Sample Lessons

Layers of Learning is about fun, hands-on learning. The world is full of fascinating people, places, stories, and nature.  Studying them should never be boring.  Below are some our favorite sample lessons and we hope that as you browse through them, you will see our philosophy in action.  There are many more, organized by subject, in the buttons below.

The lessons are similar to what you'll find inside our Layers of Learning Curriculum.

World War One Legend of the Battle of Mons

World War One and the Battle of Mons

This post has a printable timeline of World War One to assemble as well as a hands-on 3D map to build of the first battle of World War One, the Battle of Mons. There’s a cool legend about angels protecting the British.

US state maps presentation

U.S. State Maps

This exploration is for all ages, as the colored smilies show. Color U.S. state maps to show population, practice latitude and longitude, show landscapes, or depict rainfall, plus many more …

Printable Five Page Tabbed Booklet

One thing my kids enjoy is making little books about the things we’re learning about.  I made this template to go with some Canadian geography materials and thought I’d share …

Writing Narrations

Writing narrations is a perfect way to dovetail writing in your homeschool with history, geography, science, and art. Family school is easier when you can combine some of the subjects and learn together!

Photorealism & Norman Rockwell

Have you ever seen a painting so realistic you thought it was a photograph? Learn all about photorealism and Norman Rockwell and his process of turning photographs into paintings. Then design your own Saturday Evening Post Cover on the free printable cover.

Monarchs of Canada printable matching cards

Monarchs of Canada Printable Matching Cards

Canada is a constitutional monarchy, one of the oldest monarchies in the world today.  Here we have Monarchs of Canada printable matching cards. They can help your children learn the queens …

plate tectonics worksheet

Plate Tectonics

Plate tectonics is the unifying theory of geology. It explains how the whole surface of the earth changes and why it looks the way it looks. Use printables and coloring to teach these concepts to your kids.

A Tiger and lamb lying down together

The Lamb and The Tyger

Here’s a discussion guide on “The Lamb” and “The Tyger,” poems by William Blake. You’ll also find a printable to help your kids define and express their own thoughts about the poems.

Cold War Map of the World

The Cold War was the time period from the end of WWII in 1945 to the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. You can see on this Cold War …

Around The World Feast

We celebrated our homeschool year coming to an end with an Around the World Feast this year.  My plan was to try foods from each of the seven continents and …

World War II Printable Planes and the Battle of Britain

In 1940 a few young men fought in a desperate air battle above the fields and cities of their homes and over the English Channel to keep evil from their …

Printable Biography Notebooking Pages

Use these free printable biography notebooking pages to create a biography for any person present or past. Besides the biography you can make fun pages for fictional characters from books or …

ancient Greek philosophers page

Ancient Greek Philosophers Notebooking Page

Learn about three major ancient Greek philosophers: Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle.  In this exploration we’ll give some information about each of them, about Greek philosophy in general, and about how to …

Painted Collage Art

Make your own painted collage art with a variety of colors, textures, lines, and shapes. Along the way, learn about collage art from the Byzantines, Picasso, Braque, and Eric Carle.

Teaching Kids to Write a Story

Teaching kids to write a story is about a lot more than just saying, okay let’s all write a story.  Real authors plan their plots, think about their character’s motivations, …

Quadrama

Create a quadrama and get your crafty kids invested in writing a report!

My kids' favorite way to do a quick writing practice.

Draw a Story Starters

One of the things I’ve been working on with my kids is just getting things down on paper when they are given a writing assignment.  They seem to have these …

Topographic Maps

We have been learning about elevation and topographic maps and I could tell the kids weren’t quite grasping the idea of contour lines.  They understood that the lines meant a …

Civil Rights Bus Craft

This is a printable paper craft kids can do to help them learn about the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 60s. Inside the windows of the bus and …

Presidents of the US Memory

Memorize the Presidents Printable Cards

Here are some “Memorize the Presidents Printable Cards”, with names and pictures of the Presidents of the United States in order.  Click here, Presidents of the US Memory Cards, or on …

Kids working on Book of Years

Book of Years: A Timeline of World History

The Book of Years is a timeline you research, color, and write yourself.

An illustrated fact sheet about Turkey. This method can be used to learn facts about anything, not just countries.

Illustrated Fact Sheets

An illustrated fact sheet is a good way for kids to absorb and remember facts about a topic without the commitment of writing an entire report.  Reports are good, but …

One Color Paintings

One color paintings will teach kids about monochromatic color schemes, hues, tints, shades, and the emotion that colors evoke.

oceans exploration

Ocean Currents, Ocean Floor, Ocean in a Bottle Craft, and Ocean Lapbook

Start by choosing some books to read about oceans then choose from among the printable maps and lapbook plus an ocean in a bottle craft.

Message in a Bottle Creative Writing

Assigning kids to do creative writing always seems like a good idea to adults, but it can be daunting for emergent writers.  Goodness, it can be daunting even for experienced …

homemade barometer

Homemade Thermometer and Barometer

Learn to make a homemade thermometer and homemade barometer to really understand how these weather tools work.

Idioms

Idioms are phrases that have both a literal (exact) and a figurative (understood) meaning.  They can’t be understood by evaluating the individual meaning of their parts.  For example, if I …

Ancient Rome and the Legend of the Capitoline Geese

This legend, which is at least true in the basic details, took place in 387 BC after Rome became a Republic but before it became an Empire.  We’ll tell the …

Teaching Preschoolers To Write

Teaching preschoolers to write should be fun.  There’s a lot that has to happen before they are going to be off to the races and forming letters on their own …

Northeast Woodland Tribes Research Project

The Northeast Woodland tribes lived in wigwams or longhouses, hunted and fished, and grew crops like maize, beans, and melons. Some of the tribes were very warlike and others were …

watercolor picture of kids with pop bottle ecosystems

Pop Bottle Ecosystem

Pop bottle ecosystems show how living and non-living parts of the environment interact and depend on each other.

Persuasive Writing

Persuasive writing can seem a little intimidating at first, but if you understand some basics of what to include, it can be really fun for kids to try.  Simply stated, …

Diamante Poems

A diamante is a seven lined poem that doesn’t rhyme. Diamante means “diamond” in Italian.  A diamante poem is shaped like a diamond.  The first and last lines are the shortest, …

black widow spider with egg sac

Life Cycle of a Spider

The life cycle of a spider printable with book suggestions, info on the life cycle of the black widow, and a video to watch.

Art Element: Shape

This exploration is for all ages, as the colored smilies show. You can learn about shape, one of the elements of art, with your whole family together! The shape art …

raven

How Raven Stole The Sun – A Native American Raven Legend

This free printable booklet of the legend of How Raven Stole the Sun is a perfect companion to your study of Native American myths. Your kids can illustrate it as they read the legend.

Japanese shogun's game

Japanese Shoguns Game

From about 1185 until 1603 Japan was ruled by a powerful shogun. The emperor was nothing but a figurehead. The shogun in charge was the guy with the biggest, baddest …

Readers’ Theater: A Chinese Tale of Seven Brothers

I was very privileged to go to China recently.  Our parents are living there for several years and teaching English at Nankai University in Tianjin, a city south of Beijing. …

The 6 Traits of Writing

When my kids write I never just slap a grade on what they’ve done. Instead, I give them real feedback using the 6 traits of writing: Ideas and Content Organization …

Country Fact Sheet

As we learn about places throughout the world I like my kids to keep a little country fact sheet for each place that detail what we find out.  It’s a …

Library Activities

The library is one of our happy places.  And library activities and games make it all that much more fun.  Come see some things we do at the library, but …

Learning Word Roots Activities and Printables

Our vocabulary studies center around root words because they are so valuable in understanding lots of words as you learn to spot the root meanings.  Over 60 percent of the …

child in a Christopher Columbus themed paper hat and playing with a paper spyglass

Columbus’s First Voyage Map and Craft

This exploration is for all ages of kids as the smilies below show. You can color the map of Columbus’s first voyage. Then make the Columbus hat and spyglass craft …

Hard Water Experiment

Learn about the difference between hard and soft water by mixing some of your own in this hard water experiment. Hard water just means water that has minerals in it. …

Renaissance Recipe: Small Cakes

This Renaissance recipe is from an actual book of recipes collected by a Renaissance era cook.  We tried the small cakes and we liked them very, very much.  It’s different …

Solids, Liquids, and Gases

The states of matter can be confusing.  We often show them (like when we show an ice cube, a glass of water, and then steam rising from the pot on …

Audubon’s Birds

John James Audubon was fascinated by birds.  He loved to watch them from his boyhood and, as an adult, became determined to study them and document all he learned.  He …

Canada Printable Map

Learn all about Canada and use this Canada printable map to record what you find out. Canada has lots of forests, lots of grasslands, lots of rolling hills and lots …

Heat Conduction Experiment

Heat conduction is when heat is transferred through molecular agitation without any movement of the object as a whole.  Essentially, as a molecule heats up, it moves and shakes quickly, …

Family studying rocks together

Learning About Rocks

Learn about rocks, from formation to identification, and get a printable rock cycle worksheet.

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