Friday, July 20, 2012

Civil War Unit Study

This summer we have been learning about the Civil War in preparation for a tour of the Southern (or "Confederate" ;-) ) states.

We found the resources on The Civil War Trust immensely helpful.  The elementary and middle school lesson plans (under Education > Teachers) were very similar, if not the same for some units.  I printed out all of the documents, as well as battlefield maps from the site, making a small donation to the Civil War Trust to help their efforts in preserving battlefields and historic sites.

I made duplicate copies of pages that I wanted the girls to do independently.  But, since it is summer and my goal for the girls is to get them discussing data and forming their own ideas and opinions, rather than just regurgitating information that we read, we spent more time just talking about things than actually writing.

We did do all of the timelines, however.  We found these very helpful, especially since Piper hung them all over our dining room ;-)

I found SlideShark, a free app for ipad to be super simple to use and to provide enough space for all of the Powerpoint presentations included in this curriculum.

In addition to the Civil War Trust curriculum, we studied and discussed this book in depth:

I also pulled from this book for some hands-on projects:

We also watched the following documentaries:

This video:

 This movie:

This movie, part by part on youtube because it is not on DVD and we no longer have a VHS player.

We enjoyed these read-alouds.

This graphic novel:


I find books like these hard to read, so the girls perused them on their own and told me about things they learned:

 Allie read these independently:

Piper read these independently:

I love concentrating just on something like this over the summer and really digging in and immersing ourself in it.

Jason read these books and added to our "dinner table discussion":

I read this and I HIGHLY recommend it.

Whew!  It didn't feel like that much since we just did a little each day and are not doing math or science or even writing or geography or Latin at this time.  Actually, focusing so strongly on this was so helpful and we have all retained SO MUCH, that I am looking for a "Less is More"  approach to school in the fall.

linking with: