This year will be my third cycle through the Mystery of History volume 1. For the first time my children will be able to use some of the extra material I have created.
When homeschooling parents stop by the Bright Ideas Press booth at conventions I often tell them the Mystery of History book is all you need to teach history…the extra supplements are for different learning styles. Being a momma of boys…coloring pages never really get a lot of excitement at my house, this would be an easy purchase to skip. The audio cds don’t work for my visual learners but my one audio learner loves them. If you need hands-on with little writing go with the folder books.
Linda Hobar explains in the introduction how to do notecards, set up time lines, and how to organize a notebook. I have taken these guidelines and tweaked them to work at my house.
Since I have highly visual learners we skip the notecards and use the notebooking pages.
Organizing the lessons by geography location confuses my brain; I keep the lesson work in chronological order.
I have my older students circle the answers to the pretests at the beginning of each lesson, for my younger students I do the questions orally. The reproducible cd makes printing these pages easier since I don’t have to stand at the copier and do them one at a time.
I color code each quarter which a sticky tab this allows me to label the weeks for my visual kids. One of them gets overwhelmed if a task looks huge. Handing a 3 inch ring binder filled with pages to complete can cause a great amount of anxiety. Having the beginning of each week identified also gives a visual clue on when to stop work, thus avoiding accidentally working ahead.
Only my high school kids do a timeline and all the map work. I struggle with timelines; I have yet to actually complete one. Currently my older 2 kids have been able to complete their timelines for school. Bonus: they share them with the younger kids.
For my middle kids I pick and choose with maps I want them to complete from the lessons. I write the page number and which section I want them to complete on a sticky note and place it on the map.
It takes me one whole day to assemble our Mystery of History of notebooks.
- First I print the coloring pages, the notebook pages, the pretests and end of the week activities.
- Then I read through the map work and print the maps I want my kids to complete placing sticky notes on each map with directions.
- Next I assemble the piles in the order I want them in the notebook.
The order of the pages for the notebook:
- Pretest for the week
- Color page for the week
- Notebook pages for the 3 lessons
- Outline map
- End of the week activity or test
Any extra activities they complete during the school year gets added at the end of each week.
I begin systematically adding the pages into the notebooks, remembering to tab the pretest of each week.
I created a notebook cover page for easier identifying. Ancient-History-Cover-Page
As for the other supplements for the Mystery of History:
- I keep the audio cds in the car for our trips to town.
- The challenge cards are printed on cardstock and whole punched and added to a ring. Since there are about 3 to 4 cards per lesson, I have the cards broken down by quarters. I had the challenge cards printed at Staples and cut down to size. The cost was around $14 and the time saved was priceless.
- Since I use Illuminations, my literature books and movie selections are already planned and scheduled.
- Don’t forget an atlas if you are doing the map work with MOH. It will save you time on internet searching.
- Supplies for each lessons activities I do on my weekly planning sessions. I have learned over the years that my schedule doesn’t allow for completing every activity. I like to do Friday wrap-ups of the Mystery of History activities.