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Homeschool Curriculum
for History & Geography

One of the great advantages of home school curriculum is that, unlike standard school fare, it can make the study of history and geography fun, as you'll discover with some of the homeschool curriculums in this section. Also, please be sure to check our members-submitted teaching and success stories! (Get more Co-op savings.)

Teaching Tips ▼

~~ Homeschool Teaching Tips ~~


BRING HISTORY ALIVE!

Tell us below what you do to bring history alive for your kids, and get a chance to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card in our monthly Teaching Tips contest. Our winner will be randomly drawn from posts that are entered during BRING HISTORY ALIVE! Month.

We will do the drawing at the beginning of each month for posts in the prior month, and announce the winner in the Co-op newsletter. Your posts will remain on this page to provide ideas and inspiration to other homeschool history teachers! (Need help?)


seabolt4

We use Mystery of History volume 1 for our spine. To bring history alive, we do lots of hands on projects, field trips, and reading. Things like creating their own death mask, Trojan horse, and creatures make history lively for all three of my kiddos!

4 weeks ago · Like · Comment

Luke s Mom

We love that our curriculum ,Heart of Dakota, brings history alive through great living books and numerous projects. We also enjoy adding field trips in to addthat hands on flare for the time period we are studying. We have been studying the Middle Ages and scored a field trip all about Knights! We check stuff out when we travel and keep our eyes open for opportunities.

4 weeks ago · Like · Comment

juditupp

Our favorite way to bring history alive is by learning lost skills. My children love learning about flint knapping from their dad. He's demonstrated making arrowheads the way people did it before metal tools.

1 month ago · Like · Comment

Julie

We watch history videos and occasionally take out modern conveniences like electricity, hot faucet water, central heating, to understand what our predecessors had to survive through.

1 month ago · Like · Comment

Dogrunner

We love history in our house! We start by listening to story of the world and then bring in piles of interesting books from our public library. We usually spend weeks at a time on a single time period and explore it deeply with both nonfiction books and exciting historical fiction reads as well as literature important to the time, maybe add a video or movie about the time or important historical event, go out out to eat at a restaurant featuring food of the area or cook it at home, and if there are any podcasts available (there are a couple of good history podcasts) we listen to new perspectives. Then if possible we visit local museum exhibits on the area of focus. The exhibit of Tutankhamen's tomb was open at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry this winter and even though we covered ancient Egypt a year ago, it has remained a big interest and we were excited to see the exhibit (if it comes to your neighborhood, I highly recommend it - it was incredible!). We've going to see a ballet of the The Odyssey in a few weeks, tying in to our studies of Ancient Greece. The only things we don't do that i wish we did, we a single timeline - I'd like to have one running the length of our longest hallway, where we can add events as we learn about them to have a visual picture of how it all fits together in time - but so far we don't have the wall space!

1 month ago · Like · Comment

tecaskey

Since we are a Lego loving family, we use a stop motion movie maker app and Legos to act out the things we learn in our history lessons. It combines all the things we love!

1 month ago · Like · Comment

Cathy

To bring history alive we read living history books - those which are set in the time period we're studying. Also, the co-op in which we participate matches the art projects we do to the particular historical period.

1 month ago · Like · Comment

NeveraDollMoment

We bring History Alive! by acting out battles in our backyard. The strategies that we read in our history books can be rather dry - until we don makeshift uniforms and mark out boundaries of countries on our lawn, re-enacting those portions of important wars. It takes less than a half hour and my girls retain what we we read because of this hands-on experience!

1 month ago · Like · Comment

Indy

We love to bring History alive! First, we travel to different states and countries and learn about life in those places. We visit historical places and learn about the history of the people or events from that place. We learn culture and language from the places we have lived or visited.( So far we have gone to over 35 states and lived in 4 countries and visited 8 countries.) We love to read history from particular time periods and then read fictional novels or biographies or watch movies or musicals or dramas or watch documentaries and write about what we have learned from the same time period to better understand what was happening and what the people might have felt and thought at those times. We make timelines and illustrate the main events and put them up on the walls to keep as a reminder about what we have learned. We make real artifacts to learn about crafts from various places, peoples or time periods. We eat foods from various cultures and try new spices. We participate in History Bees/Bowl to review and remember what we have learned. My kids love HISTORY!!! :)

1 month ago · Like · Comment

Russ "Father of Alex"

Writing about history is a daily activity for this home educating "Father of Alex". Discovering Quora, a website of questions for authors to answer has become a bit of an obsesson. The site has bestowed titles of top ten history authors in three separate catagoies including the American Civil War. Alex sees his father writing everyday and often reads the better essays. This activity, combined with regular visits as Confederate reinactors, bring history alive. Both enjoy describing the war to vositors who come to see a bit of history brought alive and learn the enormous amounts of true history that living historians can share. Deo Vindice! visit Quora at https://www.quora.com/profile/Russell-Person

1 month ago · Like · Comment

rbshines

Learning History is more than reading text books in our home. We visit museums, watch films even cartoons, draw pictures, and reenact different events. But the one things which seems to help history stick and be remembered are stories. Fictional or real life stories help history come alive, seem more understandable, and gives my son a greater understanding of how things were and why things are the way they are today. He learns first and foremost the people in history are people just like him. They have fears, weaknesses, expectations, dreams, losses and hope just like him. My husband and I desire for him not to only know history, but try to understand what it was like to be people of history by understanding those peoples possible feelings, thoughts, fears and hopes behind each action of historical bravery or fear and retreating. We have found stories are the best way to help understand hard topics like slavery, women's rights movement, and war. We believe teaching him to think this way about history will better equip him to think this way about people now and helping him understand our wars, our current misunderstandings of equal right and prejudice. We are cultivating in him a greater understanding and empathy towards all people and towards himself. This is our story in teaching history.

1 month ago · Like · Comment

MelissaB

Growing up I hated history. Blame it on boring history teachers and dry textbooks I guess. History was actually the subject I dreaded the most when we decided to homeschool. Now, surprise, it's my very favorite subject! What turned over the leaf for me was using living books. I had no idea what living books were, but once I started studying Charlotte Mason principles, a light bulb went on. I have found that being immersed in history thought great books makes it come alive and become meaningful. You actually begin to form bonds with the characters in the books you read which in turn causes the reader to care and take ownership of what they are learning about. Living books are hands down the best way to gain the most from history. Reading these gems aloud with my kids has given me a new perspective on history and I have found it's not dry and dusty learning like I once thought.

1 month ago · Like · Comment

blessedmamaof4ok

History is our favorite subject! Of course we take field trips to relevant sites whenever we can, but when that isn't possible we enjoy creating lapbooks. It's hands on and helps my visual learners process the information we've talked about.

In addition, we recently discovered we had an ancestor that lived at Jamestown! Discussing this ancestor and how we descend from him really brought our early colonial history lesson to life; it taught my girls that these were real people with real families!

1 month ago · Like · Comment

spiderwoman

We studied American History, Caribbean History, Canadian History, European History, as well as the history of art, music, math and science. We studied history at all levels, from the history of the land on which our home is situated, to the history of our local neighborhood, city, state, and so on. We used resources from various levels of governments, borrowed museum kits, visited museums and art galleries and just enjoyed learning about everything. It is really important to bring history alive and talk to experts, act out historical events, build models, see documents, art, movies, music and artifacts from those eras. If you cannot go to museums, then go to their websites and check out what free materials they have. We would email and say we are home schooling and they would often let us know of educational materials that are available, or I would just say I am a teacher of K-12 and I would get help, too. One of the best activities we ever did as homeschoolers was get all of the books in a series on famous people. Then, we would read a book, condense it into a ten page smaller book, the kids would read it out loud (when they were first learning to read) and then they would dress up and act as that person (that means, have an accent, fix hair or wear a wig, makeup if needed, as well as any props or costumes), and members of the family would 'interview' them about their lives. The whole family loved it. Sometimes, we would sing historical songs and learn dances, or have food from a particular era, say, a medieval feast or traditional Quebecois tourtiere with maple syrup taffy or traditional food from the Caribbean using the fish and vegetables from that region. We would try to prepare food in an historically accurate way after we had done some research. We also listened to and learned about musicians and mathematicians lives in context of the historical era in which they lived by reading, and making home made books. In terms of curriculum, we used books from the public schools that I borrowed from libraries, Discovery, DK, National Geographic materials, HMH, BBC, Rand McNally, Muzzy, Susan Wise Bauer, Liberty Kids, as well as online encyclopedias. If I was excited about a topic, then the kids were excited too, usually. History can be a bore if thought of in terms of just a bunch of dates and facts to memorize, so having something memorable to associate those facts and dates really helps make history fun. It is good to supplement curriculum with fun activities. I like to say that those who cannot remember the past are doomed to repeat it, and that is the value of history! Happy Homeschooling! :)

1 month ago · Like · Comment

beckyjane27

History is one of our favorite subjects. Our love started with Susan Wise Bauer's Story of the World and have enjoyed making certain foods related to a region, creating artwork, and watching reenactments/movies on sites like the History Channel, Smithsonian, and Discovery. We love historical fictions and memoirs. When traveling, my boys love to visit old military forts and museums.

1 month ago · Like · Comment

Laetice

We visit historical sites when possible. We listen to history books in the car or read aloud at home and discuss. We read comic books and watch cartoons and movies about history or set in the past. We discuss all that.

1 month ago · Like · Comment

Dexter

We bring History alive by visiting going to some events and visiting exhibits at the Museum!!

1 month ago · Like · Comment

Kira

We incorporate props and movies into our regular curriculum and this year we are evening doing an event called Living History, a Historical Icon Presentation where each child picks a figure from History, dresses like them and gives a presentation in front of our group! We can't wait!

2 months ago · Like · Comment

MelanieR18

We live in Florida and love to visit Saint Augustine. This is our 1st homeschool year and during our last visit to Saint Augustine, I had my granddaughter plan the trip. She decided which venues to visit and we talked about what it was like to live in this era. During our visit to Fort Mose, she was able to have a better understanding what the people suffered back then. At Fort Menedez, she was better informed (through classroom discussion) about the Timucua Indians. I prefer the hands-on method when possible.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

maman

Use living history books and go to the local sites when you can, esp. during off peak times. We did Mt. Vernon for free on President's Day (but it was very crowded). We took in Independence Hall today which was easy to navigate in the off season.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

MeganR

History is my favorite subject and my daughter enjoys it too. We like to watch shows about the people, places, and events in history. One really great show that adds a different spin is called A Taste of History which uses cooking historically accurate food to teach history along with visits to historic places and information about historical figures like Ben Franklin and other lesser known people (like Dr. Physick who invented flavored soda). We also enjoy incorporating history in our travels by visiting museums, homes (like Mount Vernon), national parks and monuments (like Montezuma Castle), and anything else that might add an interesting and educational component to our vacation.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

debbieKS

Use lots of living history books and I just bought the subscription to CCC streaming with tons of history episodes; travel and map studies...

1 year ago · Like · Comment

AnnaRK

Write something...Lancaster City where we live does walking history tours. They do a regular one and then also and African American one. Very very interesting.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

Brigid

We love history in our home. We read from our text (The Story of the World), and then we read, and read, and read all kinds of supporting books. Storybooks, activity books, nonfiction books. My daughter loves to read, so this is a good fit for us.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

Ansley

History it our favorite subject. Particularly the time around the American Revolution. Our daughter is obsessed Hamilton. She listens to the music, makes costumes from that time period and reads anything she can find about the birth of our nation.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

Brandie

History is a favorite subject in our household, the opposite that I remember in school memorizing dates. We try to incorporate all media types in our search to discover the "stories" of the past. We will read a book, whether it be a biography or another type. Then we will search for "clues" such as maps online, incorporate a field trip, find a video on the event or showing the area it took place. We also at times incorporate foods from the time or the place, explore the language, the dress, etc. to make the "story" come alive. This seems to give some real meaning to what they have learned to where they hold onto the knowledge.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

RENEE

In our homeschool, we LOVE history! We tie other subjects to our history in so many ways. We go to outdoor reenactments like the Renaissance Faire, and for a HomeEc lesson, we make costumes to wear. Historic places offer reenactments for all parts of history, from the Revolutionary War to the Civil war and so much more. It's fun to dress up and learn hands-on. On famous American's birthdays, we do field trips to places relevant. We might make soap or paper or do quilting, thereby covering arts, crafts and Home Economics. Whatever period we are studying, we play music from Pandora that is relevant to the time period. We also watch historical dramas and our Spelling and Vocabulary words come from the content, which helps to retain the words. When we watch documentaries or movies, we will find the places on the maps that are mentioned in the show. In this way, we cover some geography. We always follow up with discussions, and relevant books to read. There are just so many ways to make history come alive, and be fun.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

Purplemomoffour

In my search to make History more interesting for my four girls, I recently discovered Liberty Kids History told through animated cartoon shows, free to watch on YouTube. Then I found printable Quiz sheets that go with each episode on TeachersPayTeachers, for a small cost. History brought to life, in a fun way, that keeps the girls watching-and learning.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

ACJ

We really enjoy researching things that we find interesting, so while reading we may find one person or a place that we want to further study. We also watch documentaries and listen to radio dramas. My child is a history fanatic so it's easy at our house!!

1 year ago · Like · Comment

schoolinswag

One thing that we do to make history come alive is participating as a family with historical interpreting at local historical sites. (Nothing makes it come alive like dressing up and teaching people about that time period). We also try to incorporate a lot of period recipes into our studies.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

JDorsey

One exciting thing we did was to have our DNA testing done. Through that and talking to family elders we discovered that I am the 5th great granddaughter of our 12th President, Zachary Taylor. We also found out that my 5th great grandmother's picture hangs in the Smithsonian museum of African-American History. We plan to take a trip there to see it. So, our History classes aren't textbook at all. But the lessons are life long.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

robinc2345

Took a trip to Athens and let them make the itinerary

1 year ago · Like · Comment

Mommyof4

We read books out loud and go to historical sites around us.

1 year ago · Like · Comment

JenEnberg

Living in NJ, we are quite close to numerous Revolutionary War sites. Visiting these site has really engaged our son.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

Brett

History is awesome!

3 years ago · Like · Comment

Brandie

We try to incorporate all types of resources when studying a subject. Whether it be a trip to a living museum, a movie, a play, a trip to a library or a visit to local archives. It makes it so much more real to the kids.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

JJackson

My daughter also loves Radio Dramas, History Movies and we have lots of books. We use My Father's World. They have an awesome History Curriculum!!!

3 years ago · Like · Comment

Chatterbox28

We love radio dramas. We spend a lot of time in the car so Adventures in Odyssey and others bring the history to life. My kids are being entertained and educated. More often than not they bring up questions that we can work to answer together when we get home. They have never asked me to turn it off or said it was boring.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

KellyJ

We have been reading the Little House on the Prairie books. Last year we took road trips and stopped at Walnut Grove and a different day we went to Pepin, where there is a museum and the little log house. Our boys were amazed at how small the log house is.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

Willow

I like to have my kids write a journal as if they were in the time period we are studying. They include everyday things like clothing, food, games, medicine, etc. but in diary form. They have so much fun doing this! Sometimes it gets very detailed!

3 years ago · Like · Comment

twotoddlers

Our two junior high home educated students have done special projects and booklets about known ancestors who were affected by American Revolutionary and Civil wars. We've outlined battles, illustrated uniforms worn, explained badges of honor earned, reported on prisoner of war camps that held relatives, and visited and collected pictures of the ancestors' headstones in national military cemeteries. We researched National Archives for veteran enlistment, draft, death and pension records. We've also highlighted individuals (men and women) serving in the military in a bio sketch with photos, and are editing it for publication. We have taken only one war at a time and stretched it throughout the whole year, in addition to the regular history curriculum we are working with. This year were are studying WWI and are taking advantage of the 100th anniversary articles in the news now, like we did for the 150th anniversary of the Civil War. It helps make history more personal.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

carterkids

I have the kids study about the places we will be traveling to before we go or if I know of the place and can't find it or remember its name we stop by and see it anyways. Like going to Tennessee where I lived for years and was by Fort Donaldson for a family reunion we dropped by for a show and tour for free. They became Junior Rangers In Tennessee at Fort Donaldson. Or when I went to see my oldest girl in Las Vegas, we took I-40 to see her but made sure we saw some of each of the states as we passed but learned about it the summer before. They enjoyed the Grand Cannon, Hoover Dam, Cadillac Ranch, Wig Wam Hotel stay, Flintstone RV park by Grand Cannon and other sites before Vegas. But they did enjoy the Vegas experience. We plan and then go but make sure they know before going to each site by going to the Library getting books and working on crafts some if they had certain things in that state. Here in Oklahoma they learned of their tribe and language. We are planning to go to Walt Disney World next year and they will enjoy it also along with us the parents. We will plan to stop and see things on the drive there and pray we learn all we can again about this country of ours.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

4inthequiver1inthebullseye

I use Bauer's *The Story of the World* as our base (Synge's *Story of the World* series has been useful when they are older), and then use Discovery Education Streaming to assign videos that coordinate. We also get hundreds of coordinating books from the library, so much of the filling out of TSOTW is "history through literature." When my kids were younger, I collected every book available from the Childhood of Famous Americans. This series has been a great supplement to American history. My kids have learned so much through reading historical fiction!

3 years ago · Like · Comment

mama2kids

We do virtual Tours online, Go to museums, see movies that are related to what ever subject we are working on be it Geography or Bible. I follow along in the bible. If we are reading the book, we watch the movies to go with it. We try and do some application pieces like states learning about what each state has to offer for resources. I use Youtube as good ideas along with Pinterest as well for ideas how to teach my 4th grader and my special needs son that is 6th grade that learns at a lower level. I love that the internet has so many resources for showing and doing things relating to learning.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

zenmamasan

Over the course of 15 years, we started when they were young with reading and paper models to put together, first with mom's help, then on their own, of such things like Egyptian artifacts-there are so many paper models out there to help with this. Early years went through Magic Treehouse series, {the favorite} Princess Diaries, and used these books as as jumping off points to go to library {Libraries are KEY to bringing some depth and breadth, and therefor interest!} and get more books [picture books at that stage} which led to myths, cookbooks, music, and other explorations of cultures. When they were proficient in reading, they devoured the Magic Treehouse books on their own. As they got older, [teens} we obtained the Vicky Leon "Uppity WomenOutrageous Women" books {Moms, don't skip this series just because you have boys, they need to know this! } and used these short vignettes to explore further. The key is, multi-media geared towards their age and ability and interests! Paper Cutouts, Cookbooks, Music, Dance, Art, Myths, stories, biographies. Age appropriate biographies turned out to be the ultimate hook, and then we would go from there!

For US history, which is frankly less interesting because such a short period of time, we explored local history, and then state history, then US, with field trips, visiting historical societies,and participating in town history events, {Town has a Maplefest and a "History" day when the museums open up for summer} Keeping it local when they are young grabs their interest. Save the full-out study of US history until High School. We are using Thinkwell online US History for our Freshman - she LOVES it. Hope this helps. Our kids love history now that they are almost grown up. THey see the richness in our world, and learn to appreciate differences in other cultures.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

ginnyaggie

I have my older children read their history lesson and then create a puppet show or play for my younger children and sometimes their younger cousins. It's a great review for the big kids and an entertaining introduction to history for the little ones. They all enjoy it.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

Jen120983

We'll be visiting DC in September!!

3 years ago · Like · Comment

Bud

Anytime we go on vacation, we try to read about the history of the places and learn about the background of the cities and sites. Even Disney World has a history, and it's neat to read about it! On the way to our vacation sites, we'll read about it in the car or plane, so the kids have a richer experience with the sites the visit.

3 years ago · Like · Comment

Cristina

Field trips to historical places! We have been to Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown, Mount Vernon, Monticello! We have measure how long the Mayflower was and if it would fit in our yard! we have cooked food from the times of the of pioneers! hasting pudding is definitely NOT our favorite :-)
Oh! and Pennsylvania where they have the replica of the Tabernacle!

4 years ago · Like · Comment

JosieTX

We are hoping to have "history parties"soon. Having kids (parents?) get into the time period by writing and delivering a short report on a person from that time period.....to make it come alive everyone dresses and acts the part, including playing games (joust tournament.....) having a potluck of eating time period food (And method...on floor, large buffet table, etc). And any other fun things to get kids"live" the specified time period.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

gomommy

My son is learning about Washington State history and needed a project to help him pull it all together, so we are making a huge board game that includes all of the major events he put on his timeline, and are making little sculpey space needles and boeing planes, etc. as the game pieces. He wants to make cards like "There is a huge fire in Seattle, move back two spaces" or "The Trans-continental Railroad is complete, Move ahead one space and look out for new settlers" I am as excited as he is to work on it!

4 years ago · Like · Comment
Cristina: What a great idea!!!
4 years ago · Like

Amiche

History field trips are a must. We visit the state capitol buildings everywhere we go, many have marvelous history museums with hands-on activities. State capitols are a big favorite. In addition, when we travel, we stop at historical markers near our route as much as possible.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

MelissaB

I honestly have hated history for as long as I can remember. As a homeschooling mom of four, on our fifth year of homeschooling, I really needed to find a way to tolerate history so I didn't pass on my hatred to my children. We've tried several different history curriculums over the past few years and I finally found one that works perfect for us. We started using Truthquest history and it's really the ticket for us. Reading living books makes history come alive and I actually told my husband the other night that I'm really enjoying history and am finding it fascinating! He laughed and said it was about time. So for us, reading "living" books is the key. My kids enjoy it more than any other method that we've tried and I find they are learning a lot more than they have in the past. Now that we're studying American history, we'll be taking some local field trips too to add an interactive experience to our history studies.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

AnneH

For formal curriculum, we use Veritas Press online self-paced history. LOVE it. But to add to the real-life feel of modern/early modern history, we've done a variety of things. For one, living in VA, we have tons of historical sites in our backyard: Williamsburg, Jamestown, Yorktown, Civil War battlefields, etc. Plus, for every American-involved war we study, we visit the National Museum of the Marine Corps for an immersion experience--the walk-through displays are amazing. We also add in short period biographies and sometimes include a novel set in the time period we're studying. To top it off, we explore virtual/interactive battlefield maps and play history-themed strategy games. All of these activities make history enjoyable, not just for the kids, but for the teacher too!

4 years ago · Like · Comment

Tammy Ann

I love history & have learned so much more while homeschooling my children. When I was in school it was a dry textbook, learning can be so much more exciting & memorable by immersing in it through activities. Besides the books. Use videos, field trips, plays, make the food from that culture or time period, same with making clothes or crafts and even play games relevant to then. I remember in the elementary years when we were studying American Indians. We have many places in Florida to go visit & we did! The mound house on Fort Myers beach, Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Seminole Indian Museum & festival, Calusa Heritage Trail at the Randell Research center, many state parks had Indian & soldier history & reenactments. We got to tour, touch & make crafts. We also got together with another family to make crafts, movies & make Indian foods. Another thing we like to do is notebooking. Each child has a 3 ring binder with clear page protectors in it. Keep on hand scrap booking items, like many colors of card stock, stickers, ink stamps, scissors that cut fancy...after learning let the kids make a page or 2 of what they liked. Use pictures you took from field trips or them cooking or doing a play... Let them look up info on computer & print to use, they can draw pictures & if old enough can write a little about it. When the year is done they will have a notebook of what they learned with many great memories captured! Also, when studying Japan, we incorporated it with home ec & Grandmom taught her sewing, they made a beautiful Kimono that she got to wear at a geography fair. So, have fun when you are learning & you will remember it so much more!

4 years ago · Like · Comment

Bringing history alive is a matter of re-enactment. My favorite was the Medieval feast we put on. Everyone dressed in costume. We had a minstrel, jester, knights and ladies etc. We prepared Medieval food, made medieval crafts etc.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

Brenda S.

One of our favorite ways to make history come alive is by walking "The Streets of Old Milwaukee" at the Milwaukee Public Museum and especially visiting Old World Wisconsin with it's interpretive historians. My 7 year old daughter wants to live at Old World Wisconsin when she grows up and be one of it's interpretive historians! Visiting there allows us participate in an old-fashioned school lesson, help wash laundry the old fashioned way, help cook, spin wool, harvest, feed the chickens, you name it! When walking through the streets of Old Milwaukee at the museum, we make up stories about the people and places we see, sometimes putting ourselves into the story. We both are fascinated by history and when we can't find a field trip, we utilize her talent for language and write stories about ourselves in that time period.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

mountainmama

My two boys are still quite young, so we are early in the journey. We started off our school year with a particular curriculum. It is a good curriculum, but it just wasn't fitting for us, and it was feeling like a bit of a chore. After the holidays, I just decided to shift and focus on some foundations of exploring cultures and countries in a way that engages passions that we have. My youngest son is only 4 but loves to help in the kitchen and cook, so we've been on a really fun adventure of finding recipes and trying our hand at cooking recipes from the cultures we study, and he's gotten really into it. My older son is 6 and loves making projects. I wasn't much for doing lapbooks and such, but he has loved making several little lapbooks and booklets, and we've found some great literature books that either tell about the cultures or are from the cultures we're studying. It's been a lot more work since I'm really searching and finding each piece and not working from a specific curriculum, but it has been so much fun, and I'm glad to see ALL of us (including me) excited about it!

4 years ago · Like · Comment
mountainmama: Sorry for the duplicate post! It was having trouble loading, and I'm not sure how to delete one of them now!
4 years ago · Like

mountainmama

My two boys are still quite young, so we are early in the journey. We started off our school year with a particular curriculum. It is a good curriculum, but it just wasn't fitting for us, and it was feeling like a bit of a chore. After the holidays, I just decided to shift and focus on some foundations of exploring cultures and countries in a way that engages passions that we have. My youngest son is only 4 but loves to help in the kitchen and cook, so we've been on a really fun adventure of finding recipes and trying our hand at cooking recipes from the cultures we study, and he's gotten really into it. My older son is 6 and loves making projects. I wasn't much for doing lapbooks and such, but he has loved making several little lapbooks and booklets, and we've found some great literature books that either tell about the cultures or are from the cultures we're studying. It's been a lot more work since I'm really searching and finding each piece and not working from a specific curriculum, but it has been so much fun, and I'm glad to see ALL of us (including me) excited about it!

4 years ago · Like · Comment

mom@home

We love to do things that are tangible, so often we re-enact a part of history or dress up as in a particular time period. We just recently had a nerf gun fight depicting the Battle of Somme in our basement! We made "trenches" and had both Allies and Central powers.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

schoolbeans

I love history and learning it with my children. Some of my favorite activities have been mummifying a tomato and making a map of Egypt out of cake when we learned about Ancient Egypt. The ultimate was having a Medieval Day at our house with my other homeschooling siblings' families. One of my nieces, who is public schooled, skipped classes that day to join us. We dressed in medieval garb,had jousting bouts (with buggies and pool noodles with the dads pushing the chariots dressed as horses), running the gauntlet, sword fights, and made pottage for lunch. A utensil-less supper was the big finale with roast chicken, a saffron dessert, with entertainment by a juggling jester. My kids still talk about it years later. And I loved it too. It was a great history lesson but a wonderful family memory as well.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

dawgwife

We like to watch documentaries about some of the people and events we learn about as well as take field trips to places that do history re-enactments or to places where people lived or events took place. No, it's nothing new under the sun, but it makes it real to my kids. Also, Mystery of History has recommended activities to do together that help bring the lessons to life as well. My kids love doing this activities too.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

YV

We use World of Adventure, and do a lot of out-loud reading together. We also use those Kids in History books for great hands-on crafts and projects.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

rubymamma

It really depends on how much time and money we have. Sometimes we just make a meal or food from that time period. We ALWAYS read a historical fiction book and/or a book written in that era. My daughter learns best from SEEING so we find lots of documentaries or movies about the event or era. Even if the movie is full of inaccuracy we watch it and then discuss where it went wrong. We loved the Infinity Ring series of books. The books are fun to read and then they each have online games and activities the kids can play centered around different world history eras. My son loved "walking" around the Bastille when he was doing an activity in the French Revolution era. We also look for every opportunity to visit working historical places. We visit museums, got to care for animals at an early 1800's working farm, we watched National Treasure 2 and then tried to find the exact spot the actors stood on at Mount Rushmore and took a picture (after reading through all the exhibits, etc. about the building of the great sculptures). We have hosted a medieval dinner, learned to chain mail, made butter, and put together an intricate wood puzzle of the Sphinx (given to us from my Egyptian brother-in-law). I also try to assign different writing assignments centered on history. My son made up a wonderful newspaper all about the English during Queen Elizabeth's reign beating the Spanish Armada and my daughter wrote a wonderful story about the Battle of Saratoga during the Revolutionary War from the perspective of the animals that were surrounding it and were affected by the musket fire and smoke.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

limkefamily

Using "Mystery of History" and "My Father's World" (both excellent creation - current times curricula) the last few years, we have a huge timeline going down the stairs to our basement. The best way I've made history come alive for our whole family is by including photos of family members on their birth dates, anniversaries, and other major life events. My daughters' birth dates are on the timeline, as is the grandparent who was born the year the United States created Time Zones and the one who was born the year the Russians defeated the Ottomans, among others. Recently we traced grandmothers back seven generations to the time of the Revolutionary War. We don't have pictures of those ladies, but we have names! The timeline is "coming alive" and we all feel much more connected to the past.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

YellowHouseBookRental

We mostly use Sonlight. We read many books together, mom and all my children, from youngest to the oldest. We learn about history through stories of people who lived it. Some are fiction, some non-fiction, but learning history through the eyes of people is so mucn better than dates and names on the pages of a book.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

BJoy

I want to add that you shouldn't just dismiss a resource based on your child's age. My parents gifted my five-year-old with the "Rush Revere" books (intended for a Jr.-High audience). I started reading them out loud (more for my own sake than his) on those nights when he just couldn't seem to wind down, figuring that he'd get lost and thus bored and fall asleep. Instead, he stops me to ask some surprising questions, and characters such as George Washington and "the Redcoats" have entered into his pretend play. Of course, he's not getting nearly as much out of these books at this age as he will when he's 12 or older, but he IS still getting valuable instruction from them. :-)

4 years ago · Like · Comment

JennyRen

We love historical fiction! Good literature draws us into the world, the times and the lives about which we are reading.
I think hands-on activities, such as time-lines & Time Travelers, also engage the children and reinforce the information they receive through books. And museums!! Museums are possibly the best way to teach history as children are able to view artifacts, documents and models. As we visited the Penn Museum, my children ran (yes, in a museum;) from one exhibit to the other as they noticed many of the items about which we've been learning this year.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

Vikki

We look at pictures, of the presidents for example, and try to guess what their nickname should be. Does he look like a Tom, Tommy, Billy, Jimmy? Or not so approachable Thomas, William, James? Does he look like he was funny, serious, boring, smart? Were they nice siblings to have? Close to their mom or dad? Then they seem more like real people. When we read about them, we can see if our assumptions were right or if we were WAY off.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

RENEE

To bring history alive in our studies, we get involved. We attend working museums and farms. We even wear period style costumes. :-) We try to plan our history studies to coordinate with events happening around our state, such as; the Renaissance Fair, the Foxfire Museum, and Traveler's Rest. We also attend cultural events and plays centered around history. We keep a journal of historical markers that we find, and we keep a history journal by scrapbooking our adventures. Whatever period of history we're studying, our home reading list includes plenty of books to reinforce what we learn, including both non-fiction and historical fiction literature.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

CamSeth'sMomma

The best way I find to bring history Alive is to get the kids out and about with history around our state. There is so much history that I did not even know about that it keeps us all interested. They love to go on field trips that teach them about the presidents and wars. Then we do a packet on it the next day when we are home to revisit all the fun interested facts we have learned.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

IttyBittyHSers

Nothing brings history alive more for us than stepping into the kitchen to recreate historical meals and cooking methods. We all love it! It's a real eye-opener to realize what ingredients they had to work with and how skilled they were at cooking with nothing more than an open flame in many cases. We worked our way through the Little House Cookbook but also have tried dishes from centuries before. We also completely unplug and use no electricity (batteries included!) and my daughter loves to dress in period dresses and aprons, complete with bonnet!

4 years ago · Like · Comment

Teacher Mom

In addition to our textbooks, we read living books to make the time period and characters come to life. We take field trips, cook foods from the period/region, visit historic sites, dress up in period costumes, play games, watch movies, and anything else I can think of to make learning fun. We have built a miniature Great Wall of China, visited Colonial Williamsburg and dressed as colonial characters, watched a play about Anne Frank, played American history board games, listened to audio books in the car, had pretend sushi with friends when studying ancient Japan and then visited a Japanese restaurant, and much more. I wish my history teachers had taught me this way!

4 years ago · Like · Comment

tia b.

We take every opportunity possible to get out of the classroom. This includes plays, movies, travel, and selecting literature that's compatible with the history lesson. Last year for American History we were lucky enough to get to visit DC and Williamsburg, Va. It was the 8th grade trip that she might have taken if she was enrolled in the public school. My daughter said it made history come alive for her so it was well worth the time and expense.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

mrsajohnson

History comes alive on our wall with a time line from the ancient times. Suddenly, we know who was alive at the same time - like Confucius and Buddha. The time line includes a color code to show where in the world people lived.

4 years ago · Like · Comment

staceorama

History comes alive for my kids when they can most relate, so while studying each time period we research what life was like for children! Then, we do our best to recreate some of those experiences and see what it would be like. The kids choose the most interesting or sometimes most challenging aspect of life they encounter in eras and attempt to "bring History alive"... Just a few examples are: renting/creating and wearing for a day elaborate Renaissance costumes (beautiful but surprisingly uncomfortable and impractical), building and playing various games and toys, carrying on with life/lessons without electricity/natural gas (or computers and other modern devices) for 24 hours, cooking period foods for meals, learning about personal hygeine and fashion throughout time periods/locations as those standards vary greatly... They pick aspects that most interest them and relate to their current life. (I only homeschool one of my two daughters, but my older daughter in public high school eagarly asks to participate in all of these lessons because she finds our experiential History lessons most interesting!)

4 years ago · Like · Comment

greanbeen

My step dad is a huge history buff so when we want to bring history to life we go to him! We find local history that ties into our lessons. He finds old buildings that are from the same time period to really give them a look what life used to be. We also find local history events to attend. Our favorite shows them how to collect honey, tame bees, weave, and somuch more!

5 years ago · Like · Comment

klundberg

We use Exploring America by Notgrass. One of the ways we bring history alive is to utilize the Internet while doing class. Back in the fall, we were able to got to Jamestown and Yorktown. This allowed our daughter to have some hands on connection with what we learned about the early part of our American history. We have done other field trips to Mt. Vernon, Monticello, and Montpelier. One year at Montpelier, we were able to hear Supreme Justice Roberts speak at Constitutional Day. Also, we use a nice resource The First Ladies which has awesome photographs of our first ladies and a write up about each one.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

fieryoakmama

We love to watch all sorts of living history presentations, and as a family we participate in the society of creative anachronism where we all have expanded our knowledge of clothing, foods, customs , recreation and more from the middle ages and renaissance.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

LMeyers

We are a family of foodies, so one of our favorite ways to make history come alive is to prepare and eat foods from the era or culture we are studying. To conclude a recent unit on ancient Greece, we enjoyed a "Greek Feast" of pita, hummus & tzatziki dips, lemon chicken, rice pilaf, marinated cucumbers, stuffed grape leaves, and olives. Dessert was a delicious Greek-style trifle called ekmek. As we ate, we chatted about the Minoans, Mycenaeans, Theseus and the Minotaur, the Dorian invasion and Dark Age of Greece, the development of the Greek alphabet, Homer's epic poems, and the Olympics.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

manatee668

It's our first year homeschooling and we (my 10 yr old) kind of hit a wall with history. I remembered how much I liked making shoebox dioramas when I was in elementary school. So I introduced the idea and now we have a scene of tents and George Washington riding through his troops! He loved it and can't wait till the next

5 years ago · Like · Comment

terrim

We love to take school on the road! We take our 5 kids and dog in our 37' rv and go and visit the places we study. California history has taken us all over California actually seeing the momentous places in the history of our state. Currently we are planning a 2 month sojourn to the east coast to make American history come alive! Our kids love learning this way and remember the things that they see. My 14yo daughter is studying Patrick Henry and memorizing his famous "Give me Liberty" speech. Along with this, she is studying the clothing of his period and sewing a costume to wear when she can stand in the church in Williamsburg where he gave this history changing oration!

5 years ago · Like · Comment

KJWilliams

This is our first semester homeschooling, We did a month on the Civil War because my son is newly excited after we took him to one of the battlefields here in TN. Besides leaving the house we started cooking something from the era in which we are studying. My son likes to help me in the kitchen and we talked about what the soldiers had to use to cook with and on. He is excited about doing a cooking lesson or two from the time of the pilgrims!

5 years ago · Like · Comment

madlone

We are a military family and early in our homeschool my husband had frequent deployments overseas. During one 6-month deployment my children, ages 8, 6, 3, and 6 months at the time, were really missing their Papa. So I decided we would put on a play for Papa's welcome home party. We decided on the story of Esther (yes, the Bible is history:-). My oldest daughter and I sewed costumes and my 6 year old son did posters to show the background. He even did one that showed the gallows Haman created for Mordecai. My 3 year old was Haman and she was just adorable as she wore her cape and had the king's sceptor in her hand as she commanded her siblings to "Bow!" The kids all loved preparing and then performing the skit for their Papa. Since then we have double the number of children ranging in age from 16 to 16 months. My husband is now retired from the Navy, but we still do the same each year for different topics in history. We did the crossing of the Delaware; we did the march on Washington one year; we have done other bible stories also, all complete with homemade sets and costumes. All the children love it and they have fun in the midst of learning history.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Goodhouse

I like to call it "Immersion." History comes alive for my 12-year-old son when we read classics or literature (like Washington Irving's short stories from the time period ("Rip Van Winkle" and "Legend of Sleepy Hollow") and good historical fiction books like 'My Brother Sam Is Dead' (Revolutionary War) or 'Streams to the River, River to the Sea' (Lewis & Clark and Sacagewea). For literature/language arts, I center our vocabulary, writing, literary analysis around our literature book. Sometimes, he will act out the story "play-by-play" as I read. I'm astounded at how much he remembers! There are so many great books that can easily be correlated to the time period. Then for history, we enjoy reading Joy Hakim's 'History of US' (Concise Edition)--his choice-- and we watch videos on the lesson of the day on Discovery Streaming so that he gets more of a visual sense of they way things looked back then as well as another perspective on the story.

Next, we do something active. When studying the Constitution, he wrote a play about it's writing; we also acted out a "debate" between Jefferson and Hamilton on their different visions for the new county; when studying the president's cabinet, we played a game sitting around the dining room table with a card at each place named for one of the secretaries. He played "Mr. President" while I played the cabinet members and then we switched. When we read about Lewis & Clark encountering a grizzly bear that measured 8 feet 7 1/2 inches, we got the yard stick out and measured how tall the bear would be and imagined it standing above us. After studying a biography, he has played the role of the "old" Columbus, Daniel Boone, Powhatan, and others imaginatively drawing upon his knowledge of the person by recounting his life story to the "grandchildren."

Then, we get into the History Notebook, in which the pages are different daily, not the same old boring format over and over. I simply print out a different layout conducive to what we're studying with text boxes for drawing HISTORY CARTOONs , places for text, and a title. He LOVES drawing cartoons. When you add an element of comedy to history, it really hooks the kids in. He is able to think deeper and capture the essence of the lesson with the cartoons. They're not intended to be "historically accurate" - he does that with his written summary - but it does allow him to be creative and to find a deeper perspective on the lessons.

Studying history and immersing him in the STORIES of history is what allows kids to remember the timeline and dates. And, I highly encourage homeschoolers to teach history mainly chronologically. Studying Greece, Rome, the Enlightenment, the French Revolution, and the French & Indian War BEFORE studying the American Revolution makes it so much richer. When they encounter again John Locke, Cicero, the Roman Republic, Greece's democratic ideas, it all makes so much more sense. And, they love connections. "Oo! I know that! I've heard of him!" We began with Creation and have taken four years to get up to Lewis & Clark, but with the immersion and depth, he remembers so much. It's well worth the time:)

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Kathy

Many days start with BrainPop. We watched about Washington and the Revolutionary War. When we planned our vacation, we searched for Revolutionary War battlefield sites. We camped at one in Elmira, NY. Then, we attended a a Revolutionary War reenactment. My son helped churn butter and was invited to light the fuse on the cannon. He can't wait join his crew again at this year's reenactment!!

5 years ago · Like · Comment

srlee

I used to be a Civil War reenacting, so I enjoy wearing historical costumes. I love how wearing historical clothing helps you feel more apart of an event than just merely a spectator. So, I've made my kids and I authentic clothing and our favorite two events were the 150th Gettysburg and Defender's Day at Ft. McHenry, MD. It was so great to see my kids interact with people who came to the events, even one time where my 6 year old son took on a teaching role and was showing another boy how to play an historical game. Given my background in living history and museum work, that sure made this mama really happy to see!

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Lana

My daughter enjoys adding drawings and dates to her timeline. My kids also enjoy watching historical YouTube videos .

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Cindy

We use The Story of the World and the accompanying activity book. What really makes it come alive though are the videos that I find on YouTube. There are documentaries and interesting videos on every topic, so I look through at the beginning of the week and find good videos to go with our chapter and we watch that while we are eating lunch. They love it and we are all learning so much!

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Funfam

We are a military family stationed in a Germany. We will read up on and watch any movies we can find before visiting
historical sites throughout Europe! My 9 year old is truly being world schooled and experiencing history first hand
By walking the beaches of Normandy, touching remains of Berlin Wall, walking streets of Pompeii, visiting Coloseum in Rome...the list goes on. There is so much history in our own United States and I plan to do the same when we
Return. Reading, seeing, touching, experiencing.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Funfam

We are a military family stationed in Germany and we are going out and seeing where history took place! We will

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Jules

We love to listen to history. He have discovered Your Story Hour stories and they have so many about history. We play them at home, we have them in the van and on iPods. I also hunt for book for us to read together. We have also learned a lot of history from listening to the Bible in living sound. We like to look up on the internet words that we do not recognize and look at pictures if old ways of doing things. We also like to visit Historical sites and museums. And grandpa loves to share stories from his olden days of growing up on a farm in the horse days, just before cars made there way into his life.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

ruby

When I read from our history texts my son uses his creative mind to act out the scenes. We also do projects such as making a castle out of cardboard during medieval history, dressing in togas for Roman and Greek history,cooking food that people ate during different time periods and inviting friends to join us for a feast. We have made our own stain glass windows when studying medieval churches, a family coat of arms and written our names in cuneiform, heiroglyphs and runes.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

shj

We use activity books by Laurie Carlson to make history so fun. She's got activities for the study of the Middle Ages, the Old West, Colonial America, and North American Native Americans, ancient Greece and Rome, and even Thomas Edison. My kids have had so much fun doing these simple-to-do activities.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

SallyBays

Living in a nationally registered historic district, the kids just have to walk outside to see history.I also subscribe to "Ask" and "Dig" as well as "Archaeology" magazines, the kids often read articles that lead to a real fascination of different ancient cultures and time periods. Of course we stop at all the historic monuments on our road trips, and hit up museums as well. Next year we will be studying American History and are planning an East coast history tour through Williamsburg, DC, Boston, and up through Maine. My mom has written a book on the Oregon trail and is excited to do a driving tour with the kids and myself from Missouri to Oregon, following the trail as closely as we can. I believe that hands on is a great way to really bring history alive, and put it into perspective.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

sweetpea

Topic literature, Mystery of History activities, state history activities, relevant PBS shows...

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Sandwichinwi

I don't have to do much to bring history alive for my kids--they do it on their own. Through many years if homeschooling, they've heard exciting stories, great literature, and have had lots of time to play and develop their imaginations. Consequently, when we read about something new using living books for history, it's not long before they are dressing up and acting it out, or building a teepee with branches, or setting up the Playmobils in a scene.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Vikingmom70

I'd say, the best thing we do is completely submerse ourselves in each lesson. Finding every type of cooking and craft and day to day chores that were done in that time. We have some amazing museum's here in Ohio and when we visit we even dress in period dress. We may get some funny looks but we don't care it is part of the fun! When other Moms ask what we are doing, I simply say "Studying the Colonial time period" or whatever we are studying that day :)

5 years ago · Like · Comment

Allie

We are studying the first half of American History this year. In addition to reading lots of great books, we do tons of hands on projects that range from constructing our own tipis during Native American history to making our own soap during Colonial history. We live near Atlanta, so we are lucky that there are lots of Civil War sites for visiting as well. We take our history literature with us and read it on site before exploring. History is currently my kids' favorite subject, and I'm really enjoying the chance to go back and re-learn all the things I have forgotten!

5 years ago · Like · Comment

blessedintx

To bring history alive, we use a multi-sensory unit study approach with Konos. In studying explorers, particularly Marco Polo, we made a map of his travels and glued real things to the map showing what he had discovered in those places. We learned about the camels he rode on an made a camel sock puppet. We visited an exhibit and touched real silk. We learned to make some Chinese foods and we smelled unusual spices. It was an amazingly fun and memorable study for all of us!

5 years ago · Like · Comment

lukermom

Bring History Alive month is every month for us!!!! For as far back as I can remember my dad would always tell us stories about history. Once he started taking weekends off (well mostly since he owned his own business) we started taking family day trips. We would just pack all of us in the car and drive. Anytime we would drive past a place that had a historical past he would tell us all about it. To me it was some of the best times of my life. Thabks to my dad I never had to crack open a history book in school. Lol sometimes I was more informed than my history teachers. I have since passed this tradition on to my kids. During the nice months we load up in the car and drive. I tell them about the history of the area including my childhood memories! We take time out to play, walk and picnic. Now we dont travel as far as we did when I was younger but that is only because I have a toddler who doesnt like super long car rides. But when he gets older watch out world, because here we come. When we are stuck inside (like now) we pull out our Cornerstones of History books and read. Sometimes we pick a person out of the book and take turns speaking out the book :-) My kids fav is the Titanic. They(ages 11&6) know the complete history including dates, times and theories. My fav is the Civil War. My husbands is the history of the Railroads. We are cultivating our youngest to have a large love for history like the rest of us. We are currently working on Family History. I hope my childre remember this time in our lives as fondly as I did and carry on the tradition with their children.

5 years ago · Like · Comment

anna

During February, we have a big month of "hands on". The whole month we do a project of boiling down sap to syrup like the pioneers or Indians did. We act out history and end up with around 20 gallons of maple syrup! (This can also be done on a small scale, just tapping a tree or two and boiling the sap down in the kitchen....some years we have done it that way). For President's Day, we act out Lincoln (we have the hat and beard) and other Presidents.....it brings them to life instead of just reading a "book".

6 years ago · Like · Comment

shj

When we study history, we often use one of the history activity books by Laurie Carlson to help us get an idea of
what it was like to live in a particular time period. She has activity books for US history, Ancient Greece, Rome,
and Egypt, and the Middle ages, as well as American Indian Life. (Amazon has all of her books --just type
"Laurie Carlson history activity books" and you'll see them). We use History of the US
by Joy Hakim as a rich, story of US history, and we use the Usborne Encyclopedias history as well.
The neat thing about Usborne is that there are internet links for each topic. When we studied Egypt, there
was a link to teach us how to write (online) with hieroglyphs, and an animated treasure hunt. When we studied history, the Middle ages there was an animated archeological dig to find out information. I prescreen text and activities
to make sure they're uplifting and appropriate for our family,
When we studied the Middle ages, we read from a lift-the-flap book about castles, built a cardboard castle
from a Klutz kit, made catapoults, and made food, crafts and games from one of Laurie's books. We read child-ren's
ren's books set in the Middle Ages.
We have studied about the history of the American Indian tribes this semester. We read Sign of the Beaver
together, did various crafts and games, and read Joy Hakim's first volume.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

kenkhan

My son learns more if he can visualize and experience. What we do is brainstorm what is it we want to focus on and then we look at scenes from a movie or listen to music that depicts that time. We then draw pictures about it and how we imagine it is to live at that time and talk about it. The more details the better.

There are times when that part of history we are learning relates to our family's ancestry. So after reading about it, I tell him stories handed down from the older generation of how his ancestors lived their lives. This gives him a personal piece of that history which makes him proud of his heritage. This helps him understand how our family has transitioned with the changing history. More importantly, it help nurture a love of learning history.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

abscdsj

Once we have chosen a particular period in our history timeline to study we look up the style of clothing and food for that period. We usually spend at least a week on each historical event. We dress like that time in history and eat dinners as close to theirs as we can (sometimes we can't certain things), and we play games of that period. We read interesting fictional books and watch historical documentaries.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

rzook6

We are Confederate Civil War re-enacters that live 20 minutes north of Gettysburg, PA. This makes for very interesting conversations with people we meet. My children learn a lot by just having conversations with adults on different Historical subjects.

6 years ago · Like · Comment
srlee: So great to know there are other homeschoolers out there who reenact! I don't reenact anymore, but we still love dressing up. We live 1 hour south of Gettysburg which is nice. We go up there a lot.
5 years ago · Like

nisacatbo

We MAKE history! There are so many political rallies these days in the news and in your town or state. They see that event on the news and say, I was there! I'm in history. Since we've attended a few on issues that are important to us, the kids are much more interested and able to picture themselves in other times. To live history makes it come alive.

6 years ago · Like · Comment
Audy: Oh, yes. That is great. We do the same. This last year we helped get a political forum together with area preachers. It was great for the kids.
nisacatbo likes this. · 6 years ago · Like

joruth

In my years of homeschooling, I have found that my children have loved learning history quite simply by reading superb historical fiction. We have laughed, cried and rejoiced along with the characters in the novels we have read, all while absorbing history. This year, we have been studying American history through books such as 'Walk the Worlds Rim', 'By the Great Horn Spoon', 'Caddie Woodlawn', and the 'Great Turkey Walk', to name just a few. I truly believe that they will never forget these books nor the great heritage of this nation that they have learned from them.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

olwyngdh

Bringing history alive is very important for my daughter, and I have found it easy to do. We used to live in the Hampton Roads area of VA, and spent a lot of time in WIlliamsburg, Yorktown, and Jamestown. We now live in Western MA, and have Sturbridge Village, Storowtown Village, Deerfield Village, etc. Since we are into Geneology, we also incorporate that into our history studies and try to imagine what the lives of our ancestors was like--this is easy with some of my husband's ancestors since they are actually in the history books! We visit National Historical Sites, read American Girl books and do American Girl crafts, and cook from the few American Girl cookbooks we have been able to find. Medieval and Rennaissance history is even easier, as we belong to the Society for Creative Anachronism and actually do historical recreation of that time period!

6 years ago · Like · Comment
Audy: That is great! We have done many of those as well. Never thougth of the American girl thing though. Hmmmm. Think I sold all those books in my garage sale. I had them all and never used or looked at them. :(
6 years ago · Like
olwyngdh: My daughter is an AG addict--any time I can pull a doll or a doll's story into a lesson is a good thing. She even took her birthday money last year and bought a desk for the dolls so at least one of them can do school with her every day--often we switch dolls as often as lessons because a certain girl is better with this subject than that one, and they can "help" her. Right now we are doing Rev War, so Felicity and Elizabeth are involved and arguing the loyalist vs patriot positions. Yes, my daughter has a huge imagination :)
6 years ago · Like

Audy

I thought I would take the time and reveal how I make history come alive for my kids. In this post you will see what I use and how I use it. And as a side note, I think I learn more than my kids learn. I am learning the right and true history for the first time!

With God's help and lead I kind of made my own History Curriculum this year and I love it. The kids love it too. It involves many ways of teaching and learning. I found 3 wonderful books at a garage sale. They were on my book shelf for sometime, but did not realize it or remember it. Then one day I was looking for a book to read and I grabbed one. I quickly realized this was directed towards kids and was amazed at the facts and truth it held. These books are from Peter Marshall s Ministries. They say from age 8-12 but I think it should say Infant-Adult. My 3 and 5 year old enjoy it as much as my 8 and 10 year old.

After talking to a fellow HS mom, who I found out was also using these books, I rushed to ordered the Activity Books that go along with them. She said they were great and she was right. They say age 5-8 but again, good for all.

A few weeks later I remembered a DVD I had received by coming a member of HSLDA for free. I found it and was thrilled because I had it stuffed in a cupboard for 2 years and never opened it. It was Drive Thur History.

Fast forward a few weeks and I found a set of CD's that I did not even know I owned. They were For God and Country Adventures in Odyssey.

Then I found a map of the world in the weirdest place and can't seem to find who it belongs to. For now I am using it with the books to help with geography.

I recently ordered for free via Listia some Civil War replicas. I am so excited to get these so my kids can see what things looked like back then. One more visual addition to our learning.

Now that you know what I have I will explain how I use it.

Because my kids enjoy History it is usually the first thing we do together for school. The time however, is never the same. All 4 kids (3-10) sit around the coffee table with a tub of crayons in the middle. I take some corresponding pages out of one of the activity books and copy them for each child. They do the pages while I read. Sometimes it is one sheet sometimes it is several and I never use all the sheets. I pick and choose what I think they would like and what goes with that day's story.

Now here is the key, show emotion in your reading. Many times I am up on the coffee table like I am looking starboard while I read parts of the book (why not I am in the comfort of my own home). Other times I am slamming my hand on the coffee table as I read the debates between the continental congress. I will even lay my hand on a child's back as I read of a man pleading with God. But most of the time I sit in the rocking chair using different (horrible sounding) accents with fluctuations in my voice. At times I look up and the kids are starring at me instead of doing their worksheets or coloring pages (which is fine with me). I ask them, "What?" They simply respond, "You are funny!"

At times we will act out what we read. This does not always work but with the first book about Columbus it worked great, till we got to the killing. We did not act that out! The kids learn even more this way and retain it longer. We also pull out the map in the middle of my reading when they want to see where a country or state or river is.

After reading about some people I would put in the Drive Thru History DVD. For instance when we read about Washington, we watched Dave Stotts on his tour and life of Washington. By the way Dave Stotts is drop down on the ground and roll all over laughing funny! The kids love his shows. This would hit home even more what we had just read about.

The For God and Country CD's have been invaluable in the van. They get to hear what it was like for the slaves trying to escape and how it must have felt as the soldiers fought for freedom. It is yet another way to learn that is at a completely separate time from doing the lesson. This forces the brain and imagination to work. They pull up the stories from their memory and their mind pulls it all together, what they heard me read, what they saw and colored, what they sometimes acted out and now what they are hearing in radio theater.

So there you have it. It is soooo easy I can't even begin to explain it. I do all the kids together and the preparation is simply looking at what I am about to read and copying a few pages. That is it. Easy peasy and my kids love it. It seems to be one of their favorite parts of the day and I pray to God they continue to enjoy it. I look forward to God giving me even more ideas, hopefully that involve a camper and heading out to actually step foot where our forefathers stood and where many prayed.

Let me mention that this is God's gift to me. I didn't search for this. I prayed and he gave it to me. I can take no credit for what I have done and written here. He literally landed it in my lap and I did it step by step as he showed me. So don't think for a minuet you can not do it. If I can anyone can. Just pray and follow God's steps. He may have something even more wonderful and fitting for your family.

6 years ago · Like · Comment
Carrie in NC: Audy, I LOVE your description! Way to go! Thanks for sharing in such detail. I wish I could give you a dozen Likes! Yes, God is great and gracious to show us the way :-D
6 years ago · Like
Audy: Thank you so much. Was not sure anyone would take the time to read it. I wrote this a few years back. I have added so much to my history now. I hope to get time to put that on as well. God continues to lead me to REAL history without hardly looking for it. I am so thankful. It is their favorite part of school. To think I hated history when I went to school. What a difference.
6 years ago · Like

Nanjoy

We love history! Our local historic society offers special classes and hands on activities. I schedule homeschool classes with them. We've done corn husk dolls, spinning, colonial life, the industrial revolution, and state history. As a family we participate in a "living history" program as re-enactors. Each spring the homeschool community re-enacts for private and public school visitors to a historic mill. We live near Valley Forge National Park & Philadelphia. Love those field trips to known and little known venues that surrouond this area. Lapbooks, history pockets and a literature rich curriculum all work together to bring history to life for us.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

onlysmallthings

My son loves history. We live in Pennsylvania, near Gettysburg National Battlefield...so, we often visit the battlefield. As he is a Civil War buff, we are making a point to visit most of the semi-local battlefields during the 150th anniversary of the conflict. We purchase a yearly membership in the Heritage Society which provides free admission to many living history museums and living history sites in Pennsylvania. Nearby in Philadelphia we have visited Independence Hall, and have plans to see Washington D.C. and New York City (Ellis Island/Statue of Liberty) this upcoming school year. Inside the home we use lots of biographies, non-fiction, documentaries, Jim Weiss audiobooks and hands on activities to coincide with each topic we're studying -- and this spring we are painting a permanent time line on the stairs to our attic. We live in a 80+ year old home with a lg. attic and a wide stairway. We installed bright lights and we're painting the plaster walls and adding time period markings so we may post data accordingly. Now we'll have a large visual representation of the content we study each year--and it won't be trapped inside a binder or crammed on a poster in a corner of our schoolroom! :)

6 years ago · Like · Comment

D Jackson

Although very new to homeschooling, I use art to bind history into a visual experience. For example when Sierra learned about Early Civilizations, she crafted a pyramid. As we move further into these topics she will learn Indian beading, using examples from the pictures from her lessons. She really seems to enjoy this as the art brings History alive for her.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

ancientanne

"Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it!" If my kids had a dime for every time I have said that! We are on our third voyage through time now, using Story of the World as a template. History is a "story!" We use all types of historical fiction media: books, films, audio tapes and video (We LOVE Horrible History on You Tube!) As the kids get older they can evaluate the accuracy of different works. Another great we've done is historical monologues and short stories (TRISMS curriculum). Plays are also a great way for the kids to really get into the story. If they get the story, characters and all, they'll get the history!

6 years ago · Like · Comment

Christa B

To bring history alive for my children, we read autobiographies and historical fiction set in the time period we are studying, and then we go on "extended field trips" (aka family camping vacations) to see the areas we have been learning about - the first year we did this was "The Year of Laura Ingalls Wilder" - we read each of her books, one per month, and when we were finished, we drove to Wisconsin, Minnesota, and South Dakota to see where she had actually lived. This year we are studying Colonial History, reading a variety of real and fictional diaries, and visiting Jamestown and Williamsburg in the summer. My girls love helping plan the trips, and picking out what they most want to see, and especially wearing (ALL year round, no matter the weather!) the period clothes their "Grammu" makes them.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

tmhinton

We love history. We read living books, use songs to memorize history statement through Classical Conversations, get library books, and watch videos on Discovery Streaming Plus and Netflix. Additionally, my kids love to act out history stories with our puppet theatre as well as make paper dolls and crafts to go along with the time in history. For instance, we have colonial paper dolls for colonial times, we have made pyramids and hieroglyphics and our own papyrus paper. We had made homemade mummies, and Indian teepees and woven baskets. We try to incorporate some fun project to each time period we study. The kids love to connect this.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

mousebouncer

We like to make recipes from the time period, take field trips, craft projects like making the Parthenon out of toilet paper tubes, reading literature from the time period, watching documentaries, and music from the time period all help history come alive.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

RC from CS

History is our favorite subject! While we use a text as a spine (and moreso the older they get), I find as many living books and historical fiction books as I can. If something captures their interest...we stay on it for a while. We color, we make maps, we make huge timelines and we play quiz shows (their favorite is when I have to answer the questions). Although they sometimes take forever, we also do a lot of hands-on projects. I used to wonder why and if it was really worth it. But those really are what they remember. We keep history notebooks with records of everything they've done. It's almost always the hands-on projects that spark their memories about the event or idea. Mummifying a chicken might be messy but no one will ever forget it.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

twen1977

We also act out the story after we read it. If there are too many characters for us then we use little figures to act it out. Once we even used blocks as people.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

ATennelle

We tell our history lessons as stories that makes it more interesting than dry text. While I'm reading, I assign parts to the kids and they act out the story. They have so much fun being kings, queens, peasants and samurai! Then we put the events in our Book of Centuries so we can see how it all relates to each other. To really make it come alive, we make costumes of the period, crafts, watch videos and as often as possible, go visit the places where history happened. History is one of our favorite subjects!

6 years ago · Like · Comment

Momof3inTN

We visited Lincoln State Park this fall and stopped at one of the monuments depicting Lincoln's young life growing up in Kentucky from age 7-21 years...this particular one showed his height at each of these ages - we photographed the kids who were 17, 13, and 10 standing next to each marker at their respective ages. The children have always read about how tall he was and even seen pictures but to experience this in person, especially how it relates to you, was FUN & FASCINATING! My son, the youngest, was closest in height only being 2" shy of Lincoln at that age.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

Momof3inTN

We visited Lincoln State Park this fall and stopped at one of the monuments depicting Lincoln's young life growing up in Kentucky...this particular one showed his height from age 7-21 years, which also showed how tall he was at each age. We photographed the kids who were 7, 13, & 10 standing next to each marker - my son, the youngest, came closest to Lincoln's height at age 10 only being 2" shy.

6 years ago · Like · Comment
Momof3inTN: Please remove this post...some items were omitted.
6 years ago · Like

bakers540

Two favorite history lessons come to mind. The first is when we studied ancient history and we made crispy treat mummies. We made our Egyptian creations complete with organs in fondant canopic jars. The kids and I couldn't have been prouder. Though I'm sure it looked strange sitting out among the other Christmas treats.
Our other memorable lesson was a play about Julias Ceasar. I handed the chapter over to my five girls ages 13-2 and let them make their own skit. We taped the skit and it had plenty of wonderdul blunders. They still watch and laugh when two year old cleopatra had fallen asleep.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

Carrie in NC

We have done so many things, especially the last couple of years, that really bring history alive for my younger children. We dressed in colonial costumes to visit Williamsburg, and my youngest (then not quite 3yo) would not stop marching and singing "Yankee Doodle." He continues to have a fascination with Gen. Washington, including insisting on riding horsie-back--but I didn't have a white shirt like the general's horse! My DD filmed the boys having a war council with the General--oh were they cute, and rather accurate in the troop movements, too! They build Lego cities and use their many different-colored Army men to reenact battles. When we visited Mt. Vernon, the boys got to meet Lady Washington! And, our tour guide was very impressed that my 10yo recognized the key to the Bastille hanging in the entryway of the house. I really liked seeing Lady W's clothing--I might have fit in her shoes (but, of course, they don't let anyone touch the items!). I never realized just how tiny she was, especially in contrast to her husband who was 6'3"!

We hope to visit some 1812 and Civil War sites in the next couple of years--especially because of the anniversaries. We are blessed to live in the Southeast USA where there are many sites and lots of historical museums.

There's so much more that I could tell, but it's time to get looking at my teacher's spine to see what other activities we can do to reinforce the early 1800s, including the Lewis & Clark Expedition and the lead-up to the (American) War of 1812. Thanks, Diana Waring and History Revealed!

6 years ago · Like · Comment

niudongma

We use Classical Conversations curriculum. The kids get to recite everyday the timeline they were learning that week plus previous weeks and the history sentences as well. If they have any questions on any of the event they were memorizing, I will read out the back of the timeline card and Google some images for them to see!

6 years ago · Like · Comment

4jdelacruz

We are so fortunate to live in an area that is rich in History! First we make sure that we pick a curriculum that is fun and hands on . We make time lines, draw in our history notebooks, act out lessons, and use magazines, the internet, and books to dig deeper. My favorite way is to actually go visit the sites of what we have learned or want to learn more about. We are about an hour from Nashville, and have visited The hermitage, Belle meade plantation, Tenn state museum and so much more! We will even get to see the original Emancipation Proclamation which is coming to the state museum this month! I love history and hope my children will follow suit!

6 years ago · Like · Comment

Dmmetler

Playmobil-we have Egypt, Ancient Rome, and Medieval sets, and those (along with Legos, paper, cardboard, play dough,
And lots of other craft supplies, toy animals, and small dolls) to create whole worlds. I usually don't realize just how much
Had been absorbed until I see what comes out in play.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

MyLittleCaboose

Two years ago I took my two kids on 15,000 mile cross-country road trip from California to Canada to Georgia to Mexico and back home to California. We tent-camped 80 out of our 120 nights on the road, the rest of the time staying with family and friends.

We learned about the history of national parks as we drove across the country. We learned about historic sites we saw like Mt. Rushmore and many national monuments. We also learned about great American leaders like President Jimmy Carter when we visited the Carter Center in Atlanta and Carter's hometown in Plains, Georgia, and Martin Luther King Jr. and the civil rights movement when we visited Birmingham, Alabama. And we got to learn a lot about native Americans and their suffering at the hands of our government through-out American history, as we drove through reservations from Montana to Minnesota to North Carolina to Oklahoma to Arizona.

It was a trip I'd never dreamed we'd be able to do; it truly made American history come alive!

6 years ago · Like · Comment

MyLittleCaboose

Two years ago I took my two kids on 15,000 mile cross-country road trip from California to Canada to Georgia to Mexico and back home to California. We tent-camped 80 out of our 120 nights on the road, the rest of the time staying with family and friends.

We learned about the history of national parks as we drove across the country. We learned about historic sites we saw like Mt. Rushmore and many national monuments. We also learned about great American leaders like President Jimmy Carter when we visited the Carter Center in Atlanta and Carter's hometown in Plains, Georgia, and Martin Luther King Jr. and the civil rights movement when we visited Birmingham, Alabama. And we got to learn a lot about native Americans and their suffering at the hands of our government through-out American history, as we drove through reservations from Montana to Minnesota to North Carolina to Oklahoma to Arizona.

It was a trip I'd never dreamed we'd be able to do; it truly made American history come alive!

6 years ago · Like · Comment

4jdelacruz

We are so fortunate to live in an area that is rich in History! First we make sure that we pick a curriculum that is fun and hands on . We make time lines, draw in our history notebooks, act out lessons, and use magazines, the internet, and books to dig deeper. My favorite way is to actually go visit the sites of what we have learned or want to learn more about. We are about an hour from Nashville, and have visited The hermitage, Belle meade plantation, Tenn state museum and so much more! We will even get to see the original Emancipation Proclamation which is coming to the state museum this month! I love history and hope my children will follow suit!

6 years ago · Like · Comment

bbmsmom

We use the IEW (Institute for Excellence in Writing) series for our children. We choose the curriculum that focuses on history. In it the children are to re-write historical documents and stories. After each paper, each student is given a chance to present their paper in front of a group. At the end of the year our students get to pick a historical figure, research them, make a costume and present their big research paper as that character. We love it...something to look forward each year.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

mtnmom

We joined a Tarheel Junior Historian Club, sponsored by the NC Museum of History. Our local clubs were held at local state historic sites, but anyone could do one anywhere. Through the clubs my daughter learned history through doing historic crafts, participating in History Alive presentations, doing historic reenactments, entering statewide history contests and, because of her activity in the club, when she was old enough, she was hired as an intern at a state historic site.
If you live in NC, go to ncmuseumofhistory.org and find a local THJHC. If you live in another state, check out your state museum of history website. You will be amazed at what you find. Even if you don't have history clubs, there are so many resources these museums make available to educators (including homeschoolers).

6 years ago · Like · Comment

mdbkids

Dress up and make the food! The food always gets them going:-)

6 years ago · Like · Comment

4Him

LEGOs!!! My son, age 9, is creating an animated movie using Legos. The Lego characters are acting out the "Declaration of Independence, and my son is narrating it by reading the section of the Declaration that the Legos are demonstrating. He has learned so much so far, and I admit, I have, too! This lesson not only brings out our Christian heritage and need to stand up for our values, but also encompasses vocabulary, phonics, computer skills, and reading for the purpose of a dramatic illustration. I am new to this site, but I hope to find a place to post it. Kids who like Legos are sure to be amazed to see the "king" bowing to the people as a way to show "deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed." This really stuck with my son. I, just then, as I was typing this, asked him what the part of the declaration said the above, and he quoted it to me from memory. I hope his movie will be a great tool for other teachers when he is done.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

Homeschoolmamax2

We do quite a few things. We have been doing the Electronic Field Trips from Colonial Williamsburg for years now. She listens to all the question and answer sessions and completes all the online activities they offer for each field trip. We have been starting to travel more since my little one is getting older. We went to Medieval Times to incorporate birthday festivities with history and learning.;) This year we are embarking on a "learn Texas history through travel" adventure. We visited the birthplace of Texas this year. We visited the living history farm to see what life was like before and after Texas became a state. We toured the house of the first President of Texas and the museum on the site which follows the timeline of the republic to entering into the union. We do history lapbooks chronologically and started the first one in ancient Egypt. I also LOVE to read historical fiction as a family that follows along with what we are learning in history. We take virtual tours on google maps and other historical sites and it is almost like we are there!

6 years ago · Like · Comment
hieveryone: Our kids have begged to go to Medieval Times. Did you find it appropriate for kids 12 and under?
6 years ago · Like

Our family participates in historical re enactments. We started with visiting historical sites, forts, & events. Our oldest son really wanted to participate in the events too. When the kids were 6 and 4 we signed up with a local group that commemorates the local battles from the War of 1812. We now also are members of a French & Indian War re enactment group as well. Being re enactors has brought history to life for us, & for the many visitors we get to talk with at each event. Experiencing what is what really like in Colonial days, including sleeping in canvas tents, cooking over a fire, carrying water for the troops, wearing wool dresses in the hot sun, & watching my husband and son out on the battlefield has been incredible for our entire family.
We've been able to visit forts and historical sites all across the Northeast & go inside in the evenings when they are closed to visitors to participate in English country dances or listen to bagpipers as the sun goes down over the fort walls is just like stepping back in time.

6 years ago · Like · Comment
: We are also thinking about starting to participate in Civil War events as well, and try to attend as many as possible.
6 years ago · Like
Audy: I want to do this!
6 years ago · Like

MOM/5+2

The one thing that has helped my kids in the area of history is having a mom/teacher who gets excited about learning history right along with them. While we are teaching a specific era, event, or type of history, we find books at our local library to read and try to find a field trip or two to go along with it. For instance, when I was teaching high school civics last year, we took a trip to a local City Council Meeting. They recognized us, put us on the agenda, and we were able to meet personally with the Mayor afterward. We also scheduled one of our US Congressmen to come to speak to our co-op class one Friday morning. He was very interesting and interested in the students. I had them write down one question for him ahead of time and we did a Q/A session at the end. The kids were talking about it for long time.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

Robin

Our favorite way to bring history alive is to go on local historic guided walking tours that cover certain time periods in history - civil war, the revolution, etc. Re-enactments and historic villages are also favorites. The actors are a wealth of knowledge that you don't learn in the typical history books.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

hsmom56514

Our family has two special ways we bring history alive. First we read, read, read! Although we have used textbooks, it seems we remember so much more when we read fiction and nonfiction books on the subject. Right now we are studying the late 19th century and reading Louisa May Alcott and Laura Ingalls Wilder.
Another thing we do is visit. We have been able to visit Egyptian museums, Laura's homes, Mount Rushmore and Crazy Horse, and many other fun places. But don't limit yourself to "historical" places. There are great places of history where ever you live! We live in Minnesota where the Mighty Mississippi begins as a creek you can walk across! Check out local and state parks for history programs. Don't forget to check your local library, too. They often have prams . Whatever you do, have fun!

6 years ago · Like · Comment
hsmom56514: Sorry, local libraries have programs, not prams! LoL
6 years ago · Like

arcticmom

There aren't any history reenactments available in my area (or for thousands of miles, for that matter), so we make our own fun. My children like to act out the history lesson with their stuffed animals or Lego mini-figures as I read aloud or afterward. I've video-recorded a few times so they have it to review, but mostly so I can always have it for the fond memories.
I also have my kids keep a timeline that we made ourselves. Even small pictures of books we read go onto it. We watch documentaries from Netflix, the library, or online and have discussions with other family members to include others' knowledge & insight. We play history board games and have a few history apps on the ipod. I love helping them investigate the science behind the history, answering "How'd they do that?", and the government & economics that influence history as well. I tie our Bible lessons to our history lessons so the topics are woven together. Hands-On History is a wonderful (and fun!) resource we've used as a family activity to act out history with a focus on problem-solving. It really drives it home for them when they come to realizations for themselves.
Other fun things we've done to bring history alive are finding recipes from the time period or civilization we're studying, buidlling miniature replicas (pyramids, catapults, etc.), trying out life as it was then (making homemade candles, soap, etc.) and other hands-on activities. It's amazing to see the connections even elementary-age kids can make!

6 years ago · Like · Comment

heliconian

We always do Colonial Williamsburg, and we love it! This year, we've also been doing a lot of history role playing in a small group. We've been a council of village elders trying to decide what to do about the approaching plague. We've put Martin Luther on trial for heresy. We've tried to negotiate to form alliances for the French Revolution, tried to figure out who really killed Mark Anthony, and we've taken roles in the American Reovolution (the Patriots won).

I love anything that makes it easier for my children to understand that history is full of real people that did their best to solve the real problems in their lives. Whether they wind up laughing or angry, they care and they have opinions.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

doodlemakers

As unschoolers, we come across history as an adventure of our own choosing. We use resources from everywhere. We read biographies and fiction related to the people and time period we are interested in. We watch movies. We build replicas of ancient worlds. We bake recipes from other time periods and countries. We live the history...definitely not the boring, dry text book history of my school days.

6 years ago · Like · Comment
doodlemakers: Didn't mean to comment again...just trying to select my avatar pic but it keeps commenting...oh well, I will just remain a faceless meeple :-)
hieveryone likes this. · 6 years ago · Like
doodlemakers: Oh, I forgot about our living history farm where we volunteer...I teach colonial medicine and the kids help with butter making, wool carding and spinning, songs and games at our local historical farm...fun learning at its best!
3 people like this. · 6 years ago · Like

doodlemakers

As unschoolers, we come across history as an adventure of our own choosing. We use resources from everywhere. We read biographies and fiction related to the people and time period we are interested in. We watch movies. We build replicas of ancient worlds. We bake recipes from other time periods and countries. We live the history...definitely not the boring, dry text book history of my school days.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

wimom

We immerse and act out as much history as we can. Earlier this week we read about the fall of Rome and acted out the different wars between the Celts and Romans. Then we pretended the kids were on a flying carpet (on a blanket being pulled around on our hard wood floor), while we "looked" at all that Rome once was. We have acted out battles by making our helmets and shields from diaper boxes. The kids get so much more understanding this way.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

wpgrahamster

This year in world history, we are working on our family tree and putting our family members into the history as well. We have researched the goings on in different time periods and locations based on where our family members have been. In addition to the research online and in books, the children are interviewing our oldest family members and finding out what life was like when they were little.

6 years ago · Like · Comment

mdbkids

Colonial Williamsburg EFT's AND lots of visiting. We've even been so lucky as to be IN those movies! Dressing up, playing the part, doing the chores, etc really help the meaning of history hit home! Immersion is the key!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

CindyH

Lots of immersion and play! We read living books from the time period and then bring as much of it as possible into our home. For example, when we studied Vikings, we hung a sheet across our living room for a sail and re-enacted Leif Eriksson's voyage to Vineland. We've made faux coonskin caps and fringed leather pouches for the boys to wear. I always love catching them as they play Lewis & Clark or frontiersmen! We also enjoy going to Civil War re-enactments and historical places such as Yorktown, the frontier farm in Staunton, VA, and Indian burial mounds.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

jusNanc

To help bring History Alive, use a large box (ie washing machine or fridge box) and let the kids turn it into a time machine. Then let them dress up in time period attire or bring an "artifact" from the same period you are studying, (something different each lesson). This creates a kind of "show and tell" as well as allowing the kids to demonstrate their understanding of the current topic, and encourages a little bit of research for even the youngest learners as they scramble to find something to bring to lesson time the day/night before. Then have your lesson inside your new time machine to top it off! Each child should tell why they chose to wear or bring their item and how it relates to what you are studying. Period attire could be something as simple as a newspaper hat, and an artifact could be as simple as a tomahawk made from a paper towel tube or a paint stirrer with a folded paper "football" on the end, or even a relevant picture book. (If your whole family/class can't fit in one box, try putting a few together, or making a tent with a sheet draped over furniture.)

7 years ago · Like · Comment

kelby1870

I take homeschool students on international student tours. There is nothing better than seeing the students faces as we enter the Coliseum in Rome. It's while we are there that history comes alive as they realize they are standing in an arena where Christians died for their faith!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

J\'s Mom

Total and complete immersion! For example, yesterday was Ash Wednesday and after church service, we came home and read passages from THE history book, the Holy Bible, and talked about the timeline of Jesus' last 46 days on the earth. Then we watched The Passion of the Christ and discussed further what happened in those last days. My son TOTALLY gets what happened and I am so grateful that I have tools available to bring history alive.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

greenpalm

This is one area where I can count on a lot of help from my husband. He's a history buff. He really enjoys playing war games that are inspired by actual historic battles. My two boys are thrilled to play those with him. Additionally, we've taken the opportunity to visit battlefields on every vacation, from Chickmauga to Culloden Moor.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Anna P.

I love taking my daughters to the living museums in Wisconsin that are run by our Historical society. They can participate in activities the way the orginal settlers to the area would. We have sites in Wisconsin that correspond to several different time periods and ethnicities. It is great fun every time.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

umom

We go to historical re-enactment from all periods. Have been to Gettysburg, Pa more times than I can count, and we learn new thing everytime we go. Civil war military tactics, medicine, local history, period clothing and cooking and more. Fort Fredrick, Md is another favorite for the French and Indian War. We have walked the Underground Railroad trails, we have researched locally, and also at the previous site of Ft. Cumberland. Have walked the tunnels under Emmanuel Episcopal Church also in Cumberland Md, that led slaves to the river and on thier way to freedom. USAHEC in Carlise, Pa is frequented also with live exhibits, changing historical exhibits and reconstructions of each war past to present outside that you can actually go into and experience. Reading history books and multi media sources are a staple at our home. Role play of historical figures, period crafts and cooking are almost daily activities. There is a "Daniel Boone Fort" that was built by the entire family in our back yard. We more or less live history ebery day here.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

fostymom

Primarily by recording historical events in Sonlight's "Book of Time" timeline book. Resources include reading real life books, current events and God's World News magazine, History Channel, reading historical fiction like G A Henty and this timeline http://www.visionforum.com/browse/product/70-volume-ga-henty-library/?search=70+volume+henty&sortby=0, historical audiobooks and DVD's, graphic historical novels and from any history curriculum we "might" use. We cut pictures from old encyclopedias for the timeline.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Lifeschooling

My son and I usually start by reading books (both fiction and non-fiction), we will use online resources to expand upon what we have read and watch movies. We explore what it may have been like to live in times past by doing handicrafts, playing games, singing songs, and eating meals from the time period we're studying. If possible, we take advantage of local historical sites and museums to make a real connection to history. For example; we live near an old fur-trading post. Prior to our visit we read a fictional account of an Ojibwe boy and a trader as well as historical texts. While at the post, my son was able to complete tasks to become a "voyageur" such as carrying a pack of pelts, gathering wood for the fire, and signing a contract with a quill. We viewed historical artifacts in the museum. After our visit we gathered herbs to brew tea, learned how to start fire with a flint, cooked over an open fire, and took a canoe ride. We made wool felt and sewed a "sac feu". I'm not sure who had more fun, my son or myself, but we were definitely able to get an idea of what it may have been like.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

momtopaj

We try to take advantage of the National Park Service's Junior Ranger Program. Anytime we're planning a trip, we look to see if there's a national park that we can visit. There are also many within a 2 hour drive of our house. My kids love the Jr. Ranger programs, and it really gets them to interact with the Rangers.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

craftysoprano

We read Living Books - and we try to go on fieldtrips that really make them feel as if they are there at that point in history. We'll do crafts and games and/or cook something that would have been done during that time period too. We also try to find movies that echo that time period, but only if we can go to the actual place.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

outoftheboxmom

Library books, online research, cross-curriculum historical fiction//novels (Language Arts, math, science), Discovery Education Streaming through HB Co-op, a lot of discussion, essays, comparative history then to now!

7 years ago · Like · Comment
outoftheboxmom: And field trips. History is so much more than dates and events. It is the blueprint of who we are as a world and closer to home, who we are as a nation. If we don't know where we came from and our children don't know why history matters, we will never know where we are going! My child is very passionate about history and it is so critical that every child feel that passion!
7 years ago · Like

TMM

We were blessed to discover an retired gentleman in our community that is passionate about American History. He teaches American Government for several Boy Scout camps in our state. He is a true teacher and brings the subject alive with stories and details that many of our current history books leave out! We are bringing history alive by letting a person that is truly a lover of history teach our family.

7 years ago · Like · Comment
kimmierose: We had a women like that in a nursing home I used to be a Nurse in. She was a Rockford Peach(from that movie "A League of their own".)Our eldery folks should not be overlooked like they are.You never know what you may learn from them. They are our best teachers at times.
J\'s Mom likes this. · 7 years ago · Like

Cheryl D

My kids are not hands on learners (much to my sadness) but nothing gets them going like documentaries about the period we are studying. Thank heavens for Netflix!

7 years ago · Like · Comment
momtopaj: Yes! Movies have been a great source of history for my kids as well.
7 years ago · Like

WifetoMrL

I was taught in the public school system all my life, but not my children. So learning history has a sense of treasure hunting attached to it. We use DVD's, books from a on line library archives (they still talk about God in those), and audio stories to heighten our visual, audible, and emotional senses. Then we build lap books documenting what we have learned...this takes time and I prefer to enjoy it instead of rush it! This is the part that the textile learners (the like to touch it) really like. I am not great at history, but I share an enthusiasm to uncover it. This skill, I can only pray, will give my children the patience it takes to get to the bottom of things, research, and be creative with their presentations. Did I mention we tape some of their presentations? Priceless. During our study of 16 explorers, they could be anyone to represent their explorer. My son approached the video camera as a bee (with an Italian accent (we are not Italian?). He stated he was there when Vespucci was born...until the day he died(taking his hat off at that point of the presentation). You never forget your daughter comes as Hudson's mother and in her speech, when she mentioned he died...takes out her hanky and cries into it. History is a wonderful way to have all your senses exercised and you can make memories along the way.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

jhays

We live on the East Coast so we are surrounded by richly saturated historical areas. We bring history alive by visiting places such as Mt. Vernon (George Washingtons home). There is nothing that brings history more alive than to visit the actual place where it happened!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Chief wife

As a military family we have the blessing of traveling all over the world and we are a BIG believer in field trips. If my children can touch it, taste it, smell it, see it first-hand, they will remember it. So we have walked through the Rome Colosseum, the beaches of Normandy in France, the Titanic Walk in Ireland and most recently the Independence Hall, U.S. Mint & Benjamin Franklin's grave marker in Philadelphia, PA. Field trips are where it's at!

7 years ago · Like · Comment
toobin' mamma: That is amazing. My kids are the same way about learning. We have traveled quite a bit within the US, but I would love to be able to actually go to some of the place that we are learning about in Europe. We are planning a trip to Europe this spring and are looking at historical places to visit. You are very blessed to be able to do that for your children. They will always remember the memories.
7 years ago · Like
toobin' mamma: That is amazing. My kids are the same way about learning. We have traveled quite a bit within the US, but I would love to be able to actually go to some of the place that we are learning about in Europe. We are planning a trip to Europe this spring and are looking at historical places to visit. You are very blessed to be able to do that for your children. They will always remember the memories.
7 years ago · Like

jnpmom

I love teaching history to my own kids and the kids at our co-op. There are so many resources. I choose a topic, say the Civil War, which I am currently teaching. I read books to prepare. I find movies related (fiction and nonfiction) to the subject. I plan field trips around the topic. I make food related to the time period. I find worksheets on line. I find powerpoint presentations on line and make my own. Sometimes we make lap books. As we learn about history, there are so many things that mirror what is going on in society today. It has been eye opening to see how history repeats itself, and this has been a great source of conversation with my older kids.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Homeschoolinheels

My daughter is in 6th grade. She doesn't like dressing up or acting out historical scenes, but she loves to watch period videos, visit historical sites and write about what it might have been like to be someone living at that time. We use a timeline book to keep history events and facts in order. She likes comparing what was happening in one country to what was happening in another during the same period. Since she loves art, she is always interested to know which artists and writers were popular during a given period and likes to consider how the times influenced the art and vise versa. Since she is so artistic and tactile, we try to make history tangible. We create scrapbooks and do art projects consistent with the time period. It's always fun and interesting to see how people expressed themselves. She also likes to bake, so we try to find sweet treats from the period when possible. Can't wait to read all of the other posts for new and interesting ideas!

7 years ago · Like · Comment
kimmierose: I also have a 6th grade daughter who has the same likes and dislikes as your daughter. We actually just found an old recipe for Tac Bread. Made just the way they did 250 yrs ago. It was carried by the soldiers during war because they could keep it for months without it going bad. We are going to make some next week just to see what it was like for our founding father during that time period. We are you guys from? We live in NC.
7 years ago · Like

M5

I read and learn from every one of these comments. Thank you all.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

mom with a vision

We like to make lapbooks, posters, and art projects from that history period. We also like to watch videos on utube, brainpop, and time4learning. We also go to the library and read books. I try to do as many hands on projects that keep her attention and help her retain what she learned, she is a 2nd grader.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

deannaaich

We use food,games,birthdays/holidays as teaching oppotunities. Last year, on Presidents Day in our 3 person family, I was G. Washington w/ a cottonball-wig,My 5-year old was honest Abe w/ her construction paper stovepipe hat/beard,& dad was King David, coronation crown & all. We ate macaroni since A. Jackson brought a macaroni machine back from France & we ate cherry pie, in honor of George being unable to tell a lie (cherry tree) w/ a cardboard / tinfoil axe we made,that my daughter still plays with! We've had cowboy breakfasts ,a midevil feast for the middle ages w/ family. Meatloaf shaped as a wild boar complete w/ the fruits + veggies cut into gorgeous shapes, a jester, gifts for maidens, homemade looking glasses (mirrors made w/ tinfoil) costumes,+ the King's seat (which went to grandpa,a veteran,as it was Veteran's day),Draughts +other handmade games,+ food. We ate w/ our hands ,out of bread bowls, it was great +drank Meade. So many items were made,but the Queen was present indeed w/ her sceptor as well. (thanks to a glue gun, dowel rod,ribbons +old xmas ornaments!).We've created cookie maps of the countries where our missionary stories take us, covered in fondant & their journeys marked with edible pens, etc. (The last being China & Gladys Aylward). Our recent party being the 100th anniv. of Joan of arc, making cookie shields as well,complete with an edible French flag.We make up songs & do small plays of ancient times incl. the Bible, even performing for Thanksgiving at grandma's. Living books are essential to our daily practice;if Hannah kept her oaths + covenants last year,she was to be knighted as the main character in A Door in the Wall.We always have Kingly birthdays on Christmas for the true King of Kings, (crown of thorns + WWJD included,made w/ sticks) w/ donuts made into castles for breakfast,decor,+ reading books like Vinegar Boy. We've made the coronation crowns that Saul, Solomon, or Samuel would have used. The full armor of God was made, literally,w/ what we already had for my 5 year old(love the shoes of the readiness of the Gospel of Peace which are Cars Pixar slippers w/thunderbolts (since John was son of thunder) complete w/ glow in the dark paint. We do regular sword drills w/ the memorization of scripture, Vitamins products+audio. We camped out as archeologists at a digsite via tent in the living room, were pioneers gold mining. Our digsites = square sandbox at home.The H.O.W. website is great, IXL + new IPAD apps to gain a better understanding w/ games.As a result of Scrambled States of America, our 6 year old knows most of her states/capitals.We also have puzzle time+ movie nights. Favorites lbeing Pride/Prejudice + Sense/Sensibility, BenHur+more.Once,she corrected my husband during a read aloud, her chair then had a sign of Ms. Marriane,mine w/ Ms. Dashwood, + Dad is Farris.She'llget a note on parchment (crumpled paper bag torn at the edges) from the Queen complete w/ a seal,or for bdays, such as my husband's, she created an Acta Diurna from Ancient rome, we made a pipe cleaner / paper crown of leaves & fiery torch (paper towel tube with strips of paper ) for our Hole-y Socks Greek Olympics (my husband's socks) +the play on words was due to him being born on Yom Kippur + the day before we made him a huge breakfast,on the weekend, he was referred to as the Ancient of Dads, poster of him running for Pro-Consul.Hannah made Egyptian art for him to hang in his man-cave+ asked if he was there when the Sphinx got his nosebumped! He got gifts from our storybook characters+6 year old gave a scarab bookmark,mummified fruit+did the news from the Agora (her fruitstand)---we got the Egyptian news on 1 channel (her reading from a book),then the Greek, Roman, +Explorer news.We've created every toilet tube character+actually won 2nd place in a Mouse and Motorcyle: Ralph library contest where we created a mousterpiece: the little known lineage of Ralph S. Mouse, where history characters were mousedwith ears/tails on their toilet paper tube bodies, incl. Cheeser Mousegustus, William Wilbermouse, & others.October 31st we celebrated the Reformation & won the costume contest as Martin Luther & family. It was a fun ,free+my daughter didn't fall for buying (fake) indulgences! Pirate treasure hunts, battles w/ nerf guns of re-inactments are normal.For civil rights: eating a picnic with our African American doll in public, facing persecution+ going to a non-Negro restaurant to purchase 1 of everything off the menu for our doll.Next, we will eat blindfolded in honor of Helen Keller. We've created lighthouses out of paper towel tubes/baby food fars w/ flashlights..sent letters in a bottle to dad when he comes home, made braille for Louis Braille + due to my illness, my little one knows how to be the lady with the lamp; that's just how we are.Our small family works perfect for re-inactments of her fav: Anne of Green Gables where she often now meets in her cardboard house from Christmas last year that we all painted with green paint (the roof and shutters).Here, she teaches her Amish dolls,& her animals,cooking/re-teaching what she's learned or reading or explaining maps of where she's been. Also, if the portable DVD player can be located, she can be found watching Drive Thru History in order to teach them a lesson that day. She was surprised to see a red fern (construction paper cut by mom) grow to the side of it in honor of Ann and Lil' Dan after a study on Where the Red Fern grows+ it remains.We just purchased the Little Passports program through this site + her suitcase arrived the other day.We expect some fun results+ it's been a blessing to discover this co-op. We don't just study the fun parts, but have hit World War 2+Hitlers genocide a bit; but,we try to study history w/ as much knowledge to not repeat the past mistakes as possible,while, at the same time, due to the age of our child, trying to show God's providence through it all w/ cause & effect,so,before she could read last year, I read the movie Life is Beautiful to her, WW2 from a kid's perspective.This year we watched The Diary of Anne Frank,The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, & plan to read When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit. We are just different, I am chronically ill, my husband travels, my father just died, we NEVER planned to homeschool, so it's faith & prayers.God called me to do this unexpectedly + as we now are studying a Proverbs 31 woman, we are making dolls like Ruby+her family, coloring books to remind what that looks like.We've done 2 science fairs, one with a hovercraft & one on how topography can change the world including world missions.Our sugarcube pyramids,homemade castles, or the white powder donut ones have never gotten awards,nor have our paintings in Jackson Pollock or Monet style, but to see my 5 year old graduate last year playing her guitar,2 songs, w/ only 8 family lessons, was enough. And,having her know why shebelieves what she does this year, after her coming to faith the day before Rosa Park's b-day last year, means more to me than anything.Sharing this post has blessed me,reminding me + I needed that.Well, she's rearing to watch a Moody Science video + do some Bible trivia this morning, (has me beat knowing all of the booksin order)!. Thank you for the opportunity to share. God bless your ministry.Staying excited about what we re doing is a must, esp. w/ 1 child. Soon,I expect we'll get maybe a little apologetic debate..Truth Project/Keller style.(BTW, we are huge Diana Waring history curriculum fans-highly rec. & Geography Matters as well)

7 years ago · Like · Comment

deannaaich

We use food,games,birthdays/holidays as teaching oppotunities. Last year, on Presidents Day in our 3 person family, I was G. Washington w/ a cottonball-wig,My 5-year old was honest Abe w/ her construction paper stovepipe hat/beard,& dad was King David, coronation crown & all. We ate macaroni since A. Jackson brought a macaroni machine back from France & we ate cherry pie, in honor of George being unable to tell a lie (cherry tree) w/ a cardboard / tinfoil axe we made,that my daughter still plays with! We've had cowboy breakfasts ,a midevil feast for the middle ages w/ family. Meatloaf shaped as a wild boar complete w/ the fruits + veggies cut into gorgeous shapes, a jester, gifts for maidens, homemade looking glasses (mirrors made w/ tinfoil) costumes,+ the King's seat (which went to grandpa,a veteran,as it was Veteran's day),Draughts +other handmade games,+ food. We ate w/ our hands ,out of bread bowls, it was great +drank Meade. So many items were made,but the Queen was present indeed w/ her sceptor as well. (thanks to a glue gun, dowel rod,ribbons +old xmas ornaments!).We've created cookie maps of the countries where our missionary stories take us, covered in fondant & their journeys marked with edible pens, etc. (The last being China & Gladys Aylward). Our recent party being the 100th anniv. of Joan of arc, making cookie shields as well,complete with an edible French flag.We make up songs & do small plays of ancient times incl. the Bible, even performing for Thanksgiving at grandma's. Living books are essential to our daily practice;if Hannah kept her oaths + covenants last year,she was to be knighted as the main character in A Door in the Wall.We always have Kingly birthdays on Christmas for the true King of Kings, (crown of thorns + WWJD included,made w/ sticks) w/ donuts made into castles for breakfast,decor,+ reading books like Vinegar Boy. We've made the coronation crowns that Saul, Solomon, or Samuel would have used. The full armor of God was made, literally,w/ what we already had for my 5 year old(love the shoes of the readiness of the Gospel of Peace which are Cars Pixar slippers w/thunderbolts (since John was son of thunder) complete w/ glow in the dark paint. We do regular sword drills w/ the memorization of scripture, Vitamins products+audio. We camped out as archeologists at a digsite via tent in the living room, were pioneers gold mining. Our digsites = square sandbox at home.The H.O.W. website is great, IXL + new IPAD apps to gain a better understanding w/ games.As a result of Scrambled States of America, our 6 year old knows most of her states/capitals.We also have puzzle time+ movie nights. Favorites lbeing Pride/Prejudice + Sense/Sensibility, BenHur+more.Once,she corrected my husband during a read aloud, her chair then had a sign of Ms. Marriane,mine w/ Ms. Dashwood, + Dad is Farris.She'llget a note on parchment (crumpled paper bag torn at the edges) from the Queen complete w/ a seal,or for bdays, such as my husband's, she created an Acta Diurna from Ancient rome, we made a pipe cleaner / paper crown of leaves & fiery torch (paper towel tube with strips of paper ) for our Hole-y Socks Greek Olympics (my husband's socks) +the play on words was due to him being born on Yom Kippur + the day before we made him a huge breakfast,on the weekend, he was referred to as the Ancient of Dads, poster of him running for Pro-Consul.Hannah made Egyptian art for him to hang in his man-cave+ asked if he was there when the Sphinx got his nosebumped! He got gifts from our storybook characters+6 year old gave a scarab bookmark,mummified fruit+did the news from the Agora (her fruitstand)---we got the Egyptian news on 1 channel (her reading from a book),then the Greek, Roman, +Explorer news.We've created every toilet tube character+actually won 2nd place in a Mouse and Motorcyle: Ralph library contest where we created a mousterpiece: the little known lineage of Ralph S. Mouse, where history characters were mousedwith ears/tails on their toilet paper tube bodies, incl. Cheeser Mousegustus, William Wilbermouse, & others.October 31st we celebrated the Reformation & won the costume contest as Martin Luther & family. It was a fun ,free+my daughter didn't fall for buying (fake) indulgences! Pirate treasure hunts, battles w/ nerf guns of re-inactments are normal.For civil rights: eating a picnic with our African American doll in public, facing persecution+ going to a non-Negro restaurant to purchase 1 of everything off the menu for our doll.Next, we will eat blindfolded in honor of Helen Keller. We've created lighthouses out of paper towel tubes/baby food fars w/ flashlights..sent letters in a bottle to dad when he comes home, made braille for Louis Braille + due to my illness, my little one knows how to be the lady with the lamp; that's just how we are.Our small family works perfect for re-inactments of her fav: Anne of Green Gables where she often now meets in her cardboard house from Christmas last year that we all painted with green paint (the roof and shutters).Here, she teaches her Amish dolls,& her animals,cooking/re-teaching what she's learned or reading or explaining maps of where she's been. Also, if the portable DVD player can be located, she can be found watching Drive Thru History in order to teach them a lesson that day. She was surprised to see a red fern (construction paper cut by mom) grow to the side of it in honor of Ann and Lil' Dan after a study on Where the Red Fern grows+ it remains.We just purchased the Little Passports program through this site + her suitcase arrived the other day.We expect some fun results+ it's been a blessing to discover this co-op. We don't just study the fun parts, but have hit World War 2+Hitlers genocide a bit; but,we try to study history w/ as much knowledge to not repeat the past mistakes as possible,while, at the same time, due to the age of our child, trying to show God's providence through it all w/ cause & effect,so,before she could read last year, I read the movie Life is Beautiful to her, WW2 from a kid's perspective.This year we watched The Diary of Anne Frank,The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, & plan to read When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit. We are just different, I am chronically ill, my husband travels, my father just died, we NEVER planned to homeschool, so it's faith & prayers.God called me to do this unexpectedly + as we now are studying a Proverbs 31 woman, we are making dolls like Ruby+her family, coloring books to remind what that "looks" like.We've done 2 science fairs, one with a hovercraft & one on how topography can change the world including world missions.Our sugarcube pyramids,homemade castles, or the white powder donut ones have never gotten awards,nor have our paintings in Jackson Pollock or Monet style, but to see my 5 year old graduate last year playing her guitar,2 songs, w/ only 8 family lessons, was enough. And,having her know why shebelieves what she does this year, after her coming to faith the day before Rosa Park's b-day last year, means more to me than anything.Sharing this post has blessed me,reminding me + I needed that.Well, she's rearing to watch a Moody Science video + do some Bible trivia this morning, (has me beat knowing all of the booksin order)!. Thank you for the opportunity to share. God bless your ministry.Staying excited about what we re doing is a must, esp. w/ 1 child. Soon,I expect we'll get maybe a little apologetic debate..Truth Project/Keller style.(BTW, we are huge Diana Waring history curriculum fans-highly rec. & Geography Matters as well)

7 years ago · Like · Comment
deannaaich: sorry folks, on there twice, oops!! having comp. probs.!
7 years ago · Like

ermjlh

After we have studied a time period in history, we have a meal, i.e. Egyptian Dinner, early 1900s dinner to celebrate and reinforce what we learned. We all dress in character (even dad!) and eat foods that would have comprised a typical meal of the time. I think actually putting ourselves into the time period we've studies helps drive home the facts we've learned and is such a fun way to feel connected to the history we've studied! My 3 boys really look forward to these nights. =)

7 years ago · Like · Comment

toobin' mamma

We are using Intellego Unit Series for history this year. I love them because they give you tons of links and activities to use. We also use Youtube videos to watch footage of historical events and reenactments. This year we are studying WWll and we will interview a WWll veteran who actually fought in the Battle of Iwo Jima. He was a fighter pilot who flew in many missions.
We will be going to the Pacific War Museum next month for a field trip. It will probably take us 2-3 days to got through it. It is in Fredricksburg, Texas and was formerly known as the Admiral Nimitz Museum.
My younger son loves weapons and planes so we watch History Channel videos that are about weapons. My oldest son likes just about everything about history so we watch the History Channel quite a bit at my house.
Pawn Stars and American Pickers are pretty informative, believe it or not. We have learned all kinds of things from those shows. :)

7 years ago · Like · Comment

bmama4

Bringing history alive for me is immersing into that subject as much as you can. I like the timline/chronological approach. If we study, read, watch videos and listen to CDs (Vision Forum has great lectures) I like to see what else was goingn in the world at the same time, who else was famous at that time (like musicians nad painters) and how the world looked like back then ( working on historical maps, looking at pictures and photos). You add to this some good historical fiction and that completes it and makes more fun to study.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

kelly

We do lots of field trips. We are fortunate to live near many historical areas.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

mamacat

I look for free or low cost paper dolls online for the time we will study. (Sometimes Dover or ActivityVillage will have free samples to color and cut out.) For instance, I found paper dolls for Kaya, American Girl and some for Louisa May Alcott's Little Women. I also see what will relate to the unit in local museums or places to visit, such as the Spalding Mission in Idaho where there was an actual Nez Perce camp/village. Then we discuss what type of music they listened to, if they had pets, rode horses, what they wore, etc. We also study what else may have happened at that time through books or online. We have been reading Tree in the Trail by Holling C. Holling to see Native Americans from a different part of the country. Youtube is also a great help with Schoolhouse Rock videos that teach history with singing.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

bemileab

All of four of my children claim history in their favorite subjects. To be honest, I love it too! I think that the most important thing that has helped promote an interest in the subject is to convey to them the value of knowing history. I also try to find interesting side history facts on their other interest. For example, one of my sons loves to know about weapons; so I make sure he sees and hears about the weapons of the time. My daughter on the other hand loves fashion, so I try to give her a glimpse of the fashion sense of the time. We also have volunteered at a State Historic Site. My children get to dress up in 1803 clothing and show the visitors to the site how interesting history can be. This makes history something that really happened in their minds instead of just a bunch of facts and dates.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

muzicdiva777

We are working on American History now, and I believe in offering my daughter a variety of ways of learning, whether cooking a meal from that period of time, sewing an item of something that was commonly worn during each period of time, to visiting a museum or historic festival, to even using battlemaps from a war during the particular period we are studying. We use a textbook and workbooks, but with a daughter who has dyslexia I have to use a lot of visual and hands on activities. Right now we are in the Colonial period and my daughter is working on a tableau for art of something that happened during that time. She has chosen the signing of the Declaration of Independence. With popsicle stick, a box, air dry clay and other craft items she is making the scene as she reads in her text book about it. We hope to visit a local festival next month where she will learn how they collected and used maple syrup during the time when America was being settled. I believe that rushing the experience of learning the history of our country would be a disservice to her, and so we are taking each period at a rate that allows her to fully understand and research that era. I also incorporate her history into her other subjects by having her write reports, read books set in that era, and as I said before sew or cook from that period for Home Ec. I want her to know learning can be fun and a hunger to learn more is where she will find success in her learning experience.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Christy

I started teaching my oldest history at four years old. He invented a magical character that he would act out, and that character would travel to all different periods of time to act as an advisor and helper. Together we would read books on whatever period in history we were studying, and then we would talk out or play act a story where his character would visit there and I would act out someone from that time period.

When later we were learning about wars and countries attacking each other we would dump out our basket full of blocks and make block cities. Then I would tell the story and he would make the different cities attack each other.

But I think what brings history alive most of all is having enough information. The children's history books we would read would never give enough information so I would try to read adult books on the same topics so that I could bring more depth to the stories. Then I would make notes ahead of time about what I thought he would find interesting and about some sort of dilemna or challenge to pose to him. We tried to get the games as specific as possible. We didn't play pirates, we played a particular type of pirate in a particular setting.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

mom4pak

I like to teach history through the words and eyes of the common people - the experience of those affected. Once we've read and discussed the various viewpoints and what it must be like, we have role-playing simulations. The kids love this and it really helps them live history!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

M5

Whatever the subject, we start locally and work our way out. Anything we discuss starts with how our area was involved and affected. This grabs the kids attention and we go from there.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

WisdomSeeker

Through the years we have found reading living books really brings history alive for our family. There are so many good historical fictions and biographies available that bring the kids right into that time period. I LOVE to hear, "can't we read just one more chapter?" We have combined these books with such resources as Drive thru History, built replicas of castles and forts (ie Jamestown), visited DC and gone to the National Archives to see the Declaration of Independence but I think one of their favorite interactive experiences was building medieval weaponry with PVC pipe and duct tape. In fact, this made such an impact many of our homeschool friends began building weapons and we would get the kids together and have wars (there are lots of boys in our homeschool circle). I must say, history is NOTHING like it was for my husband and I in school-PTL!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

lilheartwork

History is anything but predictable or boring, so when kicking off a new history unit, I like to surprise my boys by showing up for the day in costume. They have been taught by a Greek tutor, Pocahontas, and a Pilgrim. I'm currently working on a minuteman costume. If mom has a musket in her hand, the day is sure to be exciting. We also like to eat, so we have a meal of the times too. So, read great books and enjoy your students; they grow up so fast.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

mulemom

We have always loved history. We also love family read-alouds. We read historical novels (The Golden Goblet; Duncan's War; etc.), non-fiction historical books (The Forgotten 500; 30 Seconds Over Tokyo; The Coldtiz Story), talk about historical events and people as part of our everyday conversation . . . We also like to watch movies associated with the books we read (The Great Escape; Coldtiz) and other historical movies (The Man Who Never Was; The Tiger and the Flame). We go to museums the way some other families attend sports events. If we are reading a "history book", such as Mystery of History or Child's History of the World, we use it as a springobard. If something or someone interests us, we go to the library website and request books on events, eras, people, etc. I had to stop and think about how we "bring history alive", because history is simply a part of our lives and always has been.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

nancymomoftwo

In order to bring History alive in our home, we have been using "History Revealed: Ancient Civilizations & the Bible" by Diana Waring. This is a wonderful curriculum that entwines historical facts with the Bible in an insightful, interesting way. It includes a Teacher's manual which is full of information, including how to approach the curriculum according to each child's learning style. It also comes with student textbooks for lower and higher grades, as well as CD's narrated by Diana herself which bring an excitement to history we never experienced before. A big plus is that we can do history together as a family.
Other ways that we bring history alive is by visiting museums, attending local memorials and ceremonies where speakers share their real-life experiences, watching movies and videos and reading historical fiction and biographies as a family.
I love how, as homeschoolers, we can find and enjoy history any time, anywhere and make it come....alive!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Jesusisjoybeads

Following a suggestion from the book, All Through the Ages by Christine Miller, we have a 6-year rotation of history which goes like this: (1) Creation & Early History, Ancient Near East & Ancient Egypt; (2) Greece and Rome; (3) Dark & Middle Ages; (4) Renaissance, Reformation, Exploration & Colonization; (5) American History through the Victorian Era; (6) 20th Century american History, 17-20th century World History. I then pick one book that gives a colorful, "living" overview of the period (for example, Story of the Greeks by Christine Miller), and then add some biographies, historical fiction and "event" books to the semester to bring "glimpses" of that period alive. The biggest enjoyment my children get, even the teenagers, is the read-aloud time I do with them!! I read the overview book to them while they are coloring pictures from the wonderful Dover coloring books (Dover books are inexpensive and high quality) or drawing on blank paper, or the girls perhaps are knitting. They just love that time, and shocked me by saying, "I love history." What???? I HATED history in school! We also love field trips that help bring history alive, and movies, though I'm pretty picky about movies. We love the G.A. Henty books on cd, too. Great for travel time in the car!!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

ErinM

I started a history co-op of 3 families. We followed the "Story of the World" books and then transitioned into the "History of US" series. Meeting weekly, we discuss the chapters, go over any outside reading and/or video or any information we could get our hands on! But the *alive* part was we would do an elaborate project. From building a model of the Nile river & flooding it weekly, building Mayan temples, creating feasts of period foods, sewing clothing relevant to the time and, whenever possible, field trips. At the end of each book, we do a BIG party. We invite other homeschooling friends and share our projects, it always coincides with a main event in history. We have put on our own Olympics with chariot races, a "marathon", etc., re-enacted a Revolutionary war Battle, Played a "Who Shot Lincoln" mystery (where you had to determine who you were... we knew whodunnit!). By meeting weekly, we tailor the curriculum to our individual children and still have all the benefits of group learning.. I continue this with my son. My daughter, who is now in public high school, is preparing to take the AP World History exam. She excels in her class and I am often commended by her teacher for giving her such a firm foundation. I credit the interactive nature in which she was taught... in History as well as all other subjects. History, especially, is not just about facts & dates, it's about people, places & ideas. You have to experience it to fully comprehend

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Kelliev

We dress up in costumes and reenact history urselves ALL THE TIME. :) when th boys are studying the Civil War very day is full of battle charges, artillery fire, and maps of potential attacks being drawn in the dirt. My boys LOVE acting out what they learn!

7 years ago · Like · Comment
Kelliev: Good grief, my typing and proof-reading was atrocious! Oops!
7 years ago · Like

tburgess

Each month, I check our local library calendar for events. We have an amazing amount of presentations, activities, etc. I also check our visitor center website to check their calendar of events. They often include free events and special tours/presentations. I've made a list of places to visit in the surrounding counties so that we have places lined up to go to when there is nothing else in our area planned. We enjoy going to the "out of the way" places that are not necessarily considered tourist attractions. For example, old hardware stores, small bookstores, historic homes, etc. They usually have people there with lots of interesting knowledge or at least have information about historical events.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

KathyB

Our family loves History! So, we go to as many reenactments as possible. We're fortunate that we have access to local museums, too. When we are studying a particular time period or historical figure, such as the presidents, we take advantage of internet resources & our local library. We incorporate lapbooking into some of our lessons, too.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

K

About a year ago. I started reading The Magic Tree House series of books to my then five year old son. What an adventure. Not to mention the chapters are short so it makes for a perfect.bed time read.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

janl

What I do to bring history alive for my kids and their friends who "do" history with us is to DO history. After reading a spine text or living book or historical novel, we choose something to do. We have built homes, cooked food, reenacted events, made textiles, you name it we've tried it. I let the kids choose the projects sometimes and sometimes I choose. Not everything is successful, some things have just totally fallen apart! But we laugh and learn.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Gloria

Bringing history alive has been taken to a whole new level in our homeschooling family. After studying ancient history, our sons created duct tape covered swords, battle axes, helmets, shields and much more! They had so much fun battling and re-enacting history, they decided to share the fun with others. Warfare by Duct Tape was born!

Mark and Steven wrote ebooks that teach you how to create your own duct tape weapons and armor with detailed, step-by-step instructions, patterns, full color pictures, and also include information about the thrilling game of duct tape warfare. Chivalry, rules of the game and even ransom money are discussed, along with battle strategies and best of all, historically-based designs for your duct tape creations. They have written 4 books so far, The Battle Book, The Greco-Roman Book, The Barbarian Book and the Armored Glove Book. Currently, they are writing The Knight Book and The Armor of God Book.

Our family now goes to homeschool conventions as vendors and we sell swords and ebooks, which is a great learning experience for our children. (They do all the talking and selling!) You can see the ebooks and get more info at www.warfarebyducttape.com.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

MagicandMayhem

We take part in a number of historic reenactments as a family. My daughters have acted in a local outdoor play based on the Ingalls Family's time in our area (we live by Walnut Grove) for 7 years and my husband and son now act in it too. My husband teaches how to throw the atlatl (a spear throwing tool that was used around the world before the bow and arrow), along with skills like flint knapping, spear making and old fashioned instruments like the dulcimer. My kids also volunteer for historic sites like the Betsy-Tacy Society (the books tell about life for two girls growing up in the early 1900's in our area). My husband is president of our little town's historic society and maintains the museum and authentic log cabin, which means that my kids help with upkeep, acquisitions and learning the history of the tools and neat items inside. Then there's travel and historic fiction and so on. We love history because of how fun it's become!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

theradatz

We joined a unit of civil war re-enactors. The men do different battles from event t event. We have gottne to travel to awesome historical sites to re-enact. Such as Gettysburg! The incouraged a love of this time period in all of us as we all re-enact together. From here we have really learned to love all periods of history and they all seem to come alive to us. We didn't do this on purpose but it worked out great!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Deanne5

I use a variety of techniques to bring history alive. I read interesting (living) books aloud to even my teens, have them read fictional books related to the historical period, watch movies and documentaries (Drive Thru History is a favorite of my daughter), attend plays, play games (sometimes even making them ourselves), make crafts, and go on related field trips. We have been big KONOS (unit study) fans for years. So, we find and do science, music, art, geography, and English activities, all related to the historical period we are studying.

We are studying ancient history this year and are enjoying The History of the Ancient World by Susan Wise Bauer. Drive Thru History is producing two new dvds on ancient Israel. We have pre-ordered them and are anxiously awaiting their arrival. A local theatre company produced Julius Ceasar by Shakespeare, so we, of course, had to partake of that. My daughter has completed a number of crafts, such as a ceramic seal and a Sabbath Challah cover. As we learned about the Dead Sea, we did experiments on salinity.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

blessedhomeschooler

We turn history into complete unit studies to make history meaningful and fun for my children. I surround my chidren with many living books from that time period. The children play interactive games online, create power points, create notebooks, create salt dough maps, and lapbooks. We have made model ships and food from the different time periods. We have made homes and dioramas using clay or items from around the house.

When we studied the age of exploration, we pretended to be an explorer by making a ship log. We aged the paper by dipping it into tea, burned the edges, and then sewed a cover to make it look authentic. Then, they documented their adventures incorporating what they had learned. We studied navigation tools and then went to the US Navy Museum to learn how to use them.

We are military so we have been fortunate to visit and learn more about history hands on. After our field trips, we then have an end of the unit celebration/presentation day for family. My children help create costumes. Once, my son created a Spartan helmet out of paper mache and duct tape. Looked great! Then, my children present a particular person. For example, they start off saying, "I am a Spartan soldier. I live in, etc." The children also present all of what they have made during that unit, explaining why it was important and how it was used. We always include either a home made play or puppet show created by the children as well. Presenting the units has been the best assessment for my children because it truly shows what they have retained. Now, with Skype, children can present to family and friends.

7 years ago · Like · Comment
deannaaich: Great idea!! We support Wounded Warriors and make items to sell. ;)
7 years ago · Like

pwlu

We like reading living books, biography , movies and crafts. Going to museum or history reenactment events are also fun.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Courtneycrops

Before visiting a pioneer /early state history museum, my girls and I sewed bonnets and skirts to wear. We also wear these to any other 'pioneer' type of field trips...like the production of OKLAHOMA that we attended. The girls feel part of the day and the staff always notices our 'costumes'.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Rowanmomma

We really enjoyed spending a year learning about our country by using "The States" from the History Channel. Each week we would watch the DVD for a state and follow it up with a worksheet I made myself. The worksheet included: state nickname; state bird, flag and flower; capitol; interesting facts learned and the date it became a state. I loved it because the dvd's included history as well as modern facts, so my son learned about American history as well as facts about our great nation today! Each week he would also place the state's name on a large map as well as the capitol, so he also learned geography!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

bryssy

We love, love, love Story of the World. My oldest (6) this week is channeling Empress Theodora and my middle son is Emperor Justinian of the Byzantines. It really comes alive for us!

7 years ago · Like · Comment

Beth2244

Our favorite history curriculum by far is The Mystery of History, which combines world history with Christian history. It is very eye opening to see the characters from history and the Bible come alive together in their respective time periods and places. We love the way it reads as a story and has activities for each age group with ea h lesson. We love the time line that we have made with each book, as you can see and remember what you have studied so easily. The book series is by Linda Hobar.

7 years ago · Like · Comment

birthjoy

My children have taught me that, although it is helpful to learn History chronologically, they also have an incredible ability to learn information "out of context" and then place it within the bigger framework of time. As a result, my children have followed their interests and passions and have learned more than if I had forced them to do it a certain way.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

HiddenJewel

Our best history year was when we used "TruthQuest". I would read the commentary and the books and we would talk about the topic. Then my daughters would write a summary. Our discussions were really good and they actually remembered what they were learning.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

I love Carol Barnier's "rabbit-trail teaching" philosophy. She teaches to her kids' interests, and as someone who hated history as a kid, I embrace this method. I listen to my child express interests in various topics and go from there. He is fascinated by the Holocaust, so I am currently planning lessons that include The Hiding Place movie and the book On Hitler's Mountain. We are also hoping to take a vacation to Washington D.C. to see the Holocaust Museum. From research I've done, a lot of the volunteers actually lived during the Holocaust, so we'll get to hear from people who actually lived it!

Another thing we do, also inspired by Carol Barnier, is to make a PowerPoint timeline. Every time he learns about an historical event or person, he adds a slide to his timeline. This helps him to see how everything falls into place.

8 years ago · Like · Comment
deannaaich: I have the hardest time with timelines...we've tried a ton. How old is your son? We use the new CM one, with 4 pages, but she doesn't like it. Also, I have been to the Holocaust Museum, fabulous....shoes were powerful. I highly , highly recommend Life is Beautiful, regular movie and The Boy in the Striped Pajamas & Diary of Anne Frank. The Hiding Place movie had nudity while the others didn't , may not be an issue for you, but mine was 5. I have When Hitler Stole pink rabbit, supposed to be on a K-3 level, that I'm going to try. I'll look up your recoommendation, thanks!
7 years ago · Like

Mary J Rowell

Living Books bring history to life: I am talking about biographies of famous historic people, classic literature, and historical fiction. Charlotte Mason-style learning emphasizes the use of "living books" as essential in making history, among other subjects, relevant and more "life-size". The information seems to stick with you more also. Textbooks are useful, as a background resource.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

mick1020

History in our family means recreating as much as we can. When we studied Abraham recently we made a tent in the schoolroom and pretended to travel around like Abraham did, eating lentil soup, visiting Egypt, and herding our sheep. When we studied the Age of Exploration last year we built a wooden ship to reinact our lessons.

8 years ago · Like · Comment
deannaaich: I agree. Have you read the book Mountain Born. Fabulous. Not about Abraham, but, is great to parallel and really have an understanding of Bible sheherding. FABULOUS read aloud, my husband cried, and not long either.
7 years ago · Like

We recently started using "Home School in the Woods" and we fell in love with it right away. They have Unit Studies for almost every period of time in American History. Their Unit Studies include daily lessons, copywork, crafts, science, mapping, lapbookingk, and a whole lot more. It''s only $32 and you get a CD so you can print as many copies as you need for all your children. We are doing the Revolutionary War and we love it! The lessons and projects have really made the history come alive.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

RoadTripper

We do road trips, and include as many National Parks in our travels
as we can. Our daughter participates in the Junior Ranger programs
at these National Parks. What one does is obtain (many times they are
free, but sometimes a small donation (50 cents up to $3.00) is required
to get the booklet) the booklet and do the age-appropriate activities
in it. When completed, the child brings the booklet to a Ranger,
who reviews the work, ask questions, and awards a badge and/or a pin
to the new Junior Ranger. In some parks, the ranger makes an
announcement over the PA system, congratulating the new Jr. Ranger!

8 years ago · Like · Comment
deannaaich: My daughter and dad do Y Guides!
7 years ago · Like

mom43

We watched the History Channel's America: The Story of Us. We learned a lot of new things. I realized that my Great Aunts who are 89 and 90 years old may have experienced some of the time periods that we were learning about.

The kids developed interview questions and we visited my 2 aunts. The kids took turns asking the questions they made up. We learned what the Deperssion was like for our family members. They remembered segregation and experienced going to a one-room schoolhouse. We learned that they lived in a time before cars and a we were able to hear first hand what that was like for them. They told about WW!, WW!!, and what it was like on the homefront. My Aunt Dot had a ration book and allowed us to keep it.

I could go on and on about the things we learned, but most important is that we have a treasure that we can keep for all time. We were able to see history through the eyes of our family. My kids will be able to share it with their kids and hopefully it will bring history alive for them as well.

It was a great experience and the kids were able to see history come alive. They really enjoyed the time we spent doing this project.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

busymomma

We incorporate as many historic types of activities as we can that revive bits of history & historic everyday living skills that might otherwise be lost. These activities are done to make history alive to our children, to make memories, and so that they can continue do these rediscovered skills throughout their lives.

Being Canadian, we have put a lot of effort into learning about how Canada was discovered & how it grew from those beginnings.

We like to find recipes that are true to the period...a Viking meal, early French-Canadian meal, First Nations meal, or other.

We visited a museum, located at a major trading area, that houses historic items from Canada s fur trading days. It houses an authentic york boat, & a replica of a sailing ship (that you can board) that was used by the Hudson s Bay Company. This ship sailed across the same ocean that the original did!

We learned about the voyageur who explored & hunted along a nearby river. We visited sites of original forts & peered over the valley side to imagine the loaded canoes being paddled down the river. These were watched by the First Nations people as they stood along the banks just as we were doing. We talked about the trapping that was done & what each fort was used for. We have touched various furs that would have been trapped & hunted here. We drank cold water from a spring that they may have discovered. We gathered birch bark to create birch baskets & found instructions on how to make our own birch bark canoe & to make real snowshoes too! We travelled through some important major bison hunting grounds & discussed how all the nations would gather so close to our home area for the big bison hunt. Archery, a skill of the hunters, will be learned this summer.

We have recreated a voyageur trip in a cardboard box. We jostled it around while the voyageur was sprayed by water from a spray bottle as they shot the rapids. This, of course, was accompanied by a few portages along our route.

We have kept bison & learned their ways, then butchered & ate them. We learned about how the many parts were used & about the pemmican that was made in our area. We have gone into a plains teepee. We felt the bison hide & learned that it would be used as a blanket, touched the head, hooves & kept the horns. We researched what the unique big flat hump of bone on the bison s back was for. A picture of our bison & a lock of bison hair has gone into a lapbook.

Beadwork, authentic recipes & games, a birchbark basket, mini leather clothing of the voyageur, mini menu of authentic French-Canadian dishes (including beaver tail) & pictures of paper replicas of canoes, villages, & other historic items have been included in our lapbook of Canadian history.

When it comes to learning about pioneers, we made a popsicle stick "log" cabin with a window & door, & clay & stone chimney. We have learned how to hand sew, crochet, darn, garden organically, make corn cob dolls, do book binding, create a woven hat, make maple syrup & bake bannock over the same open fire, bake with our home-milled whole grain, make cheeses & butter from our own hand-milked cow. This is coupled with learning to care for the cow, horse, & this summer, chickens as the pioneers would have done. We have made a rope with a hand-cranked machine. We have used old draw knives to hand-peel trees to make wooden fences & we are planning to make our own mud oven outdoors this next summer & bake in it when it is complete. We visited a friend who hunts, prepares deer raw hides & creates clothing, moccasins & bullet bags from them. He also builds historic drums & stringed instruments which our kids have had the opportunity to play or listen to.

We have done some research into family history as well & found family heirlooms in two separate museums, as well as learned some interesting facts about the past generations. We visited a culturally significant (for our family history) museum & learned about immigrating to Canada & about our own culture. We still retain many traditional recipes that our children are learning to make, including homemade sausage, & have been fortunate to collect some of the authentic cookware & working tools of times past.

We have been fortunate to be able to learn about the history of the Iditarod dogsled race in Alaska, watch real-time video of the race, & have our own sled dog (a breed that was known to be kept by the Vikings) pull our children in a sled. We enjoyed making soapstone carvings, using soap, an igloo out of marshmallows, & tasting moose to enhance our northern experience.

As you can see, we are very involved in hands-on learning about history, & we LOVE it! Next, we conquer the world!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Stella

We love reading everyday from our almanac of state history to learn about remarkable and curious events to further connect us to our community.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

lovinHS

One of the great things that has worked to bring history alive in our home is the fun time we have acting out what we read. We will read the daily lesson out loud and then re-tell it with actions and maps and "quotations" said with how we think the person really spoke. Each "action" helps bring the event or person to life and helps the children remember who said and did what. Re-telling/acting it over for Dad when he gets home from work, helps to instill the dates and names once again. History is an amazing subject. We love it!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

jnpmom

We did a lot of history related to the other subjects this year. For art, we studied architecture by looking at the history of famous buildings, as well as the construction. For music, we studies early 20th century American music. So, we learned about what life was like at the turn of the 20th century, as well as listened to Ragtime and Jazz, etc. We will find activities in the area or within a 4-hour drive that relate to things we are studying during the year and make a road trip out of those things, trying to find as many other things in the area that we can besides what we originally planned for.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

mamacurls

Our family likes to "live out" our lessons. We may visit historical places, speak with people who have a connection to a time or place, eat foods from the time and location, or recreate an event. We often incorporate books, internet-based activities and movies into our lessons as appropriate. We always try to connect our family's life to the lesson we are learning so that our children feel the impact from something that may otherwise seem distant. We also have a timeline posted so that whenever we learn about something that can be pinpointed to a date, we write it on our timeline. This has helped our girls make connections in our lessons across subjects and locations of events.

For example, we recently read one of Laura Ingalls Wilder's books. As we read, we compared her experience to when we lived on a farm last year. We went to a farm where we could participate in reenactments of the time period, including churning butter, making candles, and pumping water. At home, we cooked and served a meal appropriate for the period. This week, the girls and I are sewing aprons. In the spring, we will plant a vegetable garden and visit the Wilder home. We discussed the differences in farming and daily life from then to now. We made other comparisons to our current life in a bigger city.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

We like to do skits of historical scenes. We learn about the people and how they were real and it makes them more interesting. We have researched foods from different eras and cook foods from that time. It is fun to compare how different foods are prepared now and how the tastes are different. Some are much better and there are things that were really good way back when.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

crabbygirl

History is our favorite subject! We do so many things to make it relevant to our lives. My husband is a federal employee, so we are blessed to visit Washington DC at least once a year. When we go, we choose a different focus each year.

For example: last year, our focus was on the Revolutionary period. So while in DC, we learned as much as we could about George Washington and other founding fathers, including visiting Mt. Vernon. We also took the long way home and visited Williamsburg.

Another time, our focus was on the military, so we visited all of the war memorials and saw the changing of the guard at Arlington National Cemetery.

On another visit, the history of aviation was our focus, so we spent a lot of time at the Air and Space Museum, learning about the Wright Brothers, Amelia Earhart, and astronauts. That same year, we also took a trip down to Alabama to visit the U.S. Space and Rocket Center.

At home we are blessed to also have many historical landmarks to visit. We've had a Civil War focus, visiting war sites, Lincoln's birthplace and stops on the underground railroad across the river in Ohio. A Lewis and Clark focus, visiting Locust Grove in Louisville, KY and the museum under the Gateway Arch in St. Louis.

We use a unit study approach to homeschooling, so our field trips are tremendously supplemented with living books, geography, science, biographies, art, and music. At home, we also lapbook many of our studies and include photos of our trips, so that we have lifetime memories of our adventures to refer back to and share with others!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

We do several things to bring history to life.

1) We try to visit as many historical places as we can. We live 30 minutes from Gettysburg, two hours from the birthplace of freedom (Philadelphia), an hour and a half from Valley Forge so h...aving my kids walk on the ground where our founding fathers walked, and touring Civil War battlegrounds is easy for us.

2) We study in depth world history, making meals from those cultures, drawing maps, etc....

8 years ago · Like · Comment

BreadbakingMama

Travel to historic places (Love Philadelphia and Washington DC and Boston!!!), read historical fiction, watch Drive Thru History, listen to Henty books and read Henty books. For current events we have TIME and World and National Geographic magazine subscriptions. We have timeline books that start in Bible days. And we love historical craft kits for our younger children. My son loved making leather moccasins!

8 years ago · Like · Comment
BreadbakingMama: Oh..in Texas, we went to a real working historical cattle ranch. They had some time period houses with reenactments. We also went to the Fort Worth stock yards and historical museums and tours there. Very exciting!
BreadbakingMama likes this. · 8 years ago · Like

CTMom

What brings history alive for my children is simply connecting it to their own interests. My oldest is very interested in political science and current events, so for him, history becomes exciting when he sees the context behind the headlines. We have lively discussions about how historic ethnic divisions in Iraq impact that country now, or how politicians quote (or misquote) the Constitution to suit their agendas. We watch or listen to news commentary and historical documentaries from a variety of worldviews. We ask each other probing questions - the other night we listened to an NPR report on the history of civil rights in Mississippi and he asked me how I thought I might react if I were one of the white students enrolled at a college when a first black man was attempting to enroll. He and his sister create Jeopardy! games or flash-card quizzes to remember important facts, and design presentations for their cooperative class, blending their interests in current technology with the assigned project. We also read a lot and watch old movies for fun. For my youngest, her interests center around the arts, so we do readers' theater, visit art museums (online and in-person), and incorporate historical fiction into our studies. For ancient Egypt, she wrote a scribe's journal entry which we converted to a cuneiform font and printed on dyed paper. I believe that since History is a timeline, tapping into their youthful energies in this present time is what breathes life into the topics. I think it's working - my kids have given themselves Greek and Roman names, and quote Socrates in their essays!

8 years ago · Like · Comment
birthjoy: What a great way to introduce your children to The Great Conversation.
8 years ago · Like

We travel to historic places in our area, like presidents home, and do things at our local metroparks such as maple sugaring. When traveling as a family we stop at various historical sites such as DeSmet SD , and Mt.Vernon.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

5varelas

We have gone to the 'monuments' of the Civil War in our area and walked around, looking off in the distance and trying to imagine the armies facing off just down the hill (Battle of Franklin, TN) or standing at the top of the hill 'downtown' and imagining the dark of night while (surely) hearing the enemy march quietly up the road beside us (Spring Hill, TN). We made Renaissance costumes while studying the Renaissance time period. We learned a song about Henry VIII's wives and discussed how he changed the church just so he could get a divorce. We made 'time capsule' archeological dig containers and pretended to be from the future, discerning what the people of the 21st century were like based on the everyday items we 'discovered' in the sand. We made feather Quill pens when we studied the Colonial Days and looked at photos of the kinds of houses they lived in and the types of toys the children played with. Currently, we are studying WWII, so my fifth-grader is 'interviewing' her great-grandparents to get a feel for what life was like during that time, and we are participating in a read-a-thon that benefits a local WWII-based charity that flies WWII Vets to D.C. to see the memorial in their honor. We went camping and talked about what life was like before electricity and spent an entire night at home without electricity, attempting to entertain ourselves with only the low light of a candle, and we all slept in a big pallet on the floor together.

My kids have no idea i consider this stuff 'school' because i always hated history so i teach it with 'experiences' rather than facts.

8 years ago · Like · Comment
5varelas: Oh, and my son just reminded me of the trip we took to the 'Parthenon' in Nashville after watching the rebuilding efforts of the original on television. :^)
8 years ago · Like
deannaaich: Re-inactments are great, so much better for someone like me who struggles with US History.
7 years ago · Like

jayme

We, too, read the Little House series and went to Walnut Grove, toured the town and where the dugout was located. My girls loved it! We also make it a point to go to our local museums and talk about what we find there. We have also visited petroglyphs, which was really exciting for my kids, too! We take advantage of anything in our area we can find!

8 years ago · Like · Comment
deannaaich: Where is Walnut Grove?
7 years ago · Like
deannaaich: ooops, I see! :)
7 years ago · Like

nicole

We started reading the Little House on the Prairie series at the beginning of last year. By summer we had finished the series. They loved it and were able to relate to Laura so well being similar in age. It was also fun because we live in Minnesota so they were able to relate to some of the towns. In July we were able to travel to De Smet, SD and Walnut Grove, MN to bring the history behind the books even more alive. My oldest daughter still takes about it and is currantly planning to move to Walnut Grove to be a tour guide when she grows up. It is amazing how history can come alive when you can "see" it.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

We love making history come alive in our van!

The American Girl Series audio cds allow us to bring our history with us on the road. We fill our imaginations with the realistic stories of young fictional characters from the time period we are studying. Listening together in the car allows us to stop and discuss topics as they arise and the children question what is happening. For example, during our study of the Civil War, we listened to all of the Addy stories as we discussed slavery, The Emancipation Proclamation, The Underground Railroad, Abraham Lincoln, Civil Rights and more. We used the non-fiction "Welcome to Addy's World" book to study on the road as we listened giving terrific visuals which generated more conversation. The kids can't wait to arrive at our destination to share what they have learned on the way. Hear it, Speak it, See it, Teach it. And be changed by it!

8 years ago · Like · Comment
deannaaich: Thanks for the recommendation, I have been needing something like that....answer to prayer!
7 years ago · Like

LNelson

What I always tried to do to make History Come Alive was to find some sort of physical item from that time period. It really isn't as hard (or expensive) as it sounds!

For example, when my children studied ancient Rome and Greece, I bought coins. They are commonly sold in clean-it-yourself kits, and you can find them on auction sites as well. For the Revolutionary War, I was able to buy different coins that were actually used during that time period. They were fascinating, as the US didn't have its own coins then, but used coins from other countries. I got them buttons for the civil war. Buttons found in battle fields, so they would have been off soldiers uniforms (sort of gruesome). Ancient Egypt was a snap for us, as my uncle was an Egyptian who worked for the UN. We have actual scarabs and a few fetishes that had been removed from museum exhibits.

I also have a slice of bolt encased in a piece of wood from the USS Constitution. The bolt was made by Paul Revere, or at least in his Smithy. Years ago, when my father was a child, the government was going to scrap the ship. There was a nationwide movement to save her, and my father won the item in an essay writing contest, which is documented in an old newspaper clipping. That item has traveled to classrooms over the decades, and my home schooled children enjoyed it too.

So, bringing History to Life for me is to bring some of that history into our homes and my child's lives in a physical way.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

The Titanic brought us full circle in our History class. The kids had seen the fiction movie from the 90's and being teens, acted bored about the subject when I approached it. I insisted on covering it from the factual point of views via news articles found online, books from the library, the DVD's based on the facts (history channel, etc) and then, as luck would have it, I took them to The Titanic Exhibit that was visiting Seattle at the time. They went into it laughing and goofing around...by the time we left - they were completely stunned, caught up in the reality and horror of the whole event....they were shocked to find of the 6 of us, only 2 would survive (they give you names as you enter and post on two walls at the end the survivors and those who did not) - it was a very sobering field trip. When we returned they decided to watch the fiction version of the Titanic - instead of goofing off, they spent the whole movie pointed out the actual facts that are scattered all thru' it ~ I was amazed at them and how it all came together in bringing those tragic events of History ALIVE for these teens. Although all are grown now, they still bring up that portion of the history we learned of and how it truly touched them. Of all the things I taught those kids thru' the homeschooling journey - that stands out as the one that brought them together, showed them that history has it's own purpose, lessons and was truly REAL to those it happened to.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Emily

Like many others, we love to do field trips. We are blessed in Southern California to have an area rich with history. This year we are studying California history and visiting many of the missions. We also loved attending a re-enactment of Cabrillo's landing in San Diego. I also think that reading good quality historical fiction really brings a time period/historical happening alive for the kids.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

AmyM

Using an eclectic assortment of resources, I created T.E.A.M. (Time Explorer's Adventure Missions) for our World History and Geography studies. I gave each child a photo ID badge on a lanyard and an official notebook. We get together for secret missions and they "travel" around the world, combining new knowledge of history and present day facts to complete each assignment. We began with Ancient Mesopotamia and are moving through the historical timeline, incorporating studies in geography, literature, religion, art, reading, writing, and even math and science when possible. It has been a fabulous way to increase excitement about their studies and a lot of fun for me as well.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Kathleen

We live in East TN and have many opportunities to learn about history including modern history with the Secret City. We enjoy taking field trips to the history museums, sites, and re-enactments. It has made history come alive for my 4 children.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

CherylM

Our boys are 5 and 7 and this year my husband is deployed with the military. We have monthly topics and with each topic, Dad and boys take a different stance. For instance, right now, we are learning about the colonies. Dad is England and the boys are the colonists. They email each other while taking opposite sides. This way, not only are they communicating with Dad, they are also learning a bit about patience (How long the colonists waited for replies, although our email is much faster than communication in those days!), other views on the subject, and how to argue their point of view. They get to know and understand both sides of the subject area. We have a great time with this, and in the end, History is definitely more vivid and understandable to them.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Making history come alive for my 3rd grader began with reading The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan which sparked an intense interest in all things Greek. A trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art gave us a day to immerse ourselves in greek art and architecture, the stories of the gods, and a chance to draw Hercules with his Nemian Lion around his neck, right there in the statue gallery. We also visited the Egyptian mummies and the Temple of Dendur. Encountering the primary sources of the art of the day and being able to have a direct experience like that is worth a thousand pages of reading -- and seems to inspire a deeper desire to learn more, as well as a sense of mastery of one's subject. Go to the museum!!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

sbhyde

For middle and high schoolers, the National History Day competition provides excellent incentive to learn research skills while diving into primary source material. Students work alone or in a group to create a documentary, exhibit, drama, website or research paper. This year my 6th grader is working with two other homeschooled boys to create a documentary. Along with online and book research, the boys are interviewing a college history professor and pouring through WWII newsreels for their topic. They are also learning to use imovie software for this project.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Lonette

Making history alive for my kids involves getting all of their senses involved. We read biographies and other non-fiction books about the time period as well as fiction related to the time period or event that gives us a feel for life at that time. Other elements we sometimes include are singing songs from the period/event, acting out or making puppet shows of the event(s), cooking and eating foods common to the time period/place, watching related movies or documentaries, attending events such as war reenactments, making items as they would have been made during that time period, and more.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

wyomom

We attend, and occasionally participate in, living history days ie. fur trading days, Oregon trail reinactments, Pony Express Reride, 4th of July at 1890's fort with period games and MUCH more. This allows our children to see and experience how others lived.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

kendrajune

We are enjoying participating in a wonderful group near Arvada, CO called Vision Heirs. (www.visionheirs.com) They produce a play and a rotation of activities, including battle re-enactments, related to the revolutionary war and call it Living History Day. We make period appropriate clothing, candles, muskets, etc... and learn in detail by reading quotes and works directly from the period, as well as attend talks by a very knowledgeable aficionado of the time period. There are many groups around the country that perform similarly, the society of creative anachronism does similarly for the 17th century, and there are many others for various time periods and areas if you just check around you locally.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Figgy Bottom Academy

We use a combination of books and movies to bring History alive. We read a lot of the books on the Sonlight book lists, as well as watching tv shows with a historical spin, such as Time Waro Trio and Carmen San Diego. We will be using Sonlight next year which uses History as a spine.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

livsmama

My kids loved Drive Thru History all of the dvds! They still talk about the things they learned from watching them. They were entertaining for the entire family, really bringing history to life. It was great seeing the places that were being discussed, it really helped put it all together for my family. Dave Stotts is a hightly engaging and entertaining host. I can't say enough good things about Drive Thru History and Dave Stotts!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

WorkofChildhood

Right now, we are just using classic stories, from Ambleside Online to take us through History. Once my son is old enough, we will take a journey with Story of the World and History Odyssey. I LOVED History growing up and I hope that DS will love it as well :)

8 years ago · Like · Comment

BrownFamily

Education Social Science Secondary level was my major! My favorite NEW thing is "The History Teachers" on You tube! they have songs for EVERY major event in World History I think. Here is one to learn all the important facts on the French Revolution it's a parody of Lady GaGa http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wXsZbkt0yqo

8 years ago · Like · Comment

CHELLE31

We are studying the presidents and are using a United States cookbook to make some of the presidents favorite foods. We also learning about all the states. My boys are visual and hands on learners. They are making a states & president notebook and love adding to it everytime we learn about a new state or president.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

AtHome

We are fortunate to live in a city with a 3000+ year old history. Merely walking around our neighborhood, we can see a Roman aqueduct and a Byzantine farmhouse. A five-minute walk brings us to where we can see a 1300-year-old religious shrine that is still in use today. Traveling further afield, we can visit (for free!) what is presumed to be a 3000-year-old palace and the original city around it. And there are many other archeological sites, buildings, and museums from every period of our history.

We don't have to MAKE history come alive; it is living all around us. And we take advantage of as much of it as we can as often as we can!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

AnaParsons

We find pictures and related facts on the internet. We also try to find movies and clips from movies made about that time period. Reading historical fiction is also very helpful.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

jesshsbc

We love Drive Thru History!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

This year we have started using My Father's World, beginning with Exploration to 1850. I enjoy pioneer history, so we needed to start with something I could be excited about.

My Father's World uses a wide variety of books to keep us engaged, and learning new things, all around the world starting about the 1500's to the 1850's.

We are reading Story of the World, Exploring American History, George Washington's World, and the list goes on. We have made Scottish flat bread in honor of the Queen of Scots. This next week we are making "Hasty Pudding", in honor of the New England Colonists. We have bowled 9 pins with pop bottles, and heard about many heroic acts of the explorers settling in our great country.

We are studying about George Washington at the moment ( and other great and not so great leaders around the world) and our local history museum is having a special feature of George Washington! Just in time for us :) We're so thankful to be able to get out and explore this time of year :)

This year by far has been the best history year for us. The best part about it, is this year they are not only grasping it, but enjoying it! :)

8 years ago · Like · Comment

HmskoolMom

Since I live in Florida with lots of Native American things to do, the best way for me to bring local history alive is by experiencing it. We just came home from a field trip to Emerson Point and the native mounds and had two very wonderful demonstrations from a company called Around the Bend Tours. One demonstration showed us Native American tools and how they are used and the other showed us food that the locals would have eaten.

I also volunteer at our local historical park and we get lots of local history this way, especially from visiting the cemetery across the street from it and seeing the pioneers of our county buried there.

We have a local Natural History Museum that has many, many items on display for Native History, including the carved canoes and some shell mounds; so we visit that frequently.

I am very fortunate to be able to live in an area with lots of free parks and locations that are historically kept. DeSoto National Park is not too far away from me and they have some wonderful demonstrations going on right now, regarding the landing of Hernando DeSoto and his interactions with the Natives. This is our next trip. We also get to access Fort DeSoto in St. Pete which gives us a great more modern approach to war time history.

I can go on and on regarding this, but the one tool I found useful for me, other than googling, is a book called One Tank Trips (there are 3 now) and we use them to locate many out of the way places that most people do not know about and learn lots regarding local history.

Toni Wilson

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Audy

Because my kids enjoy History it is usually the first thing we do together for school. The time however, is never the same. All 4 kids (3-10) sit around the coffee table with a tub of crayons in the middle. I take some corresponding pages out of one of the Peter Marshall s activity books and copy them for each child. They do the pages while I read the books from Peter Marshall s Ministries.

Now here is the key, show emotion in your reading. Many times I am up on the coffee table like I am looking starboard while I read parts of the book (why not I am in the comfort of my own home). Other times I am slamming my hand on the coffee table as I read the debates between the continental congress. I will even lay my hand on a child's back as I read of a man pleading with God. But most of the time I sit in the rocking chair using different (horrible sounding) accents with fluctuations in my voice.

At times we will act out what we read. This does not always work but with the first book about Columbus it worked great, till we got to the killing. We did not act that out! The kids learn even more this way and retain it longer. We also pull out the map in the middle of my reading when they want to see where a country or state or river is.

After reading about some people I would put in the Drive Thru History DVD. For instance when we read about Washington, we watched Dave Stotts on his tour and life of Washington. This would hit home even more what we had just read about.

The For God and Country CD's have been invaluable in the van. They get to hear what it was like for the slaves trying to escape and how it must have felt as the soldiers fought for freedom. It is yet another way to learn that is at a completely separate time from doing the lesson. This forces the brain and imagination to work. They pull up the stories from their memory and their mind pulls it all together, what they heard me read, what they saw and colored, what they sometimes acted out and now what they are hearing in radio theater.

So there you have it. It is soooo easy I can't even begin to explain it. I do all the kids together and the preparation is simply looking at what I am about to read and copying a few pages. I look forward to God giving me even more ideas, hopefully that involve a camper and heading out to actually step foot where our forefathers stood and where many prayed.

8 years ago · Like · Comment
Audy: I could not put who I was when I put this on here last night. My name is Audy. Thanks!
Audy likes this. · 8 years ago · Like
deannaaich: Drive Thru History is awesome! And, for kids and adults alike, love it! They just came out with an Egypt one.
Audy likes this. · 7 years ago · Like
Audy: Yes, I ordered that last month but they keep getting set backs and it is still not out. Soon I hope.
7 years ago · Like

We use The Story of the World and it's activity book for daily lessons. The stories are wonderful and the projects allow my son to create and view pieces of history. History Pockets are something we like to incorporate as well. We also do a lot of traveling and frequent history museums. Our favorite, so far, is the Smithsonian American History Museum.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

mtnmom

We have been members of a history club run by the NC Museum of History for years. Our Jr. Tarheel Historian club meets at the Vance Birthplace every month. Nothing makes history more alive than being a part of it. We participate in reenactments, learn how to operate all of the historical equipment at the site, and have exquisite guest speakers who teach on all aspects of history.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Fiddler

One of the ways we bring history alive at our house is using historical fiction relating to whatever we're learning about for read-alouds. Right now it's Young Fu of the Upper Yangtze, which paints a picture of life in China in the 1920's (and has very rich vocabulary, to boot). Both of the older two (13, 9) also have independent readers from the same culture, and the youngest (6) gets related picture books (usually folktales) read to him.

In addition, we use Learning through History magazine,

http://www.learningthroughhistory.com/

Schlessinger Media dvds,

http://www.libraryvideo.com/browse/sm_allseries.asp?mscssid=SE38JEW1PH0P8M471VG7EABCGAE768HB

cookbooks, games, and whatever else we can get our hands on.

We're studying Eastern Hemisphere countries this year, so we're planning field trips to local art museums that have Chinese, Japanese, and Indian art and also one to a Russian icon museum. One book we've enjoyed using to "do" art as it relates to various cultures is Geography through Art, by Sharon Jeffus and Jamie Aramini.

I've loved reading everyone else's ideas and will be incorporating some of them into our home learning--thanks, all!

8 years ago · Like · Comment
Fiddler: Forgot to mention that there is an excellent new series of books that my eldest is enjoying called "Teens in. . ." (China, Korea, Russia, etc.). Lots of photos and a peek into what life is like for adolescents in other countries.
8 years ago · Like
deannaaich: Missionary stories are great also, we do alot of that.....as they will likely coincide and there's character lessons and geography / culture. :)
7 years ago · Like

We go on field trips when possible, and we act out famous events. My kids love good books, so we read stories and listen to radio dramas about historical people and events. The kids especially love the radio dramas, because they can hear and feel the emotion, while still also using their imaginations more than they would with a movie.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Nani

We darken the room and pretend to be time travelers. After we all make a big whooshing sound I pick a random year on the calendar and my kids pick a location on the planet, for example 1455 in Italy or 1200 BC in Egypt. When I turn on the lights, we ARE THERE and explore everything as if we live in that time period. We play roles, dress like the people of that time and have fun. Nothing makes more sense to kids than pretending to be there themselves.

8 years ago · Like · Comment
Audy: Awesome I will add this to my stuff above. Woot! Audy
8 years ago · Like

I like doing The Story of the World by Susan Wise Bauer. The big book has so many activities to do it makes it come alive and it is fun. We also like Evan Moor pocket books. They have fun activities and show how things were at different times and different places in history. I also like The American Heritage Series with David Barton. I like how he has dug up such interesting facts that were not usually taught in schools. I feel like I am learning history for the first time and my kids enjoy it too!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Teresa :)

During the election season, we attend political luncheons, meet-and-greets, go to political rallies, and pass out literature for our chosen political candidate. Every time we vote, we take one of the kids with us, and explain the process as we vote. The people there always give them an "I voted" sticker! :)

8 years ago · Like · Comment

noef

I am part of a history co-op. We read the wonderful books by the fabulous writer Genevieve Foster. Together we discuss the history we read and afterwards the kids put on several humorous skits based on what we read and learned. It's wonderful to give them this creative outlet and, at the same time, see their understanding of the events.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

UmmHumza

We also try to do as many field trips as possible. Thankfully, in Indiana, we have some great resources. We can go for an archaeological dig, we visit Conner Prairie, a living history museum, and visit Spring Mill State Park. The Indiana State Museum and Children's Museum are also fabulous places to go to bring history alive.
When I was teaching in a classroom, we did a living museum. Each student chose their a famous person from the past - ex: Martin Luther King - They had to write a biography for that person and then on the day of the Museum dress up like them. On their shirt they were given a sticker. The sticker served as their button. When another child pushed their button they got to "come alive" and tell their story. I loved the activity because it incorporated so many academic areas and the kids enjoyed "being" someone else. This idea would be great for a homeschool co op :)

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Laurainbow

We turn our basement into a museum and create exhibits from the time periods we study. Right here are some marble (bars of white soap) carvings of ancient Greek statues.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

We went to Johnson's Island, a Civil-war site that is being excavated by a Heidelberg University professor. It's off limits to the general public. First, he talked to our group of about 20 or so about the history involved at the site, and then on the day of the dig, we visited a nearby gravesite and learned more about the fallen and the battles. Then, finally we were able to actually participate in the actual dig, the site of an old hospital during the war, and one of my daughters has a find in the Heidelberg museum, an old pen-nib used for writing. Other items found were fishbones, pipes, pieces of glass from windows and from medicine bottles, pieces of chamber pots, etc.... It ranks as my children's best field trip ever!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

ntelasue

We have always tried to take field trips that correspond to our history readings. We've enjoyed the Colonial Williamsburg Virtual Field Trips. When my children were younger we'd done so many of the trips to coincide with American history readings for the older kid that when we read about the Vikings and the book mentioned a museum in Scandinavia where a full-size Viking ship could be viewed, my son who was then about first grade, asked if we could go there to see it! It took some explaining to convince him it was too far away and too expensive to do that! He's now 16 and I think he would still go there given a chance!

8 years ago · Like · Comment
onlysmallthings: Sounds like us! :)
6 years ago · Like

tenleyl

Our state history museum has several great resources that we take advantage of using. There are history kits that can be shipped that have lessons and materials. We have checked out the pottery, Colonial America, Civil War, World War Two, Health and Healing and Pirate kits over the years. The museum also sponsors history clubs with a magazine and contests each year. Once a year we attend a history conference with other clubs from around the state where we participate in hands on workshops and hear from many excellent speakers. All of these are no or low costs. The museum also has movie rentals and history notebooks available for teachers. Information can be found at www.ncmuseumofhistory.com. Maybe other state history museums offer similar opportunities. I know that when we studied the Civil War I was able to get free teaching materials from the Virginia History Museum. Happy homeschooling!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Julie H

To bring history alive we attend as many history fests as we can attend. For the last ten years we have been attending these as 1850's re-enactors. we haul our spinning wheels and wool and have fun demonstrating to adults and children. For the last three we have attended a 1770's Sugar on Snow... way up on the north shore drive in MN. It is next week so we are hoping temps are well above zero! As they teach others about "our" time periods they absorb knowledge from the other re-enactors.
We also love any good historical fiction or well told biographies we can find.

8 years ago · Like · Comment
onlysmallthings: Cool -- we've considered becoming re-enactors. :)
6 years ago · Like

Cheryl D

My two boys are not hands-on learners, which makes bringing history "alive" a challenge since you usually think of *activities* to accomplish this. We read a lot instead. I have a running read aloud at all times(Genevieve Foster is an absolute favorite) as well as historical novels that are offered both for their mp3 players and for them to read. I have also found that the large notebook style timeline we use really helps them put it all together since it seems so much more real when you realize that the American West was settled at about the same time as the Australian Outback.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Adele S

Great suggestions so far! We also love the Colonial Williamsburg field trips and Chester Comix. Other hits for our family: videos from Discovery Education Streaming videos, field trips, historical fiction literature, hands on crafts and activities, board games (Made for Trade) and computer games, time-line book, lapbooks and PowerPoint presentations. The kids also enjoy making their own videos which can be a bit time consuming but they love it and it's a great way to share their learning!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

We are teaching our kids skills from the past, like making apple cider, tapping maple trees for making pure syrup, milking goats and making cheese...all like our ancestors did to survive and thrive. We take lots of photos during these projects and make books to share and keep. These books are some of our most cherished possessions.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Curious K

To bring history alive we get involved. We cook period food,. We dress in period clothing. We even made blue face make up and were our own Celtic horde for a day. There is nothing like really jumping in with both feet to make history come alive!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

tedebear

We visit places such as battlefields (we have so many near us that we try to visit several a year), museums, etc. We enjoy games, so we play various boardgames (really into Settlers of Catan right now, so we have the new Settlers of America game) and my kids play computer & videogames as well (they really love Sid Meier's Civilization). We also use books (not textbooks) & magazines, dvd's, history programs on tv, etc.

When my kids were younger we also did unit studies with crafts, plays and other hands-on fun.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

mumoffunkids

We try and make something relevant to the time period. We have made Egyptian neck pieces, frescos using damp plaster and paint, vases decorated with tile grout and finished with seeds, shells, beads etc. All of these things and more are accessible to little ones and older ones and the finished article demonstrates their abilities and how much effort they have put in. Even our 3 year old joins in, they then might like to act out some of the scenes while their sister records them on her camera.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Aisha

History for me has to be one of my favorite subjects. I spent three years living in the middle east, in Syria. We spent a lot of time researching the various sites and castles, and then visiting those places to get a hands on experience. We would storm castles, and stage battles. My children found sticks and costumes at times and just had at it. We spent time to absorb the environment, to realize the difficult task of concurring the castles, or what it must have meant to have been a worshiper of some of the different shrines. We found time to watch excavations and talk to the archeologists. One of which we visited was a Temple of Zeus, that hadn't even been excavated. We have always made it a point to give the historical facts and evidence from all angles, and let them come to their end opinion of how this affects us now in the future, and I believe this in particular is what keeps their interest. Currently back in the US my son is now on a full pledged research project regarding the Crusades and in fact re-enacting some of those Crusade battles on his video game Ages of Empires II. We never limit our history lessons to text books and worksheets, but utilize every possible resource, and then compile those into lap books and research projects, and sometimes re-enactments. We watch movies, do internet research, visit sites when possible, and just soak it up! We try and find the interesting in even the most boring events and work on it subject by subject but never necessarily chronologically. History is important for us to also understand our future! And we do whatever it takes to make sure our children understand that.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

jennhosier

what I do to make history come alive to my children is to study chronilogically so they see the big picture. We also do crafts from each time period we study. We also make lapbooks!!! They are so proud of their finished lapbooks and They have a wonderful way to remember what they learn. We also end each time period study with a dress up day. On that day we dress the part cook

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Gwyn

We try to stay out of the textbook as much as possible. We use DVDs and go on a lot of field trips. Our favorite approach, though, has been to act out the historical events we're learning about. Everyone will take a role (or more than one) and we all get to add a dramatic flair to the story. My personal favorite was when I had my dad show up at our door dressed as Paul Revere. My kids were blown away!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

ajury

You Are There cds from Jim Hodges productions, Imagine a radio broadcast of the first olympics! Jim Weis does a number of great historical CD's. Chester Comics is great (and Homeschool buyers Coop has it). Of course Story of the World. We all enjoy Keith and Rusty McNeil's American History Through Folksong what could be better than singing the songs the Revolutionary war solders sang? History maybe our favorite subject.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

angelarts

We just went to an Abe Lincoln birthday celebration last weekend at Focus on the Family. A period actor gave some of his most famous speeches and told the story of Grace Bidell. Of course, there was an actress for her part, too, as well as Mrs. Lincoln. It was very fun! Then afterwords we looked at the exhibits, including civil war era guns. It was a huge hit with the family and truly did bring history alive!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

sumkoolskool

History was boring for me as a kid-I was in Public school and it was all about memorizing facts and dates. Now, I homeschool three of my 5 kids who are old enough for it. We try to share with them men and women who exhibited character traits that we admire and desire to see in our children. We use resources such as Nest Entertainment's DVD Heroes series with activity pages to ago along with each person. We use other DVD series (our kids are mostly visual learners) such as Drive Through History and Liberty Kids (studying US History this year.) Also, this year, we plan to take the kids to Washington DC to show them where a lot of events in our countries history occurred. My dream is to take a couple of years to tour the United States in a camper and visit many of the places that shape our country and make it as great as it is today.

Giving our kids a solid foundation in history is important to us as we wish for them to be able to research more about history on their own as they get older. More importantly, we desire for them to know our Christian heritage and how we have fallen and WHY we have fallen away from that. By teaching them these things, we pray that it will keep them steadfast and unmovable in the coming years and whatever that may entail.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

ChristeeB

We don't do dry & drab History at our house!

We use the Colonial Williamsburg Electronic Field Trips (available @ the Co-op) because my kids LOVE them... they really enjoy calling in during the live sessions to submit questions to LIVE Historians.

We also use Historical stories on CD... if the storyteller is lively, even better!

We read Bible scriptures at least 3 times a week using The Message translation... this brings Biblical History into modern language for my kids. I also relate the chosen story/scriptures to their personal lives with comedy. They LOVE this and it brands the 'meaning' on their hearts.

We use timeline notebooks! These show the kids a visual walk through events by leafing thru their personal timeline notebook.

Field Trips! We LOVE field trips!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

vweers

My boys love to do Lapbooks and little projects that are hands on. They love to watch historical shows, like Liberty Kids. WE have also started to read some of GA Henty novels and they love those too.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

indiamom

I use a lot dvd's and books from my local library. We also have a map on the wall which we use to add dates and specific historical events. We use a time line to put events in order and that helps her know when things actually happened in reference to each other. I also will add crafts or art work when possible that is pertaining to a events or time periods we are studying.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

We travel to as many local historic landmarks as we can, and come up with projects that the kids love to do to reinforce what they learned there. For Missons we would paint it while we were there, for churches we would learn about that religion and then make "stained glass" out of transparency paper and dye. Traveling, seeing, and touching the things makes it more real for children, and they have fun visiting the new places.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

My oldest son is a self learner. He just loves watching DVD's or doing research. The younger boys, they prefer doing projects or play acting. I like to keep it simple and fun.

8 years ago · Like · Comment

Brett

Hi, all! Welcome to our new contest page! We hope you enjoy sharing your great ideas and interacting with other members! Please invite your homeschooling friends to participate!

8 years ago · Like · Comment

"My teen son and I have been using the World History: Patterns of Interaction for about a month now.



Compared to other history textbooks that we've read over the years, the World History: Patterns of Interaction high school textbook seems to outshine the rest.



My son enjoys the multimedia clips and movies. The digital version of the textbook is very helpful to have handy, especially when there are many maps to view at the same time.



The teacher's interactive edition is excellent. This has been one of the best Homeschool Buyers Co-op deals that we've purchased over the years, and I hope they offer it again for the next school year."
Traci S., Co-op Member

"This is a great resource, my daughter wanted a good geography book to go along with a course she is working on. After some research I bought this one, with the online resources it's so much more than a geography book. I highly recommend it."
D. Huntley, Co-op Member

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D Martin, Co-op Member

"As a historian, I'm always on the lookout for things that might make my kids like history. I was reluctant to try these unseen, but am so glad I did. I figured these might be useful when my boys got older, but at 3.5 and 7, they're both completely in love with the Chester Comix series. There must be something seriously compelling in the art, because I can't imagine the three-year-old is understanding a word I read him of the ideas behind the Constitution! But for less abstract ideas, they really can absorb something even at this young age. Nothing warms a historian mom's heart like hearing kids discuss Rosa Parks or argue about the Mayflower. We hope the author will do many more! We bought a second set to give away."
J. Turner, Co-op Member

"We are using the World Geography model and are loving it. It is very thorough, and will take a full year to complete. There are so many possible activities to suit a variety of learning styles and age levels; it's tempting to do them all but we sometimes have to pick and choose.



I love the progress reports and the practice tests which are already corrected and graded. A high school student can do this course independently; a middle school student might need a little more assistance. We will be purchasing other modules after finishing this one."
Terri V., Co-op Member

"I purchased both the Civics course for my son and the Basic American History I course for my daughter. I find them to be challenging and incredibly educational. I don't know that I would say that my kids enjoy it, that might be too strong of a word - but they don't mind it as much as other history curriculums that they have used. It is more entertaining than others, and yet manages to get across a lot of information in different manners that make it more interesting and easier to process. The essays are tough, but very good at showing what your child is getting from the lessons. My older son is getting through it on his own, but my daughter definitely needs more guidance and explanation - so it is not fully hands off - there is work that needs to be done by the parent in terms of explanations, etc. and of course checking their word to ensure that they are understanding what they are reading."
Joanne R., Co-op Member

"We really like Mapping the World By Heart. Our Curriculum requires that the student be able to draw and label the World by the time they graduate. This will make that task so much easier. This is built into our memory work each week. My daughter (9) loves the different shapes or figures that are in the maps. She shares these with the other children. We will use this all the way through High School. I share this each time it comes up in conversation. It is a wonderful addition to our World History."
LR, Co-op Member

"I don't know if you can pass this on, but as much as I love the concept of Mapping the World by Heart, I gave up on it after the first couple of lessons because there's absolutely no teacher's guide or "answer" key, even to the provided exercises on contour lines etc. I'm pretty good with maps, having been in the Army, but I don't want to teach my kids wrong and it's very frustrating to not have anything to back up my answers."
Lisa Ansley, Co-op Member

"The content and video selection are abundant However I do find that the search doesn t really give me what I m looking for For example I put in a grade level range grades 6 and up in Science and it will still list videos for younger elementary grades It makes searching a bit tedious Also if you build a playlist with multiple video you have to play them in the order that they are in the list It would be nice if there was a way to save a list of the ones you are interested and then be able to select from that list which ever you want in whatever order you want Maybe there is a way I haven t found it I do like that you can quiz your kids on what they ve watched to be sure that they have truly paid attention and grasped the content I don t know that I would renew again"
Wendy, Co-op Member

"We just started using CCC Streaming and we love it! The interface is very simple to navigate and understand. As a parent, I especially love that my 9 year old son can simply select a subject or topic, watch the video and be able to take a short quiz right afterwards. I love the playlist and bookmark feature although I have not needed to use those yet. He simply watches what he wants in a given topic. It is especially cool that we can choose material by state standards or subject. There is also a report feature. Our son has ADHD and vision issues and reading a lot of print material is not an option for him. The videos are engaging and informative/educational and he loves the ease of use. They are perfect in duration and he does not get bored or lose interest.I can see how useful this would have been when he was younger also. In the past we have scoured the net for educational videos but this sure beats that painstaking process. This is perfect for our family and we thank HSBC for making this deal available to us. Very happy and grateful for this resource!!!"
G. Sadler, Co-op Member

"We are using the World Geography model and are loving it. It is very thorough, and will take a full year to complete. There are so many possible activities to suit a variety of learning styles and age levels; it's tempting to do them all but we sometimes have to pick and choose.



I love the progress reports and the practice tests which are already corrected and graded. A high school student can do this course independently; a middle school student might need a little more assistance. We will be purchasing other modules after finishing this one."
Terri V., Co-op Member

"I purchased both the Civics course for my son and the Basic American History I course for my daughter. I find them to be challenging and incredibly educational. I don't know that I would say that my kids enjoy it, that might be too strong of a word - but they don't mind it as much as other history curriculums that they have used. It is more entertaining than others, and yet manages to get across a lot of information in different manners that make it more interesting and easier to process. The essays are tough, but very good at showing what your child is getting from the lessons. My older son is getting through it on his own, but my daughter definitely needs more guidance and explanation - so it is not fully hands off - there is work that needs to be done by the parent in terms of explanations, etc. and of course checking their word to ensure that they are understanding what they are reading."
Joanne R., Co-op Member

"Our family LOVES VP Self Paced History. We have had a subscription continuously for seven years! My oldest son loved it so much that he completed all five sections in under three years. My second son is happily working on the last section, and my third son just started the program this fall. I am always amazed at how much information it covers and how much the kids enjoy the lessons and review games. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Also, VP has awesome customer service, a friendly human on the other end of every phone call every single time!"
Holly Sheppard, Co-op Member

"Veritas-Press online Bible is a wonderful curriculum. This is our second year using it and my daughter has learned so much. It's nice that she can log on and do a bible lesson on her own and she absolutely loves it. After each lesson we talk and discuss what she's learned and it has been amazing. The videos are fun and engaging. We will continue using Veritas Press as part of our homeschool curriculum."
Janna A., Co-op Member

"Our 9 year old son has thoroughly loved the books from YWAM publishing! They are well written and have been very thought provoking for him. He is so excited after he reads one, he comes and gives me an oral book report over the entire book :) When people are looking for great books for their kids, we will definitely mention these."
Wendy G., Co-op Member

"We love the YWAM biographies of Christian heroes throughout the ages! They are very interesting to read. It shows the subjects to be ordinary people who are willing to do extraordinary things for God when He calls them to it. Highly recommended!"
G. LePoidevin, Co-op Member

"Mystery of History Volume I. I use this curriculum for my two daughters, ages 4.5 and 7. The lessons are nice and short to keep their attention, and I often read them aloud in the car. We don't do the activities due to the children's ages, but I like that when we go through this material in later years, the activities will be there, and the text will still serve as a springboard to further study.



I also like that the author notes when there is controversy (who was the Pharoah from Exodus, for example). I use places where I don't share the author's viewpoint as opportunities to teach my children that not everyone believes the same things, and to develop their reasoning skills.



The kids never ask to do history, yet they pay attention and ask questions as I read to them. We will continue to use this text, and I believe I'll be watching for a sale on Vol. II and III in the future."
Melanie H., Co-op Member

"We are just finishing volume 1 of The Mystery of History, and getting ready for volume 2. I can't wait. I have so enjoyed learning right along with my 7th grade son, as we've walked through the ages together, using the Bible as our timeline structure. Seeing how events around the world coordinate with what God was doing with His people has been so interesting. I have recommended this series to many friends looking for curriculum options."
Lisa Seward, Co-op Member

"We\'ve really enjoyed the Discovery Education video service. My daughter\'s 12, and there are hundreds of videos targeted at that age range. Her favorites so far are the math videos (go figure!), but we\'ve watched a lot of science and history videos as well."
Rhee Eliker, Co-op Member

"This is a wonderful tool for my family. It is easy to use and fast to search for things, they are very well grouped."
Mary T., Co-op Member

"CCC-Streaming-BBC-History has been an amazing supplement for science and history - one of my children is a visual leaner - we read about a subject then watch a quick video or vice versa - access the huge video library has significantly enhanced our classes - absolute value added! We love it and recommend it!"
M. Bess, Co-op Member

"This program has helped with my kids knowledge with the reading and understanding of the maps of the world. It gave them a sense of where everything is and it helped to associate their classes of where everything is happening. When we study any news report, we go to the map so they can learn where everything is happening."
John Calderon, Co-op Member

"This has been a great addition to our history and geography curricula. The maps are excellent and there are so many additional features!"
Crystal C., Co-op Member

"My teen son and I have been using the World History: Patterns of Interaction for about a month now.



Compared to other history textbooks that we've read over the years, the World History: Patterns of Interaction high school textbook seems to outshine the rest.



My son enjoys the multimedia clips and movies. The digital version of the textbook is very helpful to have handy, especially when there are many maps to view at the same time.



The teacher's interactive edition is excellent. This has been one of the best Homeschool Buyers Co-op deals that we've purchased over the years, and I hope they offer it again for the next school year."
Traci S., Co-op Member

"This is a great resource, my daughter wanted a good geography book to go along with a course she is working on. After some research I bought this one, with the online resources it's so much more than a geography book. I highly recommend it."
D. Huntley, Co-op Member

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