Studying history is always better when it involves Christmas trees, ornaments and chocolate chip cookies. So, we decided to virtually homeschool through the holidays at the White House... with chocolate!
I am always on the lookout for engaging ways to teach history. I love history. It's probably genetic since my father was a history teacher for over 30 years. Can the love of history be genetic? Well, if I have to live with his ugly feet, I guess it's good that he passed down something useful to go with them.
Anyway... I was moseying around some vendor tables the other day and came across a history unit study about White House holidays. The one that struck me as being perfect for us was on Christmas. So, of course, I got it. And then I started thinking about all the fun we could have with history, government and all wrap it neatly with a Christmas bow.
Studying history is always better when it involves #Christmas trees, ornaments and chocolate chip cookies. So, we decided to virtually #homeschool through the #holidays at the White House... with chocolate! #ihsnet
Homeschool Through The Holidays at the White House Resources
In my searching for all things White House Christmas, I found these children's books about the holidays at the White House:
- Christmas Traditions at the White House
- Holidays in the White House: First Family Traditions
- The National Christmas Tree Lighting
- The White House Historical Association Christmas Ornament Collection
- The White House in Gingerbread
And these videos:
White House Holidays Christmas Unit Study
Remember that White House Christmas unit study I mentioned earlier? Well, it is an amazing wealth of information produced by Silverdale Press.
We sat down and began our deep dive into the White House Christmas traditions with Jackie Kennedy. First Lady Kennedy started the tradition of themed Christmas trees in the White House with her Nutcracker themed tree. That led to watching some clips from the Nutcracker and the youngest demonstrating her dance to "Coffee," the Arabian dance.
We moved on to President Kennedy's speech at the 1962 Christmas tree lighting ceremony which led to a discussion of the Bay of Pigs and the role of those working outside the U.S. to keep our country safe.
Our study of a map of the White House brought up discussions about the rooms in the White House and their names. The girls loved looking at the White House ornaments over the years. Eventually, we studied more traditions in the White House and found an activity we all could agree would be perfect... baking homemade chocolate chip cookies. It seems that Hillary Clinton's award-winning chocolate chips were a hit at our house. The tween jumped right in and made them without any help from mom and I have to say they were delicious. We had so many that we decided we would eat cookies until we were sick. And, we did. I won't comment on who at the most. (sigh)
We're looking forward to delving into the next lesson in our White House Christmas Unit Study. Would you like a free sample? Silverdale Press is offering a free Christmas Unit Study to all subscribers. Just click the image below.