By: Courtney Newman
Unit studies are a popular choice among homeschoolers, and for many reasons! Unit studies are, in essence, a themed study about a particular topic and everything related to that topic. The study usually revolves around a focal point, but can jump into various aspects. For example, a unit study on Little Women may involve not only reading the book, but possibly deciphering themes from the story, learning about the author’s personal life, researching the fashion of the time, recreating popular recipes from that era, taking a field trip to a related museum, learning the political history during the book’s setting, and so on.
Unit studies are sometimes referred to as a thematic approach or a multidisciplinary method. Unit studies are a fantastic way to combine multiple subjects into one group of lessons. As a result, students are encouraged to view the topic as a whole rather than just as “literature” or “history.” It’s about the big picture, not just fragments. Consequently, unit studies help the topic feel more realistic and memorable for homeschoolers.
10 Excellent Literature Unit Studies
Literature unit studies are a wonderful way to introduce your students to the wonder of reading and especially classic literature. While literature-based studies certainly don’t need to focus on classics alone, it is a great way to study these timeless books and explore the depths of themes that may otherwise go unnoticed. However, unit studies are great for any books on your homeschool reading list! These studies can add hands-on aspects for students who may not be strong readers, and enliven the story for a more enjoyable time. Further, these homeschool literature study guides provide greater discussion, and therefore a more thorough understanding of the stories themselves. In the end, literature unit studies are all about sparking a fire for reading in your children!
- “Anne of Green Gables” Literature Unit Study & Lapbook. Anne of Green Gables is a wonderful story for children, boys and girls alike! Explore more about the books with this unit study and a hands-on lapbook!
- “The BFG” Literature Unit Lesson Plans. The BFG is such a classic and heartwarming children’s book that you just can’t go wrong with a themed homeschool unit!
- “Holes” Literature Unit Study. Many of us read Holes as kids, perhaps even in school! It’s a fun story and lends itself to an exciting setting for a unit study.
- “Journey to the Center of the Earth” Unit Study. Journey to the Center of the Earth is a classic, and for good reason! Enjoy the intricacies of arguably one of Jules Verne’s most well-known stories with this study guide.
- “Black Beauty” Unit Study. Black Beauty is sad, but a classic and endearing story nonetheless. This unit study adds depth and dimension to the experience.
- “Around the World in 80 Days” Unit Study + Printable. This one is also great! With the popularity of the film so many years ago, most of us have read this classic of Jules Verne and enjoyed it. It’s starkly different than the movie and worth a read! These unit studies help students dig even more from the story than they would by simply reading the novel.
- “Wonder” Literature Unit Study Resources. Wonder is such a sweet, sad, heartwarming, and incredible story! Make this wonderful book into a unit study for your homeschooler with these resources.
- “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” Teaching Guide. Most of us had The Adventures of Tom Sawyer on our reading list as kids to experience the classics of Mark Twain. Make it even more fun with this teaching guide!
- “James and the Giant Peach” Literature Study Guide. You can’t have a list of literature-based unit studies without including one of the best children’s books: James and the Giant Peach! It’s a personal favorite of ours and one of my biggest recommendations.
- “Pride and Prejudice” Study Guide. Pride and Prejudice is a book for all to read. Jane Austen’s writing style is unique. While some love it and others don’t, a unit on this book will help ensure your student’s reading experience is well-rounded.
10 Literature Unit Study Resources
Unit studies are such a popular method of instruction for homeschoolers, beyond the aforementioned benefits, because they take an experience (i.e. a journey within a story), from one format (reading) to another entirely (visual, spatial, auditory, tactile, even gustatory!). The opportunities for exploring themes, stories, and aspects within literature are boundless. Unit studies break down the barriers. In a sentence, they add excitement, life, and dimension! Here are ten resources for exploring further unit studies, creating your own, or even supplementing a literature course!
The technique of combining multiple subjects into one study helps your child see the importance and impact of each subject in a themed unit. Your student may even find themselves no longer disliking certain subjects, such as math or science, when they are combined with others in an intriguing study. Let these unit studies help create excitement and inspire a love of learning in your homeschool!
Do you have a book you’d like a literature unit study for? Let us know in the comments below!