Homeschool Helper: History Odyssey (Pandia Press)

Alex loves history.  He chooses history books for his bedtime stories and when it is his time to pick a show on Netflix he often chooses a historical documentary.   His interest began with the big bang.  He is very curious about the chronological order of  our world.   His younger sister Ava is following his interest as well.  I have always tried to piece together our learning topics by hand (AKA for free) but their insatiable interest in history and my lack of time to put together my own learning path led me to purchase History Odyssey.History Odyssey By Pandia Press Review:  Earth Mama's World

I have never been a fan of purchasing boxed curriculum’s.  I enjoy the freedom to customize my children’s learning to their individual interests.  When a friend mentioned History Odyssey began to research it and quickly became very interested.

History Odyssey is not a boxed curriculum, it is more of a lesson plan…a very awesome lesson plan.  It is a secular story of mankind through a study of literature, historical events, and geography.  When learning history using  History Odyssey you use many different reading resources not just one standard textbook.   I enjoy that History Odyssey is studied through the reading of many books.  It teaches a world view and allows the opportunity to discover different cultures and how they interact.  History Odyssey makes it so much easier on me in regards to planning our history learning.  It coordinates resources and lesson planning.  I choose the activities that I think that my children will enjoy then prepare them for the week.  I look through the list of additional reading resources provided in each lesson and place the books that we will read on hold at the library.  History Odyssey makes organizing our history learning so much easier.

History Odyssey also provides many hands on activity ideas that my kids love!  Ava built a ziggurat out of sugar cubes and Alex created one out of boxes and clay.   This is Alex’s ziggurat prior to painting:
History Odyssey By Pandia Press Review:  Earth Mama's World

We organize all of the fun learning activities in a history notebook.  Alex is very proud of this notebook and shows it off to whoever shows the slightest interest in what he is learning (much like his lapbooks!).  This notebook is also great to use in our annual homeschool evaluation.

A look into Alex’s history notebook:
History Odyssey By Pandia Press Review:  Earth Mama's World

Another thing that I really like about History Odyssey is that it makes it very easy for my children who are different ages and on different reading levels to learn about the same subject matter.  History Odyssey is very compatible with the Classical style of homeschooling.  History is broken down into four periods that are repeated later on a more complex level of learning.

The four time periods covered by History Odyssey are:

  • Ancients  6000 BC to AD 500  (grades 1, 5, 9)
  • Middle Ages  500 to 1600 (grades 2, 6, 10)
  • Early Modern  1600-1850 (grades 3, 7, 11)
  • Modern Times  1850-present  (grades 4, 8, 12)

The three levels of History Odyssey are:

  • Level 1 (grades 1-4):  Tells history as an exciting story.  It involves many hands on learning activities including crafts, art, cooking, and coloring.  We are currently using level one Ancients.  Alex is enjoying putting together his history notebook.
  •  Level 2 (grades 5-8):   This level guides students to learn information organization, literary analysis, research skills, and writing skills through reading some of the greatest historical literature for each time period.   (via Pandia Press)
  • Level 3 (grades 9-12):  Level 3 guides students in tackling rewarding literature, writing persuasive arguments, forming a thesis, and creating research papers. Level three study guides contain numerous writing and research assignments and prepare students for college entrance.  (via Pandia Press)

History Odyssey is certainly working well for us right now.  I also think that it will continue to be a good fit for our family.   Alex and Ava will be able to work on the same level and when Audrey is ready to tackle history she will be starting level one Ancients while the other two begin level two Ancients.  We will all be learning the same topic which is how I have always envisioned our home learning!

Pandia Press is so wonderful they offer a free try before you buy option.  They offer you the beginning portion of the text that you are interested in PDF format.  The try before you buy is not just the table of contents and introduction it actually includes several lessons so that you can try it out with your children to make sure it is a good fit.

To read more about History Odyssey please click here.  To view the try before you buy page please click here.

To read more about our homeschool please click here.

If you enjoyed this you may also enjoy Homeschool Helper:  Daily Learning Drawers

or  Learning About Planets:  Fun & Free Activities

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