Last week we started a unit about the Aztec and Incas. This is a unit I’ve had ready for more than a year (books gathered, maps and sheets printed and ready for use). LD and DD insisted we dive in (in part because they knew we’d study the history of chocolate along with it!).
We started out with a look at the Aztecs. We read this lovely story about the founding of the Aztec capital, the arrival of Cortez and the troubles that followed. I highly recommend this book even if you don’t do an entire unit on the Aztecs: The Sad Night: The Story of an Aztec Victory and a Spanish Loss. (affiliate link)
We added a number of pages to our history notebooks. (The kids have 3-ringed notebooks where they keep lapbook type pages, maps, coloring, worksheets and so forth.) We used history pockets from the Teacher Filebox (I got mine at a group rate from homeschool buyers coop), plus other sources that I had on hand. We all really enjoyed Growing Up In Aztec Times (affiliate link) which had a lot of good information. What I loved about the work we did was that ED (age 4) was right in the middle of things! She labeled every country on the South America map too–I told her letter by letter what to write and kept asking if she was done. She insisted on filling in the entire sheet!
We reviewed the countries and capitals of South America. We sang along to Rock the Capitals, South America several times again last week.
We read the book, Secret of the Andes, (affiliate link) over the course of the week. Cusi, a modern Inca boy, leaves his home high in the Andes mountains, to learn about his birth and his people’s ancient glory.
The reviews about this book on Amazon are quite mixed. This is definitely not a fast paced book, but the images it evoked were really lovely. We stopped a lot to look at some of the things that were talked about in the book — the frail-looking, swinging rope bridge that swayed as he made his way above the rapids below. We looked at pictures of llamas, the condor, Machu Pichu and things like that on wikimedia commons. For us this book was really a terrific jumping off point.
See our study of the Ancient Mayan Civilization you can visit these posts:
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase.