When You Need a Little More
Whether you are piecing together your own curriculum from multiple programs, designing your own thing from scratch, or using an out of the box plan, there will inevitably be a time when you need something more or different than what you have. One of the first places I look is on Teachers Pay Teachers (TPT). This website is a marketplace for teachers to share resources that they have developed and used in their classrooms so that other teachers can use them. (Remember, homeschooling parents are teachers!) While many items on TPT are free, many of them are not. Luckily for us, there are two ways to save money on these resources.
1. Take advantage of their semi-regular sales, like the one happening today and tomorrow. I'll plug my own shop here but the code and sale below are happening sitewide. I'm going to use this sale and the fact that I need to start planning for my next six week term to walk you through my shopping process below.
2. Review the products that you pay for. The review you leave will help other users understand what they're getting AND it pays you back 10% of the purchase price in store credit to use for future resources.
In this case, I have a series of chapters in my history spine text, Story of the World, that I need to provide some activities for. I need to focus on the period between 306 and 866. Ideally, the resource(s) I find will cover Constantine I, Heraclius, Leo III, and Iconoclasm. The spine covers the reign of Justinian & Theodora so any resources can touch on them but don't have to go into too much depth.
When choosing resources on TPT, I begin with a keyword search for Byzantine Empire. For whatever bizarre reason, the total number of search results are displayed at the bottom of the page... 1,348 possibilities. That's a ton to sift through, so I'll try another few keyword searches to see if I can find some resources that touch on the specific areas I've identified. Searching for Iconoclasm and limiting the grades level to 6th-9th got 14 hits, which is much more manageable!
After reading the blurbs about each resource, I narrowed the 14 hits down to two possibilities: an interactive notebook and a PowerPoint and guided notetaking set. Both of these cover the entire history of the Byzantine Empire, so they have the added bonus of being resources I can come back to later in the year. I think either one is going to be a good choice so I will likely let Emma choose which one she thinks she would prefer.