We’ve been taking a focused look on various topics in our social studies, choosing one topic per month to concentrate our studies around. I grouped most of the books in our reading list at the beginning of the year into different themes, which include the British Isles, New Zealand, The Old and New Testaments, exploration, and so forth. [Most of our books for this year come from Sonlight Core C, World History Y2].
Each month we include a person of interest, mapping exercises, reading aloud together, notebooking pages, and various other activities depending on the theme and what resources we have.
So this month is all about how children of the world live. I’ve been looking forward to this one all year! Justice and compassion issues are really important to us as a family, and we plan to continue to lay this into our children’s worldview. We already do lots of things as a family in terms of supporting others and loving and giving where we can. But sometimes it’s good to have some intentional and concentrated learning time as well, just to bring a different dimension to putting this emphasis in our children’s value system. One day, it will be up to them to decide what they do with all this.
Here’s what we’re aiming for (with our almost 8 year old daughter):
- To widen her growing awareness of how others live;
- To cultivate a heart of thankfulness;
- To stir a missions heart and encourage a response in reaching out to others;
We’re weaving our history and geography in by marking places on our world map and doing notebooking and copywork pages that I printed free from various websites.
The main resource that my daughter is using to write in is a printable activity e-book (from Winter Promise) which includes activities and suggested for serving and reaching out to children. Because doing we’re enough writing as part of this unit study, we’re taking a couple of weeks off our regular writing program (Writing with Ease).
We are using:
- Children Just Like Me – Barnabas Kindersley
- Working Children (print version) – Kaeryn Brooks (Winter Promise Publishing) [NB. This book contains some content that may not suit your child’s current level of maturity].
- Bold Believers Kids of Courage e-books (free)
- Window on the World – Spraggett & Johnstone
- Material World: a global family portrait – Menzel
- Children of Many Lands (print version) – Kaeryn Brooks
- Prayer and Personal Involvement Journal: finding ways to serve, pray, and reach out to children of the world – ebook version (Winter Promise Publishing)
- The Joy Journal that our family started at the beginning of the year
Extra reading and activities
- George Mueller (Benge)
- Houses and Homes (Unicef)
- If the World Were A Village website, and free lapbook
We’re also going to watch a program on an inspiring young lady who cares for 30 orphaned children in Uganda.
Most of our learning will take place simply by reading selections from these great books aloud, through discussion together, and through using a few simply writing and craft activities to reinforce it. So far we are really enjoying this together. It really can be that simple! And really at this age, it probably needs to be.
Here are a couple of the suggested activities from the prayer journal e-book (well worth purchasing this super resource – then you can also read the text that relates to the activities):
- Write a thank you card to Dad for providing for us
- Volunteer at the local soup kitchen
- Interview a foster care worker
- Follow a 30-day calender and pray for the need listed on each day
- Read about the life of Paul
- Write to a missionary
I hope there’s something here that inspires you to do something similar in your learning at home to grow your child’s awareness, and stir their hearts to make a difference.
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