I believe that life just is easier with unit studies. What is a unit study you ask…a wonderful addition to homeschooling, that’s what. Okay, it is more than that, but that seems like a great start. A unit study is a laid out plan of study that revolves around a particular subject. For instance, Early Settlers in America from Homeschool Legacy is a great one to talk about.
Joseph, Ana, and I reviewed this for the past couple of weeks and I enjoyed the review as much as they did. We were given a PDF (Grab-n-Go) that we downloaded and I printed out. It is not required to be printed out but it always works better for me to have it printed and easily accessible. Use it in the way it works best of you. Homeschool Legacy has a printed version of each unit study available on the site.
Here is layout of this unit study, which worked pretty well at my house.
Early Settlers in America
This is a six week unit study. It entails way more information and covers a bunch of subjects that you would think at first. The study is so well laid out that there is virtually nothing the teacher needs to do, other than read and follow the game plan.
The first couple of pages go over the basic information of how the unit study works. Then, get this, there is a breakdown of what badge information a child will receive if they are enrolled in American Heritage Girls or Boy Scouts…that is pretty cool right there!
After that there is a suggested usage timeline for each week. Note to self (and you) this is just a suggestion, work this however it works best for your family.
Here is the breakdown of the six weeks of study:
- The Lost Colony – Roanoke, North Carolina
- The First Successful Settlement – Jamestown, Virginia
- The Pilgrims – Plymouth, Massachusetts
- New York
Now, at first glance you might think that this is going to be the boring stuff that we learned in school. Well, that just isn”t the truth. This was a very comprehensive and through study of the beginnings of our great nation.
There is a lot of reading. And I mean a lot! Each week there are suggested books and/or videos on the list for library checkout. I think for this review we visited the library way more than we have lately. Which is a pretty different change for us. I love the library, but this unit made me step out of my comfort zone a bit and really get into the library…a nice change for us.
The list offers suggestions for independent reading as well as read aloud books. There are some fun read aloud that we were so delighted to read. Now that Ana is older and she reads better it was not always my job to read out loud, she did sometimes too. Which greatly improves her skills, a fact that I truly enjoyed.
Not only is that a lot of reading, there is almost always a supply list for the week. This allows you to be more prepared and make sure when you get the the craft for the week you already have the needed items. The weekly craft was always more fun than we originally thought but we didn’t get to do all of them either. Time permitting and supplies needed, but most were done.
There is a weekly family devotional included in the unit study also. This was the way we wrapped up our week and had time to sit and discuss the things we read about, watched, or worked for the week. I love this about this unit study, it makes sure to always lead the student back to the bases of God in each area.
Here are some of the subjects (skills) we covered during this unit study:
- community service
- library skills
- map skills
- science life skills (baking)
How this Unit Study Worked for Us
Since this is a review, we laid down pretty much every other subject (unless it was another review) for this time period. The unit study amazingly covered almost every other subject that the kids would need. I am so impressed and the kids learned so much information.
Each day of work was always a different amount of time. Depending on the reading that needed to be done or the time needed for the craft. Our average was between an hour or two for each day we used the unit study. There were a few days that were longer, like the days we read AND watched a video or the days we went out to the library.
For us, this unit study was a real active way for me to interact with the kids with more hands on than normal. Yes, we sit and read, yes I help with math but this unit study put us ALL in the thick of this historical place, at the same time, and all learning things, yes, even mama learned a few things about the early settlers!
And because we were so busy with the hands on, this mama totally forgot to grab real pictures of the goods…
Overall, this was fun review that the kids and I both enjoyed. It was a nice way to take a break from the day to day (sometimes monotonous) schooling that we get caught up in. So if you are looking for a way to get more involved in your kids schooling, this just might be the product that you are looking for.
I for one am seriously considering more of these products from Homeschool Legacy because of how well laid out the program is and just how wonderfully it worked for us. Somedays being more involved is a wonderful way to build the important memories that we are searching to create, and yet another reason why we homeschool.
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I hope you enjoyed this review that the kids and I got to use. Please visit again soon to see what else we have in the works!
In His Grace.