Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Prairie Primer ~ Little House In the Big Woods

We just completed Little House in the Big Woods today.  We used The Prairie Primer as our guide.  The Prairie Primer is meant to be a complete unit study covering almost every subject.  However, I am only using it to make our literature come to life in a hands-on way.  Since I hardly know how to sew, I am skipping all of the sewing projects for now.  I decided to use the history, science, music, life skills (cooking), Bible, and field trip portions of the curriculum.  Someone asked me if it was worth the cost.  I bought it at a used curriculum sale for $20, and yes, it is worth that cost or a bit more to me.  Even though we are not using the entire unit study, it gives me a quick reference point of what is coming and ideas to use.  Then I can easily build on the ideas in the book.

Here is a list of the activities we did to go along with Little House in the Big Woods
  • We watched a great video on defending ourselves from germs. I think this was the kids favorite YouTube video.
  • We ate maple sugar candy given to Tim as a gift for taking care of a neighbor's cat.
  • We watched maple syrup being made on YouTube.
  • We went on a field trip to the Mast General Store, a store modeled after the 19th century general stores. 
  • We made delicious butter.
  • The kids made grain-free bread.
  • We made sugar snow.
  • We learned the songs, "Pop goes the Weasel" and "Buffalo Gals".
  • We talked to the cheese seller at our local health food supermarket and bought small amounts of four kinds of cheese (goat and cow).  We then sampled the cheese and studied the different rinds (wax and cloth).
  • The kids watched cheese being made on YouTube.
  • We learned all about Louis Pasteur.  We watched several videos and read three books about him.
  • The kids learned about the phases of the moon and learned about craters on the moon.
  • We practiced hand washing and how to be a PDI agent ("protect don't infect" agent).
  • We studied the germ theory and learned how germs are spread.
  • We read about honey and sampled various honey.
  • The kids used the Bible verses in the book as copy work.
I still plan to read some books about the California gold rush to the children and take them on a field trip to a gem mine (the closest thing we have to a gold mine around here).

We look forward to moving on with Little House on the Prairie.  I will continue using The Prairie Primer as our guide.  It is nice to have a plethora of ideas right at my fingertips.

Please join Learning all the Time  and Read Explore Learn for more great entries.

Blessings, Dawn


  1. I have heard of The Prairie Primer sounds like it is working wonderfully for you! We love the Little House series here at our house. Great job making it come to life for your kids!
    Thank you for linking up with "Look! What We Did!"

  2. has free lapbooks for each book Enjoy!

  3. Thanks for letting me know. I have wondered about it. You got it for a good price!

  4. Wow! What a fun week! My girls LOVE LHotP, too, so I'm sure they'd love this. I hopped over from Collage Friday. It's nice to "meet" you!

  5. I love your amazing array of projects! What a wonderful unit.

  6. I sent your blog post to a friend of mine who is using The Prairie Primer next year!! Thanks for linking to Collage Friday. :-)

  7. I'm glad you linked this up with Favorite Resources, too!

  8. Oh I love the Little House books. I've collected all kinds of assortments related to them. I've visited Almanzo's home in New York. I know all kinds of trivia about Laura and her books. I did unit studies with them with my third graders. So much fun!