I’m a huge proponent of taking learning out of the textbooks and making it hands on and engaging. Home School in the Woods offer so many products to help me do just that. Now, they’ve taken some of their best hands-on learning activities, and made them available through an Á La Carte option.
When asked to select some of these products to review, I had a hard time making the decision. There were so many games, timelines, and projects to check out.
I finally made my decision, and received a PDF copy of the Pirate Panoply Game, The Orchestra File Folder Project, and The Art of Quilling.
Pirate Panoply Game
Since we’re learning about explorers this year, I thought this pirate game would be a good addition. The PDF file consists of seven pages. There are some directions, and then you get to the heart of the game.
There’s a pirate dressed in his skivvies, and a page of pirate clothes. Each player needs each of these pages.
Everyone colors and cuts out their pirate garb. Then, they gather around to play. You need a standard die with six sides.
One player rolls. Each number on the die corresponds to a piece of pirate clothing. One is the hat, six is the stockings/boots and so on.
The player places the corresponding article of clothing on the pirate. Then the next player rolls. The first person to completely dress their pirate is the winner.
The kids thought it was cute and played it a couple of times. Once they were finished, most of them decided to use a glue stick and glue the pieces down so the pirate stayed dressed.
The Orchestra File Folder Project
Since music appreciation is important, I wanted my kids to learn more about instruments. The Orchestra File Folder Project helped them do just that.
This was more of a lapbook style project. As the kids colored instruments and put them together in a display, I read aloud the information about each. We learned about instruments used in four different periods of the orchestra, from the Baroque Period through the modern era.
It was neat to see the changes throughout each period, and to talk more about each instrument. Since we weren’t familiar with some of them, we looked them up on YouTube.
If you look at the picture above, you’ll see a spot down at the bottom where it says 20th century period (modern era). What’s fun about this project is you can remove that, and slide in another card. Then, you pull out the instruments and replace them to show another era. The kids had fun sliding in different instruments and seeing how the orchestra looked during different periods.
Here’s a picture of some of the instruments (my kids had fun coloring these, and didn’t always stick to “traditional” colors. You can also see the cards used to show which time period you’re in.
The Art of Quilling
This was our favorite product! After it arrived, I ordered a basic quilling kit from Amazon. That way I didn’t have to try and slice a notch in a chopstick or toothpick to make my own quilling tool. I’m also not very patient at tasks like cutting thin strips of paper, so I was thrilled to avoid that!
The Art of Quilling provides an introduction to quilling. This is art created by twirling strips of paper around and around, and gluing them down to form pictures.
My kids had a blast with it! They quickly completed the included project, and started creating their own. Depending on how tightly you twist the paper, your resulting curl is either tiny or large. It took a while to get the hang of it, but once they did they were off and running.
Since then, three of my girls have asked to quill during our quiet times. I love it when they find new hobbies!
That’s a picture of Sydney using the quilling tool. You load the strip of paper into the slot and then start twisting the tool.
Here’s the start of a quilling project Jayme is working on. It’s a dragon’s head. You can make so many different pictures just by twisting paper, it’s incredible.
What We Thought of the Products
We had fun with all three of these products. I like that they were black and white, and didn’t take a lot of unnecessary ink. It was easy to print off exactly what I needed, and if a child lost an instrument card, I could easily print another one.
There was a lot of information in these activities. They really are a great learning tool, and I highly recommend them.
There are so many products available in the Home School in the Woods Á La Carte options. Once my younger kids get a bit better at writing independently, I want to check out the American History Newspaper Collection. This is full of creative writing tasks to help students use what they’ve learned in their history studies.
Since we love games, I think this Name That State! File Folder Game will be a fun addition to our schooling next year when I work with the younger kids on memorizing states and capitals.
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