An Awesome Hands-On American History Resource From Homeschool in the Woods

I've tried history from a textbook, ya'll. Sometimes it seems easier and less labor-intensive on my part to just read from a book and have the kids answer some questions. But now that my kids are older, when we talk through some of the things we've learned and done with history in our homeschool over the years, they never seem to mention the chapters we read from a textbook. They never seem to remember the facts and dates. 


Do you know what they do remember? They remember hands-on projects. They remember lapbooking. They remember crafts we've made that went along with what we were learning. They remember creating notebooking pages that were diaries or newspaper entries summarizing what we were learning.

The fact is that hands-on history projects just seem to "stick" more than simply reading from a textbook and answering some questions. And hands-on history is certainly more fun to do, with the added benefit that, often, we can be doing it all together as a family!

I've recently been reviewing an awesome hands-on history resource from one of my very favorite history resource publishers. I love it! (You want to make sure you read this whole post because there is an awesome freebie and a giveaway at the end!)

Hands-on history Homeschool in the Woods

Disclosure: I received a free product and compensation for this post. All opinions are always my own.

I've long loved the resources from Homeschool in the Woods. Over the years I've used many of these for my kids, including their amazing timeline resources, lapbooks, Project Passport resources, and more. I love the products they offer because they are hands-on, allowing us to move beyond textbooks and workbooks and really dig in to a historical time period. One of our favorites was the Project Passport: Middle Ages we did when my youngest girls were elementary aged!

Recently I've been using one of their Time Travelers resources for World War 2. The Time Travelers series takes students through American history in a hands-on, interactive way.

A Look at the Time Travelers American History Resource


The Time Travelers: World War 2 resource that we used is a digital resource that comes either on a CD or by digital download. There are a number of files included, and one of my favorite things about these resources from Homeschool in the Woods is that there are great instructions included. These will guide you through what files are included and how to use them, including what you need to print and any other materials you'll need.

Your digital files will include: 
  • Teacher resources- a lesson plan schedule, answer keys, binder covers and spines to print, and a list of additional resources you can include as you wish.
  • Lesson pages- the text pages you'll read with each lesson, project pages that give instructions and show the projects for each lesson, and project masters which are the pages you'll print for the kids to create.
  • Gallery of project photos- a photo gallery that gives examples of the completed projects. (This is a HUGE benefit for me. Often when I can't figure something out, seeing the created project really helps!)
  • Lapbook instructions- this shows you how you'll use some of the mini books you've been creating in the lessons to create a lapbook.
Hands-on history Homeschool in the Woods

The resource is very complete. These project packs are recommended for grades 3-8, but you could easily adapt for older or younger students, making them something the whole family can do together.

There are other Time Travelers packs in this series which includes seven studies covering New World Explorers to World War 2. These are complete, deep dives into American history, and with all seven, you'll cover much more about American history than you would with an American history textbook.

Why You'll Love This Hands-On History Resource


The Time Travelers series is an excellent way to teach American history. Here are just a few things I loved about Time Travelers: World War 2. I know you'll love it too!

Notebooking


I love using notebooking in our homeschool, and this resource is perfect for that! Kids will create a lapbook as well as completing notebooking pages as they work through this study. I like to include pocket pages in the kids' notebooks, so they can put in any loose projects as well.

Hands-on history Homeschool in the Woods


Flexibility


There is a lesson plan schedule included in this study to make things easy for homeschool moms. But the introduction to the study makes it clear that this can be flexible. There are twenty-five lessons. If you wanted to do one a day, you could complete the study in five weeks. But you can definitely spread them out or speed them up.

There is also a great collection of additional resources, including fiction and nonfiction books, movies, audio resources, and websites. You can choose to add in any of these- or none. It's a great way for you to customize your American history study. If you have high school students and are trying to make this study applicable to them as well, some of the books and other additional resources are on a high school level, so you could require those for their study.

Easy to Use


Although there are a number of projects kids will do, you're not going to have to scramble to find lots of materials or books to complete them. Most of what you need is included- including the text you'll read- and the additional materials are clearly listed so you can gather them at the beginning of the project.

The way that the resources are laid out with a very clear Start Here section makes it easy to sort out which materials go with each lesson as well as how to use all of the materials. It makes this great collection of files very easily accessible.

Hands-on history Homeschool in the Woods

More of Homeschool in the Woods: The U.S. Elections Lap-Pak


Another great American history resource that is particularly applicable this year is the U.S. Elections Lap-Pak. With this digital resource, kids will learn about the election process in the U.S. This resource is also recommended for grades 3-8, but could be adapted for older or younger students. It includes activities that guide kids to learn about:
  • The definition of "election"
  • Different forms of government
  • Suffrage
  • Political parties
  • Campaigns
  • The electoral college
  • Innauguration
  • And much more!
We actually reviewed this great Lap-Pak around the time of the last presidential election! You can see what we thought and a few more details about this resource here.

Freebie!


Some of my favorite Homeschool in the Woods resources are their file folder games. You can get a freebie- Greek Life! File Folder Game- from Homeschool in the Woods right now. Use the code iHNGameNight when you check out to get it FREE!

Giveaway!


There is also a great giveaway from Homeschool in the Woods that you don't want to miss. You can win your own digital copy of the U.S. Elections Lap-Pak. This is a perfect study to do as we're preparing for another presidential election this year. The giveaway is open through August 7, 2020. Enter below.







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