Friday, May 17, 2013

Shakespeare to go with Early American History

As I've been reading through the books my kids will read this coming school year, something has stood out to me.  In both "The Witch of Blackbird Pond" and "A Lion to Guard Us" Shakespeare's "The Tempest" is mentioned.  This got my thinking about our coming school year and what we would read for the Shakespeare portion of our year. And "The Tempest" is our winner!

"The Tempest" is a story of about a shipwreck on an enchanted island and was based loosely around the stories of the Sea Adventure crashing 600 miles south of the Jamestown colony.  The stories were circulating at the time and Shakespeare wrote a play about it. At least, that's the tale I'm reading in the Historical Facts section of "A Lion to Guard Us."

There are lots of good modern translations of "The Tempest" available out there.  "Tales from Shakespeare" by Marcia Williams looks fun! It not only has the play we're reading this year but also several others.  No Fear Shakespeare is available at the Spark Notes website (but there IS some potty talk in there!).  And one final suggestion, Charles and Mary Lamb have a free version of their "Tales from Shakespeare" available on the Kindle or Kindle app (which if you don't have on your phone, tablet, or home computer, you should really get; it's free and easy to use!).

Even if the stories of how "The Tempest" came to be are not true, this is still a fitting story for the times.  There was a LOT of ship travel during Early American times.  Ships went back and forth between America and Europe bringing supplies and sometimes people. Travelling by ship was dangerous.  There were storms, choppy waters, pirates, was tough being a new colonist travelling to a new world.

So what do you think? Are you reading along with us this year? ;) Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Total Language Plus AND My History Plans

Today, I wanted to make a suggestion of a great way to add Language Arts to my History Plans.  Total Language Plus.  You can see their website here:  They have books for third through twelfth grades.

Here's some ideas for breaking them up by time period:


1. The Bronze Bow

Middle Ages:

1. The Whipping Boy
2. Adam of the Road
3. The Door in the Wall
4. Crispin: The Cross of Lead
5. The Trumpeter of Krakow

Early American History (with some world history suggestions from the same period):

1. The Courage of Sarah Noble
2. The Witch at Blackbird Pond
3. Johnny Tremain
4. Amos Fortune, Free Man
5. The Sign of the Beaver
6. Ben and Me
7. Carry on, Mr. Bowditch
8. The Light in the Forest
9. The Call of the Wild
10. Treasure Island
11. Jane Eyre
12. The Scarlet Letter
13. Pride and Prejudice
14. Oliver Twist

Modern History:

1. Shiloh
2. Charlotte's Web
3. Caddie Woodlawn
4. The Cricket in Times Square
5. My Side of the Mountain
6. Where the Red Fern Grows
7. Rifles for Watie
8. Words by Heart
9. The Hiding Place
10. Lord of the Flies

This is not ALL of the TLP selections but it is many of them.  I have not read all of their selections at this point, so some were left out because I was unsure where to put them.  There are also many that would be fun to read during a Geography year such as Around the World in 80 Days.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Free Charlotte Mason/living books/hands-on History Curriculum: Year Two, Term Three

Here it is! The last of the three terms for year two! Check back often because I am always tweaking these plans!! When I update them, I will add the word "updated" with a date in red print at the top of the post. :)

The link:

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Maia of Thebes: the rest of the notebooking pages

I'm pretty sure these never made it up! Sorry!!  I believe these are for chapters 13 through the end of the book but it's been awhile since I put them together and since I actually READ this book! Here are the rest of the pages that I have:

Biography Review: Childhood of Famous Americans: Benjamin Franklin Young Printer Week Four Questions

Here are the final week's questions for chapters 13 through 15, which is the last chapter in this biography. Have a great weekend everyone!

Chapter Thirteen

1. Why is James "cross and glum" in the beginning of this chapter?
2. Why does Ben decide to run away?
3. Who helps him run away and how?
4. How old was Ben when he ran away?
5. Where did Ben find a job as a printer?

Chapter Fourteen

1. What kind of book did Ben Franklin publish every year for 25 years?
2. Who did he marry?
3. As Ben became prosperous, what kinds of things did he start up in Philadelphia? Where did he give money?
4. What kinds of things did Ben invent?  List them.
5. What scientific achievement is described involving a kite and a key?  Explain what he did.

Chapter Fifteen

1. Where had Ben been when he returned to America at the beginning of the chapter?
2. To whom is the crowd comparing Ben?
3. Why is it said that Ben is "the best loved citizen in the United States of America?"
4. What date did Ben die?
5. Ben Franklin had many different descriptions. But what did Ben prefer to be called?

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Biography Review: Childhood of Famous Americans: Benjamin Franklin Young Printer Week Three Questions

Here's the week three questions for chapters 9-12:

Chapter Nine

1. Who is looking for Josiah Franklin's candle and soap shop at the start of the chapter?
2. Where is Ben's brother's new candle and soap shop located?
3. Why is the woman in the candle shop angry?
4. What is Ben doing in the candle shop?
5. What does Ben think of the woman from the candle shop?

Chapter Ten

1. How does Ben feel about the candle business?
2. What is his father afraid Ben will do?
3. Where does he take him in town to try to spark an interest in Ben?
4. What do the other apprentices want to do?
5. What do the constables say happened to the other 15 missing boys?

Chapter Eleven

1. What is James Franklin's job?
2. Where is he from and what does he want from his father?
3. What did he see at the home of Cotton Mather that he wished he could have himself?
4. What did John Collins allow Ben to do?
5. How did Ben get the money to buy his own books?

Chapter Twelve

1. What was the name of James Franklin's newspaper?
2. What does Ben want to do that he fears his brother wouldn't allow?
3. How does he end up getting his way?
4. Who is Silence Dogood?
5. What kinds of things does Mrs. Dogood make fun of? Give examples from the chapter.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Biography Review: Childhood of Famous Americans: Benjamin Franklin Young Printer Week Two Questions

Good morning! Here are the week two reading questions for Benjamin Franklin.

Chapter Five

1. What professions were held by the three grand gentlemen?
2. Why are the three grand gentlemen there and what do they agree to do?
3. Where does Ben go to school in this chapter and what does he think should be the name of the school? Why?
4. What happens on visitation day?
5. When Ben switches schools, with what subject does he struggle?

Chapter Six

1. What did Ben teach the boys to do in the writing school?
2. How old was he in this chapter?
3. What did the sailor say he wanted from Ben?
4. What happened to Ben's brother, Josiah?
5. After reading this chapter, what did the sailor really want to do with Ben?

Chapter Seven

1. What was Ben's experiment at the start of the chapter?
2. Why did Ben choose the big pond in Green's meadow?
3. Did his invention work?
4. What was his next invention?
5. Did his next invention work?

Chapter Eight

1. What did Ben and Nathan buy and fix up together?
2. What did they name it?
3. What did people start calling Ben as a nickname and why?
4. When Ben went sailing with his friend, Jonathan and the squall came, what did he and Nathan have to do?
5. What did Jonathan's father say about the way they handled the situation?

Monday, May 6, 2013

Biography Review: Childhood of Famous Americans: Benjamin Franklin Young Printer Week One Questions

During year 3, some of my kids will be reading about Benjamin Franklin.  In order to confirm reading comprehension and show that they've read the chapters, I have questions prepared for each chapter.  The following questions are for chapters one through four and are intended for the first week of this reading.

Chapter One

1. How old is Ben in this chapter?
2. What are his parents' names?
3. What is his father's job?
4. What does his father wish he could do for Ben?
5. What did Ben promise he would not do?

Chapter Two

1. Whose turn is it to tell a story on story night?
2. What was the name of Ben's story character?
3. what is "the rule" they refer to?
4. How did Ben break "the rule" in the chapter?
5. What happened when he broke it?

Chapter Three

1. Where does Ben go to school?
2. Who are his teachers?
3. Which guest doesn't give the children any lessons?
4. What does he talk about instead?
5. What lesson does father give the children after their guest leaves?

Chapter Four

1. About whom does Abiah tell the children?
2. What are some of the jobs he did?
3. What does Ben want to do when he is grown?
4. What happened to Ben's grandpa in the woods?
5. What was he paid with in the end?

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Updates to year 3, all 3 terms!

Just in case anyone missed it, I have updated all 3 terms of year 3.  I've added a few more books to the lists and also added Hands of a Child Early US History to the plans as I have it available here.  If you have never checked out Hands of a Child, I'd suggest doing so! They have some amazing units with lapbooking and notebooking components.  Their website is here:

Here are the update links:

Term 1:

Term 2:

Term 3:

Have a great weekend! :)

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Time Lines: Story of the World 3

When I posted my History plans, I included a link to the time line I plan to use with my kids next year.  That is here:

Now, I recognize that this may be more work than many of you are willing to do and that leaves us with somewhat of a dilemma.  What kind of time line should you use if not the one I suggested?

I'm including a list here of other free time lines I like and/or have found that would work well for year 3.


For my younger kids, we will likely use time line figures.  Guesthollow has some, but I will likely make our own using Google images.  To do it, we'll just google the character name, choose a picture, and print it to the size to fit our time line with a label of who it is and what year it is.

I hope this helps some of you! Have a great day! :)