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US History or World History Writing Workshop

Social Studies

History Quest 1: The Dawn of Civilization (Full Curriculum Grades 4-6)

This 9-week course uses story-telling and hands-on activities to bring the story of humankind alive, starting with pre-history through one of the very first civilizations. (Part 1 of a year-long social studies course for grades 4-6)
Kim Musolff
210 total reviews for this teacher
3 reviews for this class
Completed by 14 learners
  There are no upcoming classes.
year old learners
US Grade Level
learners per class


Charged upfront
$13 per class
Meets 3x per week
Over 9 weeks
45 minutes per class
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Class Experience

Upon completing this class, students will have an understanding of 
-pre-history vs. history
-how humans progressed from nomadic lives to creating civilizations
I am a Colorado-certified teacher with over 20 years experience teaching children in grades K-8.  I have taught in many settings, including public schools, private schools, and homeschool environments. 
Students are required to read one chapter from History Quest each week.  They may read the chapter independently, listen as an adult reads it aloud, or listen to the audio book, available here for $29:  https://www.pandiapress.com/product/history-quest-early-times-audiobook/

Additionally, students may need to complete some parts of the research project outside of class.  They will be given several class periods to work on this, but still may need extra time to put the project together.  
Students will be required to keep a notebook for this class. This can be any 3-ring binder where they can add and remove pages as needed. Students will also need to purchase the History Quest chapter book and the History Quest Study Guide (see below). The study guide includes pages needed for notebooking throughout the entire year. Due to copyright laws, I am unable to provide copies to students. However, when you purchase the Study Guide, you can use it for all other classes in this series. History Quest Study Guide, available in print or as a digital copy for about $30. Used for the entire year: https://www.pandiapress.com/product/history-quest-early-times-study-guide/ History Quest Chapter Book, available in print ($22), digitally ($16) or as an audio book ($30). Used for the entire year: Audio Book: https://www.pandiapress.com/product/history-quest-early-times-audiobook/ Print Book or ebook: https://www.pandiapress.com/product/history-quest-early-times/ Additionally, students will need supplies for hands-on projects. A detailed list of supplies will be provided upon enrollment. Most of the supplies needed are common things you will find around your home. These include things like, paper, colored pencils, tape, flour, mixing bowls, etc.
Learners will not need to use any apps or websites beyond the standard Outschool tools.
Students are assessed informally though class discussions.  A written test or teacher evaluation will be provided at the parent's request.  
2 hours 15 minutes per week in class, and an estimated 0 - 1 hours per week outside of class.
History has many circumstances where we can question the perspective of the events.  For example, one group of people “conquers” another group, or a group of people form a religion around a certain set of beliefs. I make every effort to include multiple perspectives or ask questions that encourage students to think about different viewpoints.  I explain to students often that there are multiple ways to construct history, because there are so many people involved in any one part of it.  That’s what makes it so interesting!  Students are always free to ask questions and state opinions in a respectable way.  If controversial topics arise, my practice is to point out that not everyone believes the same thing, and it’s our job to try to see things from everyone’s point of view if we are to create a fair picture of what happened in the past.  

Additionally, history is not always pretty.  Death, mistreatment, and other uncomfortable concepts may disturb sensitive students.  I will make every effort to give parents a heads-up to any sensitive topics like this, and welcome any parent to reach out with questions or concerns they may have about their student.  

During week 1, we discuss evolution of animals and the evolution of humans.  You are welcome to skip this week if you don't feel comfortable with these ideas.  

The activity for week 3 is a bread-making activity.  Please be aware that if your student has an allergy to wheat you may skip the activity or substitute for another flour of your choice.  

History Quest curriculum

Books used in this class
"History Quest: Early Times" Chapter Book
-This book was written with the intention of offering an unbiased story-telling approach to history.  The author explains that "for me, it was very important that History Quest refuse to promote a predetermined agenda.  Most people understand that scientific work is best done when scientists approach data without preconceptions so that the data can determine conclusions.  The same can be said about historical work.  The abuse of history to advance a political ideological, or religious agenda disturbs me greatly.  But despite my devotion to an accurate and unbiased presentation, I, like all history writers, have my own inevitable subjective perspective.  I do try hard to mitigate that, and I worked in tandem with a wonderful publisher and editor, whose perspectives challenged and complemented my own.”

“Discovery in the Cave” by Mark Dubowski
-a Step-Into-Reading book about the discovery of ancient cave drawings found in France

“First Drawing” by Mordicai Gerstein
-a fictional story about what it might have been like in prehistoric times when the first cave drawing was made

“The First Dog” by Jan Brett
-A fictional account of how a boy living during the Stone Age might have befriended a young wolf.  

“You Wouldn’t Want to Live Without Writing” 
-Though these books are written with a sense of humor, they offer historically accurate information In class we use the books as a discussion starter and will differentiate the facts from the fiction.

“Gilgamesh the King,” “Return of Ishtar,” and “The Last Quest of Gilgamesh” are 3 books by Ludmila Zemen that tell the epic tale of Gilgamesh.  The books are used to show students some of the stories used at this time in history.  As the author of the History Quest chapter book notes, “History should be much more than descriptions of conflicts and battle.  Art, inquiry, ideas, and invention also shaped the past dramatically and are treated as vital topics.”  

“A Street Though Time” by Steve Noon and DK
--a wonderful picture book that displays the progression of a fictional Roman city from the Stone Age to today.  The pictures depict what life may have looked like in various time periods.  It is a wonderful way to look at history from a variety of perspectives as we see how the very same place can look so differently, depending on the people that live there and the things that have happened (like invasions, battles, sickness, and prosperity).  


Kim Musolff
Lives in the United States
210 total reviews
166 completed classes

About Me

Hi! I'm a Colorado-certified elementary teacher and a veteran homeschool parent of 4 children.  For over 20 years, I've taught hundreds of children in grades PreK-8 in a variety of settings.  In 2016, I founded and ran a microschool for 3 years,... 
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