Teaching History With Novels

Teaching History with Novels

History is probably my favorite thing to study.  It was my favorite subject in high school and one of the most interesting parts of college.  What I love about history is that it’s everywhere.  You can’t study literature or art or music without also studying history.  In fact, in our homeschool, we have used music history, art history, even garden history to supplement (or count entirely toward) our history lessons.   We learn just as much from studying the arts of a culture as we do from studying its politics.  I mean, the two are often intertwined, aren’t they?

I crush hard on using novels to teach history, too.  I love to find books written during an era we’re studying so the boys can get the nuances of language and society as they learn about the history of a place.  It’s not as hard to do as you might think.  But there are also more modern works set during historical periods that can really transport a little back to that time.  There’s nothing better than falling back on a novel I enjoyed as a child except maybe finding a new one for the boys and I to enjoy together.  I have A Lot of favorites, but there are some that genuinely stand out as genius.

Story Time: Sunflower House

Story Time: Sunflower House

It was super easy to come up with a book for this week’s Story Time.  You can’t beat Eve Bunting at picture books, and Sunflower House is no different from all her other brilliant works.  With rhythmic rhymes, Bunting and illustrator Kathryn Hewitt lead your littles through the life cycle of a sunflower from seed to flower to seed as well as giving you the brilliant idea to plant a circle of sunflowers in which to play.  I want a sunflower house myself!

I’ve come up with some very cool activities for you to do with your littles, too, so let’s get on with it.

Surgery & Rest & Other Wicked Things

Surgery nurse

Wanna hear something freaky?  I mean Really Freaking Freaky?  For 3 nights after my surgery I kept dreaming I was dead.  Not dying.  Already dead.  I would wake up thinking, “Oh My God I’m Dead!!!”  About 5 times a night.

Um.  I think anesthesia messes with me Way More than it does other people.

I learned some other things through this process, too.

What to Read to Spark Joy (WTRW Link Up)

What to Read to Spark Joy

One of the reasons we read to our littles and teach our littles to read to themselves is to give them the joy of stories.  I  recently shared with you how to choose reading material for your homeschool, but how do you choose books that really spark that joy we want them to have when they read?

We choose joyful books.  Books that inspire.  Books that make them laugh.  Books that make them see that the world is so much bigger than they imagine.  Books that make them think.

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