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How to Keep Your Children Entertained for Six Weeks Using The Story of the World

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Melissa Moore
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Not sure how to entertain your children for weeks on end without plopping them in front of Disney+ for eight hours straight while you attempt, for the third time this week, to. just. take. a. S H O W E R?

We’re here to help.

The Story of the World , our perennially best-selling elementary-level* history text, is filled with amazing stories from, well, around the world. And we’ve put together a list of the best-of-the-best chapters for you to read along with your children (or have them read, or have Jim Weiss read to them while you finally take that shower). Then, we’ve listed the top activities that correspond with these chapters so your children can continue learning without even knowing they’re learning because they’re too busy delighting in making Turkish delight, conquering Europe, and mummifying chickens. Our Activity Books also include map exercises, games, reading lists, and (in most cases) coloring pages.

If you don’t already have our Story of the World texts and Activity Books, they’re available on our store (you can even buy them as PDFs!). We’ve also listed the ISBNs for the paperback versions of each title in case you want to shop elsewhere.
*Do you have middle-schoolers at home? No worries! They’ll still enjoy reading The Story of the World ; the reading level increases across the four volumes. And the joys of mummifying a chicken are ageless.

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Melissa Moore

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Discussion

10 thoughts on “How to Keep Your Children Entertained for Six Weeks Using The Story of the World”

  1. Hi, I hope you all are keeping well
    I wanted to know at what age do you recommend to start reading this set of books. I have a 6 year old son and 5 year old daughter and have the collection at home but was just wandering when the right time was to start?

    Reply
    • We are well, thank you! Each volume increases slightly in complexity and vocabulary level. So Volume 1 is a good “read-aloud” book for children that age. Volume 2 is a good read aloud for 6/7/8-year-olds. So we’d recommend starting with Volume 1 this year.

      Reply
  2. My daughter is 8 and should be entering the 3rd grade for the 2020/21 school year – we have chosen to homeschool
    Her love for learning has been reignited since she is not at school – I know school was doing nothing in terms of the history curriculum you talk about in your book. Should I be starting with vol.1 /2/or 3? She is currently reading little women and has a more advanced vocabulary- but I see your point of starting at the beginning of the time line – where should I start? And can I order through you? I would prefer not to support amazon if I dont have to..ugh!! Thank you

    Reply
    • You can certainly order the Story of the World books from us! They’re all at https://welltrainedmind.com/c/history-geography/ For this situation, we’d suggest starting with Volume 2, since the vocabulary/content is slightly more advanced in that volume than in Volume 1, and it sounds like she’s ready for it. We are so glad that her love for learning has been reignited!

      Reply
  3. Hello! I have recently purchased the story of the Workd for my 6th grade daughter. She loves it, but I am wondering if I purchased the wrong volume for her age. Which one did you recommend for 6th grade?

    Thank you,
    Katie Palmer

    Reply
    • When giving the books to students to read themselves (as opposed to having them read aloud), we generally start 4th or 5th graders with volume 1 and move on from there. But if she’s enjoying the books, there’s no rush to move on to the next volume.

      Reply
  4. Hello and thank you for answering our questions here. I have pulled my kiddos from public school and have a K, 2nd, and 6th grader. Should I start at Vol. 1 with all three, as a read aloud, and simply have my middle schooler do more complex activities in the activity book? The other idea I had was to start my kiddos on Vol. 1 next year and I’ll read aloud to my then 1st and 3rd grader, and I’ll have my daughter (6th grader) start now on Vol. 1 reading this independently. Do you have a recommendation on how to manage multiple spread apart ages? And at this rate, if we start my daughter on vol. 1 now and take 4 years to complete the series (1 vol. per year), so she’ll be in 9th grade upon completing them, will it not be challenging enough for her by then? Thanks so much for your help! I’m so overwhelmed!

    Reply
    • Don’t be overwhelmed! There’s so much information when you start homeschooling, but everything gets easier as you actually dive in and find your rhythm.

      The Activity Book has multi-level teaching tips so that every volume is extendable to middle school, but I would plan on something different for high school (we do have the History of the World series for high school; it currently goes through the Renaissance).

      Because the age spread is so wide, I don’t think you would save much time or effort by having all three of them in the same volume; the activities and additional reading will be so different. Combine the younger two for sure, then figure out a plan for the 6th-grader. If you would like her to have a complete four-year rotation before high school, I think that’s very doable. Remember that a middle schooler will be able to read a chapter, do the mapwork, and answer review questions quite quickly. If outlining is a new skill, that may take longer at first, but you’re still looking at just a couple of days for the basics. Activities and additional reading will be the biggest chunk of time.

      You can either divide the typical number of school weeks by the number of chapters and allocate the same amount of time to each chapter, or choose certain chapters to do the basics and certain chapters to cover in more depth. Choosing chapters lets you give more time to topics of greater interest, and also makes the additional reading a bit easier to fit in, but either way can work. It’s really a matter of preference (and I’d let a 6th-grader have some input on this).

      If you have additional questions or need clarification, please feel free to email us at [email protected].

      Reply
  5. Hello! We have done Beautiful Feet Books for history the past two years, and we loved it, but I wanted to try a different approach for variety and to keep it easy when our new baby arrives and my husband picks-up the schooling for a bit during paternity leave. Our kids are 9, 6, 6 and 4. We have 25 weeks of school scheduled for this year, and we will be doing The Story of the World Book Two: The Middle Ages, which of course is 42 chapters long. We also have the Activity Book and coloring books for each of the kids. I know everything is “pick and choose” — we could pick one activity per chapter that appeals to us, for example. But, I still don’t see how we would finish the book in one school year, especially if we take the advice to spend time on chapters/subjects that really interest the kids and dig in deeper, rather than trying to push through. It almost seems like 1.5 years’ worth of material, even if we omitted many of the activities. Can you explain the intended pacing a little bit? Even at a standard 26-week school year, we’d never make it unless we doubled up on chapters about every other week. Thank you!

    Reply
    • Hi Heather,

      There are two main ways you can handle having more chapters than weeks of school. You can take the number of days in school and divide it by the number of chapters, and allocate an equal amount of time for each one. For a standard American school year of 180 days, that would be 4 days per chapter, with 12 days left over for extra reading or projects. Or, you can choose a certain number of chapters to just read, so that you have a longer amount of time to spend on favorite topics. That’s probably the most common way.

      Of course, some people do wind up spending more than a year on a book, and that’s fine as well! If you start with a first grader and spend an average of 1.5 years per book, you would finish the four volumes by the end of sixth grade.

      Enjoy your journey!

      Reply

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