Monday, June 28, 2010


History is not history unless it is the truth-  Abraham Lincoln

Our history studies are really the jumping off point for the whole rest of our curriculum.  We use a four book series called The Story of the World and we are just now half way through.  The great thing about it is that it is chronological.  I really think that is the only way to really understand history.  If the first thing a kid learns about in history is "The Pilgrims," he has no religious, geographical or historical context to put that in.  We also study God's work in the world as part of history.  Abraham and Moses are historical figures like King Tut and Napoleon.  We start with Creation, Mesopotamia, Ancient Egypt, The Roman Empire, Vikings, Knights and so on. Last year we studied the Ancients.  This year was The Middle Ages. As you go you study the art, science, literature, religion, famous people and geography of that time period.  See how it covers everything?

We usually read a chapter and then PK1 tells the lesson back to me orally.  I type it up and she colors a picture under it.  Next year, she will probably be ready to write it herself. Here is the page she made after we learned about Vikings:

The book is not American or Euro-centric when they discuss knights, they also taught about Samurai knights from the east.  PK1 wrote a pretty good little compare and contrast between the two.  Here is what she wrote:

Samurai were knights from Japan.  They were a little bit different from the English Knights.  They also used the Feudal System and the Samurai had to fight for the King in exchange for land.  But when Samurai weren’t fighting they liked to write poems, do dances and build gardens.  One of the Samurai generals did a certain dance before he led his troops out to war.

And this is what she drew:

There is also a map for every lesson.  So when they learn about Marco Polo and the Silk Road they have this map:

Then we would also read other books that went along with whatever we were studying.  Biographies of interesting people like Martin Luther:

 Joan of Arc:

 We studied Saint Nicholas, Saint Benedict and Saint Patrick  Saint Patrick was AWESOME!

We also read books like A Medieval Feast which told about all the food and preparation that went into a big feast during Medieval Times:

Here are a few more of PK1's drawings.  They are pretty funny!

The Globe Theater:

Martin Luther nailing up the 95 Theses (that is a hammer, not a hair dryer):

The first 3 of Henry VIII's wives..she ran out of room and interest for the last 3!

And my absolute favorite from this year...The Council of Trent.  Do you not love the arguing archbishops?


Kelli said...

I need to come to one of your history lessons because that is not my strong subject. I do love the frown brows in the last picture. What a great learning tool!

chicago_mom said...

Alright, this is my second time trying to leave a comment. My computer is a struggle. BUT...I think Ellie is an incredible drawer! (and I know that is not a word). Seriously, she looks like a child's book illustrator. You know how artists will try to draw something that looks like a kid drew it but really they can't because it's too good? Well, that's what Ellie's drawings look like to me! Too good! Anne Bolyn is awesome! And this is a perfect narration/drawing idea. I'm stealing this idea. Which means that you-know-who will also! Haha.

Chelsea said...

Hi there! I love the drawing of Luther nailing the theses to the door! Can I use it in my church's newsletter to draw attention to Reformation Sunday?? We'll make sure to give you full credit for creating the image! Pastor Chelsea, Seattle WA