I usually plan out most of our curriculum. We use textbooks and then I supplement, so I have a little help as a base. But I personally really enjoy unit studies, which can be time consuming to plan out. So I was very excited (and Caty was too) to get the opportunity to try out Knights and Nobles Once-A-Week Unit Study (Digital Download $14.00, Printed $18.95) from Homeschool Legacy.
She has been wanting to learn about Knights and Castles. The trouble is that we were traveling a lot at that time. So I was nervous when we first received the easy to download Knights & Nobles file. I try to keep the curriculum and supplies we carry to one suitcase. Sometimes with unit studies there are lots of extra materials that you need. I didn't want to have to repack all of our supplies. I was surprised at the amount of flexibility that the Knights & Nobles Once-A-Week Unit Study provided me. The fact that it is written for Grades 2 - 12 also opens up many options for families with a wide age range of students.
With Once-A-Week Unit Study options from Homeschool Legacy, everything is laid out for you. The only prep is to order books from the library or purchase them, which ever you plan to do. Several of the suggested books I was able to borrow for my tablet, so there was not a bunch of extra materials for me to worry about packing. I was also worried about a bunch of extra work that might cut into our exploring time when we are visiting new areas. I found that Knights & Nobles Once A Week Unit Study gave us ideas that allowed us to learn a lot about the Middle Ages without sitting at the table for hours.
Each week you are provided with:
- Weekly Biblical text to go along with the subject you are learning about
- Weekly Field trip ideas
- Weekly Family Night ideas that include theme menus and movies
- Ideas for art projects, Language Arts, and several other subjects
- Weekly hands-on project ideas (such as different ideas for materials to build a castle from)
Each Once-A-Week Unit Study also provides a list of badge requirements for the American Heritage Girls, as well as the Boy Scouts.
You can use these study options alone or along with the curriculum that you are using. I was also able to easily see what was going to be covered during this suggested 4 week study. I easily could have stretched it out further than 4 weeks if I would've wanted to. We studied in the 4 Week time frame because Caty is not up to the suggested writing projects.
Since I already had a base outline for Caty for school planned out, I easily was able to slide the Knights and Nobles Once-A-Week Unit Study right into her lesson plan. We were leaving on another trip when we started it, but I was able to spend 5 minutes reading the suggested activities and reading list to know what we would need on Monday. I ordered a couple of books and then downloaded some for my tablet. It was literally that easy.
Because of her age and attention span, here are some of the books we used during the past few weeks.
She made a medieval lunch for us to enjoy (with help of course)....rosemary baked potatoes and baked chicken. She wanted a chicken leg to eat like she saw a knight doing in a cartoon she had watched.
We talked about the weapons of knights. The directions on how to make a simple catapult were included in the Knights and Nobles Once-A-Week Unit Study. I was almost dreading this project a little. I expected it was going to be difficult. Joey had built a catapult a few years ago that took hours. It took us only 5 minutes to build and starting firing our catapult across the living room.
Another weapon we talked about was how armies would shoot arrows with fire over castle walls to try and force the citizens outside so they could overtake the castle. So Caty practiced her archery.
She really liked all the art project suggestions. We did not even get a chance to do all of them.
We have watched several videos including, Three Musketeers, Robin Hood (The Disney version), and even Sword in the Stone. We also watched Hunchback of Notre Dame while learning about Cathedrals and their construction the first week. The list of suggestions is wonderful!
Homeschool Legacy has several unit studies to choose from:
- Birds of a Feather
- Horsing Around
- Forest for the Trees
- Weather on the Move
- Knights and Nobles
- Early Settlers
- Christmas Comes to America
- Native America
- Revolutionary Ideas: the Story of the American Revolution
- We the People, Getting to Know Your Constitution
- Lewis & Clark: From Sea to Shining Sea
- Westward Ho Part I and Part II