Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A Page of EasyFunSchool links...

There are quite a few links no longer active, but still...something to spark your imagination as you move along:

EasyFunSchool Links to All Topics

EasyFunSchool History Read-alouds

Suggested Reading and Resources
by Historical Period

This is a list of suggested reading and resources divided up by approximate historical period. This list will be updated and modified on a regular basis. Books on this list include commentaries, "living books", biographies, autobiographies, videos, audiotapes, resources, historical fiction, etc. As a reminder, please review each book for age and content appropriateness for your family. Books cover a broad age range, from preschool to college and beyond. I'm including books from the young adult fiction genre for advanced readers and to get some of the reluctant readers interested in historical fiction.

When possible, I will link the title to an online merchant where the book, audiocassette, or video can be purchased at a discount and/or where a synopsis or other description of the book is located. Some of the suggested reading I've run across is actually now available on the internet for free ("free ebook), to be read online or printed off for later reading.

If you have a specific book that you think should appear on this list, please feel free to email me at feedback@easyfunschool.com with the book title and author. If the book is one that is out of print, please also include the original publishing date.


Ancient Egypt: Multimedia CD Rom

The Cat of Bubastes by G.A. Henty
also available in audiocassette and CD

How Would You Survive As an Ancient Egyptian?

The World in the Time of Tutankhamun


Ancient Greece: Multimedia CD Rom

How Would You Survive As an Ancient Greek?

The Usborne Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece

The World in the Time of Alexander the Great


Ancient Rome: Multimedia CD Rom

Augustus Caesar's World by Genevieve Foster

The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare

Handbook to Life in Ancient Rome by Lesley and Roy Adkins

History of Christianity - Video Curriculum

How Would You Survive As an Ancient Roman?

Romans, Reformers, Revolutionaries: Digging Deeper Series by Diana Waring
note: also available -- Romans, Reformers, Revolutionaries elementary level activity book

True Tales from the Times of Romans, Reformers, Revolutionaries by Diana Waring
(60 minute audiotape)
note: More True Tales form the Times of Romans, Reformers, Revolutionaries also available (80 minutes audiotape)


Ancient Civilizations and the Bible: Digging Deeper Series by Diana Waring
note: also available -- Ancient Civilizations and the Bible elementary level activity book

Ancient Mesopotamia: Multimedia CD Rom

Seven Wonders of the Ancient World
(video, 60 minutes)

True Tales from the Times of Ancient Civilizations by Diana Waring
(60 minute audiotape)
note: More True Tales from the Times of Ancient Civilizations also available (80 minute audiotape)

What in the World's Going on Here? Vol. 1 by Diana Waring
(set of four audiocassettes of living history stories) note: this volume covers Creation to the Renaissance/Reformation to the French Revolution
Vol. 2 is also available.


The King's Shadow

Vikings: Fear and Faith

Wulf the Saxon by G.A. Henty
note: also available in audiocassette and CD


Alchemy: The Art of Knowing

The Apple and the Arrow (1291, Switzerland's fight for freedom, William Tell)

In Freedom's Cause (late 13th century)
note: also available in unabridged audiocassette

How Would You Survive in the Middle Ages?

Joan of Arc by Mark Twain
note: of all of Mr. Twain's works, this is reportedly his personal favorite

A Journey of Souls by C.D. Baker
(1212, the Children's Crusade)

The Middle Ages: A Watts Guide for Children

Story of the Middle Ages

The World in the Time of Charlemagne


Along Came Galileo by Jeanne Bendick

Martin Luther (video, b&w, 2 hours 35 minutes, 1953)

The World in the Time of Leonardo da Vinci


Age of Exploration: Multimedia CD Rom

The World in the Time of Marco Polo

The World of Columbus and Sons by Genevieve Foster


The Foundling by Linda Hayner



Bridle the Wind by Joan Aiken

The Complete Works of Shakespeare (multiple volumes of free ebooks)


Blind Justice by Bruce Alexander

Murder in Grub Street by Bruce Alexander

Person or Persons Unknown by Bruce Alexander

The World in the Time of Marie Antoinette

Watery Grave by Bruce Alexander


The Amazing Life of Benjamin Franklin

Anne Hutchinson: Religious Leader

Benjamin Banneker: American Mathematician and Astronomer

Benjamin Franklin: American Statesman, Scientist, and Writer

Caesar Rodney: American Patriot

Colonial America: Multimedia CD Rom

Controversial Questions About Thomas Jefferson

Cotton Mather: Author, Clergyman, and Scholar

Emma's Journal: The Story of a Colonial Girl

Foundations of Freedom
(video, 110 minutes)

George Whitefield: Clergyman and Scholar

His Autobiography by Benjamin Franklin

Increase Mather: Clergyman and Scholar

James Oglethorpe: Humanitarian and Scholar

John Peter Zenger: Free Press Advocate

John Smith: English Explorer and Colonist

John Smith: Gentleman Adventurer by C.H. Forbes-Lindsay

John Winthrop: Politician and Statesman

Jonathon Edwards: Colonial Religious Leader

Lessons from Nature: Poems for Boys and Girls
by John Bunyan, originally published in 1701

Life In A New World 1000 - 1783

Life in the Colonies 1764 - 1789

The Life of Benjamin Franklin by M.L. Weems (free ebook)

Lord Baltimore: English Politician and Colonist

Mary of Plymouth by James Otis

Miles Standish: Plymouth Colony Leader

Peter Stuyvesant: Dutch Military Leader

Plymouth Plantation by William Bradford
note: reprinted from a 1909 modern English translation, 353 pages

Roger Williams: Founder of Rhode Island

Sir Walter Raleigh: English Explorer and Author

Sir William Berkeley: Governor of Virginia

The Story of Liberty by Charles C. Coffin
note: reprinted from an 1879 manuscript; a study guide is also available for this book.

Sweet Land of Liberty by Charles C. Coffin
note: reprinted from an 1881 manuscript

William Bradford: Governor of Plymouth Colony

William Penn: Founder of Democracy

The World of Captain John Smith by Genevieve Foster


American Revolution: Multimedia CD Rom

The Boys of '76 by Charles C. Coffin
note: from an 1876 manuscript

Forgotten Founding Father: The Heroic Legacy of George Whitfield

George Washington's World by Genevieve Foster

Give Me Liberty: The Christian Patriotism of Patrick Henry

Minute Boys of Bunker Hill by Edward Stratemeyer

Minute Boys of Lexington by Edward Stratemeyer

A More Perfect Union: America Becomes a Nation
(video, 114 minutes)

Paul Revere's Ride by Longfellow (free ebook)

United States Constitution: Multimedia CD Rom

Various time periods from post Revolution to late 19th century

In the Heart of the Rockies by G.A. Henty

In the Shadow of the Alamo by Sherry Garland

The Life of Kit Carson by Edward Ellis

Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls

Myths and Legends of the Sioux (free ebook)

Rachel's Journal: The Story of a Pioneer Girl

Retta Barre's Oregon Trail Series
note: currently three volumes in this series, available individually, fiction about a 12 year old girl

Stores of Great Americans for Little Americans
by Edward Eggleston, first published in 1859

A Tale of the Western Plains by G.A. Henty

Westward Expansion: Multimedia CD Rom

AMERICAN CIVIL WAR PERIOD (including years leading up to the Civil War where appropriate to this topic)

Abraham Lincoln's World by Genevieve Foster

Call of Duty: The Sterling Nobility of Robert E. Lee

Dog Jack by Florence W. Biros


Charles Dickens: A Concise Biography (video)

David Livingston: Man of Prayer and Action

David Livingston: Missionary and Explorer (video)

Eliza's Daughter by Joan Aiken

Industrial Revolution: Multimedia CD Rom

The Teeth of the Gale by Joan Aiken

You Are the General II (1800 - 1899) by Nathan Aaseng


Ellis Island Immigration: Multimedia CD Rom

Hannah's Journal: The Story of an Immigrant Girl


You Are the General (Great Decisions of the 20th Centry)

Twentieth-Century Inventors

THE 1910's

Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage

Ice Story: Shackleton's Lost Expedition

The Sinking of the Titanic and Great Sea Disasters


Anastasia: The Last Grand Duchess - Russia, 1914

World War I: Multimedia CD Rom

THE 1920's

Roaring 20's & Depressing 30's: Multimedia CD Rom

THE 1930's

Rose's Journal: The Story of a Girl in the Great Depression


A-Bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki (free ebook)

Bonhoeffer: The Cost of Freedom (audiocassette>
note: also available on CD

The Christian Heritage Series: The Santa Fe Years
by Nancy Rue, takes place during WWII, six volumes, also available individually

The Diary of Dawid Sierakowiak: Five Notebooks from Lodz Ghetto

Hanged on a Twisted Cross: The Life, Convictions, and Martyrdom of Dietrich Bonhoeffer (video)

The Hiding Place (video, color, 2 hours 20 minutes)

Never Give In: The Extraordinary Character of Winston Churchill

Paris (Cities at War)

World War II: America at War

World War II: Fire From the Sky

World War II: The Great War
(video, b & w, 2.5 hours)

World War II: Multimedia CD Rom

We Remember the Holocaust by David A. Adler


Adventures of the Northwoods series
note: ten volume series, also available individually, takes place in 1905 in northwest Wisconsin

A Knock at Midnight by M.L. King Jr.
note: this book is also available on audiocassette

Autobiography of Martin Luther King Jr.
note: this book is also available on audiocassette

Carry a Big Stick: The Uncommon Heroism of Theodore Roosevelt

Deliver the Ransom Alone (1990's, El Salvador)

True Tales from the Times of World Empires, World Missions, World Wars by Diana Waring
(60 minute audiotape)
note: More True Tales from the Times of World Empires, World Missions, World Wars also available (80 minute audiotape)

The World in the Time of Albert Einstein

Some More history finds

I always find something fun at EasyFunSchool....here are some of their history pages...enjoy!

This is a list of the history lessons and activities available on EasyFunSchool. It is broken up by time period and is alphabetized within each section.


[Note: some of the projects in the Science Fun Index might also be appropriate for specific historical periods (e.g., "homemade hourglass").]

History, General:
Aged Paper for history projects
Community History Unit Study
History Fun: Resume of an Historical Figure
The History of Visualization and Role-Play in History Lessons
Mixed Up Presidents - part 1 (puzzle
Mixed Up Presidents - part 2 (puzzle)
Suggested Reading for History

Ancient/Old Testament History:
Explore Ancient Israel
Investigative Report: Ancient Israel
Research Project: Famous Person of Ancient Israel
Mixed-Up Books of the Bible (puzzle)
The Old Testament Said What?!
Resources for Study Old Testament/Ancient History
What Made Them Different?

Ancient Middle East:
Ancient Mesopotamia and Religion
Assyrian Mythology
Brickmaking Activity/Experiment
Daily Life in Ancient Civilizations
Daily Life in Mesopotamia
Daily Life in Mesopotamia: Activities
Debate Hammurabi's Code
Gilgamesh and Enkidu
Locating Mesopotamia
Plan a Sumerian Feast
Sumerian Proverbs

Ancient Egypt:
Brickmaking Activity/Experiment
The Harvest Cycle

Ancient China:
Ancient China Unit Study

Ancient Japan:
Suggested Reading

Ancient Greece:
Ancient Greece Timeline and Activities
Create a Fresco
Cast a Faux Alabaster Figure
Cast a Faux Marble Sculpture,
The Iliad (please note: large file, slow in loading)
The Judgment of Midas
Marbled Paper
Olympian Vocabulary

Ancient Rome:
The Bronze Bow
Create a Fresco
Cast a Faux Alabaster Figure
Cast a Faux Marble Sculpture,
Marbled Paper

Early Europe:
Norseman Tale of Creation
The Sons of William the Conqueror

Medieval Times:
Fire-Breathing Dragon Bookmark
Kings, Queens, & Castles Unit
Middle Ages worksheet #1
Middle Ages worksheet #2
The Sons of William the Conqueror
St. George and the Dragon
Unit Study on the Middle Ages

British History:
A Child's History of England: Chapters 1 - 2
A Child's History of England: Chapters 3 - 6
A Child's History of England: Chapters 7 - 10
A Child's History of England: Chapters 11 - 12
A Child's History of England: Chapters 13 - 16
A Child's History of England: Chapters 17 - 21
A Child's History of England: Chapters 22 - 25
A Child's History of England: Chapters 26 - 30
A Child's History of England: Chapters 31 - 35
A Child's History of England: Chapters 36 & 37
The Sons of William the Conqueror

Age of Exploration and Beyond:
Exploring Antarctica
Life on the High Seas
Make a Compass
Pirates Treasure Chest
Who Really Discovered America?

Native Americans:
[Please note: The history of Native peoples falls in many different streams of history. You may want to check other sections of this history index if you do not see what you want in this list.]
Folk Tales
Myth/Stereotype of the Native American Women
Native American Cooking: Ah-Gee-Chum-Buh-Gee
Native American Cooking: Indian Bean Bread
Native American Cooking: Parched Corn
Native American Cooking: Simi Chumbo
Special Homes
Tribal List


Acorn Flour
Beet Dye
Clabber Milk Cheese
Coffee Dye
Colonial Cooking: Apple Butter
Colonial Cooking: Apple Catsup
Colonial Cooking: Homemade Applesauce
Colonial Cooking: Homemade Sausage
Colonial Cooking: Indian Pudding
Colonial Cooking: Philadelphia Pepper Pot
Colonial Cooking: Sausage and Apple Rings
Colonial Cooking: Wiggs
Cranberry Dye
Easy Homemade Hard Soap
Easy White Cheese
Exploring Early America
Hashed Hominy
Homemade Butter
Homemade Hominy
Homemade Ink from Berries
Homemade Ink from Nuts
Homemade Mulled Cinder
Homemade Yellow Cheese
John Smith's Letter About Pocahontas
Marigold Dye
Mustard Dye
Old-Fashioned Pomander
Purple Cabbage Dye
Rendering Lard
Sausage Cake
The Settlement of Jamestown
Soup Can Lantern
Sourdough Starter
Spinach Dye
Tea Dye
Walnut Shell Dye

American Revolution:
American Revolution Timeline
Johnny Tremain

Frontier/Pioneer History:
Cherokee Sweet Potato Bread
Daniel Boone mini unit
Lewis & Clark Unit
Maple Candy
Now That's Different!
PBS Frontier House: Lesson 1
PBS Frontier House: Lesson 2
Pioneer Cooking: Bannock Bread
Pioneer Cooking: Dough-nuts
Pioneer Cooking: Grits Bread
Pioneer Cooking: Hasty Pudding
Pioneer Cooking: Indian Cake
Pioneer Cooking: Indian Dumpling
Pioneer Cooking: Sallie Lunn
Pioneer Cooking: Venison
Pioneers "Meeting the Elephant"
Suggested Reading: Native Americans

Westward Expansion:
The Pony Express
The Sante Fe Trail

American Civil War:
Civil War Cookin': Baked Bread Omelet
Civil War Cookin': Breakfast Cornbread
Civil War Cookin': Carolina Rice and Wheat Bread
Civil War Cookin': Fondus
Civil War Cookin': Fricasseed Eggs
Civil War Cookin': Griddle Cakes
Civil War Cookin': Hydropathic Crumpets
Civil War Cookin': Mississippi Cake
Civil War Cookin': Molasses Toast
Civil War Cookin': Rumbled Eggs
Civil War Cookin': Soda Biscuits
Soda Crackers
Send 'Em South (book review with activities

World War I:
Lesson Ideas
The Lusitania
Research Topics

The Great Depression:
Amelia Earhart
The Great Depression: A Mini Unit

World War II:
Number the Stars
Pearl Harbor
Unit Activities

Friday, March 26, 2010

Need Historical Documents...

like a copy of the US Constitution, or The Bill of Rights, or The Louisiana Purchase or The Women's Right to Vote?  Hey now, what about Elvis' letter to President Nixon?

The National Archives website has you covered.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

American History: Explorers

Another still-in-progress plan here.  American History

We like the pages we've printed off so far from History Central's website.

We'll start with The Age of Exploration...probably using many of the links and ideas from their listing of chronological exploration of North America.  I know these aren't all-inclusive links, but it does give us a good starting point and we can branch off into other areas from there, like a specific study of a time frame, or a particular explorer, etc.

And read-alouds, of course.  They are a backbone for us this summer at least.

Nature Year One: Spring, Wildflowers

Wildflowers of Mississippi....I know, I said we might just as well start at the beginning of The Handbook of Nature Study.  Well, We will follow the 6 year rotation from Ambleside's Nature pages instead.  I like a game plan...not that starting at page one and working through to page whatever isn't a plan.

I'm like the wind.  I change in some areas.

Probably why my poor children live a life of utter confusion from time to time.

I should name our homeschool Windy Day School or something.  Plain and Simple probably doesn't speak it plain enough and gives the wrong impression to folks.

That's why we homeschool...well, one of the smaller reasons, anyway...so we can adjust and flow in other directions when inspiration strikes.  There's something to be said for free-ranging.  Although I am only suited for it with the non-core topics we cover.  If I free-ranged with the biggies, like math and English, I'd have children needing to learn English as a second language...after babble-ese or something!

So...Spring Year 1...wildflowers.
Mississippi Wildflowers
and the Ambleside link of My Wildflowers...there are some great ID pages here worth bookmarking.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Wars and Battles of History

What resources do you use as study or read-alouds for going over the wars and battles of history?

I'm not even sure I know where exactly we want to start...just the American Revolution, or start with some more ancient?

The children watched Johnny Tremain today...twice...and really enjoyed it and asked a bunch of questions we've been going over today.  So, with an interest, perhaps I want to keep going and hit at least some major points of several battles before digging in and covering something on a larger scale.

Wars and Battles Timeline at About.com
The American Revolution at History Central
Wars and Campaigns at Heritage History

Do you have any read-alouds that would be good for something like this?  We will be reading Johnny Tremain, of course, and something like Ben and Me, My Brother Sam is Dead, Guns for General Washington, George Washington's Socks, The Fighting Ground, The Secret Soldier: The Story of Deborah Sampson,...and of course, we love Henty novels so we'll see what we have there to choose from (LOL...pretty much all of them!)

Just wondered if anyone else had any good books, resources, websites, blogs, etc they would go to for a study such as this.  Please share!!!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Some Ambleside Online Thoughts

I have always like the Ambleside Online site, as well as the several Charlotte Mason resources I have here.  I love real books.  I don't always "teach" with them effectively, but that doesn't keep my from plugging away.

Ambleside Online is a treasury of wonderful resources, schedules and book lists and thoughts from others following the CM philosophy. 

In keeping with our determination to not only do nature study with more planning, but to thrive with it, we'll be keeping tabs on some ideas from not only The Handbook of Nature Study book itself, but the wonderful blog challenges Barb shares as well, and this suggested flow from Ambleside Online:

Nature Study Schedule
If you follows the whole 6 year rotation, every subject in the book will be covered; the plant/animal section being covered twice.
If you'd like to add poetry to your nature notebook, this site has lots of nature poems.
Year 1
Summer/Fall Term - mammals
Winter Term - birds (bird poems; bird songs; hummingbird birth)
Spring Term - wildflowers (Northeastern wildflower guide)
Year 2
Summer/Fall Term - insects/invertebrates
Winter Term - trees
Spring Term - garden flowers and weeds
Year 3
Summer/Fall Term - reptiles
Winter Term - flowerless plants/crops
Spring Term - fish and amphibians
Year 4
Summer/Fall Term - mammals and wildflowers (Northeastern wildflower guide)
Winter Term - rocks and minerals (also lessons on brook and soil)
Spring Term - birds (bird poems; bird songs; hummingbird birth)
Year 4 - alternate schedule for second repetition of the year 4 for those choosing to use the 3 year rotation with years 4, 5, and 6 instead of the 6 year schedule.
Summer/Fall Term - rocks and minerals (also lessons on brook and soil)
Winter Term - birds (bird poems; bird songs; hummingbird birth)
Spring Term - mammals and wildflowers (Northeastern wildflower guide)
Year 5
Summer/Fall Term - trees/insects/invertebrates
Winter Term - climate and weather
Spring Term - garden flowers and weeds
Year 6
Summer/Fall Term - crops/flowerless plants/fish
Winter Term - the skies (astronomy)
Spring Term - amphibians and reptiles

I am sort of leaning toward trying out more of the CM/Ambleside Online schooling for our summer term here.  Just to feel it all out more.  We'll keep our English and Math through Rod & Staff going, but there's no reason we can't really flesh out a great curriculum using these wonderful books.  Maybe my idea of starting at the beginning of the Handbook isn't the best way to go.  I would sort of lose some 'seasonal' variances...ahhh, you know me...I'm always thinking too much!

Now to see what our local library has to offer as well as really digging into my own assortment of books here.

Handbook of Nature Study: Birds & Chickens

We finally decided to stop lolly-dragging about and just start at the beginning.  The Handbook of Nature Study (free download online....but I strongly suggest buying the book as you will use it many times over, it is that great a resource!) has been a constant in our family as mainly a reference and go-to tool, but we are going to really dig in deeper with the actual book itself and get back to what we had fun with last year -- following the book assignments from the start.

I have followed -- and loved -- Barb's blog, The Handbook of Nature Study as well as the outstanding sharings of Outdoor Hour Challenges.  She has them very well linked in her sidebar, so you can start anywhere, at anytime :o)  She starts you off with some beginner tips, selecting a focus, then brings you along at a good pace, sharing how to implement a wonderful study of the nature that surrounds all of us, city and country dwellers alike.

Well, starting at the beginning, and not really pinning down a focus persay, we start with birds, specifically chickens.  Well, we have chickens :o)  We can study their coloring and habits up close and personal.  We've had many different breeds over the years, though no 'fanhttp://www.blogger.com/post-create.g?blogID=7015741143978794314cy' breeds.  We're just a plain homestead here, we go for utility and not so much show and pretty.

There is a great study one family did, shared at the Nature Study blog.  We are just starting today, so we don't have alot to share just yet.  We've discovered several things, though, using our resources here at home:

The Little Red Hen....how could you study chickens without reading The Little Red Hen?  Talk about a good lesson for other areas of life :o)  The online reading book there at Starfall shares a great vocab list as well.
How about some fun activities for the youngers....First School Preschool Activities shares several ideas for crafts and fun going along with the story....as does Enchanted Learning.  Printable worksheets, crafting sheets and ideas.  Here is a coloring book of the story itself you can download from SchoolExpress.

What about Chanticleer and The Fox?  I need to find that one yet.

And chickens in general: 
Early Chinese records indicate the chicken was shared from "the west" around 1400 BC.
The New World didn't have any domestic fowl until brought here by the Spaniards...of course, we did have the turkey :o)
it is likely that all breeds stem from one species, the Red Jungle Fowl (Gallus gallus) of India...even with the variety of breeds, from the 12# Brahma to the 20 oz. Bantam.
Our White Leghorn, the truest egg machine known to man, was introduced to the U.S. by Italy in 1835.
Most farmers (homesteaders) still lean toward traditional, standard breeds for home egg and meat production, such as Rhode Island Red and Plymouth Rock, both of American origins.
Bantam hens are commonly used to hatch out and brood pheasant eggs both on a small scale as well as commercial level.

Chickens are just fun study :o)  We're off to draw some pictures and get back to reading all about their traits and characteristics in The Handbook of Nature Study!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Today's Homeschool Freebie Resource

The blog, Just Us, has shared several notebooking and lapbooking pages.  They are featured as today's resource over at Homeschool Freebie of The Day.

We looked through some of their pages and it is certainly a resource I will return to many times.  There are some good American Revolution resources shared, with notebook pages, lapbook components, and pages for using Johnny Tremain in your reading. 

There are pages on book ideas for studying early American History and Explorers I've already saved for printing.

They even have a Yahoo group...Simply Lapbooks worth checking into.