Everyone has their favorite holiday that they look forward to each year, right? Have you ever wondered about how these holidays actually came to be? I mean it is not as if the White House has declared National Hotdog Day to be a day off from work or school. Although it would be pretty cool if they did. Our family recently had the opportunity to dive into some unit studies by Silverdale Press LLC called White House Holidays Unit Studies. Here is what we found…
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A Little About Silverdale Press LLC
Silverdale Press LLC strives to produce quality English and social studies homeschool curriculums for the whole family. There are two curriculum choices for parents to choose from. These include the social studies unit studies (White House Holidays and Presidential Election) geared for K-12 and the 36 week English curriculum, Persuasive Writing & Classical Rhetoric: Practicing the Habits of Great Writers, which is geared specifically to high school.
The English curriculum works to develop a student’s writing ability. It uses great literature to guide the student in their writing. Our family did not spend time with this curriculum, but other Review Crew families did. If you would like to learn more about it, there is a link below to see those reviews. Our family worked with the White House Holidays Unit Studies, and most specifically the Veteran’s Day study. Our son really enjoyed learning about Veteran’s Day as both his dad and grandpa are veterans.
A Little About the White House Holidays Unit Studies
Each White House Holiday Unit Study takes students on an in depth learning journey through a particular White House holiday. There are six White House holidays including:
- Martin Luther King Day
- Valentine’s Day
- Labor Day
- Veterans Day
All of the unit studies are family oriented which means that if you have multiple students all at different grade levels, one study would work for the whole family. These are designed for school age students. However, the younger students may find some of the activities fun and it is possible that you could modify the curriculum for an older preschooler. Our son just finished sixth grade and will move on to seventh in the fall, so we had him complete the entire curriculum for one study. He seemed to fall right in the middle with some of the K-6 grade materials being too easy and some of the 7-12 being a little bit challenging.
How We Used The Studies
Since we started these unit studies right around Memorial Day, we decided to try the Veteran’s Day study as it seemed to be the most closely related. We worked through the study over the course of a week, even though you could realistically do this in a day. We wanted to go a little deeper with this, and we ended up spending a couple of hours on the lessons each day. My son liked the activities that went with the study, so we tried to do most of them. My kids are hands-on learners and typically will spend lots of time when they have suggested activities.
A few of my son’s favorite activities were making a Poppy Pin and planting Poppy flowers in our yard. The study covers Armistice Day and how this actually became Veteran’s Day. The history behind this is actually pretty interesting.
We found it to be pretty cool that the American public felt as if they were fighting right beside the soldiers of World War I even though they were still at home. Posters in grocery stores encouraged the everyday citizen to make sacrifices in their normal diet, so there would be more food for the soldiers. It was fun to look at these posters and try and figure out who they were targeting and why.
Former President Dwight D. Eisenhower had a very large part in the creation of Veteran’s Day as well. He made a list of three things that the American people can do to help celebrate this day and bring honor to our veterans. Many of us still do these things today.
One of the other suggested activities was to actually speak to a veteran. This was not very difficult for our family, and it brought up some interesting dinner conversations.
Our Family’s Thoughts
Seth (age 12)
“I really liked the photographs they included, as they were from the different times in history. This helped me visualize things better. I liked the activities, because they helped me retain the information that I learned. The last thing that I liked was that it had two levels for two different grade groups. This was helpful because the 7-12 grades dived much deeper. The K-6 grades had more fun activities. I wished they could have changed the way they had the grade groups. They were both in the same packet, and sometimes I got lost with which thing I was doing. I would have liked two packets instead. Otherwise I really liked the study, and want to do the others.”
“The unit studies are a great way to learn about the holidays more fully. I think they provide a nice break from the typical curriculum the kids are doing every day. Each packet has a guide for parents to guide the lessons which is something I really liked. I need the step-by-step walk through of what do be doing for each lesson. The activities used things from around the house, which was nice. Overall, we really enjoyed the study.”
Review Crew Thoughts
You don’t have to take our word for it though. There are lots of Review Crew families who have been working hard to bring you a great review as well. I highly recommend that you check them out. You can do that by clicking the link below.