I have used timeline notebooks with my children for years. If you haven't heard of timeline notebooks before, essentially, it is a book (I've used everything from a binder to a specifically made spiral bound book) with the years of history marked and blank lines to write down events. I love them because it makes it so easy to see what else was going on in the world and also where in history the event happened. It makes it much easier to visualize one hundred years verses one thousand years.
While I am in love with adding the dates of the things we have learned about in the books (each child has their own), my children are not quite so in love. They dutifully write down what I ask them to, but I wouldn't say they were excited about it. And they certainly don't think to themselves, "Oh, this is interesting. I'll add it to my timeline."
They may never be in love with the concept of keeping a timeline notebook, but I realized I was. You know I read a bit, and often there is some bit of history I find interesting, and I do think to myself, "If I had a timeline notebook, I would put this in." I few months ago I realized there was no reason why I couldn't also have a timeline notebook. (Don't you love it when the obvious takes so long to enter one's brain?) So, when I was at the homeschool conference in June, among my homeschool purchases for the next year was a timeline notebook for myself.
On Sunday, I spent some time getting it ready.
Can I just say I love it when I can actually reproduce the idea I have in my head? It doesn't happen all that often, but it's nice when it does.
Inside, gives me room to write and illustrate the events and people that I come across in my reading. For instance, earlier this year I read the book, Pompeii by Robert Harris. (It was really good, by the way, even if you do know what happens at the end.)
I'm really looking forward to adding to this as I read. It can be a little frustrating to read something, find it highly interesting, and then have nothing to do with that interesting bit of knowledge. This helps to give me an outlet and a way of recording things. I also hope that my interest in keeping a timeline notebook will transfer itself to my children. It usually doesn't fail that if I just start doing something interesting, most children will want to join in. We'll see if this happens here.