Learning about our home state, Florida, had been in my wish-list for a while. So I was delighted to come across the Chronicles of … A State History Notebook from Hewitt Homeschooling, designed specifically for this purpose. I was given this notebook for free, in exchange for my thorough and honest review.
What We Received
We received the Chronicles of … A State History Notebook really fast, via Priority Mail. The notebook was extremely well packaged and protected. There was a letter addressed to me, in Hewitt Homeschooling’s letterhead, thanking me for taking the time, out of my busy homeschooling-mom schedule, to review their product, and offering their assistance. Such a neat detail! It showed a great deal of their thoughtfulness, and I do appreciate that!
What to Expect with Your State History Chronicles Notebook
The Chronicles of … A State History Notebook, is intended for children in grades 3 – 8. It’s basically a regular, white binder with 100 notebooking pages of fine quality paper, that are to be completed by the child. They are organized by themes, covering pretty much everything there is to know about a particular state. Here’s a break down:
- Facts, Symbols, Emblems
State flag, state seal, license plate, state tree, state flower, state bird, state animal, state stone, state song and state capital
- Geographic Population
State outline, my & other states, counties, statistics, population, natural resource map, forests, wildlife, water, climate map, temperature line graph, relief map, state route map, letter to a friend
- Industries, Jobs
Main industries, other industry, major industry flow chart, tourism, points of interest map, transportation
- History, Government
Early historical events, history of my local area, historical sites and descriptions, indian tribes, famous people (past), important people (present), interview of an elderly person, interview of a new resident of my state, inmigration from foreign countries, state government, governors, natural disasters, religious history, state newsletter, news articles, historical play/skit, time line
- Miscellaneous, Field Trips, Photographs
Well known places, events, other important cities, current events, newspapers, newspaper clippings, copies of letters written for information, foods, my favorite place, field trip to the capital city, field trip to a historical site, field trip to a nature site, field trip to a museum, field trip to ___, my poem about my state, special report, photograph album, resources used
- Certificate of completion
Suggestions of additional projects appear amongst the introductory pages as well:
- make a travel brochure for your state
- read works of famous authors, including poets, from your state
- find “now and then” comparison pictures of towns, cities, farming methods, tools, fashions, and buildings
- role play an event in state history
- and so many more
How We Used Our Notebook
While it makes total sense to start at the beginning, you certainly can open up to any page and start there. Since this is a collection of notebooking pages, each page could be completed almost independently from one another. Of course they are all grouped in coherent themes, as mentioned above, but there is a lot of flexibility in how you would like to approach each of them.
Super hero did start with the first section: Facts, Symbols, Emblems. He drew and described Florida’s flag, seal, license plate, tree, bird and stone. He glued on images of Florida’s outline, and gathered information on counties, population, and other statistics.
A neat collection of ideas that spark interest and creativity is this notebook’s biggest benefit. Super Hero was inspired to plan a trip to our state capital, Tallahassee, and of course, the most historic of all cities, not just here in Florida, but in the entire United States, for being the oldest in the country: St. Augustine. Interviewing an elderly person born in Florida sounds fascinating as well, especially considering Miami is so full of new comers (relatively and not-so-relatively), that meeting old people born and raised here is special.
In short, Hewitt’s notebook is full of fun ideas!
Our Opinion about the Notebook
We both enjoyed this notebook quite well. It was engaging and instructive. Super Hero can pretty much open any page, research the topic at hand, and fill it with as much or as little information as desired. It allows for creativity too, just as noted in Hewitt’s description. Super Hero’s free to do his own drawings, take photographs, or get clippings from the paper or magazines, or yes, google it, print it and glue it on.
The fact that it comes in a binder is also a big plus. He can add any pages anywhere if he wants to. He already added a map of Florida from Highlights Magazine, that ties in perfectly well with many of the topics already suggested, and then some more complementary ones.
As we progress, we will surely add other things like post cards, brochures or other items about Florida that Super Hero may deem appropriate. With such a plethora of learning pages, ideas and suggestions, this can totally be on-going learning experience, where everyone in the family can participate!
I also really like that this notebook is completely secular. I especially appreciate this since Hewitt Homeschooling is actually a Christian company, and I believe, most of their products have a Christian slant to them. So, if you are secular homeschoolers, like us, then this notebook would be a good fit.
In a Nutshell
If you’re looking to learn more about your home state, or really, any state, I have no doubts recommending the Chronicles of … State History Notebook. It contains pretty much everything you need to launch your own learning journey at your own family’s pace, and at your own terms. If so, you can purchase Hewitt’s notebook for $19.95
Want to Learn More?
Feel free to read more reviews and experiences with Hewitt Homeschooling by my fellow Crew members. Or visit Hewitt Homeschooling at their website or social media accounts:
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Hewitt Blog: http://hewitthomeschoolingresources.blogspot.com/