I’ve been homeschooling for quite a while now, and one of the subjects that I have the hardest time being able to teach the kids is history. I mean, we love learning about history, but it’s kind of difficult for me to teach without any guidance. I wanted something easy to put together, and understand and I got my wish. Today, I’m reviewing the Homeschool In the Woods Project Passport Curriculum. Specifically, Ancient Egypt. Full disclosure, this is a religious-based curriculum, and we were comfortable with that.
I was compensated by Homeschool In The Woods for this review
What Are Project Passport Units?
Project Passport is considered interactive history. Children are meant to get into the meat of the times by creating lapbooks, 3D models and whole recipes. The unit comes on a CD or as a download. The unit includes 25 stops where students will become familiar with the events and people from the particular region which you have. We have Ancient Egypt, so we were excited to see what was in store for us. Each of our 25 stops included a guide book to give background on the topic of the day, and an itinerary so that your students can choose the project of their choice.
I loved that there was a hodgepodge of activities to choose from for my children, who ALL have different ideas as to what’s fun to do for the day. By the way, before going further, this unit is geared towards students in 3rd – 8th grade. My children were able to practice creative writing skills, and we got back on the notebook wagon! You may remember our first foray into lapbooking way back when. Boy do I miss those days, and we got to tap back into them with this curriculum. I wasn’t prepared for the pleasure I had in completing one of the 25 projects included in this unit. I could totally see myself ordering the rest of the stops from the site. Just so we can time travel around the world.
What’s Included in the CD
The CD that comes with each unit contains all of the printable files you will need for the 8-12 weeks of instruction time. I was surprised to find 3-D projects included in this, and while we’re adventurous, we’re going to save those for the kids when they are a bit more advanced. Other items included are listed below.
- Creative Writing
- A “Dining Out Guide” of Recipes
- A File Folder Game
- A “Scrapbook of Sights” for storing notebook projects
- A Newspaper “The Kemet Chronicle”
- A “Snapshot Moments in History” Scrapbook Timeline
- “Postcards from Famous Folks”
- Souvenir Craft Cards with a dozen 3-D projects to make
- Over a dozen Lap Book Projects …and much more!
- Also included are eight Dramatized Audio Tours, over an hour of listening! Join “King Tut’s Tours” as Agatha (your tour guide) and Brian (your coach driver) take you on various excursions, such as a tour down the Nile, an interview with an embalmer, a pyramid under construction, and an interview with Akhenaton!
Why Do I Recommend Curriculum Like This?
When I was in school, I could NOT sit still. I NEEDED to be able to do things to keep my brain whirring. And it needed to be self-guided. It needed to be something fun, while also educating me. I needed to be able to talk through the problems without being silenced because it was disturbing the other students. I was fortunate enough to attend a school that allowed me to do all of these things – except talk to other students – but that seems to be a dying practice which is why we’re doing it at home!
Having cool aspects like luggage to go with each unit that we’re learning allows such great ownership for students. My kids each chose a color, lil miss above is all about the bright yellow, and this way we don’t have to figure out what belongs to who if they don’t put their names on it right away. Besides that, luggage for historical travel just makes the entire curriculum so fun. Conversations start at the table, and before I know it, we’re diving deeper into the subject than we anticipated.
We already know that we learn by doing, and there is something about being active while learning makes what you’re learning “stick.” That’s why notetaking is encouraged through actual writing rather than typing, and mimicry works so well. There is a connection that happens when children are active participants in learning, rather than being taught at. I’ve found that subjects are digested a lot more smoothly when they have a bit of control over what they are learning.
This isn’t a completely comprehensive curriculum. You do need to purchase other supplies, which I’m pretty certain you may already have in that homeschool closet or file cabinet in your home. Supplies include cardstock, binders, instruments for cutting, and of course a printer. I suggest also prepping for the entire unit before you even begin teaching. Just…trust me. While I’m pretty good at winging it, I hate being disorganized while teaching my children because it ruins the entire school day.
The start of the unit is actually the most difficult because you’ll be prepping for a while. I say to give yourself a day or two to get everything printed out and organized. This will also allow you to go over the lessons to know what you’ll need before the school day starts.
What Other Options Are Available
You can buy the five-pack project passport bundle and have your historical curriculum for years to come. You have your entire first quarter of history set for you.
You can also choose from a la carte options – which allows for supplemental addition to a history curriculum that you already have planned out. It’s a great option for those of you who really ENJOY creating your own curriculum, but don’t necessarily have enough time to finish out. Those of us who aren’t as strong in history though? We’ll do just fine with the full CD with all of the files and lesson plans we’ll need.
Check out more of Homeschool In The Woods and consider them for the rest of your homeschooling history lesson.