Jul 11, 2017

Homeschool Review Crew: Make-a-State

We have been crazy busy this summer, but the kids and I have still managed to squeeze out some time to work on a few review products. We have been learning some Texas history with Home School in the Woods. This is one of my favorite places to get hands-on history products and we have been enjoying their Make-a-State Activity, which is a part of the Activity-Paks series. 


This product is a quick download. It comes in a zipfile and after you extract the files you have PDFs, images, and an autorun button. The PDFs and images can also be found in the autorun section, it just gives you options in case you have troubles with your browser or just have different printing preferences. I generally just use the autorun, which pulls everything up, in order, on my browser and I just go from there. It keeps my brain organized because I am easily confused if there are a lot of different pieces.

Hands-On History Activity-Paks: Make-A-State

And Make-a-State has a lot of pieces! It is basically a lapbook that you can use to study any of the 50 states that you want, or all the states that you want! It is not a complete study because it does not contain the information that you need about the states. There is a page of info, but it is pretty brief. Texas had three paragraphs, a list of famous people, symbols, facts, and a few "on this date in history".  So you  do need to incorporate books, websites, and other materials to round out your study. However, with 20 projects to complete and a file folder game to play, it is a great foundation to start with!

Hands-On History Activity-Paks: Make-A-State

The projects are:

1. Key State Facts 
2. Origin of State Name 
3. State Motto 
4. State Symbols 
5. State Song 
6. State Industry / Agriculture / Climate 
7. State Wildlife 
8. Regions 
9. State Geography 
10. State Government 
11. State Seal & Flag 
12. State History 
13. Famous People From... 
14. Native Tribes 
15. State Landmarks 
16. Sports Teams 
17. State Quarter 
18. Recipes 
19. State Vocabulary 
20. State Timeline 
BONUS #1: State Page for each state and Washington, D.C. 
BONUS #2: “Name That State!” File Folder Game


These are either adaptable for each state, or there is one for each state. So you can chose to use this for one state study, like we did, or you can use this over and over for all the states. The only drawback is that if there is one for each state, there are multiple states on each page. So for us, just wanting Texas stuff, I did have to waste some ink printing off other state's quarters and flags and etc. This would not be a big deal if you were learning all fifty states, but I would have liked the option to just print Texas stuff.


One of the reasons I enjoy Home School in the Woods so much is that they make it so easy for me to use! I open the file, read the simple instructions, scroll, click and print and we are ready to go. I can choose the pieces that will work for my family and skip the ones that won't. 

My kids are between the ages of 10 and 14, so we tend to ignore the more imaginative pieces and spend our time on the parts that require research, writing, thinking, and effort. But when they were younger, it was totally the other way around! That is another great thing about Home School in the Woods! They work great for any age and if you have a big family or a wide age spread, you can easily make it work for everyone.


My kids are not big into lapbooks, either, but that's okay. We still use the pieces to record the information that we discover and we then put those pieces into our history notebooks or a binder, or just hang them on our wall for awhile to enjoy. 

So we focused on Texas, and learned about the native tribes, did some mapping, hunted down the key state facts, sang the state song, read some history, explored some biographies, and even learned about chicken fried steak, which my little Texans didn't even know existed, ha!


As I mentioned before, Home School in the Woods is one of my favorite resources for hands-on history, we have used their History Through the Ages Timeline Figures which is a part of the Timeline Trio for a few years now. We have also used Composers Activity Pak (review here), Artists Activity Pack,  Project Passport World History Study: Ancient Egypt, and Project Passport: The Middle Ages. And that is just a small sampling of what they have to offer! 

And now, they have another great offer... A-La-Carte projects! You can buy just an item or two to round out your history theme without having to buy the whole pack. And for a limited time, the Erie Canal is FREE for you! The code to use at checkout is alacarte. If you have never used Home School in the Woods before, it is a great way to start!

Hands-on History {Home School in the Woods Reviews}
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