Project Passport: The Middle Ages {A Review}

If you were to ask my girls what is their #1 favorite subject, you would almost certainly hear: “HISTORY!” For my girls, learning about people, places, and events in the past through stories and hands-on activities has been key to their love of history.While we are still working our way through the ancient world in our studies, I leapt at the opportunity to review Home School in the WoodsProject Passport World History Study of the Middle Ages.

Project Passport- The Middle Ages

{In exchange for an honest review, I received a free digital download of Project Passport World History Study of the Middle Ages.}

What is Project Passport: The Middle Ages?

Home School in the Woods Review
Project Passport: The Middle Ages is an interactive project-based curriculum, available on CD or as a download, that takes you on a trip through time. It is recommended for grades 3-8. Students create their own Passports, have their own Travel Itineraries, and pack their Luggage in preparation for their journey into the Middle Ages. Like all trips, there are stops along the way to see the sights, meet the people, participate in local events, and partake in culture and customs. The Guide Book presents information in the form of lessons.

Some of the topics you will explore on your trip to the Middle Ages include the following:

  • Vikings
  • Coat of arms
  • Knights & castles
  • Everyday medieval life
  • The feudal class structure
  • Guilds
  • Science, inventions, the arts, & education
  • Battles, invasions, & wars
  • Early church history

On this trip there are 25 stops, which you can spread over 8-12 weeks depending on your children’s interests. There are over 50 projects available to complete plus an Additional Resources page filled with books and other materials to go more in-depth, but you decide what will work best for your family. Plus, there are 7 Dramatized Audio Tours where you can “participate” in medieval events like the Battle of Hastings and a festival day.

Along the way, your students will create their own Scrapbook of Sights — a 3-ring binder that serves as a receptacle for everything you’ll do along the way including the following:

  • “The Medieval Times”: a newspaper written & illustrated by students
  • Postcards from famous people of the time
  • Notebooking pages
  • A file folder game
  • Recipes
  • A “Snapshot Moments in History” timeline
  • Souvenir craft cards
  • And so much more…

Project Passport is available in two formats: CD or download (Mac & PC Compatible).

As you can see, there’s LOTS to see and do on your journey through the Middle Ages!! There are also Project Passport World History Studies of Ancient Egypt and the Renaissance/Reformation.

Download a sample and check out the scope & sequence for details.

How We’re Using Project Passport: The Middle Ages

Homeschool in the Woods - Project Passport

History happens about 3-4 days a week during the summer term because we LOVE history. In setting up Project Passport, I first downloaded all the materials and bought all the supplies needed, including both white and colored card stock, double-sided tape, and a 2-inch binder. Then, I printed off all the materials according to the specific instructions. I let the girls color the binder and spine covers as well as do any assembling they’re able to do without me.

On the days we “go to the Middle Ages,” as my daughters call it, we take out our binder, look at the Travel Itinerary, and pick and choose the activities we do. There are so many to choose from, and they are all engaging and fun.

Reading a postcard from Charlemagne

Reading a postcard from Charlemagne

In just a few weeks, we have

  • Started a timeline
  • Created a lap book of medieval class structures
  • Written and illustrated newspaper articles for “The Medieval Times”
  • Received and illustrated postcards from famous medieval people
  • Read several books from the list of Additional Resources recommended
  • Made a few (simplified) medieval costumes
  • And, despite the young ages of my children, learned a lot more about the Middle Ages than I had ever expected!

Pros & Cons of Project Passport

Project Passport: The Middle Ages

In all honesty, my only hang-up with Project Passport is the amount of preparation needed and time required to get started. You will need to make sure you have all the necessary supplies first, and it’s imperative that you follow the specific printing instructions. That isn’t a con, just something you need to be aware of. I made the mistake of hitting “Print” first and printed nearly 50 pages off before discovering some pages needed to be printed front to back or on colored card stock. So, just be sure to read the directions first!

Despite the upfront legwork, we love that Project Passport is…

Hands-OnFor many children learning comes through doing. With Project Passport, my girls are coloring, cutting out and gluing pictures on their timeline, illustrating post cards, creating lap books, writing newspaper articles, labeling maps, and so much more. While the material is a little above their heads, exposure is what counts, and the variety and amount of hands-on activities keeps them engaged and eager to “keep going to the Middle Ages.”

Full of AMAZING Materials. This is not a cheap curriculum. It’s all very well-done, and the attention to detail is super impressive. You will not find another activity-based, in-depth history curriculum as thorough and elaborate as Home School in the Woods.

All-inclusive. While there is an Additional Resources list with books and multimedia options for further investigation, none of those things are necessary. The history lesson, maps, activities, audio tours, everything that is included far exceed what you could possibly need. You won’t have to add anything in unless you want to. That’s a huge plus for a busy mom who doesn’t have time to find additional resources.

In Conclusion

Project Passport: The Middle Ages from Home School in the Woods has put together a phenomenal hands-on history program for your older elementary/middle school-age child. Children of all learning styles will benefit from this curriculum although those who enjoy making things with their hands and being creative will probably find it most appealing. I’m sure in a few years when my girls are a little older we will pull out Project Passport: The Middle Ages and give it another go!

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