So many of my vacations with my mom, before I was married, involved touring historical locations (like Eckley Miners' Village Museum). This is probably one of the easiest ways to supplement your history curriculum. All you need are time and some money because you will often find tour guides, park rangers, and others at each site who will be able to help teach you and your homeschooled children new facts and information. Many places will even allow you to participate in living history by using tools of the time period, trying on period clothing, or creating a memento to take home.
Another very easy way to supplement your homeschool history curriculum is with documentaries and movies. If you attended public school, you might remember the television being wheeled into the classroom to watch a documentary borrowed from the school library or perhaps from your teacher's own collection. I am old enough to remember a few of my teachers sharing slide presentations with us. While not all documentaries and movies are created equal, there is a great selection available. One of our favorites is Drive Thru History® with Dave Stotts. There are quite a few series in which Dave Stotts takes viewers on a journey through history like those listed:
- Drive Thru History® Ancient History
- Drive Thru History® American History
- Drive Thru History® The Holy Land
- Drive Thru History® The Gospels
- Drive Thru History® Acts to Revelation
In addition to documentaries, movies can also be wonderful to incorporate into your homeschool history curriculum. From movies that are not highly accurate to those that are written and try to stick the facts more, there are different learning opportunities. For example, for high school homeschooled children, you may wish to view the movie Gettysburg, read the book, and visit the site to compare and contrast the accuracies and inaccuracies. In addition to this movie, many others focus on the American Civil War, including two television series: North and South and The Blue and Gray. These both follow many fictional characters but provide a sense and a feeling for the time period with costumes, foods, and other details.
Listen & Play Through History
- Learn to play songs from a particular time period
- Learn to sing songs from a particular time period
- Research different musical instruments that may no longer be played today
- Listen to the music of the era of history you are studying
- Interpret the lyrics written to learn more about the historical time
Why not play a game? There are many different games inspired by history and ones that incorporate history into their play. You may wish to purchase games already made and designed like Egyptians, Made for Trade, or even Go to the Head of the Class (which covers multiple subject areas), or perhaps you might want to make your own file folder games like those offered by Home School in the Woods.
How Will You Supplement Your History Curriculum?
Have you discovered any new ideas to incorporate into your history curriculum? Even if you are using a boxed curriculum, there is always room for additional supplements. Some even have items like literature packages or hands-on projects. We are using the literature package that goes along with Our Star-Spangled Story from Notgrass History. We have also used hands-on kits from Sonlight in previous years.