The Lessons & Legacy of World War II

“The Lessons and Legacy of World War II” is a collaboration between the Friends of the National WW II Memorial and the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. The primary source based lessons here explore five themes of World War II:

The Beginnings of World War II
The United States Home Front during WW II
Letters from American men and women on the battle front
Pivotal battles and the turning of the tide
Victory and the legacy of WW II

Each downloadable lesson includes important historical background and context for the teacher, cross reference to the National Standards of United States History, an essential question to be explored by students, objectives for student learning, related documents, learning activities for student engagement.

CLICK HERE to go to the site!


An Introduction to Chemistry EBOOK

An Introduction to Chemistry by Mark Bishop, is a textbook intended for use in beginning chemistry courses with no chemistry prerequisite, and was designed by the author’s experience of teaching introductory chemistry for over 30 years at Monterey Peninsula College, CA. This textbook has garnered praise and classroom adoptions nationwide for its accessible presentation and student-friendly features. The text was written for students who want to prepare themselves for general college chemistry, for students seeking to satisfy a science requirement for graduation, and for students in health-related or other programs that require an introduction to general chemistry.

The textbook is available in two versions to meet all teaching preferences:

  • The Chemistry-First version covers chemical reactions early and postpones math-related topics until slightly later in the book.
  • The Atoms-First version provides a more complete description of atomic theory and bonding early and describes chemical reactions later and presents the math-related topics earlier.

The PDF and ebook versions of the textbook are available for free downloading from the website, along with supplementary animations and other resources. The author does request a donation if you like the text and use the materials for a complete chemistry course, but it is not required.

CLICK HERE to go to the site!


Shoot Like a Pro

Created by a 25+ year professional photographer, photo journalist and college photography instructor, this excellent ebook clearly explains five “core” photography tips/principles to taking outstanding photographs:

Identifying Light and Using It Correctly
Photo Composition Techniques
How to Capture Moments
Photographing People
Using “Point of View” to Capture Unique Images

The ebook includes 40 beautiful images and examples that clearly illustrate the principles taught. Whether you’re using a camera or phone, this is a perfect mini-course that will help both you and your kids take much better photos. Think “Photography 101!”

To download this PDF ebook, RIGHT CLICK HERE then “save link” to your computer. Mac users, press the “control” key then click the link and save to your mac.

Civics, Government

PBS Crash Course in US Government and Politics

Host Craig Benzine takes you through a tour of US government and politics in this energetic series of 48 video lessons, each about 8 or 9 minutes long. Each episode focuses on a different aspect of US government, including the three branches of government, checks and balances, how bills become law, and many more.

These are short, high energy videos, and are a lot of fun to watch. Great for Jr. high and up!

CLICK HERE to go to the site!

Physics, Science

Explain That Stuff!

How does it work? What makes it go? What’s the science behind it? If those are the kinds of questions you like to ask, “Explain That Stuff” is the right place to go.

Explain that Stuff is an online book written by British science writer Chris Woodford (author of many popular science books for adults and children). It includes 450 easy-to-understand articles (plus over 2000 photos and 1000 illustrations), covering how things work, cutting-edge science, cool gadgets, and computers. (Their motto: “We take the “pain” from explain and the “tough” out of stuff!”) There’s more information on this website than in your average expensive science book, it’s continually updated, and it’s completely free to use. Highly recommended!

Click here to go to the site!


Compound Interest

Compound Interest (created by Andy Brunning, a UK based chemistry teacher) is a site that aims to take a closer look at the chemical compounds we come across on a day-to-day basis, explaining them with easy-to-understand graphics.

The infographics and accompanying texts are fascinating looks at the chemistry that affects our lives, albeit usually behind the scenes. They are sorted by type of chemistry: atmospheric, aroma, biochemistry, colors, chemical warfare, food, poisons, and many more. Most (but not all) are suitable for homeschool use, especially for Jr. High – High School ages. You’ll want to browse the site to find topics that interest your student, or fit in with your other studies.

Click here to go to the site

Here are a few of our favorites you might wish to check out:

The Smell of New Books vs. Old Books

The Chemistry of Thunderstorms

What Temperature Does Water Boil At?





The First Spelling Book


Today’s resource is this wonderful spelling lesson book, originally published for primary grade students in the Philipines. As such, it has a fascinating agricultural / Philipino slant with delightful illustrations, so there is some cultural learning going on along with the spelling lessons. Each of the lessons in this book has instructions for the teacher at the bottom of each page to help you in presenting the lesson. Lessons are meant for the second through fourth grades, and there is lots of variety in the presentations. Lots of fun, one of our favorite vintage spellers ever. Enjoy!

Note: This ebook is a scanned copy of the original printed book. We recommend viewing on a computer, not a phone.

To download this PDF ebook, RIGHT CLICK HERE and “save link” to your computer. Mac users, press the “control” key then click the link and save to your Mac.

Arts & Crafts

The Mother Goose Coloring Book

Today’s resource is this lovely collection of vintage illustrated Mother Goose rhymes, taken from various books from the late 1800s & early 1900s.

Great for coloring and for learning or re-visiting these classic childhood rhymes. Enjoy!

To download this PDF coloring book, RIGHT CLICK HERE and “save link” to your computer. Mac users, press the “control” key, then click the link and save to your mac.


In the Days of the Guild

Today’s resource is this great historical storybook, set in 13th Century Europe, telling the stories of different boys and girls who came to learn and master different trades through apprenticeship to different craftsmen and merchant guilds. These stories run the gamut of many of the main crafts and industries of the Medieval period, including scribes, wool merchants, stained glass artisans, goldsmith, potter, goose girl, perfumer, musician, and many more.

The book includes lots of excellent illustrations with some color plates too. A wonderful “living history” book that really brings the times to life through the stories of these young people finding their “calling” in life, 13th Century style.

Note: This is a scanned PDF of the original printed book, so it may not be viewable on a phone or portable device. We suggest downloading to a computer.

To download this PDF ebook, RIGHT CLICK HERE then “save link” to your computer. Mac users, press the “control” key, then click the link and save to your Mac.


Don’t Forget the Poetry!

This brief but activity-filled unit study on poetry by Amy Ringger will get you excited about studying poetry with your kids this Spring. This little gem was written to put the tools in your hands to immediately be able to bring poetry to life for your children!

* Learn how poetry opens the door to improving your grammar and spelling skills.

* See examples of poems in different forms that her family has written (that you can emulate) to show you that anyone can write poetry.

* Learn how to s-t-r-e-t-c-h your kids’ own imagination and writing skills by creating their own poems.

* Follow Amy’s helpful tips and instructions for compiling your own book of poetry favorites using blank books.

* Also included: Amy’s own “gold nugget” resource guide to favorite family-friendly poets and poetry books, to ensure you get started with some wonderful poetry your kids will love.

This short little guide will help you put together a concise, “hands on” unit study that — accompanied by a trip to your local library — will give you all you need to conduct an entertaining, educational and memorable study of poetry. It does NOT require a lot of preparation on your part to implement. You can read through it and map out your study plan in about an hour.

To download this PDF ebook, CLICK HERE!