as you need for your children, to re-use it when younger children are ready, and in my case, to re-print pages that got messed up for whatever reason

Before “The Artist” began the Michigan Make-A-State Activity-Pak, I got out the file folder (only one!) he would need. I then printed out the pages showing the placement of everything in the Lap Book. Then, I printed out the pages which told, in order and with small pictures, which activities to do and in what order. I used THAT to tell me which pages to print out for him. I also let him into my paper crafting stash to choose what color card stock he wanted to use for the two inside pages of his Lap Book.

Once everything was printed and contained in the folder, I had “The Artist” begin doing the projects.

Having never been really successful with using glue sticks on Lap Books, one of the supplies we keep on hand is double-sided tape. Other supplies you may want to have on hand (and probably already do, if you are a home schooling family) are colored pencils, crayons, scissors, regular pencils, printer paper and card stock.

This Activity-Pak has 20 activities to create for your Lap Book:

  • Key State Facts
  • Origin Of State Name
  • State Motto
  • State Symbols
  • State Song
  • State Industry / Agriculture / Climate
  • State Wildlife
  • Regions
  • State Geography
  • State Government
  • State Seal & Flag
  • State History

And more!There also some bonus pages:

  • State Pages to help with some information for your chosen state (though it will still be necessary to research information which is not included)
  • A Name That State file folder game to print out, assemble and play.

Even though all the people in our immediate family were born and raised in Michigan, there ended up being things we either did not remember, or just didn’t know. I just asked “The Artist” about that and he says that he only knew (without looking it up) one famous person from Michigan, didn’t know much in the Industry / Agriculture / Climate section, or what the state seal looks like. So, even if you elect to study the state you live in, you might be surprised at how much you will learn!

Here is “The Artist” showing me page by page, his lap Book.

Home School In The Woods is a hands-on history company, with multiple product lines which are as follows:

Project Passport: Ancient Rome study has been release ahead of schedule, and is now available for download here. The now complete Project Passport collection is available here.

To read 89 additional reviews written by my fellow crew members about many of the products from  Home School In The Woods, please click on the banner just below.

Hands-on-History, Project Passport, À La Carte Timelines and Time Travelers {Home School in the Woods Reviews}

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As always, I would just love it if you would join me in all of “My Journeys Through Life.” Just go to the subscription box at the top of the blog and enter your email information. After that, you will always know when there is something new happening. I hope to see you here very soon! -)

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Filed under History, home education, Home School In The Woods, homeschool unit studies