Notebooking Your Way Through HistoryLisa Rupertus
The Mystery of History has been our choice history curriculum since I began homeschooling in 2012. I knew I wanted something with hands-on activities to keep my boys involved. So we began plowing through the curriculum starting with Vol I: Creation to the Resurrection. The kids loved hearing me read aloud from the spine and doing the fun activities such as building ziggurats and wrapping ourselves up like mummies.
One thing I noticed early on was that my sons remembered only the bigger things we did. Since they were ages 10 and 12, I felt they should retain more of what we studied. So I looked on the Bright Ideas Press store to see what extras were available. I settled on these wonderful printables found in the Super Supplemental Collection.
- The Mystery of History Volume I Coloring Pages
- The Mystery of History Volume I Challenge Cards
- The Mystery of History Volume I Notebooking Pages
- The Mystery of History Volume I Folderbook, 4 Quarters
When I added notebooking pages to our homeschool history studies, things changed. The children learned how to take dictation. They also began to keep track of facts and practice active listening. When we reviewed the lesson, they remembered much more then when they were merely passively listening without a notebooking page.
Click the images to see them a larger view of my son’s work.
We are now starting our third volume of The Mystery of History, and we won’t be without those notebooking pages. For middle school and high school students, the notebooking pages elevate the course to a higher level of learning. Yes, you could just have the kids write in a spiral notebook, but my children like seeing the titles and pictures on the pages.
Tips for Using The Mystery of History Notebooking Pages
1. Print out everything at the beginning of the year.
This will save you time each week, and you will always be prepared. Choose some kind of organization system. For volumes I and II, I made a file folder for each week. For Volume III, I’m using two binders with dividers to organize the student sheets into the various weeks.
2. Print with a laser printer to save on ink costs.
Everything will be in black in white (unless you splurge for a color laser printer), but it won’t make that much of a difference. This year for Vol. III, I printed some in color on my old inkjet (because of the artist’s artwork) and some in black and white.
3. Hand out the writer’s pages before the reading assignment.
Encourage your children to use shorthand notes and not write complete sentences as they take notes while you read. This will help them to write faster which will come in handy for college. Next, hand out the fill-able pages after the lesson is read to see what they remember. These are great to use as worksheets.