Time Travelers: American Revolution/The Early 19th Century

by Kelly Duckworth
(Montrose, Colorado, USA)

These unit studies are truly great! My kids had a blast making the lapbooks and doing the projects. I'm a big proponent of NOT doing a bunch of busywork. The kids are producing quality work that I plan on keeping to show my grandkids some day.

Each lesson is made up of a write-up, told as a story, that you first share with the kids. Usually, it's interesting enough to hold even the younger kids' attentions. Then, the kids do some mapwork, timeline work, and activities.

The activities range from writing in an ongoing newspaper to cooking to lapbook activities. The kids can also build models of various incidents in history. There are also vocabulary lists and vocabulary cards, review games and copywork, for those so inclined.

Their website is great for seeing samples of what the kids accomplish. My son was really into Lewis and Clark for awhile and one of the assignments was to write a newspaper article about their travels. Well, we ended up needing to make 4 extra copies of the newspaper because he had so much to say. He was in 3rd grade at the time!

The only beef I have with this curriculum is that it would be nice if it included some literature studies that could be used throughout the unit. For instance, it would be great if there was a literature study of Tom Sawyer when studying the late 19th century. Or maybe Uncle Tom's Cabin during the Civil War unit? It's adaptable for all ages. I have a friend that was using Early Explorers with a 14 year old. She just expected more reasearch/writing from him. Definitely take the year to work on one unit, though. You don't want to rush through it.

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