Thursday, September 11, 2014

History Homeschool Style

I'm not a fan of our mainstream history texts; I don't think they give an accurate portrayal of US history and don't go into enough depth. This is my opinion and if you happen to share it, then read on if you want to find out what curriculum I've chosen to use to homeschool my children.

Liberty Classroom

I ran across last year and loved the history lectures! I hate lectures in general but I love learning and these teach. Some courses are free on here so you can try them out and even create your curriculum around the free ones! The lectures are given by different history professors with differing viewpoints but all are basically libertarian.

I have two children in high school so I use the lectures to keep track of their hours spent on history for their high school credits. I also count various field trips and anything else we do that is relevant to what they are learning. Luckily, we live near Williamsburg, Jamestown, and Yorktown so there is no shortage of opportunities.

I added geography in with Map Trek. You can get creative with this or just go by the book.  The map numbers I use correspond with the CD.

I'm also a fan of IEW (Institute for Excellence in Writing) so I use their US History-Based Writing Lessons in conjunction with the lectures to create a way for the information they've learned to stay with them longer by writing it down. You don't have to do this, of course, but it's what works for me instead of having them write about something else all year. (Try finding used, out of date, or imperfect copies through, ebay, craigslist, or local groups.)

Another thing I have the older kids do is create a powerpoint while listening to the lectures. At the end of the year, they'll have documentation of everything they learned. I encourage creativity with this but don't force it.

Oh, I almost forgot. If you want to give quizzes or a final exam, keep a list of important people, events, and documents as they pop up in the lectures. This is also great for a course description if you have to write one for a high school transcript.

 I use different history courses so they sometimes overlap. I prefer this since it gives the children extra repetition of the facts but from different views. You can skip the lectures that you feel are repetitive if you like. The easiest way to figure out which ones you want is to look at the powerpoint presentation for that lecture (located on each lecture page).
*No, my kids do not copy from the course powerpoints. :-) Yes, they tried that option.

Here is my schedule; I'll update it as I go through the year for your benefit. When I finish, I'll create a document for download (Printable Calendar). Until then, just copy the schedule into your planner. has some options you can print but I decided to break down and pay for a planner this year and wish I had done it sooner. I bought The Well-Planned Day Planner and love it!

*Note: We did some US History lectures last year so the early ones aren't included. Feel free to add them in at the beginning.
*Note: You can spread this out over a year if you prefer. This is for a semester then we'll move on to the 2nd part of IEW History.

Week 1:
M-IEW Lesson 1
T-Map 28
W-IEW Lesson 2
TH-Map 36
F-Free/Finish Work

Week 2:
M-IEW Lesson 3
T-Map Jamestown
W-IEW Lesson 5
TH-Finish Work

Week 3:
M-IEW Lesson 4
T-Constitutional History Lecture 1
    Map 42
W-Lesson 6
TH-Map 58
F-Map 60

Week 4:
M-IEW Lesson 7
T-American Revolution Lecture 1
W-IEW Lesson 8
TH-Constitutional History Lecture 2
      Map 54
F-Constitutional History Lecture 3

Week 5:
M-IEW Lesson 9
T-US History Lecture 7
W-Map 70
TH-Map 40
F-Free/ Finish Work

Week 6:
M-IEW Lesson 10 (Can combine Lessons 11 and 13 with this to lesson writing load)
T-American Revolution Lecture 3
   American Revolution Lecture 4
W-IEW Lesson 12
     American Revolution Lecture 5
TH-American Revolution Lecture 6
     American Revolution Lecture 7
F-American Revolution Lecture 8

Week 7:
M-IEW Lesson 11
T-American Revolution Lecture 9
   Map 74
W-IEW Lesson 13
TH-American Revolution Lecture 10
F-Free/Finish Work

Week 8:
M-IEW Lesson 14
    American Revolution Lecture 11
T-IEW Lesson 15
W-IEW Lesson 16
    Constitutional History Lecture 4
TH-American Revolution Lecture 12
F-Free/Finish Work

Week 9:
M-IEW Lesson 17
    American Revolution Lecture 13
T-American Revolution Lecture 14
    Map 76
W-IEW Lesson 18
     American Revolution Lecture 15

Week 10:
M-IEW Lesson  19
     American Revolution Lecture 16
W-American Revolution Lecture 17
TH-American Revolution Lecture 18
F-American Revolution Lecture 19

Week 11:
M-IEW Lessons 21 and 22
     US Constitutional History Lectures 5 and 6
W-US Constitutional History Lectures 7 and 8
TH-US Constitutional History Lecture 9
F-US Constitutional History Lecture 10

Week 12:
M-IEW Lessons 23 and 24
T-YouTube Videos on Branches of Government/Bills (Schoolhouse Rock)
F-Videos on Articles 4-7 of the Constitution

Week 13:
M-IEW Lesson 25
     US Constitutional History Lectures 11 and 12
T-US Constitutional History Lectures 13 and 14
W-US Constitutional History Lectures 15 and 16
TH-US Constitutional History Lectures 17 and 18
F-US Constitutional History Lectures 19 and 20

Week 14:
M-IEW Lessons 31 and 33
     Map Lewis and Clark
T-Map 94 War of 1812
W-US History to 1877 Jefferson and Madison Administrations Lectures
TH-US History to 1877 Monroe Administration Lectures
F-US History to 1877 Marshall Court Lectures
   Oregon Trail Game (Can be found free online)

Week 15:
M-Lessons 32 and 34
T-Map 100 (add trails)
W-F US History to 1877 Age of Jackson Lectures
         Trail of Tears (whatever extra resource you want to use)

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