How we use Story of the World with multiple grades {win a FULL SET of activity pages!}

I have been using Story of the World as our history curriculum ever since I started homeschooling… about 8 years ago now! I absolutely love how comprehensive it is. At least half of the stuff in there is completely new to me, never even touched on by my own sub-par public school education!

Over the years, my teaching methods for SOTW have changed. When I first started with young elementary students, I basically just read the stories and they would color the coloring pages. As they approached older elementary, we added in more interactive experiments and map work and activities and field trips. Meandering into the middle school years, we add outlines and projects. But I still need to be able to teach it to all my kids at once (because who has time to do it individually!?!)

So here’s a look at how our SOTW lessons go now, with a 1st grader, 3rd grader, 5th grader, and 7th grader learning the same material simultaneously.

1. I start by giving them something to do.

For the younger kids, this is the corresponding coloring page in the activity book. For the middle kids, they look at & color the map and sometimes do the coloring page too. For the oldest kid(s), they fill out the test pages as I read.


One with an outline, the other with a map!
A finished outline!


2. I read 1/2 – 1 chapter out loud.

I get everyone at the table with their appropriate pages and I read. I often add or subtract information as the time allows, putting in personal anecdotes and adding my own knowledge to the lesson. If something comes up in the lesson, I often find myself opening up the nearby iPad to pull up a google image search to show them photos or Hagia Sophia or YouTube to show them a video tour of a castle. I use my white board to make lists and draw silly pictures. The kids help by making silly pictures and lists of their own! Something I have learned the hard way is not to be afraid of taking it slowly. I would rather cover the information in a fun, engaging way and take twice as long than to power through it and make it miserable.

3. We finish with something interactive.

I love to finish the lesson with some sort of craft, like the time we made a model of a real castle when we learned about knights, or dressing up in togas when we learned about ancient Rome. If there is something available nearby, we’ll hit a local museum (like the Civil War Museum in Tiffin, Ohio or Perry’s Monument which has a great museum about the War of 1812). We often watch an informational video from New Dimension Films on the way to these field trips to further the knowledge acquired.

Some other interactive activities that have been favorites over the years include recreating monuments or battles with play-doh, finger painting like the cave men on cardboard, and building the pyramids and King Minos’ maze out of Legos. The possibilities are really endless, all it takes is a simple google or Pinterest search about your topic, and you’ll find crafts galore!

Want to give Story of the World a try of your own?

I’m giving away a full set of coloring pages, activity pages, and test books from ALL FOUR Story of the World volumes!!! This has a value of over $100 so it can save your family some serious dough if you love SOTW like I do! Note that the giveaway does NOT include the textbooks themselves (though you can usually find them for $10 each on amazon, or used even cheaper, or possibly even free through your library!)

Here’s how to enter the giveaway:

{this giveaway has ended and the winner has been notified– thanks to everyone who entered!}

16 thoughts on “How we use Story of the World with multiple grades {win a FULL SET of activity pages!}

  1. Hannah Sholes says:

    I started using SOTW with my oldest last year. This year we need to include my second oldest who is starting Kindergarten while entertaining two younger siblings! Any help would be appreciated. 😀

  2. Christy Grayson says:

    I would love to try Story of the World with my 2 boys. We use ABeka right now but they need something more interactive.

  3. Suzanne Faust says:

    We are just starting kindergarten so we don’t have any yet. But I have heard great things about SOTW. Our library actually has all four textbooks 🙂

  4. Nicola Cusack says:

    I would love to win as we are just starting SOTW volume 1 and it would be great to be all set up for the years to come. This is a great prize!!!

  5. Jenni L. says:

    I am going to use SOTW with my 2nd grader this year. I would LOVE to have some activities to go along with the reading besides just copywork I was planning on. This would be great!

  6. Leigh Schuler says:

    Great giveaway! We would love to win, I have tried to get SOTW from the library but it has so many holds! My kids are you guys so we would be able to use it for many years to come.

  7. Sherri Wood says:

    I want to use this curriculum because I believe It will help me be able to teach both of my kids at same time. Teaching both children at same time is a challenge because my son has autism and is developmentally behind and is sister is a typical 4th grade. This curriculum is written in a way that helps both children learn at their level and speed. Unfortunately the cost is a challenge for us due to medical cost. Thank you for a chance to win materials.

  8. Nicole Jackson says:

    I am a new homeschooling Mom & would love to win the giveaway.
    This curriculum looks like exactly what he needs to have a successful full year of homeschooling.
    Thank you.

  9. Stephanie Yeager says:

    Would love to try SOTW to help with teaching 2 children this year! It’s been quite a challenge with just 1 child, so any extra help is greatly appreciated! I love that we can supplement other curriculum options to work with our needs per child! I’ve been using My Father’s World with my 7yr old, but every child is different, just don’t have the funds to try a lot of different options that are now out there for homeschoolers! Thank you for informing me about these books!

  10. Naomi Kell says:

    Have heard of SOTW before, but have no hands on experience. It would be an awesome replacement for the curriculum we have now. My kids are a little frustrated with the teaching style of it. 🙂

  11. BethAnn says:

    I love reading to my children. This sounds like a wonderful history to do with my 7th and 1st graders, complete with extras on their level

  12. Angela Richards says:

    We already use SOTW. We LOVE it!! We also love to use the audio CD’s in the car!! I swear we learn so much even when we repeat!! There’s just so much to learn and absorb, and it’s so much fun!! Why would you ever want learn/teach history a different way?!?

  13. Kali says:

    Love SOTW!! I’ve always wanted to get all the activity books, but so far haven’t had the cash available. We love reading the books though 🙂 I really like how it gives an overview of so much and opens the doors to studying whichever parts catch their interest. And it is interesting whether you are 6 or 60! 😉 Works so nicely when we’re spanning from teens to toddlers here.

  14. Kate says:

    I’d love to win because we’ve never used this curriculum before and I love exploring new curriculums and seeing what’s out there.

  15. Britney Tifft says:

    Hi, and thank you for this post! I would love to try this with my son. He is starting kindergarten this year and I am always ALWAYS looking for materials. I am sort of stuck on what to do for history as I did not do very well with it in school myself. He is a very smart boy and I think he would like this. I have never heard of SOTW, but it sounds like a very good fit for us. I am hoping to find something that will grow with him and eventually his younger brother when he is old enough to join in on all the fun.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *