Now that we are done with the Civil War era (will back post on books and links this winter when I have a bit more downtime at home – but notice how I finally updated the book bar on the side!) we will be moving on to the Pioneer era. And what better way to do this then through the Little House on the Prairie book series? In fact, I know of very little who don’t love this series. I remember watching the TV series as a small girl and falling in love with this time period. I can’t wait to share this with my children and let it become a memory of their’s as well. We will be studying the period lazily over the winter. By lazily I mean taking our time, delving deep, letting the books speak and guide our direction and interests. I have no idea how long it will take us.
We will be continuing our use of lapbooks with this study. We have found, through a bit of dabbling in it this year, that the kids respond to my choice of books better and remember the information better if they have this to look forward to after the readings. Lily loves lapbooks because it is much like scrapbooking our history information. Gabe loves it because it frees him of the burden of narrations. I have narrowed narrations down to one main narration per time period that they will stick in their lapbook/scrapbook and it will be based on a book of their choice to read from that time period. I know this isn’t quite the Charlotte Mason way but it still fits and I have to do what is right for my family as God whispered to a dear church friend who wrote it to me in an encouraging note. This worked so well while studying the Civil War and Gabe ended up doing a lovely narration effortlessly when allowed to choose what he thought was an exciting book, not what I thought.
Luckily, Homeschool Share has a free lapbook for each of the original Little House series beautifully made by Heather L. This is the main site I used to download pdf files for our use. I have fallen in love with this site! I encourage every homeschooling mother to go there and poke around.
First of all, here are the living books we will be using:
The Little House on the Prairie Book Series by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Little House in the Big Woods (perfect now that we have a forest in our backyard!)
We will also read all of the My First Little House Picture Books concentrating on the winter ones first since we are in that season.
And read a living biography on Laura Ingalls Wilder
As spines alongside our literature study we will use If You Were a Pioneer on the Prairie
and Look Inside a Log Cabin by Mari Schuh
These three books will be great sources of information for making the lapbooks and answering questions about the time period. And to delve into the science of the period we will be, obviously, studying prairie grassland habitats through these books:
One Day in the Prairie by Jean Craighead George
A Tallgrass Prairie Alphabet by Claudia McGehee
Prairie Food Chains by Kelley MacAulay
and America’s Prairies and Grasslands Guide to Plant and Animals by Marianne D. Wallace
And for activities to supplement or add to the study:
- Lapbook for Little House in the Big Woods
- Additional Lapbook Templates for Little House in the Big Woods
- Watching the DVD series of Little House on the Prairie
- Cooking from The Little House Cookbook
- Crafting from the My Little House Sewing Book
- Listening to Pa’s Fiddle on Happy Land: Musical Tributes to Laura Wilder audio CD
- Maybe learning some songs from The Laura Ingalls Wilder Songbook