I love teaching with unit studies, it’s the best way to teach multiple kids simultaneously. I love unit studies but I don’t always love the unit studies I see available for purchase because the content just isn’t there. When I shop for a unit study I want to see a book list, craft ideas, working (!) website links, and ideas for teaching multiple subjects. Basically, I want all of the hard stuff done for me.
I was asked to review a unit study based on one of my favorite series of books, the American Girl series. After speaking with the author I was given access to the unit study materials that go with the Josefina series.
Description from Amazon.com:
“Josefina Montoya is growing up on a rancho near Santa Fe, New Mexico, in 1824. Ever since Mamá died a year before, Josefina and her three sisters have been struggling to carry on without her. One bright fall day, happy news arrives–their beloved grandfather is returning home after a long trading trip. Josefina knows that he will bring exciting stories and wonderful treasures from his journey. But this time he brings something more–a great surprise that Josefina and her sisters never even dreamed of!”
I seriously love the American Girl books, so much that I’ve been known to read them on my own. We were first exposed to the series with Felicity, which we listened to on cassette tape (that’s how long ago it was!) during our weekly commutes to dance class. My oldest child was 8 years old when we listened to it and she and I both shed a tear when we finished the series, we felt like we were saying goodbye to a friend. The books are engaging and fun, even for boys. My 8 year old son is really enjoying the Josefina books, so much that I downloaded them to his Kindle so he can read ahead.
I was expecting a lot from this unit study, and I was not disappointed. Justine Gamble, the author of the Girls of American History, has really covered all the bases. She really “gets it”, like me she has 5 children who are homeschooled, so she knows what a unit study should look like.
Included in this virtual unit study, which at the time of this post costs $7.95, are:
-Crafts to add a hands-on element
-A book list for drawing lessons to add another hands-on element
-A book list for additional educational resources & teacher’s guides for the time period
-A book list of other series that relate to the time period of your chosen Girl.
-A list of field trips relating to your Girl (which can be taken anywhere!)
-A list of educational vacations you can take that relate to your Girl
-A book list of every single book your Girl is featured in
-A list of lapbook templates
Every resource in the unit study is internet-linked for your convenience.
If you and your child like the American Girl books these unit studies are worth a look. You can download free samples here.
Cost: $7.95 each, packages available
Ages: Recommended for grades 2-6
Meg Grooms is a decades-long secular homeschooling mother of 6 children, ranging in age from preschool to married with kids of their own. Always a vagabond at heart, Meg and her family have embraced a slow travel lifestyle, currently calling Southern California home. Your guess is as good as hers as to where they’ll end up next.
Meg blogs about secular homeschooling and gameschooling at Homeschool Gameschool.