Sunday, January 27, 2019

I Love Our History Timelines!

Ode to a Timeline

Oh I really love our timelines! I have been doing them for six years with my kids and this is something about our homeschool work that has really lasted and I still love doing with them. I may  be hugging a timeline right now. This idea of using a timeline comes from the Charlotte Mason philosophy of homeschooling, which she called a Book of Centuries.

What is so great about using a timeline for history?

The very most awesome thing about using a timeline is it frees you to study history out of order. Study history as your child's interest dictates! If they want to study the pyramids and then tanks from WWII--it doesn't matter! If you have a chance to check out a cool local history site even though you are studying the renaissance, go for it! It all just goes in the timeline and it is easy for children to see how it all relates to all the rest of history.
Another nice thing about timelines is you can go through them to review what you have studied. They don't have a chance to forget everything since it is all in a timeline that they use every week. It becomes a portfolio of their studies.

How I made our timelines:

I got my binders at Target. They are Up and Up brand 2" binders and they are PVC free, so no yucky chemicals for us. The covers and spine printouts I got from Guest Hollow. They are free printables and have a boy and girl version. They are pretty cute!

The timeline pages inside are from Build Your Library ($9.99). I got these because I liked the color on the pages and the way the years are set up (longer spans for the ancient times going down to 10-year increments for modern times. Each of the 4 main parts of history are a different color on the top of the page as well, so it makes it a bit easier to find out where you want to be in time. These correspond to many history series such as Curiosity Chronicles and Story of the World (the latter is not totally secular but I use it for some things).

This is how we do our timeline: 
Whatever history we learn about, whether in our history curriculum Curiosity Chronicles, on a field trip, in a YouTube video, in a historical book we read, or a documentary we watched on TV, we put it in the timeline. We do have some timeline stickers I ordered from History Odyssey and the printable timeline figures that come with the Curiosity Chronicles Activity Guide Bundle, but often we have to find our own, so we choose an image from Google Images and print it out, cut it out, and paste it into the book in the appropriate place (I buy lots and lots of glue sticks). Then I have the kids write the date and anything interesting we want to include.

Curiosity Chronicles comes with cute "baby was born" timeline figures, so we have put all the members of our family in, including grandparents and other relatives. This allows the kids to see, for example, that Grandma and her sister were born in the midst of WWII, and what else was going on in the world at that time.

When the kids are older I plan to do a family history project with the kids and we can add more ancestors to the timeline and see what was going on when they were alive. It makes history come alive when you know your ancestors lived through it.

The kids are able to make so many connections with this timeline! I plan to continue using the timelines through high school and they will be a great keepsake when my kids graduate from homeschool.

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Second Grade Curricula 2018

Second grade? They were just doing preschool work a moment ago!

Math-U-See Beta

Language Arts
Reading Eggs Online Curriculum
Books for reading

Handwriting Without Tears (we are doing the first grade books again for more practice)

The Happy Scientist Subscription
Mystery Science Subscription

Curiosity Chronicles: Snapshots of Ancient History