Over the years, our family has often enjoyed digging into history using an activity-based unit study approach. Our boys have remembered so much more history when we reinforce those lessons with crafty, hands-on
messes history projects. Because we didn’t complete these while we were reading through The Story of the World (as I had originally intended), we’re using this unit study to review 14 world empires from ancient times to the 20th century as we wrap up our study of world history this year. If you’re searching for a fairly quick overview of world history that includes hands-on activities, this is definitely something you’ll want to check out!
This Great Empires Unit Study from Homeschool in the Woods includes dozens of projects, games, recipes, reading recommendations, and history summaries for fourteen world empires. Each empire takes about 1-3 days to complete (or longer if you want to explore literature recommendations). Thus far, we’ve reviewed…
…Ancient Egypt and Ancient Greece
The projects for Ancient Egypt and Greece include making a cartouche using hieroglyphs, painting Greek pottery, and designing a Greek shield. Each lesson features a map study and recipes (Egyptian Fig Cookies and Lemon & Garlic Potato Salad for Egypt, and Hummus and Spanikopita for Greece).
After reading through the historical summary of Ancient Rome, we completed the projects which include People of Impact cards and painting a fresco. The recipes include a frittata and panettone.
The Ancient China overview includes a small foldable booklet on the history of Ancient China which features The Great Wall, the Terracotta Army, and the Qin Dynasty. Recipes are provided for Egg Drop Soup and Spring Rolls.
…The Arab-Muslim Empire
For this empire, we made a notebooking foldable featuring influences of the Arab-Muslim Empire. Arabian recipes include Jalik (Cucumber Soup) and Tabouleh (Cracked Wheat Salad).
…and The English Empire
The final empire we’ve completed thus far is the English Empire which includes an overview of Who’s Who in English History. Even after finishing this project, it continues to be a great review of the major people and events in Britain through the Middle Ages. Recipes include Traditional Scones and Bubble-and-Squeak.
Remaining empires for us to review include:
- Mongolian Empire
- Viking Empire
- Spanish Empire
- French Empire
- German Empire
- Japanese Empire
- Russian Empire
- The United States of America
Some of the projects we still look forward to completing are Viking coins, a guillotine for the French Revolution, Matryoshka Dolls, Japanese Kirigami, and the Yankee Doodle “Dandyland” game (not to mention all the cultural recipes and mapping projects which our boys always seem to enjoy!).
One of our favorite pieces of all of our Homeschool in the Woods project excursions has been the Timeline:
This one provides a fantastically concise way to view the major world empires over the course of world history.
TheGreat Empires Activity Study includes a text overview of each empire,
printable project masters for each project,
and detailed project instructions for each activity with printing and assembly instructions.
The project pages also include mapping projects, recipes, game ideas, Internet links, and a list of additional recommended reading to provide a more in-depth study.
Recommended for elementary through middle school, The Great Empires Activity Study is available as a digital download from our friends at Homeschool in the Woods, and teacher and school licenses are also available.
If you’re interested in more hands-on learning projects, be sure to check out:
- History through the Ages Timeline Notebook
- Project Passport Unit Studies (Ancient, Medieval, Renaissance & Reformation)
- U.S. History Time Travelers Unit Studies
- History of the Holidays
- Classical Music & Orchestra Study
- Old Testament Hands-on History
- New Testament Hands-On History
Questions? Just hop down to the comments and ask away!