Tuesday, October 06, 2009


This year we are starting the history cycle over. That means we are learning Ancient History (5000 B.C. - 400 A.D), or, all about Egypt, Greece, and Rome. Every year I'm always trying to figure out how to do a better timeline, as much for my own learning as for the children's. After thinking it over and discussing it with David this is what I decided:

I wanted a visual timeline that showed the division of years equally so we could get a feel for how long it was from one event to another. The wall in the basement provided the perfect place. We measured and penciled in seven lines seven feet long. We added colored plastic tape along the pencil lines and then marked the years.
The years we broke down as 10 inches = 100 years. On those spots I added a half inch by one and three fourths inch white label with the year written in a gold pen. In between, we marked off every two and half inches to represent each 25 years.At the end of the first strip we realized there were years represented after the last 100, so we cut that part of the strip off and simply restarted on the next line with that same number. Therefore our breakdown works as follows: strip one - 5000 B.C. - 4200 B.C.
strip two - 4200 B.C. - 3400 B.C.
strip three - 3400 B.C. - 2600 B.C.
strip four - 2600 B.C. - 1800 B.C.
strip five - 1800 B.C. - 1000 B.C.
strip six - 1000 B.C. - 200 B.C.
strip seven - 200 B.C. - 600 A.D.

As we read and study about various events in history, I have the younger three color one of the timeline figures and then we put double sided sticky tape on the back, locate where it should go on our timeline, and stick it in place.

As my guide for history this year I'm using Veritas Press (year one and year two) and Story of the World. This website has great resources along with lists combining various history programs for ease of use. I printed off this one, and then re-typed it into a document adding the subject covered for my own benefit and ease of use. I also rearranged a few things, but for the most part that is our history plan for the year.

The other change is that for the two oldest, we decided to buy them their own copy of the Record of Time notebook. This way they would have a nice, personal copy of historical events they can take with them to college and beyond. The use the same timeline figures only reduced to fit in the book. I also purchased the suggested placement guide to give us a feel for what events are all on one page and how to lay them nicely on the page. We will do the same for the three youngest when they are older.


Ewe said...

Can I come attend your history class? I was a history minor and I learned far more teaching 2nd grade history (Ancient Egypt etc.) than I did all of my schooling combined.
Also, are you on Sturm? Would you mind if I posted to Sturm this blog post? I think the classical Lutheran (homeschool or dayschool) would like to see what you have done.
Thank you for posting this-it gives me great ideas to file away for the future.

Rev. Rick Stuckwisch said...

Impressive. I like it. Well done.

Melody said...

IF you have time this fall for a looong field trip...
We have 2 world-class museums in Chicago with awesome ancient-world exhibits. The Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago is all about Mesopotamia through Ancient Greece. Those HUGE lions of Babylon? They built the Oriental Institute around one in 1905-6-7 or so. Each gallery has guided tours meant for kids under high-school age; very user-friendly, very up close and personal.
Then there's the Field Museum's Egyptian exhibit....
And I know of a very nice B&B about an hour out of the city. Farm-fresh eggs, red wine and chocolate...let me know when you decide to come!

Glenda said...

I know what you mean Ewe - I was a history major and I'm learning all sorts of things - I love that about homeschooling. So although you are welcome to come to my class anytime, I don't want to deprive you of your own joy in teaching your own lambs. :-) Oh and yes I am on Sturm and I don't mind, I never thought of what I've done as anything special.

Thanks Pr. Stuckwisch, the impressive part to me is that the children love looking at it and adding new events.

OH Melody! I forgot about those museums. Hmmm, I just might have to make that visit, besides our bestest friends live not far either, plus you and other loopers and even a sil! Isn't there some free day in February for the museums? Now my wheels are a turning......

Laura said...

That actually looks like a timeline that will WORK! Great job! Nice pictures...I always love hearing about your school.

Cate (Supermom) said...

Oh, nice! I am impressed!