I’m a huge fan of Home School in the Woods. Their timelines are awesome! They’re a great company that makes super high quality products that have won numerous awards and is owned and operated by a homeschooling family who actually does live in the woods.
They have a fabulous hands-on history program that I was excited to receive and review, HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study: Ancient Egypt.
Going into this I knew it would be a challenge for me because I’m not especially crafty and I’m horrible at doing hands-on activities, but I love the idea of activities that bring history to life. I still remember making a mummy and pyramid during my own school years, so I know the value of these types of activities. My problem is that by the time I do the research to find suitable projects and gather up all the supplies, my enthusiasm has disappeared. I have good intentions; you should see my Pinterest boards!
I received the digital version of Ancient Egypt and when I downloaded the file and opened it up I was a bit overwhelmed. There’s so much here! It is set up like a tour with specific stops along the way just like a real-life tour. There are 25 stops in all and include stops that cover everyday life, work, education, literature, the sciences, religion, the leaders, and more, which are all listed in a “Travel Planner.” An “Introduction” and “Travel Tips” are included to aid the teacher in how to proceed. Also included is a list of additional resources such as fiction and non-fiction books, videos, and music that all tie in with the theme.
For the purposes of this review I printed off all the activities for the stops we planned to make just to get an idea of the different projects. The set-up of the product takes a little time. You first need to make a passport and a “luggage” folder that is used for all other time-era projects (Ancient Greece, The Middle Ages, etc.). The purple one is mine!
Then the timeline is prepared. As you make stops along the way you add the timeline pieces.
A map of the area is put together and colored and again, you add to this throughout the tour.
And finally, a postcard rack is constructed to hold the Postcard Greetings from Famous Folks:
Each stop has a unique set of activities that are explained in detail on the Travel Itinerary. Some activities have you add figures to the timeline or label the map. The dramatized Audio Tours are fun and if you close your eyes it really does sound like you’re in Ancient Egypt. Souvenir Craft Cards give directions for making mummies, canopic jars, reed boats, and so many more. One of the activities I especially liked was about Egyptian clothes. It reminds me of playing with paper dolls:
We also made the Game of Senet:
As we continue our tour we make lapbook pieces at various stops that will be assembled at the last stop along with creating a travel brochure and putting the stamp into the passport.
My three boys have been having a blast with this project, even the ones that don’t care for hands-on activities. They especially like the Dining Out Guide that includes recipes! They’re already planning on getting all the other projects in the series.
In my opinion, this could easily be a stand-alone history curriculum. It has all the basics covered and creates an AMAZING portfolio that is sure to stay in my kids’ memories. This program could also be used as an add-on to any other curriculum you use and can be condensed by picking only a few of the activities, or expanded with books and other material related to the time era. This is not an open-and-go curriculum and some time is required for printing and putting things together, but I think the effort is worth it. The projects are very well laid out and detailed instructions make it easy to follow, even for this not-so-craftsy mom.
HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study also includes The Middle Ages, Renaissance & Reformation, and their newest product Ancient Greece. They are expecting to release Ancient Rome in 2018.