For the last two years, we have done a big timeline as our group history project. While certainly a fun project, repeating it for a third year didn't sound too exciting to me. If it isn't exciting to me, I'm positive it is less exciting to the small children I call my students so we have been working on something new.
This year we have been studying the settlement of the Americas and writing our own book about it!
I'm not talking about a history textbook full of dates and details, but rather a compilation of maps, select biographies, illustrations, etc. Instead of Story of the World, we are using a collection of history and geography books put together from major booklists covering American History. We are also using the Pioneers & Patriots textbook. Here is some of what we have covered thus far and what will be included in our "book".
South & Central America
An illustrated list of early explorers (courtesy of Caleb)
A current political map of South America (courtesy of Aidan)
Biographies of two South American Saints (St. Rose of Lima courtesy of Aidan and St. Martin de Porres courtesy of Caleb).
A current political map of Canada (Caleb)
Illustrated explorer list (Aidan)
Saint Biographies (Aidan- St. Kateri & Caleb- St. Isaac Jogues)
The Colonial US
Map of the 13 colonies (Caleb)
Profile of life in the colonies (Aidan)
We are wrapping up our studies before we prepare to move, and this project will not be *finished* for quite some time. We are hoping to finish up these sections and then next year we will move into the American Revolution and other early American history. I haven't decided yet if it will be best to bind them just at a copy store or actually scan and/or type everything up to print more neatly. I think it will depend on how everything looks when we are finished!
On a side note, while writing is still something that is challenging for the boys (and has a ways to go to reach "grade level"), their paragraph writing skills have improved a fair amount through this project. I feel like this will open up a whole new world for us next year!