Category Archives: History and Geography

Getting Acquainted with Dr. Ben Carson

Ben Carson

I confess I am probably one of the few people who has not read Gifted Hands, the autobiography of Dr. Ben Carson. Dr. Carson is one of the featured speakers at the Great Homeschool Conventions this year and I know many people are very excited to hear him and perhaps meet him in person.

The conventions are too far away so we won’t have the pleasure of hearing Dr. Carson speak. But I decided to do some digging so I could learn more about him and also introduce Caroline to this gifted man.

In addition to Gifted Hands, I found a book put out by zonderkidz called Ben Carson (Today’s Heroes). The tagline is, “As a kid, his knife was a weapon. Now he uses it to save lives.” I told Caroline a little bit about Dr. Carson and she started peeking through the book. She is excited to begin reading it with either me or her daddy.

I checked out his website where his about page tells us:

Benjamin S. Carson, Sr., M.D., had a childhood dream of becoming a physician. Growing up in a single parent home with dire poverty, poor grades, a horrible temper, and low self-esteem appeared to preclude the realization of that dream until his mother, with only a third-grade education, challenged her sons to strive for excellence. Young Ben persevered and today is an emeritus professor of neurosurgery, oncology, plastic surgery, and pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and he has directed pediatric neurosurgery at the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center for over 39 years.

I also found this great little video of him talking about the power of the mind. He also shares a story about how his love of classical music probably helped him land one of the two coveted spots at Johns Hopkins.

Dr. Carson is also politically active and there are links to numerous opinion pieces on his website where he articulates his views on important topics such as A Physician’s View of the Sanctity of Life and Secular Progressives Can’t Keep God Out of Public Life in the The Washington Times.

Read more about Dr. Ben Carson in this Spotlight on Dr. Ben Carson blog round up.

Ben-Carson-Spotlight

Posted in History and Geography, Homeschool Conventions, Learning and Homeschooling | Leave a comment

America Math Pack – 6 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays

America Math Pack 6 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays

This math pack celebrates America with 6 centers and activities. Perfect for your students who need hands-on learning and not just another worksheet.

The pack is designed primarily for first grade, but could also work in kindergarten or second grade depending on student ability.

All student sheets are provided in both color and black/white.

This math pack is part of my larger America Literacy and Math Pack. It also has a coordinating America Literacy Pack.

Graphing America! – Students will sort and count the cards with different objects. They will then fill in the bar graph with the appropriate number.

July Calendar Task Cards – Students will answer the task card questions by using the provided calendar filled with information. They will then write their answers on their recording sheet.

Measure with the Stars! – Students will cut out a ruler of stars and use it to measure various objects on task cards. They will record their answers on their sheet.

Adding Change – Students will add the change pictured on the cards and write their answers on the recording sheet.

Help George Washington Get Home – Students will follow the path of odd numbers to get Washington back to his home.

Addition and Subtraction Story Problems – Students will determine if the story problem on the task card is addition or subtraction and then write the correction equation on the recording sheet. There are two sets of cards. One is simple addition of single digits and the other set is double digit with no regrouping/borrowing. The teacher can choose the appropriate set for her class. OR Use the easier set at the beginning of the year and the more challenging set later in the year.

Bonus Activities

America Word Search – Fun America-themed word search. No backwards or diagonal words.

Memory Game – Fun game for center time or early finishers.

America Math Pack - 6 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays
America Math Pack - 6 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays
America Math Pack - 6 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays
Price: $5.00

 

Posted in Arithmetic, Early Elementary, First Grade, History and Geography, Holidays, Kindergarten, Math, My Educational Products, Printables, Store-All, Store-America, Store-History, Store-Math Centers and Activities, Store-President's Day | Leave a comment

America Literacy Pack – 23 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays

America Literacy Pack 23 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays

This literacy pack celebrates America with 23 centers and activities. Perfect for your students who need hands-on learning and not just another worksheet.

The pack is designed primarily for first grade, but could also work in kindergarten or second grade depending on student ability.

All student sheets are provided in both color and black/white.

This literacy pack is part of my larger America Literacy and Math Pack. It also has a coordinating America Math Pack.

Literacy

Word Bank – A printable sheet word bank with 42 relevant words for any America-related unit. Teacher can laminate and put in centers or hand out for students to use during the unit.

Word Wall Cards – A set of 42 word wall cards on red and blue star backgrounds.

President True or False – Students will cut out statements and determine if they are true or false. They will glue them in the correct section of their sheet.

Scrambled Sentences – There are two options for this activity. In the first, students will unscramble the sentence on the six card set. They will write the correct sentence on the recording sheet. OR There is also a worksheet with the scrambled sentences (no cards) that can be unscrambled and written down.

America ABC Order – Students will put four words on each task card in ABC order and write on recording sheet.

Write the Room – Students will complete write the room tasks. There are four sheets in this pack: short/long vowels, common/proper nouns, 1-2-3-4+ syllables, and person/place/thing.

President versus King Venn Diagram – Students will brainstorm the differences and similarities between a king and president.

George Washington versus Abraham Lincoln Venn Diagram – Students will brainstorm the differences and similarities between the two presidents.

If I Were President – Students will write a brief statement and illustrate four things they would do if they were president.

My American Favorites Mini Book – Students will fill in blank of up to 12 different favorites and illustrate each half page. The teacher may choose as many different topics/pages as she would like.

America Cross Out – Students will cross out the word in each row that doesn’t belong with the rest. They will then write a few sentences at the bottom using some of the words listed above.

My July 4th History Book Mini Book – Students will learn fascinating facts about July 4th and illustrate each page.

How To Become President – Students will list five steps to becoming president.

Dear Mr. President – Students will write a letter to the president.

Four Great Things about America – Students will write about four things they think are great about America.

My Favorite Place in America – Students will write about their favorite place in America and illustrate it as though it is a newspaper article.

America List It! – Students will attempt to write one word about America for each letter of the alphabet.

I Love America! – Students will tell what they like about America by writing one word for each letter in “I Love America”

How Many Words? – Students will write as many words as they can using the letters in “Washington, D.C.”

Reading Response – Students will illustrate the Beginning, Middle, End and My favorite part.

A Story Map – Students will identify Title, Author, Characters, Setting, Beginning, Middle and End.

A Story Web – Student will identify Title, Author, Main Characters, Setting, Problem and Solution.

America and The President Writing Papers – Titled pages with lines for writing and a large box on top for illustrating. Includes both primary dotted lines and regular lines options for both topics.

Other

America Word Search – Fun America-themed word search. No backwards or diagonal words.

Memory Game – Fun game for center time or early finishers.

Inauguration Day KWL – Explore Inauguration Day with this KWL activity.

America Literacy Pack - 23 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays
America Literacy Pack - 23 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays
America Literacy Pack - 23 Centers and Activities for Patriotic Holidays
Price: $6.50

Posted in Early Elementary, First Grade, History and Geography, Holidays, Kindergarten, Language Arts and Literacy, My Educational Products, Printables, Reading, Second Grade, Store-All, Store-America, Store-History, Store-Literacy Centers and Activities, Store-President's Day | Leave a comment

Black History Month Fun Fact Cards – Unit Extension Activity, Bulletin Board, Games, Circle Time

Black History Month Fact Cards – Unit Extension Activity, Bulletin Board, Games

If you are looking for a fun and simple way to learn during Black History Month, check out my Black History Month Fact Cards. I learned so much while researching these and I know you and your children/students will enjoy them too!

Black History Month Fact Cards are a quick, flexible, colorful and fun way to expand your unit! Start building interest in your topic each morning with these 28 fascinating fact cards that go beyond the basics.

One teacher shared:
“My kids are addicted to reading these facts cards every morning. If I forget to read one, they are sooo quick to remind me. And the parents are learning too! During conferences, I had many parents tell me how much they had learned from their children when we read the apple and pumpkin cards. Thanks!”

These cards are used multiple ways by teachers and parents in many grades. I love reading about all the different ways teachers and parents use them in their home and classroom!

Quick Fun Fact – Read the fact card each day and store them in a small basket where the students can look at them again and again. Or keep the set on a ring.

Fact of the Day Bulletin Board – Read a fact each day and display the cards on a special bulletin board or foam board.

Hallway Display – One teacher displayed them on the hallway chalkboard outside her door so many students and adults could read them.

Calendar Pocket Chart – Put a fact behind each number on the calendar and have a different student take it out each day. You can then display on bulletin board.

Geography Extension – Put the cards on a wall map with a string that points to where it ties in.

Go Fish – Create two sets and use for a game of Go Fish.

Memory Game – Create two sets and use for a Memory Game.

Scavenger Hunt – Use the cards to create a Scavenger Hunt.

School Bulletin Board – One kindergarten class had two students take the fact of the day down to the office each morning, “teach” the fact to the office staff, and then display the cards on the office bulletin board for everyone in the school to see.

The cards are 3×3 and there are 6 on a page. I made them small so they easily slide behind your date cards on the calendar pocket chart. They are also a good size for small hands if using them for a game. I also made them smaller to find the balance between making them colorful, but not taking too much ink when you print them.

The cards are unnumbered so they can be used in any month and in any sequence. You can use all the cards in the set or only a portion. This provides maximum flexibility for the teacher’s schedule. Use one set all month or use parts of two sets depending on your needs.

Also included is a hyperlinked list of the relevant websites where the facts were located.

Black History Month Fun Fact Cards
Black History Month Fun Fact Cards
Black History Month Fact Cards - 28 Cards for Unit Extension Activity, Bulletin Board, Games
Price: $3.00

Posted in Calendar or Circle Time, Early Elementary, February, First Grade, Fourth Grade, Fun Fact Cards, History and Geography, Holidays, Kindergarten, My Educational Products, Second Grade, Store-All, Store-America, Store-Fun Fact Cards, Store-History, Store-Winter, Third Grade, Winter | Leave a comment

How I Teach History – Relaxed Homeschooling in the Early Elementary Years

Relaxed Homeschooling in the Early Elementary Years History

So how do I teach history?

I don’t.

Honestly.

It’s rather ironic since my Elementary Education degree came with a Social Studies major and I love history. But so far I’ve done almost no history teaching because Caroline has been taking those classes at homeschool co-op.

We’re blessed with a really good Christian co-op. Caroline has been taking two classes there a semester since Kindergarten and she loves it. The vast majority of her classes have been history and geography related. She had a class about America, a World History class, Geography through Literature, and a couple of other literature classes that also incorporated history and geography.

So with co-op handling most of the teaching in this area, I’ve focused on providing other learning opportunities.

Caroline has U.S. and world map placemats and a globe. She has an excellent grasp of geography for her age. Like her daddy, she loves maps so that’s been pretty easy to “teach” her so far.

She enjoys playing learning games on the Kindle, especially Stack the States. (I see there is also Stack the Countries now which would be much more difficult!)

I have many informative flashcards that I’ve picked up here and there (especially at Target). Caroline likes to lay them all over the floor and study them. We have the U.S. Presidents, U.S. Landmarks, World Landmarks, etc.

We have geography-based puzzles and activities that she picks up and plays with at times.

We’ve read many books about historical figures. Some are books I have from teaching and many others are from the library.

When something comes up in conversation, we look up all kinds of things online. We’ve watched videos on YouTube about various topics including the Titanic.

Eventually we’ll move to a more structured approach of history, but for now we’re all learning and having fun!

This is part of my Relaxed Homeschooling in the Early Elementary Years series. Read the Introduction to the series here.

HopscotchiHNJanuary2013

This is also part of the iHN January Hopscotch. Check out all the fun series here!

Posted in Caroline, Curriculum, Early Elementary, First Grade, History and Geography, Home Education/Homeschooling, Kindergarten, Learning and Homeschooling, Relaxed Homeschooling in Early Elementary, Right Brained Learners, Second Grade | 2 Comments

Martin Luther King, Jr. Fact Cards – Unit Extension Activity, Bulletin Boards, Games, Circle Time

Martin Luther King Jr Fact Cards for MLK Day

Celebrate the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. with your students! These Martin Luther King, Jr. Fact Cards are a quick, flexible, colorful and fun way to expand your unit! Start building interest in your topic each morning with these 15 fascinating fact cards that go beyond the basics.

One teacher shared:
“My kids are addicted to reading these facts cards every morning. If I forget to read one, they are sooo quick to remind me. And the parents are learning too! During conferences, I had many parents tell me how much they had learned from their children when we read the apple and pumpkin cards. Thanks!”

These cards are used multiple ways by teachers and parents in many grades. I love reading about all the different ways teachers and parents use them!

Quick Fun Fact – Read the fact card each day and store them in a small basket where the students can look at them again and again. Or keep the set on a ring.

Fact of the Day Bulletin Board – Read a fact each day and display the cards on a special bulletin board or foam board.

Hallway Display – One teacher displayed them on the hallway chalkboard outside her door so many students and adults could read them.

Calendar Pocket Chart – Put a fact behind each number on the calendar and have a different student take it out each day. You can then display on bulletin board.

Geography Extension – Put the cards on a wall map with a string that points to where it ties in.

Go Fish – Create two sets and use for a game of Go Fish.

Memory Game – Create two sets and use for a Memory Game.

Scavenger Hunt – Use the cards to create a Scavenger Hunt.

School Bulletin Board – One kindergarten class had two students take the fact of the day down to the office each morning, “teach” the fact to the office staff, and then display the cards on the office bulletin board for everyone in the school to see.

The cards are 3×3 and there are 6 on a page. I made them small so they easily slide behind your date cards on the calendar pocket chart. They are also a good size for small hands if using them for a game. I also made them smaller to find the balance between making them colorful, but not taking too much ink when you print them.

The cards are unnumbered so they can be used in any month and in any sequence. You can use all the cards in the set or only a portion. This provides maximum flexibility for the teacher’s schedule. Use one set all month or use parts of two sets depending on your needs.

Also included is a hyperlinked list of the relevant websites where the facts were located.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Fun Fact Cards
Martin Luther King, Jr. Fun Fact Cards
Martin Luther King, Jr. Fact Cards for Unit Study and Calendar Pocket Charts
Price: $3.00

Posted in Calendar or Circle Time, Early Elementary, First Grade, Fun Fact Cards, History and Geography, My Educational Products, Printables, Second Grade, Store-All, Store-America, Store-Fun Fact Cards, Store-History, Third Grade | Leave a comment

Free Thanksgiving History Download from Michael Medved and Great Homeschool Conventions

Michael Medved has been added to all three Great Homeschool Conventions for 2014! If you are a subscriber to GHC, you can receive his popular Thanksgiving history audio for free. Just click the graphic below to claim you free copy.

Also, the early bird registration discount has been extended through the end of November. So if you were on the fence about attending, you still can get the early bird registration rate if you act soon. Just click the graphic below for registration info.

Homeschool Convention Discount Ticket Price Extended

Posted in History and Geography, Homeschool Conventions, Learning and Homeschooling, Thanksgiving | Leave a comment