Recently we received a fascinating fun digital unit study to review from Homeschool Legacy for the Homeschool Review Crew: Cooking Up History with the Founding Presidents. We’ve used curricula from Homeschool Legacy before and enjoyed it thoroughly. This time was no exception, as we were introduced to this new curriculum from their Once-a-Week Micro-Studies collection!
What is Homeschool Legacy?
Homeschool Legacy is an incredible company which produces homeschool curricula in the form of unit studies. These can be Once-a-Week Unit Studies or Once-a-Week Micro-Studies, depending on their length. They take homeschoolers through fascinating subject matter all on one topic through reading, writing, creating art, or fun activities both indoor and outdoor. Both American Heritage Girls and Boy Scouts can use these programs for badge earning, as well. And Homeschool Legacy desires to do all this to the glory of God–which is a lovely perspective and worldview to write from! Author Sharon Gibson creates enjoyable and fascinating accounts of history, science, holidays, and other subjects which homeschoolers will love learning about.
What is Cooking Up History with the Founding Presidents?
Cooking Up History with the Founding Presidents is one of Homeschool Legacy’s Once-a-Week Micro-Studies. This means that it is a condensed form of a unit study that you can do (in this case), once weekly for a month to complete the curriculum. Generally, Homeschool Legacy recommends that this study be formatted in three 30-minute assignments which will include reading the study itself, checking out recommended links on the Internet with more history on the presidents, using additional picture or chapter books, and cooking. It is designed to be used by students in grades 1-8.
So whom will your children meet and get to know more fully in this study?
- George and Martha Washington
- John and Abigail Adams
- Thomas Jefferson
- James and Dolley Madison
Each of the four sections starts with basic history about each president, such as birth and death dates, occupation/college attended/religion/political party, and when each one served as president. Links to each president’s favorite recipe, coloring pages, and facts about their accomplishments or struggles are included. (As always, I recommend that parents and children visit these links together, just because the Internet can change in a heartbeat!) There are also links to history videos which children will always love watching (talk about painless learning!). Sharon Gibson also has sections on First Ladies, where we get to meet Martha, Abigail, and Dolley (but not on Jefferson’s First Lady, as he was a widower). We also learn about language (changes in it during this time, plus what was added during the various presidencies) and get to read or hear pivotal speeches given by these men. There are also recommended biographies you can read to your children (or for yourself) to learn more about these famous couples and leaders.
How we used it
We were sent a link to Cooking Up History with the Founding Presidents and saved it in two places; first, on our computer, which enabled us to print the curriculum ourselves; and second, to my Kindle Fire. The Kindle Fire document of the study worked well for me as the teacher; I could pull it up easily to prepare lessons or for our read-alouds. However, the Internet links included with the study didn’t work on my Kindle, and we had to link to the various history sites and the recipes via our computer. We used most of the materials online, but I did print the recipes just because I like having those with us in the kitchen when we cook.
We enjoy working on history lessons together. So for each president, I read aloud from the study’s text. We visited websites to learn more, and dipped into other presidential biographies to deepen our understanding. These were all great learning activities. But I must admit that cooking together, and eating the results of our kitchen “labor,” were the most fun of all! We made Abigail Adams’ apple pandowdy (which, I admit, I had to do more research on before I understood the whole plan for the pie crust); Jefferson’s macaroni & cheese; and Washington’s cherry pie. (Sadly, we didn’t make either Dolley Madison’s oyster-flavored ice cream (ick!) or Jefferson’s vanilla ice cream. We don’t have an ice cream machine. But we did enjoy vanilla ice cream with our other desserts!)
I am always delighted with Homeschool Legacy products, and this time was no exception. We are studying American history currently, so a micro-study on four of America’s Founding Fathers, and their lives (and favorite dishes) was truly enjoyable. And adding to what we learned from the study and from books with cooking together was a delight! This provided a rich and incredible learning experience to our regular history textbooks. It really made those early days of America come alive!
This is one of the hallmarks, to me, of Homeschool Legacy and their unit studies. Learning should not be dull and boring, yet the way some textbooks or materials present it, it can be a snore-worthy experience. That is never the case with Homeschool Legacy, though. Their unit studies are bright, lively, full of great information presented in both a user-friendly and interesting way. We’ve always loved their products; and we especially loved Cooking Up History with the Founding Presidents. Fascinating and fun–plus delicious food to eat!
Definitely visit Homeschool Legacy and check out their amazing curricula! Other Crew members reviewed a variety of products from Homeschool Legacy, including:
- Pirates or Privateers: You Decide
- Victoria and Her World
- Thanksgiving with the Pilgrims
- Many Nations
- Christmas Comes to America
Just click on the banner below, and you can visit my Crewmates’ blogs and discover what they thought about these! All of these, plus Cooking Up History with the Founding Presidents, can be purchased through those links at Homeschool Legacy.