We love hands-on activities here so when the chance came to review Great Empires Activity Study by Home School in the Woods I was very excited.
Home School in the Woods have created a number of great History study guides that provide a fun and exciting way to bring history to life.
The Great Empires study guide gives an introduction to 14 great historical empires. It comes as a PDF which includes text, projects and activity pages - the projects include loads of hands on activities like historical recipes, crafts, games etc. The reading usually consists of 2-3 pages and you can cover most of the activities in each unit over 3 days, depending how much extra research you want to do (they do provide a list of recommended reading so you can go as in-depth as you like).
I started by printing off the timeline and then discussing with the girls which unit they would like to start with - they opted to start at the beginning and work through but it would be just as easy to pick and choose to fit in with your curriculum.
I printed off the reading and projects pages for each unit we worked on. We did rush through Egypt, Rome and the Greeks (although they did pause to paint some Greek urns) as we covered these in depth last year, then moved onto China - the girls loved making the lapbook
and did loads of extra research on the terracotta army and the silk route. Next came the Vikings where we got to make flat bread and stew, which I am happy to report they really liked.
They also made Viking coins and played longboat explorers.
We are currently half way through the Arab unit and they are looking forward to some cucumber soup for dinner tomorrow : )
Overall the girls have found this an engaging study, it has given them enough information to whet their appetites to explore some more. I personally have really enjoyed the recipes and tying traditional foods as well as the hands-on activities. I love their timeline which has a bar for each great empire so you compare them all together in one place.
Great Empires activity study is designed for elementary aged children and is available for $18.95, you can also purchase as a CD.
You can see what my crew mates thought of this and other Home School in the Woods products over at the TOS Blog