If you are planning to study The Vikings in your upcoming homeschool program you will need ideas for an educational and non violent study. As many of the tales of these sea warriors can be graphic, I have found some great ideas for teaching your upper elementary through middle schooler about these captivating men. If you have younger children feel free to make some of the activities work for them, and I have included a book list for this lower elementary crowd as well.
1. Online learning- The PBS/Nova site on Vikings is not too graphic, and it is chock full of information. Read through the site alongside your child.
The Vikings- www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/vikings/
*Some questions for your student to answer based on this site are:
1. What were some of the conditions that led to the Viking movement from Scandanavia?
2. What was the occupation of most Vikings?
3. Name the 3 classes in the Viking society.
4. How far/to where did the Vikings travel?
5. Why did many Vikings raid churches and monasteries?
6. What qualities/virtues did the Vikings prize most in people?
7. What effect did the Vikings have on the history of Russia?
8. Describe why Viking ships were well suited to surprise raids.
9. List the 3 most important Viking gods.
10. What was a ship grave?
2. Hands on learning- Have your child make a Lego scale model of a Viking ship and take pictures of it, or complete a power point describing the details of the ship.
3. Art fun- Draw a model of the typical Viking ship and label the important features.
4. Read about it- These books are wonderful for your upper elementary and middle school child:
Viking It and Liking It (The Time Warp Trio Book 12) by Jon Scieszka
Leif Eriksson (Biography from Ancient Civilizations) (Biography from Ancient Civilizations: Legends, Folklore, and Stories of Ancient Worlds) by Earle Rice Jr.
The Raider's Promise (Viking Quest Series) by Lois Walfrid W. Johnson
Here are some choices for your lower elementary student:
The Adventures of Aust Forkbeard. Viking! (History Plays for young people)
Viking Ships At Sunrise (Magic Tree House, No. 15) by Mary Pope Osborne
Adventures with the Vikings (Good Times Travel Agency) by Linda Bailey
5. Enjoy some cool crafts with your homeschooler. The Vikings (Crafts from the Past) by Gillian Chapman is an excellent resource for Viking time period crafts.