Exciting news! For months (years!) I have been planning a series of states unit studies. Now your students grades 3-8 will be able to study each state in the union and create a notebook along the way. And they are all FREE!
The unit studies are primarily be written as a list of resources you can use to notebook across the USA, leaving room for flexibility to adjust according to the needs of your own homeschool. There are a lot of resources listed. Please don’t ever feel that you need them all. I strive to make sure there are ample resources for different grade levels.
Many of the books and DVDs should be available at your local library. With your library card, access to the internet, and the ability to print (or create your own) notebooking pages, you’ll be well on your way to having everything you need for your family to enjoy 50 weeks of unit study learning.
I tossed around ideas for what order to write and publish these states unit studies — by region, in alphabetical order, or by order of admission into the union. I ended up doing a poll on Facebook to see what my readers would prefer and although all 3 choices received votes, by far, the majority preferred to study states by admission into the union, so that is what we will do.
This landing post serves as the home base for links to each unit study, so be sure to bookmark it. Below, you’ll find the links to each unit study so you’ll have them all in one place.
State Unit Studies
How to use the Notebooking Across the USA Unit Study series
Notebooking Across the USA assumes that your students understand where the USA is in the world. We will not be studying the country “USA” or any of the history related to the formation of the USA except when the history of an individual state leads there. If your students are not familiar with North America as a continent or that the USA is a country in North America, you’ll want to review that with them before beginning Notebooking Across the USA.
There are a few ways to use this series in your homeschool. The following suggestions should help you find the best way to enrich your own homeschool.
Use this series of states unit studies to do a year-long study of the U.S. history and geography. Studying one state per week, your student will learn about the history of each state, geographical features, state symbols, famous people, common flora and fauna, foods and recipes, and must-see sites, including national parks. Each states unit study will contain a resource list of books, websites, apps, games, puzzles, activities, and more to make the study both fun and educational. Add the 3Rs and you’ll have an entire year of study for elementary and middle school. Not in a big hurry? Spread each states unit study over a 2-week period and complete it in 2 years. There will be enough information to make each unit study as light or deep as you wish to go. And don’t forget the rabbit trails. Your kids may want to follow a few. Let them!
Study your own state and go deeper. Maybe you’re only interested in studying your own state. Utilizing the resources provided for each states unit study, you can spend from one week to one month or more learning about your state. A common year to do this is grade 4, but the resources provided can be used for grades 3-8.
Use the information in each states unit study for more specific studies. Your student can create a nature journal of USA flora and fauna, keep a notebook of famous people from the USA, take a tour of the USA via virtual field trips, or create a timeline of the USA or journal of state symbols. The possibilities are endless.
Use these states unit studies to enrich another U.S. geography or history curriculum. Adding the notebooking feature especially will add great substance to any U.S. geography curriculum you’re already using.
Recommended Resources for Every State
The following resources will be the spine for this unit study series. There will be a resource list for each states unit study as well, but the following are the recommended resources for those of you who will be using this series to Notebook Across the USA. None of these resources are set in stone. You may substitute other maps and atlases you have in your home library, however, I do recommend purchasing the USA State Study Complete Notebooking Set for the sake of convenience.
USA State Study Notebooking Bundle
The spine for the Notebooking Across the USA will be the USA State Study Notebooking Bundle from Productive Homeschooling (formerly NotebookingPagesdotcom). Each state study set includes 44 notebooking pages, including outline maps, state sympbols, nickname, and motto, template pages for history, government, famous people, inventions, and tourism, state facts, state timeline, travel journal, blank templates, and more. See a preview here.
This bundled purchase includes ALL 50 Individual States Study Notebooking Sets plus the following bonus sets: 13 Colonies Themed Notebooking Pages, National Memorials Notebooking Pages, National Monuments Notebooking Pages, National Parks Notebooking Pages, State Birds, Flowers, Flags, and Seals Notebooking & Reference Pages, United States of America Notebooking Pages, and Washington, D.C. Notebooking Pages.
I talked with the kind folks over at Notebooking Pages and they are excited to support this series by graciously offering my readers a discount of 25% off this bundle of notebooking pages. The regular price is $29.99 (or each state can be purchased individually for $3.95 per state and does not include the bonus sets). With the discount, you can purchase all 50 states plus the bonus sets at 25% off. You must use this link below and use the code: benandmeUSA when you check out in order to receive the discount.
A common question I expect to hear is whether or not you must purchase the USA State Study Notebooking Bundle in order to do these unit studies. The answer is no. You can create your own notebooking pages, search and find free notebooking pages online, or skip the notebooking altogether. Having this set available (especially with the 25% off discount) is purely for the ease and convenience of having beautifully created notebooking pages right at your fingertips.
Cantering the Country is an engaging Unit Study homeschool curriculum organized to use real books to teach 1st-5th graders about the United States, state by state.
Teach science using state animals, natural resources, and other state emblems.
History is covered through carefully selected biographies of significant people and engaging historical fiction books.
Language arts makes use of the preambles to state constitutions to establish our nation’s rich foundations. State mottos provide the core to teach and value character qualities.
Get free shipping and save 20% with this bundle which contains many of the key resources used throughout Cantering the Country.
The package SHIPS FREE and includes:
- Cantering the Country
- Desk Atlas of the United States
- Earth Science for Every Kid
- Geography From A to Z
- 50 State Notebook with Stickers
- Eat Your Way Through the USA
- USA Placemap
- Zoo Guide
- Cantering the Country Lapbook download
Optional Resources for Every State
These resources won’t necessarily be mentioned in any of the unit studies, but are fun resources your student will enjoy using while notebooking across the USA.
Stack the States (iOS)
Stack the States 2 (iOS)
Stack the States (Fire)
Stack the States 2 (Fire)
GeoFlight USA (Fire)
Flash Cards United States (Fire)
Games and Puzzles
Free USA Games online (Sheppard Software)
Recommended Resources for Each State
Each state unit study will have it’s own recommended resource list of picture books, chapter books, non-fiction books, websites, DVDs, games, puzzles, apps, and more. The above resources are recommended if you will be notebooking through all of the states. For resource lists for individual states, click on individual states from the list above.
Links to state maps and travel guides with tips for how to use them to teach geography.