How to Make History Notebooks

I love what we are doing for history this year, and I think it's versatile enough to use for all of the elementary years.

We have our Classical Conversations for our spine of memory work, and that is what we are basing our notebook off of this year. With that in mind, we started the notebook to record our history studies. Our notebooks are basically a collection of pictures, maps, copywork, notes, and a timeline for our history sentences. And this is where it can be very versatile. Gideon can't do much writing yet, so usually I help him fill in his timeline and that's it for writing for him. Eowyn fills in her own timeline, and I usually have her copy a quote or note about the event. Every year that we do this, I will add to their writing work in the notebook, so that by 6th grade they will be writing history papers.
I can add anything I like really. I usually print off a couple of coloring pages so that they can color, cut, and glue. Nothing too involved though, I want this to be as independent as possible. I have them draw maps free hand in the notebooks. And if there is something interesting in one of our library books for the week, they will copy that. Lots of our studies this year are about proclamations, declarations, and doctrines so I print off a small copy of those for the kids to add to their books.
history notebook
This isn't necessary for the classical method or for CC, but it is fun, and it gives the kids some creative exercises. Plus, it contains all of the papers we accumulate into one book. If they want to do a presentation at CC on the history studies, they can just bring their notebook to show their work.

I bought the notebook at Hobby Lobby; it was the cheapest I could find. I do wish I'd spent a little more on some thicker paper, because of the amount of glue the kids use. But it's worked fine other than that. I'll just know better for next year.
history notebook
The kids really love their notebooks too, and have taken ownership of them which is nice.
history notebook
Our CC history sentences, library books, and our notebooks round out our history curriculum. For our overview of all history, we are memorizing our CC timeline and listening to Mystery of History audio books. Those books flow along nicely with the timeline.

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  1. Jennifer...Those are so precious. I just love what you are doing and how you are doing it. They're almost like lapbooks but better. It's so neat to see other ideas from homeschoolers. Thank you for sharing at Monday's Musings. Have a great week.

    1. Thanks Naomi, I love these books too. It's something I can keep without a lot of fuss, since it's all contained in the book. It'll be fun to look back on their notebooks once they get older.Thank you for reading and commenting, it makes my day!

  2. I love these history notebooks. Very cool.

  3. Such a good idea and I can think of just the notebook with thick paper at Walmart. Blessings to you this week. Visiting from Abundant Life. Your children did an excellent job.


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