My 13-year old has always been interested in Ancient Japan.
He is also interested in China, Germany, Mexico, Italy, and pretty much any other country that has a different culture than ours. He will be our world traveler when he’s older because other cultures fascinate him.
Last semester, at the school he was able to take an Egyptian Mythology class. Since I don’t believe in trying to straddle two historical topics or time periods, I had him work through Apologia’s Africa unit in Around the World in 180 Days. It was a perfect fit for him and rounded out the Egyptian Mythology class perfectly while covering our Social Studies bases.
This semester, he’s taking Japanese Culture and Language.
I knew he wouldn’t have the mythology class but I wasn’t quite prepared for the switch. While it was a bit of a scramble, I easily found a great Ancient Japan Thematic Unit from Teacher Created Materials that fit perfectly. I ordered the required companion books for it, and we’re set! Amazon packaged them all together and they arrived today.
This literature-based thematic unit covers:
Language Arts: Writing assignments, journal entries, Haiku and Tanka poetry, Japanese proverbs, and writing Japanese
Social Studies/History: Japanese creation myth, historical timeline, geography, social order and government, Samurai, ancient customs, and current day Japanese festivals
Science: Study of volcanoes and the Ring of Fire
Fine Arts: Jomon pots, puppets, Zen gardens and Zen painting, family Mon (crests) and more
Applied Math: Japanese strategy games
The unit book is packed with information, blackline masters/printables, and lots of project ideas and writing assignments. The companion books, Exploration into Japan, The Samurai’s Tale, and The Sign of the Chrysanthemum are what divides the thematic unit into sections with each book covered over a period of weeks.
Now I’m back in unit study planning mode.
It’s been a long time. Someone help me! 😀 Just kidding. He’s 13, reads great, and takes charge of 90% of his studies himself. All I have to do is write up the assignments and let him go.