History Studies Versus Á La Carte Projects

Posted by The Home School in the Woods Team on

Over the years, Home School in the Woods has created history-focused timelines, maps, lapbooks, notebooking pages, and other projects. These cover a variety of historical topics, including American history, world history, Bible history, and more. 

Needless to say, at this point, we’ve got a lot of stuff out there.

The very fact that we can finally offer so many different products and history study materials, though, can make picking from the options a little bit overwhelming — and the last thing we want is for you to purchase yet another piece of curriculum that you’re never going to actually get around to using — yes, we see that pile of products in their shrink wrap over in the corner. In fact, we’ve got a couple of piles like them, too...

With that said, we’ve created this post in order to explain one of the most significant distinctions amongst all of our products: 

What is the difference between our history studies and our á la carte projects?

The information below will help you make an informed decision about what each of these is and which one will help you the most. Let’s break it down, shall we?

What Is a Home School in the Woods History Study?

Our history studies are jam-packed with all sorts of hands-on goodies that all come in one big, shiny package.

Each history study typically comes with a twenty-five lesson plan schedule. Between eighteen and twenty-four of those lessons come with original, quality text that provides a spine for the study, while an “Additional Resources” section provides further recommendations for living books, nonfiction books, audio, and video resources.

This plethora of information makes each history study a complete stand-alone educational product.

However, even if you already have a history curriculum spine text, they still make a spectacular addition to your existing history study guide as a supplement filled with fun activities, ideas, and project templates.

Each Home School in the Woods history study comes brimming with various project ideas, as well as detailed pictures, written instructions, and hundreds of printable masters.

Here is a list of some of the projects that tend to show up in each study:

Between the text and the project instructions and masters, each history study is fully equipped to keep you and your kids engaged, entertained, and learning in new and exciting ways each day.

A History Study contains

Before we move on to the á la carte projects, let’s briefly break down the two major kinds of history studies that Home School in the Woods offers.

Time Travelers U.S. History Studies

Our Time Travelers U.S. History Studies collection consists of seven different studies that take you through American and U.S. history starting back at the earliest explorers (think Brendan the Navigator and Leif Erikson) and proceeding step-by-step through to the mid-20th century. You can see them in chronological order below:

You can learn more about the series in the video below or by reading this post on What is a Time Traveler?

Project Passport World History Studies

Our Project Passport World History Studies are similar to the Time Travelers series, but with a focus on world history. 

The five Project Passport studies start at Ancient Egypt and work their way up to the end of the Reformation. Once again, in chronological order, they are as follows: 

You can see our Project Passports broken down in further detail in the video below:

And there you have it. Our history studies, broken down by subject. Each one is a huge bundle of jam-packed fun! 

What Are Home School in the Woods’ Á La Carte Projects?

Over the years, our history studies have remained very popular. The truth is, though, on a regular basis, we would have people ask us if they could purchase one piece of a lapbook, a mini-timeline on a single era, an individual 3-D project from a larger history study, and so on.

Hence, the concept of the “á la carte project” was born. 

An á la carte project is typically an individual project or small group of individual projects, most of which are also generally found inside of larger history studies. 

In other words, if you’re looking for a big bank of projects on a single subject, you’ll want to head over to the Time Travelers or Project Passports. But what if all you need is a project on, say, Martin Luther? Rather than getting the entire Renaissance and Reformation study, you could just nab the á la carte project specifically about the famous German Reformer and call it a day. 

You may not always find what you’re looking for — although our á la carte menu is substantial at this point, it doesn’t have everything yet — but it’s worth taking a peek if you’re in search of a specific person, place, or event. And the content will be added to in the future.

Here are a few of the categories that á la cartes cover at this point:

Before we go any further, we should make one more thing clear.

The majority of the á la carte projects come directly out of larger Home School in the Woods products. 

This is because the entire á la carte concept is to offer you bite-size versions of those resources. 

If a project does appear in a larger study, it is clearly stated in the description so that you don’t go and purchase it twice by accident. With that said, though, there are also several á la carte projects that are unique in and of themselves. For instance, The War to End All Wars File Folder Game and the Science, Invention, and Mathematicians Timeline aren’t found in any other products. The á la carte menu has provided an excellent opportunity to add in random projects we have developed for a variety of reasons, making them available on a regular basis. ...and we’re still adding to it!

A La Carte Projects

Before we go, let’s take one final look at when each of these options should be chosen.


Choices, Choices

The question that still remains, though, is what should you get? Should you get a history study or a handful of á la carte projects?

In general, we break it down this way. If you’re looking for a one-off project, or you want to tailor a handful of projects to your specific needs, by all means, pick out a few á la carte items and have fun with it. 

However, if you’re not sure what projects you’re looking for, or you want to get hands-on with your studies on a regular basis — and possibly even add a core curriculum and text, to boot — you probably want to consider getting the full history studies. 

The big motivating factor? The price. 

We’ve priced the á la cartes very affordably, but nothing beats the history studies for overall bulk value. Each Project Passport, for instance, has over fifty projects ...for $33.95. That’s less than a dollar apiece (and this isn’t even including the dozens of text pages that come with each study!) and all reproducible within a family. If you’re looking for inspiration, options, and variety, history studies are the way to go.


Teaching History Hands-On

Whatever option you choose, either history study or individual projects, we hope and pray that you’ll find success as you go about using the activities to teach your students. While reading has its place, the ability to spice up your studies with hands-on history projects takes a relatively dull subject and turns it into one of the most exciting parts of the school day.

So what are you waiting for? Pick out your products and start making some plans!

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