Posted by Cindy on February 4, 2013
An Easy 13 Colonies Travel Brochure Project
In an effort to share more of our project-based learning, I thought I’d highlight Caleb’s latest research & writing assignment. After some textbook and living reading about the 13 Colonies, I asked Caleb to choose his favorite of the colonies. His assignment was this:
Using legal-sized paper, create a travel brochure of the colony of your choice. The travel brochure can be written from the perspective of then or now, however, the main focus must be on historical information. The brochure should:
- include thorough information about the colony: its founder(s), important historical events that took place, important people who lived there, historical buildings, what life was like in the colony, etc.
- include drawings, pictures, maps, bullet points or other visually pleasing elements.
- be neat.
- be engaging for your reader.
Caleb very creatively wrote the brochure comparing modern-day New York with Colonial New York. He even added a few multiple choice trivia questions for the reader.
I call this a research-based project because he was expected to use the internet or books from the library to delve deeper into the history of the colony. The information he learned had to be grasped and translated into the format of an informational travel brochure. He had to use further creativity to make the brochure interesting for his readers. He even had to research images and use a word processing program to copy/paste/print.
The project took him about three days (an hour or so each) to complete. Think of what a rich time of learning these hours were – reading, writing, research, computer skills, history, comparisons, presentation, creativity…
Do you use project-based learning in your homeschool?
Posted by Cindy on August 6, 2012
This post contains affiliate links and links to my business website, Shining Dawn Books.
I’m in love.
While school supply shopping at Walmart the other day, I ran across some clipboard storage boxes. I remembered Maureen from Spell Out Loud mentioning using these clipboards on her family’s nature walks, so I put three in my cart. Wow – they have been a wonderful addition to our nature walks!
We can pack supplies inside and clip our papers to the outside. They aren’t too bulky and can even be wiped clean! Love this new find!
Posted by Cindy on January 12, 2012
Check out what Jimmie of Jimmie’s Collage and Notebooking Fairy has written! What a gem it is!
This post contains affiliate links. Read my entire disclosure policy here.
Clear. Concise. Full of practical ideas. Easy to implement. Very motivating! Those are phrases that perfectly describe Notebooking Success by my blogging friend, Jimmie.
I’m not new to notebooking. My children have used this method of narration and writing for years in our homeschool . But, after reading Jimmie’s e-book, I felt a renewed passion for this excellent method of teaching and learning – and this old dog even learned a few new tricks!
Jimmie’s writing style is so smooth and succinct that you’ll find yourself easily reading all the way through the book in less than 30 minutes. More importantly, at the end of the 30 minutes, you’ll have all the tools you need to get started (or refreshed) with notebooking right away.
Why incorporate notebooking into your homeschool? Jimmie answers that. How is notebooking with a 1st grader different than a 6th grader or 10th grader? Jimmie answers that. Doesn’t notebooking get boring for children? Jimmie answers that. She covers everything you need to know about notebooking from start to finish, including plenty of grade-specific ideas to get you and your children rolling.
As explained in the book, notebooking works well with just about any type of homeschooler – even those who use a strictly textbook curriculum. I have often mentioned notebooking to friends who are looking for a “better” way to help their children retain information or for children who need extra motivation for writing. Now, I’ll be sure to point those people toward Notebooking Success!
Posted by Cindy on October 27, 2011
Children of the 21st century simply must be knowledgeable about and capable with computers. Besides typing programs and internet research, I like to assign occasional projects that are computer-based. I thought you might like to see the most recent projects…
Writing is something that Caleb does NOT like. But, when the writing is (at least somewhat) hidden, I get way fewer complaints! Using the newsletter program that came with Office 2010, I asked Caleb to create a keepsake page about his summer’s experiences with baseball. Besides the obvious skills of writing and word processing, he practiced page design and inserting photos and clip art. (There was a little more on the bottom of the page, but it included personal info that I didn’t care to share, kwim?)
Mahayla was given an assignment to create an informational newsletter about horses. The topic was her choosing and I was completely floored by her final product. What you see below is only the first of a two-page newsletter. I couldn’t figure out how to copy the 2nd page as a jpg!
Just this week, Caleb has been learning about non-vascular plants during science. We went on a fungi photo walk where he was supposed to find as many fungi as possible to photograph. (We found more than 20 varieties!) I asked him to create a notebooking page about the fungi using some of the photos from his walk. This proved to be a great learning opportunity for him in science, writing and computer skills – typing, fonts, tables and inserting images.
How do you use computers in your homeschool? I’d love to see some of your projects!
By the way, now is the perfect time for studying fungi in most parts of the USA. Check out A Fungus Among Us!
Posted by Cindy on July 19, 2011
Lately we’ve been having lots of read aloud time in the afternoons. I’ve been trying to give my children things to keep their hands busy – paints, knitting, Lego pieces and nature notebooking pages or simple activities. So many of the NaturExplorers notebooking pages and activities can be used on the spur of the moment that they have become wonderful “fillers” during our reading time.
Before we read, I have them hop out into the yard to collect whatever nature specimen they need to complete the page or activity. Since they know we’ll be reading for some time, they don’t rush through the assignment and the resulting work has been excellent! Below are just a couple of examples from the Fruits and Nuts and Delightful Deciduous Trees studies.
(Note that my notebooking pages are copied in black and white. All the NaturExplorers notebooking pages are created in full color, but print just fine in black and white if you don’t have a color printer.)