Tag Archives: Independence Day

History, Fireworks, Food, and Family Fun – A 4th of July Unit Study and Resource List

4th-of-JulyThe 4th of July, America’s birthday, is a fantastic opportunity for family fun, fireworks, food, and summer school learning!  I’ve found some great cross curricular and multi level resources to share as we celebrate,  explore, create, learn, review, and play through a unit study.

American Revolution Timeline starting with The Stamp Act (1765) and ending with The Treaty of Paris (1783)  http://www.ducksters.com/history/revolutionarywartimeline.php

Early America Resources – Documents, Photos, Biographies, and Videos https://www.varsitytutors.com/earlyamerica

Revolutionary War Videos          http://www.havefunwithhistory.com/HistorySubjects/AmericanRevolution.html

Tour Revolutionary War Battlefields                                  http://johnsmilitaryhistory.com/revvirtual.html

‘Revolutionary War’ Famous Paintings                                                    http://www.reenactmag.com/7-paintings-define-revolutionary-war/

Museum of the American Revolution – Impressive collection of objects, works of art, manuscripts, and printed works!                                                       http://www.amrevmuseum.org/collection

Interactive version of John Trumbull’s famous painting “The Declaration of Independence” http://www.quiz-tree.com/Declaration-of-Independence-Trumbull.html

Guns of the Revolutionary War                                                            http://www.reenactmag.com/important-guns-revolutionary-war/

“Freedom in America” Interactive Board Game              http://electronicfieldtrip.org/freedom/frontPage.html

History/Geography/Math Game Printable  – “Find the Lost Redcoat”             https://www.education.com/activity/article/The_lost_redcoat/

banner_2465Liberty’s Kids is an entertaining and a favorite video resource for homeschooling families to introduce the events and people of the American Revolution.  Here’s the link to the viewers guide for all 40 episodes.  http://www.tv.com/shows/libertys-kids/episodes/

And, the link to the Liberty’s Kids Youtube channel and playlist.  All the episodes are available to view.   https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5pJi9mLIy38m2e_u3sboKQ

Schoolhouse Rock 4th of July Cartoon  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmSVnP-oDRs

4th of July Vocabulary List and Word Puzzles                                                   https://myvocabulary.com/word-game-puzzles/july-4th-vocabulary/

July 4th Writing Prompts                                                                                                    https://writeshop.com/july-4th-writing-activities/

Patriotic Writing Paper Printables                                       http://www.busybeekidsprintables.com/Patriotic-Stationery.html

Calligraphy Resources                                                                  https://www.franw.com/2015/08/calligraphy-resources.html

Patriotic Quotes                                                                   https://www.countryliving.com/life/g1841/patriotic-quotes/

Edit and Correct the Rough Draft of the Declaration of Independence                     http://mrnussbaum.com/rough-draft-declaration-of-independence/

How to Speak Like a Colonial                                                       https://makinghistorynow.com/2015/07/well-said-old-fellow-how-to-speak-like-a-colonial-virginian/

Devotions, Quotes, Prayers, and Bible verses for Independence Day  http://www.graspinggod.com/4th-of-july.html

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“Why do we celebrate the 4th of July with fireworks?”  According to Slate, that answer is , “Because John Adams wanted us to.”  Link here for the full article.  http://www.slate.com/articles/life/explainer/2012/07/history_of_fireworks_in_america_why_do_we_celebrate_fourth_of_july_with_fireworks_.html

Boom Pow Whizz” is an awesome article explaining the history of fireworks with a couple of suggested art and language arts activities.   https://antiquitynow.org/2013/07/03/boom-pow-whizzz-the-history-of-fireworks/

Fireworks and Flags Math Activities  http://www.yummymath.com/2016/4th-of-july/

Learn about the chemistry of fireworks and use the handy chart of to identify what chemical compounds are used to produce different colors  http://www.scifun.org/CHEMWEEK/fireworks/Fireworks2017.htm

And here’s more firework chemistry including a highlighted periodic table http://sciencenotes.org/firework-colors-chemistry/

And to find out more about the elements that make the firework colors  http://www.rsc.org/periodic-table

What’s inside a firework and step by step explanation of what happens when lit  http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/fireworks/anat_nf.html

How It’s Made – Fireworks  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hatDxw8-GRM

How It’s Made – Sparklers  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8LJ-lAANCw8

Steve Spangler’s – 4th of July Science  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lZp7VTYJvQw

Make Your Own Firecracker!   (fairly easy)                                                                                                   https://layers-of-learning.com/make-your-own-firecrackers/

Homemade Fireworks Instructions (advanced and probably dangerous!)                  https://www.thoughtco.com/homemade-fireworks-projects-607331


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BBQ and Grilling Safety Guide with kids  http://www.air-n-water.com/bbq-grill-safety-kids.htm

Kids Grilling Recipes and Tips  http://www.kids-cooking-activities.com/easy-grilling-recipes.html

My family’s favorite 4th of July treat is this yummy and easy layered dessert using store bought angel food cake – cut into cubes, blueberries, sliced strawberries, and whipped cream.

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Fun Learning Activities                                                                             http://www.franw.com/2013/06/4th-of-july-americas-independence-day.html

4th of July themed Bible games and activities  http://www.christianitycove.com/?s=4th+of+july

4th of July Party Games  http://www.rd.com/advice/parenting/4th-of-july-10-fun-party-games/

4th of July themed Interactive Games  http://www.primarygames.com/holidays/july4/games.htm

Patriotic Music for Kids  http://www.rhapsody.com/artist/various-artists/album/americas-favorite-patriotic-songs-for-kids

And don’t forget to check with your local library!  We found these …

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And we don’t have to stop this study here!  “The Pennsylvania State House bell was rung to summon the people of Philadelphia to gather for the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence on July 8, 1776.  Though the bell wouldn’t be called the Liberty Bell  until years later, the bell’s message of liberty certainly rang that day.”

The Liberty Bell –  Learning Resource List  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/07/08/the-liberty-bell/

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betty jo

Fireworks

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These photos were taken at our city’s riverfront last night.  It was our family’s second year to attend their annual event.  A few of the families in our neighborhood have been celebrating Independence Day all week and we have seen some beautiful fireworks and heard some BOOMS.   Z has been excited and J has tried to be tolerant.  They have had some questions.  My answer is the same for each of them,  “Let’s google it”.  Our search resulted in our homeschooling summer school lesson of the day and covers the subjects of history, science, and because we use the internet, computer lab gets a “check”.  We have a community service project also.  (There is quite a bit of firework trash to be picked up in the neighborhood yards and street.)

Below are J’s and  Z’s questions and the links to the answers.

“Where do fireworks come from?”   “The birthplace of fireworks is generally recognized as China, with the first explosive mixture found being black powder, during the Sung dynasty (960-1279)”  For the rest, click this link  to the brief article, The History of Fireworks   http://www.pyrouniverse.com/history.htm

“Why do we celebrate the 4th of July with fireworks?”  According to Slate, that answer is , “Because John Adams wanted us to. Before the Declaration of Independence was even signed, he envisioned fireworks as a part of the festivities. In a letter to Abigail Adams on July 3, 1776, he wrote that the occasion should be commemorated “with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.”  The first commemorative Independence Day fireworks were set off on July 4, 1777.”   You can link here for the full article.  http://www.slate.com/articles/life/explainer/2012/07/history_of_fireworks_in_america_why_do_we_celebrate_fourth_of_july_with_fireworks_.html

“What makes fireworks explode in different colors?”  According to a post from the Interactive TechnologExperience Center’s Facebook page, “Sodium produces yellow/gold colors. Barium creates green, copper compounds produce blue, strontium salts give you red and titanium metals give you silver coloured sparks.
Other commonly used chemicals are carbon which provides the fuel, oxidizers which produce oxygen for burning, magnesium which increases the overall brilliance and brightness, antimony that gives you a “glitter” effect and calcium which deepens the colors.” 

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Interactive-Technology-Experience-Center-iTEC/115400341904918

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“How do fireworks work?”  We found the answer in this video from Science Kids and The Franklin Institute.  http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/videos/chemistry/fireworks.html

“Can we make some fireworks?”  We don’t have to google this answer, I already know it,  “NO!”

betty jo

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Happy Birthday America

4th July

Even though today is a holiday, it is not going to be a day off from homeschool/summer school.  The learning possibilities are too numerous to pass up by not having some lessons.

We will be starting here with a slide show of a trip across America on the Google home page.  https://www.google.com/

I download the freebie, Why We Celebrate the 4th of July,  from Simple School and Currclick yesterday for J and Z.   We got started on it and I think it is very nice. It contains some historic information and copy work,  It even has a couple of things the older kids can use, too.   http://www.currclick.com/product/48874/Simple-Schooling-Why-We-Celebrate-the-4th-of-July?it=1   (You will need an account to get the free download.  If you don’t already have one, I highly recommend you getting one and sign up for their e-mail newsletters and updates.  This is my favorite resource site.)

Also, Activity Village is offering some free 4th of July  printables that we’ll be using. http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/fourth_of_july_activities_for_kids.htm

Quiztree has an interactive art and history activity that we will take a look at.  I think this is very cool.  You hover the mouse over each person in Trumbull’s famous painting, The Declaration of Independence, and the name of the person appears at the top of the screen.  http://www.quiz-tree.com/Declaration-of-Independence-Trumbull.html

We’ll follow this link for music appreciation  http://www.christianity.com/church/church-history/timeline/1801-1900/1st-performance-of-samuel-f-smiths-america-11630412.html?utm_source=This%20Week%20in%20Christian%20History%20-%20Christianity.com&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=07/03/2013

Movies are are the planner for today also.  E suggested we watch The Patriot, and she and B can, but that’s not suitable for my younger boys.   We all can watch this episode of Liberty’s Kids though.

Finally, we’ll end up our studies in the kitchen.  We’ll be making this simple angel food cake, blueberry, strawberry, and whipped cream layered dessert.

4th dessert 2We even have a community service project tonight.  We will be passing out mosquito repellant bracelets with our church at our city’s fireworks display.

Have a safe and happy Independence Day!

betty jo