Educational Resources for Teachers and Homeschool Families
Author: My Teaching Library / CHSH-Teach, LLC
My Teaching Library has evolved from very small beginnings. In 2010, a small site was created to help homeschooling families come together and support one another. It quickly became apparent that there was a need for quality, low-cost, educational material for these families. Lynda Ackert (the founder) was a veteran education of 20+ years and knew she could begin compiling and creating these materials and created the Download Club. As the site began to offer more materials, teachers outside the homeschooling community began to find and want access. The site grew and a company was formed: CHSH-Teach, LLC. Over the next several years, platforms changed and demand for materials increased. The company needed to expand, secure and create a space for everyone to find the educational materials they needed. Thus, My Teaching Library was created.
Brief story overview: Set in England in the early 19th century, Pride and Prejudice tells the story of Mr and Mrs Bennet’s five unmarried daughters after the arrival of the rich and eligible Mr Bingley, and his status-conscious friend, Mr Darcy, in their village. While Bingley takes an immediate liking to the eldest Bennet daughter, Jane, Darcy has difficulty adapting to local society and repeatedly clashes with the second-eldest Bennet daughter, Elizabeth. It is an 1813 romantic novel of manners written by Jane Austen and follows the character development of Elizabeth Bennet, the dynamic protagonist of the book who learns about the repercussions of hasty judgments and comes to appreciate the difference between superficial goodness and actual goodness. Its humor lies in its honest depiction of manners, education, marriage, and money during the Regency era in Great Britain.
“I am amusing myself with Miss Austen’s [sic] novels. She has great power and discrimination in delineating common-place people; and her writings are a capital picture of real life, with all the little wheels and machinery laid bare like a patent clock.”
—Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Journal entry, May 23, 1839
So why have students read this 19th century novel?
I could give you several reasons that seem to be ‘literary learning’ in nature such as…
To study the author’s use of satire and irony as well as many other literary devices
The novel has a strong female protagonist and thus a study of her role would lead to rich discussion
The ability to make strong contrasts between characters and how Austen builds our knowledge of each
To find and study the many themes of the novel and how these themes relate to students’ lives today
…and while all of these would be true, that’s not what I’m going to do. Instead I’m simply going to highlight several ‘life lessons’ that can be learned while reading and examining the story and characters.
Lessons which can be learned while reading Pride and Prejudice
1. It’s okay not to be good at everything.
Elizabeth Bennet, the novel’s heroine, is interesting not because she’s good at everything, but precisely because she isn’t. She and her eventual husband, Mr. Darcy, have a conversation early in the novel about what defines an “accomplished” woman. Darcy indicates that such a lady would be able to play music, sing, dance, draw, speak several languages, and read frequently. Rather than pretend she possesses these qualities—or feel ashamed that she doesn’t—Elizabeth accepts who she is.
Elizabeth replaces exhausting exceptionalism with passion. There are certain things that she is passionate about—reading, her family, travel—that make her unique and, in fact, endear her to Mr. Darcy.
As you teach this novel, point out this fact to students to remember that it’s okay not to be good at everything and life is a learning process. Have them take time to reflect on (and try to discover) the passions and qualities that make each of them unique.
2. Don’t make snap judgments.
This is the obvious lesson of the novel—don’t judge the proverbial book by its cover. This lesson is as important as ever in today’s society. Remind students not to let their first impressions dictate how they feel about people, ideas or even activities. Don’t shy away from something because you fear it—try to view it from a different perspective. Ask them to allow others to surprise them! To keep an open mind as they might find that people may contradict the image they first presented to them.
3. The importance of planning.
In this easily-readable novel, Ms. Austen underscores the importance of planning. Pride and Prejudice as perfectly-structured a novel as ever was written: from the initial tension in Elizabeth and Darcy’s meeting to the disastrous anticlimax of the first proposal, the upward trajectory of Elizabeth’s feelings for the man she’d judged poorly, Darcy’s climactic saving of the Bennet family’s reputation, and his subsequent successful proposal of marriage to Elizabeth, the novel moves quickly and deliberately in precisely-plotted chapters. Austen wastes no time with frivolous details: everything ties together; each scene has a purpose.
Ask students to take a page from Austen’s book as they plan both in school and in life. Careful preparation can lead to great success!
4. A little humor goes a long way.
Despite the beliefs of some, Pride and Prejudice is not just Victorian chick book. It’s a romantic tale with a marriage plot, to be sure, but it’s also a comedy. From the sycophantic Mr. Collins to the drily sarcastic Mr. Bennet, the novel is filled with jokes, little nods from Austen to the reader. The book is really funny.
Pride and Prejudice Novel Study Complete novel study for Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (196 pages). Includes: – Author’s Biography – Novel Introduction – Characters and Themes – Quotes and Analysis – Teaching Guides dividing the novel into 5 sections w/ * Chapter Summaries, Thought Questions and Vocabulary * Student Handouts * Student Worksheets, Assessments & Keys – Final Assessments
Pride and Prejudice Vocabulary Study Complete novel study for Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (196 pages). Includes: – Author’s Biography – Novel Introduction – Characters and Themes – Quotes and Analysis – Teaching Guides dividing the novel into 5 sections w/ * Chapter Summaries, Thought Questions and Vocabulary * Student Handouts * Student Worksheets, Assessments & Keys – Final Assessments
Pride and Prejudice | Assessments Looking for only a way to test student reading comprehension and understanding as they read Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice? The resource will give you 5 quizzes for students to take while reading the novel and then after they have completed the entire novel, an essay assessment as well as a 20 question, multiple choice test. Answer Keys included!
The Caribou is a wild species of deer often called reindeer when domesticated. They are found in the arctic tundra regions of North America, Asia, Northern Europe, Alaska and Greenland. Caribou can also be seen in sub arctic boreal forests during migration where they take refuge in windy coastal areas from flies and mosquitoes. Typically in northern North America they are called caribou and in northern Europe and Asia are called reindeer. This is because the majority of these animal in Europe and Asia are domesticated.
FUN FACT: Caribou / Reindeer belong to a large group of hoofed ungulate mammals called artiodactyls which also includes camels and giraffes!
Caribou habitats include arctic tundra regions, sub arctic boreal forests and mountainous habitats.
Caribous are large even toed mammals that measure 4-7 ft (1.2 – 2.2 meters) in length and stand 4-5 ft (1.2 – 1.5 meters) foot at shoulder height. They can weigh between 130-700 lbs (60 – 318 kilograms). Their coats are short, thick and colored brown in summer turning grey in the winter. Their rumps and chests are white and they have blunt, hair-covered muzzles and short tails. Their legs are long and wide and they have flat hooves which act like snowshoes helping them walk on snow and soft ground. Caribou hooves are hollow underneath which enables them to dig snow when searching for food!
Caribous are the only deer species where both male and female have antlers but some females have no antlers. Males have larger and more branched out antlers than females which can extend in size to a little over 3 ft (1 meter). Their antlers grow directly from their skulls and are covered with a thin skin called a ‘velvet’. During the ‘rutting’ season, the velvet on the males antlers disappear. Males use their antlers to fight each other for access to females. Male antlers fall off after the mating season has finished and females lose their antlers during the birthing season. When a caribous antler is broken between April and August when in the ‘velvet’ stage, it loses blood flow to the antler and velvet.
FUN FACT: Caribou have 2 circulation systems in their bodies! The circulation through the legs is up to 50 degrees colder than the circulation system for the rest of their body. Caribous have hollow hairs rooted in a thick layer of fat also to conserve heat during freezing temperatures.
Caribous are herbivores and their preferred diet is tundra plant matter including leaves, twigs, moss and lichen known as reindeer moss. When food is abundant, an adult caribou can eat as much as 13 lbs of food per day. When the caribou eats, the food goes down to the caribous first stomach, where it is mashed into small pieces called cud and stored to eat at the caribous next meal. Because caribous can eat large quantities of food they increase their internal heat production to prevent them from freezing in extreme weather conditions.
Caribou undertake one of the most grueling animal migrations of any other terrestrial mammal. Herds of thousands of animals complete a round migration journey of over 3,100 miles (5,000 kilometers) visiting spring calving areas and summer and winter feeding grounds. During migration, herds of cows (female caribou) leave several weeks before the males, who follow with yearling calves from the previous birthing season.
Caribous move from region to region, forced on by seasonal availability of tundra plants on which they feed. Caribou frequently cross rivers and lakes during their migration travels. They are very strong swimmers using their wide hooves as paddles and their thick, air-filled coats help them stay buoyant and warm when swimming through the icy waters. In winter months, caribou move to sub arctic boreal forests where the snow covering is less than on open tundra. Here, they can use their wide hooves to dig and graze on the lichen beneath the snow.
Caribou herds can run very fast reaching speeds of 50 miles per hour while migrating. Herds of caribou tend to be larger during spring migration and smaller during autumn when mating occurs.
Male caribous fight during rutting season which can result in serious injuries such as cuts and bruises. The worst that can happen is that their antlers can lock together and caribou who cannot unlock their horns will starve.
Caribou are generally quiet animals, however, they may emit a loud snort. Herds of snorting caribou may sound like a group of pigs. Groups of cows and new born calves are particularly vocal as they constantly communicate with each other.
Caribou predators include wolves, grizzly and black bears, cougars, wolverines, lynx, coyotes and golden eagles.
Mating season occurs in autumn. Males fight for access to females. Two males will lock their antlers together and try to push each other away. The most dominant males can collect as many as 15 – 20 females to mate with. A male will stop eating during this time and lose much of its body reserves.
Births take place in May or June the following year on inland calving grounds after a gestation period of 45 days. One calf is born each year with twins being rare.
Calves can run shortly after birth, however, large numbers succumb to predators, in particular, Grey Wolves who track down the migrating herds and stalk the birthing grounds looking for easy prey. The young are able to graze and forage but continue suckling until the following autumn and become independent from their mothers. Caribou become sexually mature at between 1.5 and 3.5 years of age. The life span of a caribou is around 15 years in the wild.
Caribou Conservation Status
Despite their large numbers, caribous are an endangered species. The caribou has a very warm very soft fur that is hollow, insulated and sheds water and snow. This valuable fur was traded for a lot of money in the 1800’s. The caribou population decreased because of over hunting until laws were passed to protect it.
Caribou are susceptible to and recover slowly from population declines because of their low rate of reproduction. The main factors leading to caribou declines are habitat loss, degradation, and fragmentation, as well as predation (from wolves and humans). Loss of caribou habitat, which is permanent, occurs when forest is cleared for agriculture. Habitat degradation means a reduction in the amount or quality of caribou habitat, as happens following such events as wildfires or timber harvesting, or through human disturbance.
Caribou Notebooking Pages
My Teaching Library offers Caribou Notebooking Pages for students to use when producing a report on these wonderful animals! Students will love using these pages and when they do, their study becomes cross-curricular!
As a cross-curricular unit, students will need to read (and research) the caribou, write a report, complete map work (geography) and learning about the life of this cute little squirrel (science).
The Arctic wolf also known as the white wolf and the polar wolf! Where does it live? What does it look like? What does it eat? Keep reading to find out the answers to these questions and more!
General Appearance and Behavior
An adult Arctic wolf can weigh between 70 and 125 pounds. A 70-pound wolf is equal to the weight of 4 adult Dachshunds. They range between 2 to 3 feet tall and can be up to 5 feet long including their tail. Think of the average Christmas tree. An Arctic wolf’s body is about three quarters as long as that tree.
The white or sometimes grayish coat of this wolf has two layers. The upper layer gets thicker as the temperature drops in the tundra. The layer of fur closest to the wolf’s skin is waterproof. The waterproof layer of fur helps this wolf to stay dry and maintain its body heat in subzero temperatures.
Along with their insulated fur coats, Arctic wolves have paws with thick pads allowing them to walk on frozen ground. Plus, these pads give them traction on the slippery surfaces they walk and run on. Arctic wolves run while hunting muskoxen or other prey. The fastest recorded speed of an Arctic wolf is 46 mph.
You may think of a wolf as a solitary animal, but Arctic wolves travel in packs of six or so. These wolves live in incredibly cold climates, so they rarely encounter people. Normally, people don’t want to travel to these cold places! They are not aggressive animals unless they are defending their territory from a wolf or another animal.
Habitat of the Arctic Wolf
The Arctic wolf lives in the arctic regions of North America and Greenland. Since they live in these arctic regions year round and these regions have regions have long dark periods that last about 5 months, these wolves have adapted to living in the dark and in the cold. Instead of living in dens in the ground, Arctic wolves live in caves or seek shelter in outcroppings of rocks. The ground in these Arctic areas is always frozen making it impossible for them to dig traditional dens.
What do Arctic wolves eat? Arctic wolves eat Arctic hares, caribou, lemmings and muskoxen. An Arctic wolf is smaller than its close relative, the gray wolf. So, you may be wondering how a single Arctic wolf could hunt and kill large mammals. The answer is: They don’t hunt alone. A pack of wolves will work together to single out a weak member of a herd of caribou or muskoxen to capture. A large mammal will be eaten by a pack of wolves over the course of a week or so. An Arctic wolf is able to eat about 20 pounds of animal meat in one feeding period. Next time you go to the store, look in the meat department and see just what 20 pounds of meat actually looks and feels like!
Reproduction and Lifespan
In a pack of Arctic wolves, only the alpha of the pack will mate with the beta female. Arctic wolves are known to stay with one mate. This helps to control the number of wolf pups also called whelps, so there will be adequate food available to them. The gestation period is 63 days and the mother gives live birth to 2 to 3 wolf pups. Newborn pups have dark fur and blue irises that change to yellow as they grow older. They weigh about 3 to 4 pounds when they’re born, but quickly start to gain more. Arctic wolves give birth later on in the month of May and sometimes early June. This is different from gray wolves. Gray wolves give birth in the month of April and usually have 4 to 5 pups in a litter.
They are born with their eyes and ears closed, but are able to see and hear within about 12 to 14 days. The pups can crawl around a bit especially when they want to nurse from their mother. In a few weeks, the pups start to nibble on small pieces of chewed food brought to them by their mother.
Arctic wolf pups stay in the cave or den with their mother for about 6 weeks. After 6 weeks, they join in the activities with the pack and are full-grown adults by 8 months. Generally, grown pups stay with the same pack for years.
The average lifespan of male and female Arctic wolves is about 7 years in the wild and 20 years in captivity. One of the most common reasons for the early death of an Arctic wolf is a lack of available food in the harsh climate. There may be a limited amount of food and that’s taken by the alpha male and beta females in a pack. Another reason for early death is injury. Arctic wolves can be injured during hunts or from another wolf or the main predator, the polar bear.
The population of Arctic wolves is about 200,000. They are not considered to be a threatened species and are officially listed as Least Concern. The main reason that Arctic wolves aren’t threatened is they live on the frozen tundra where very few humans travel and where very few other animals can survive. One of the largest populations of these wolves is found in northern Alaska.
My Teaching Library Arctic Wolf Notebooking Pages
Help your students create a beautiful report using the available: Arctic Wolf | Notebooking Pages! Students will love using these pages to create a report on the Arctic wolf. They are also perfect to use during a study of the arctic region, tundra animals or as a cross-curricular unit that will have students reading, writing, completing map work (geography) and learning about the life of this cute little squirrel (science).
The Christmas story can be found in both Matthew and Luke. It is the beautiful story of the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. My Teaching Library has created two copywork products (one using the KJV version, one using the NIV version) to help students learn the story and at the same time, practice valuable skills (keep reading to find out what these skills include).
If you aren’t interested in the actual copywork products and you simply want to read the story to your children, here it is (using the NIV version):
The Christmas Story Luke 2:1-20 1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register. 4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. 8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” 15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” 16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.
You may be wondering what benefits can be found in having your children copy text such as this. Aside from helping them learn the story, you may be asking, Why put in the time and effort to simply copy what they are reading?”
Why copywork? Copywork is copying a piece of well-written work, from any variety of sources, onto paper or into a notebook. The student copies from a written selection using his best penmanship to create a “perfect copy” that is properly spaced and includes all proper capitalization and punctuation marks. It is a method, that when used consistently, will improve your child’s penmanship, grammar, and punctuation skills as well as expose him to a variety of writing styles, structures, and techniques.
The arctic fox is an incredibly hardy animal that can survive frigid Arctic temperatures as low as –58°F in the treeless lands where it makes its home.
It has furry soles, short ears, and a short muzzle—all-important adaptations to the chilly clime. Arctic foxes live in burrows, and in a blizzard they may tunnel into the snow to create shelter.
Common Name: Arctic Fox Scientific Name: Vulpes lagopus Type: Mammals Diet: Omnivore Group Name: Skulk, leash Average life span in The Wild: 3 to 6 years Size: Head and body: 18 to 26.75 inches; tail: up to 13.75 inches Weight: 6.5 to 17 pounds
Christmas is fast approaching so to help you add some holiday spice to your lessons (and let’s face it, we all need help from time to time), here are some fantastic December, Christmas and Hanukkah themed resources that your kids will definitely enjoy…
Pumpkin Poetry – Fall Creative Writing
This resource, Pumpkin Poetry, has been created to spark your students’ imaginations and creative writing! Covering 9 different types of poetry: Acrostic Diamante Haiku Limerick Mono rhyme Cinquain Minute Tanka Shape
Pumpkin Science (Hands-on Activities)
Pumpkin Science has several fun, hands-on activities that ask students to compare, contrast, observe, estimate, count, sort, investigate, graph and much more…Students can even create a Pumpkin Science Journal or use pages as notebooking pages.
Veterans Day Kindergarten – 1st Grade Unit
Celebrate the Veterans Day holiday throughout the month of November with this true cross-curricular resource! Your young learners will learn about this military branches of the United States and the why we should honor those who have served our country.
A Study of the Mayflower | 5th-6th Grade
This is a comprehensive, cross-curricular unit study on the Mayflower. Students will read informational text to learn about the ship, its voyages, and its passengers (the Pilgrims). Students will also work with vocabulary related to ship navigational instruments, sections of the ship as well as words used in a farewell letter written to the passengers …and more!
For your Kinders and 1st Graders:
Big or Small Worksheets
Give your littles the practice they need to develop visual discrimination and basic math skills with 42 engaging worksheets! Students will interactively identify big or small objects by coloring pictures, circling or tracing the words ‘big’ or ‘small’, cutting, pasting and sorting (classifying) pictures.
Mega-Phonics | Blends Volume 2
This large (184 page) volume is filled with phonics learning! Students will concentrate on words with the following blends: scr, sk, sl, sm, sn, sp, spl, spr, st, tr
Introducing Multiplication with Arrays | Math with Visual Models
Help students learn and practice the basic concept behind multiplication with these 280 visual model problems. Designed for 2nd – 3rd Grades, students will demonstrate the ability to… – Determine the quantity of shapes shown – Create equations from arrays – Create arrays from given equations!
For your 4th-5th Graders:
Types of Nouns | Interactive Notebook or Lapbook
Engaging and interactive, this Grammar resource will help your students learn to identify different types of nouns: common, proper, singular, plural, possessive, collective, compound, concrete and abstract. Students will be asked to list, categorize and use in context the different types of nouns!
Decimal Bundle | 4th-5th Grade Math
3 products in one! – Resource #1 will help students understand equivalent fractions, decimals and percents. – Resource #2 will have students working with decimal notation, location on a number line, digit value and relative value in relation to half. – Resource #3 will give students a lot of practice adding and subtracting decimals and includes 100 word problems!
For your 6th-8th Graders:
5 Themes of Geography BUNDLE
There are 5 major themes of Geography: Location, Place, Human/Environment Interaction, Movement, and Regions. This BUNDLE includes ALL FIVE individual theme units!
Physical Science – Student Edition
Physical Science is the study of the inorganic world. It is ordinarily thought of as consisting of four broad areas: astronomy, physics, chemistry, and the Earth sciences. This textbook is a full-year Physical Science curriculum (356 pages).
Teacher’s Edition also available.