Sunday, June 12, 2011

American Girl Club - First Meeting for Kaya

There was a group of gals in our homeschool group who has started an American Girl Club.  Lydia loves the dolls and Caty will too, so we decided that it would be fun. 

We will be doing the girls in historical order, so the first AG is Kaya.  We will spend six meetings on each doll. 

Here's some of the resources we are using at our house:

Hands of a Child Lapbook:

The American Girl® (1764-1864) Hands-Full

Highlights of Homeschooling:

American Girls Series Kaya Novel Literature Unit Study and Lapbook
Welcome to Kaya's World

We finished Book 1: 

We will start Book 2 this week.  I love the book from Highlights of Homeschooling because it gives AWESOME reading comprehension questions to draw Lydia out while we are reading.  Her attention span and work level is not up to completeing all the sections, but I pick and choose questions so we can talk about events that happened.

Now I looked up a bunch of information on the Nez Perce Indian tribe so that when we completed projects we could make sure to not mix up tribal rituals, customs and daily living.  It is soooo easy to assume that what one tribe did, then all tribes probably did that.   I tried really hard to explain (without boring her) how a project we are working on, like the teepee, was not completely accurate.

Here are a couple projects we did before our meeting:

We built little teepees out of fake suede and doll rods.  This was very hands on for mom!  We know though that Nez Perce Indians lived in teepees during the summer fishing months.  During the Winter they lived in long houses, sometimes with most of their tribes.  They also did not use animal skins to cover their homes, but reeds that were tied together.  When they were dry they allowed air to blow through, but when it was wet and rainy they would swell in the rain and keep them dry.

Our almost finished teepees with our little Kaya dolls.  The other items is a "reed" mat and a food gathering basket from the American Girl Collection.  Just some props I found on ebay cheap.

We painted our teepees then to make them look pretty.

 The girls wanted dresses like Kaya.  That was not a bright decision on my part.  We had a heat index of around 110F degrees and I was on our back deck sewing fake seude.....NOT FUN!!!  Took me a day of the A/C to recover from that.  But the girls liked their dresses, but they didn't want to wear them at the meeting....again it was too warm and they wanted to play on the slide.

I also started mocassins for their dolls.  They are a work in progress.  I couldn't find fur lining for them, but Kaya's did not have a fur lining on their Kaya dolls.  So I may attempt another pair next week to see if I can come up with something similar.

At our meeting, Holly helped the girls to make dresses for their dolls.  Lydia's attention span lasted about as long as I thought it would since we met in a park by play equipment.  She lasted a little bit though.

We were going to make smoked salmon or at least a close example of how the Nez Perce Indians made smoked salmon.  But our oven broke, so we quick looked at our Nez Perce information and found a pine cone game the children would play.   This is a look-a-like of that game.  We velcroed a hula hoop to a ladder golf stand.  We threw real pine cones then through the hoop.  I think the girls had fun.

Here's Lydia moving the hoop farther away.  The idea is when you throw a cone through the hoop, the hoop is moved further away or you step back further. 

Even Caty liked it.

Here's our finished doll dresses.  I forgot I had letter beads, so we used some of them to put the girls name on their dresses.  When they take them off then, they won't get their dresses mixed up.

If you like American Girl and would like to start a club, we got some awesome ideas from Just Call Me Jamin'.  She is actively invovled in an American Girl Club in their Homeschool Group.  Wonderful posts about all they do.  Just do a search on her blog for American Girl. 


  1. Looks like you are having lots of fun! Our first year of homeschooling (5 yrs ago!) we did a unit study that was based on the AG books (we only did 3 of them - Kit, Molly & Addy)...we enjoyed it quite a bit. Your little Caty is just about the cutest thing ever :)

  2. How fun! I've thought about doing an American Girl Club, but we get SO busy during the school year that I simply can't fit anything else in. My daughter has read all the books a couple of times as well! LOL Oh, and has free lapbooks based on the American Girl series if you'd like another resource.


  3. It was so fun Renita! I know the girls had such fun. L can't wait for the next meeting! I'll be blogging about it soon! :)

  4. i will have to look into this series. This looked like so much fun. My daughter wants to study Indians next. Lots of good ideas. Thanks for linking up to the NOBH

  5. Where can I find step by step instructions on how to make these awesome projects?
    Maureen in Florida

  6. We too are doing lapbooks on these dolls at our homeschool co-op meetings. This is our first semester so we are on Kaya as well. Alot of fun and informative. It would cost quite a sum of money to buy all of the large dolls so we are sticking with the minis for this series of dolls.
    We made dolls such as Kaya would have played with, out of corn husks. Alot of fun. Enjoyed reading your blog.

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