Ok do NOT ask how old this is (even though the date is right there… baaaad Lisa). I have decided to push through and post these crazily old posts now before I never get them up!! Hopefully our collection of links are helpful… and still active!!
For Emanuel’s (and now Trinity’s) first dinosaur of the 2013-2014 school year we actually went reptile… giant reptile with the Archelon turtle. This late Cretaceous period reptile was believed to be slow moving and only dove deep to hibernate. A Potential omnivore it spent its entire life in the ocean except to lay eggs. It is thought to be the predecessor to our current turtles.
What I found interesting was that it was soft shelled AND around during the END of the dinosaurs. And HUGE!!!
We watched a short independently made video about our reptile on youTube by Sarcosuchus7 titled Archelon The Biggest Turtle.
Moving from Slavery (HERE) which was an eye opener for the kids on how cruel the history we come from really is, to Declaration of Independence and the idea of ALL men created equal not actually making it to ALL and completely ignoring women, and then to Abraham Lincoln and his push to begin the abolishing of slavery (HERE), the children actually made a good choice in their next two topics…
Martin Luther King Jr. and his movement to end segregation was the twins’ pick. We had briefly read about him on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Which spurred the wish to know more. Meanwhile Trinity and Emanuel had come across a book that on the back also advertised Rosa Parks in the same series. Her courageous move to NOT move out of her place on the bus and her continuing of standing up for equality and an end to segregation at the same time was just amazing. Two very timely and appropriate topics we began in February.
Our lapbook of choice for MLK was a free one (I like to avoid the pay for ones, even though they are so complete, just to save on money.) from Homeschool Helper Online HERE. I find that the lapbook booklets make the topics easier to face, and more enjoyable then a plain written report. For worksheets you can check out my collection on Education.com HERE, EnchantedLearning.com has some good resources (pay site) HERE and Activity Village has their page for Martin Luther King Day HERE.
I spent a grand total of a dollar on Rosa Parks. We used the Knowledge Box Central Interactive Foldable Booklet. Now I do want to warn that when we purchased it there was a minor spelling error (Education was spelled wrong on one of the pages). I was able to correct it with whiteout and pen, but be warned. You can purchase that HERE.
Rosa Parks is a huge inspiration for Trinity and Echo. They think her choice to sit on the bus was amazingly courageous. They could not get enough of hearing how she was able to not only start a bus boycott, but continued on to work as a Civil Rights Leader and make changes not only in the US, but in other countries around the world. Some called her the Mother of the Civil Rights Movement.
One of the questions we asked ourselves was – What would you say to Rosa Parks? Then Emanuel and Trinity wrote her a letter.
For our craft activity we filled our buses with all sorts of people. You can find our print out HERE thanks to Danielle’s Place. My Education.com collection is HERE. EnchantedLearning had some good pages HERE as well.
We definitely got ourselves a lovely stack of books to read together and use for research.
As I write that it totally looks like I am saying Lincoln was AT the signing… rather we covered BOTH of these rather interesting topics recently and I figured why not bundle the two together for the blog post?
The 2016/2017 school year has had a focus more towards history and the United States of America. It has been a learning experience for students AND teacher. These two topics were the twins’ choice. We started with the Declaration of Independence. Such an important piece of paper. We used a lot of sheets from Education.com HERE.
We had a few books we requested from the library that were helpful:
What is the Declaration of Independence by Michael C. Harris HERE
American Documents: The Declaration of Independence by Judith Lloyd Yero HERE
The Declaration of Independence by Lori Mortensen HERE
I have to share a rather interesting link passed along by a good friend (and fellow twin mom)… this one looks at what happened to the signers of the Declaration of Independence AFTER they signed at USHistory.org. They truly risked life and limb to do so, as they were really committing treason against the crown and King of England. The twins spent quite a bit of time picking out some interesting people to put into our hand out and report folder.
Abraham Lincoln was a huge success. The boys have always had a vague interest in him with his distinctive look and hat that he apparently kept things in. Our final conclusion was that Abraham Lincoln was a great president, one of the best, BUT his life seemed rather miserable. Granted there was a shorter life expectancy and much higher general death rate but… wow… so much sadness, death and difficulty in the life of someone who now is seen as such an inspirational figure.
We ended up choosing a labook set up that was not free, but it was well worth it. We went with a Knowledge Box product you can find for 5.00 (US) HERE. They have a study guide, lapbook and clear instructions.
You can check out my Education.com collection of worksheets HERE. Activity Village has some very helpful worksheets as well (sadly these are all pay for sites to get the full experience, but we have found it well worth it.) HERE. You can do a helpful search on EnchantedLearning as well to get these pages HERE.
These were wonderful topics for us to cover one after the other. We really haven’t spent as much time on US history as we have researching countries from other parts of the world. I can’t say we will stick with these kind of topics, but the more we can cover and find interest in the better. From Lincoln it is a quick jump to Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks. I will share our resources from these topics to. From slavery to a country declaring independence, to a man realizing that a whole group of people also deserved their independence… then to a man who made sure that it was realized that segregation is wrong and a woman who helped courageously help attain that dream. Not bad for taking topics the kids chose themselves!