Homeschool Curriculum Choices: History & Geography

Homeschool Curriculum Choices: History & Geography (for a 6 and 7 year old) @ AllOurDays.com
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Earlier this week I shared my plan for our Bible “curriculum” for the coming school year. If you read through the comments, you’ll find that one part of my plan has already changed :)

Today, I’m going to share what we’ll be using to learn History and Geography this year.

Remember, my official students are 7 and (soon-to-be) 6 years old. Our main goals for these early years are more about developing a love of learning and figuring out how to work together as a family than about strict academics.

I developed the plans for these subjects, keeping my motto of simple learning in mind.

Maybe, like me, you’re in a season where your homeschooling time and energy is limited…you can still homeschool! Maybe you now have more time and resources than before. Whatever your situation may be, use what you have, do what you can, love your children, do real life together and remember that they are always learning.

Okay, back to History and Geography :)

For history we’ll be learning about the American Revolution by watching through the Liberty’s Kids DVD series. This award-winning, animated series with voices from well-known actors like Walter Cronkite, Billy Crystal, Dustin Hoffman, Michael Douglas, and Whoopi Goldberg, teaches about life in colonial America during the time of the Revolutionary War.

Liberty's Kids: The Complete Series - Our American Revolution History Curriculum @ AllOurDays.com

The series includes 40 episodes covering major events, people, battles, politics and more. Right now you can purchase the entire series as one DVD on Amazon for only 5.00!

We’ll be watching one episode each week as well as picking up related books from the library. One of my goals for July is to make a list of available books that go along with the main topic from each episode. I think that goal will carry into August.

Once a month, we’ll also complete some sort of simple activity to go along with the people and events we’ve learned about. This will most likely be a coloring page for the younger kids and a simple crossword or word search puzzle for the older ones…simple learning.

For our Geography “curriculum” we’ll be studying US Geography by learning the names and locations of the states. We’ll do this mainly by getting back on track with our after-breakfast map work. We’ve adapted the idea we found here to fit our family with four children involved.

We just pull out two United States Map placemats and a bag of Cheerios (or Cheerio equivalents). We have simple map placemats (similar to this) that my mom used with my younger brother and sister, but I’m saving up to buy these ones with images of what each state is known for.

 

Since there are two kids on each side of the table the pairs each share a placemat. I place two O’s on a state on each placemat. For example, I put two O’s on California on each placemate. That equals four O’s total or one each for four kids.

Then the kids raise their hand if they know the name of the state, or at least in theory…we’re still working on hand raising.

Once someone has correctly identified the name of the state they all point to the state, say the name and then claim their piece of cereal.

We repeat this process starting first with states we already know and adding in one or two new states at a time. We’ll do this about 3 mornings a week…again simple learning.

Are you in the middle of homeschool planning or are you finished your plans for this school year? I’d love to hear about what you’re studying this year.

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Homeschool Curriculum Choices: Bible

Homeschool Curriculum Choices: Bible - What we're using for our 1st and 2nd graders (plus preschooler, toddler, and two babies) @ AllOurDays.com
This post contains affiliate links. You can read our full disclosure policy here.

I had grand plans of making this post about all of the subjects we study as a group: Bible, History, Science, Geography, and Music.

Then real life happened and there were days strung together with no time for blogging. So instead I’ll spend a few posts outlining our plans, partly to give you a glimpse into our homeschool and partly to help me get my thoughts and ideas down on “paper”.

One of my favorite things about homeschooling is being able to gather all the kids together for group learning. I love how learning together encourages family bonding and frees me from spending one-on-one time with different students all morning long.

This year, we still have only two “official” students (ages 7 and almost 6) in our homeschool, but typically everyone participates in our together subjects.

My theme for this fall is simple learning. We’ll be welcoming a new baby into the family in August (or early September) and I know from experience that if I don’t have simple goals planned for the subsequent few weeks I’ll end up behind and frustrated.

For Bible we will continue to read through Jesus Calling: 365 Devotions for Kids every day at breakfast. (I’m also enjoying the original Jesus Calling devotional during my morning quiet time).

Kids' Devotional - Jesus Calling for Kids @ AllOurDays.com Devotional - Jesus Calling @ AllOurDays.com

We are also picking back up with our Memory Verse Box after taking an unplanned break this summer. We’ll start by reviewing the scriptures we learned last year.

Scripture Memory Box @ AllOurDays.com

Once a week, we’ll also watch one What’s in the Bible episode (there are two on each DVD). These DVDs are fun and really educational (I’ve actually learned a lot from them) and will give me a nice break to sit down on the couch and nurse the baby or maybe even sneak in a quick nap.

What's in the Bible 1-13 DVD Bundle @ AllOurDays.com

The kids will have the choice to color a corresponding coloring page while they watch or draw a picture showing something they learned about. You can find free coloring pages here or you can get the 200 page coloring book. We’ll also review the material taught by going through our free What’s in the Bible Flashcards.

I also want to read through two books about heroes of the faith. I have a couple audio books and a couple of print books from the Christian Heroes Then and Now series, but I’m afraid they might be too much for my younger children. I’m also looking at the Trailblazers Series which might be a better fit for the ages of my children.

The Trailblazers books are available through Amazon, but they are difficult to search for by the “trailblazers” title as there are several similar series by that name. I found it easier to refer to the list I linked and then search for specific titles.

Christian Heroes, Brother Andrew: God's Secret Agent @ AllOurDays.com  Christian Heroes - Brother Andrew: Behind Enemy Lines @ AllOurdays.com

Any thoughts or opinions about these series?

We’ll also be sprinkling in more Bible learning with nightly readings from different Bible Story Books. We usually pick one book to read through and then move on to another once we’ve finished. Right now, Tim is reading a section or two a night from The Action Bible. The graphic novel format fascinates the kids.
The Action Bible @AllOurDays.com

Are you in the middle of homeschool planning or are you finished your plans for this school year? I’d love to hear about what you’re studying this year.

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Organizing Our Kitchen Pantries

Organizing Our Pantry @ AllOurDays.com

After my busy project weekend, one of the few things left on my to-do list was to clean out and organize our kitchen pantries. Our kitchen is small and we don’t have a real pantry. Instead we store canned and dry goods in one small stand-alone cabinet and in the two largish cabinets under the bar in our dining area.

Over the last couple of months the pantries had become very unorganized making it hard to know exactly what we had on hand. This meant it took me longer to make grocery lists every week and I often bought duplicates of things we already had simply because I couldn’t see them easily.

My ultimate goal for cleaning out the pantries was to get all like items grouped together and easily visible.

The three older kids each took charge of one pantry, emptying them and wiping down the shelves. After everything was out we grouped like items together (most kids love to sort) and put everything away.

Organizing Our Pantry @ AllOurDays.com

Organizing Our Pantry @ AllOurDays.com

In the end, we were able to consolidate everything into the smaller stand-alone cabinet and one of the other cabinets. The third cabinet is now holding some of the kids’ craft supplies and a stack of cleaning rags that we seem to go through almost daily (this stack is only about a third of what is normally there). I love having these where all of the kids can reach them for daily spills and messes.

Organizing Our Pantry @ AllOurDays.com

Now I’m motivated to clean out and organize my spice and baking cabinet…maybe this coming weekend :)

Do you have any cabinets or drawers in your home that have become out of control? If not, how do you keep everything organized especially when your kids (and your husband) help put things away?

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