Did you know that the Great Wall of China was paid for by salt?
Neither did we until we had the opportunity to explore the Box of I.D.E.As. unit on salt. The Great Wall of China module and the Salt March module were just two of the fascinating activities that we enjoyed as we worked our way through this treasure chest of ideas.
A physical box product from Box of I.D.E.As. is a unit study-like package that contains 10 or more zip-locked bags (modules) that focus on one unique, particular topic such as Salt, The Number 11, WWII, Quilting, or Laundry, and there are many more to come!
Before I received the Box of I.D.E.As. on salt, I was intensely curious to find out how someone could build a viable curriculum business around such seemingly random topics. If the salt unit is any indication of the quality of the other topic-units, the folks behind this curriculum are absolute geniuses at creating cross-curriculum, engaging, FUN activities that pique your students’ curiosity, offer fascinating insight, and compel critical thinking.
The Salt Box of I.D.E.As. contains the following modules:
Science of Salt
Language of Salt
The Salt March
The Wall that Salt Built
Preserving with Salt
Need for Salt
The Salt of the Earth
The History of Salt
Each module includes background information, game or activity instructions and all the materials needed to complete them, discussion questions, a portfolio worksheet, and web links. The whole kit also contains a final exam and essay questions, and answer keys. The modules include math, science, history, geography, and literature activities, and it is recommended for ages 9-16, but even my 18 year old enjoyed the activities with us.
At the least, Box of I.D.E.As. makes a fabulous once-a-week unit study, but families could easily turn it into a deeper cross-curriculum study by adding notebooking and lapbooking activities. Box of I.D.E.As. would make a great summer curriculum or a wonderful month-long or even semester study – it’s so easy to use and flexible.
Each module includes EVERYTHING you need to complete the lesson. Did I mention that already? I think that was my favorite part. Other than scheduling the time and herding my three busy teens into the same location for an hour, I had absolutely no prep work to worry about, and the lesson was a blast. I LOVED THAT!
The kids and I proceeded through 1 module per week each Friday. The first module we used was Language of Salt where we explored a plethora of salt idioms and metaphors that have been used throughout history around the world. The module contained a deck of cards for playing a matching game where players tried to match the card with the saying to the card that explained its origin. We tweaked the game a bit and played a version of “Go Fish” with the cards rather than just laying them out on a table and trying to match up the pairs. We had no idea how essential salt has been to the whole world throughout history, and we learned so much while enjoying each other’s company in the comfort of our own living room! Such sweet homeschooling moments are rare during the teenage years when one kid is taking pre-college classes, the other has a volunteer position, and another working part time… Box of I.D.E.As. was a real treat for my family.
I received the physical Box of I.D.E.As., which sells for $79, for the salt topic, and I was so glad that I did. You can also download the PDF version of the curriculum for $49 and print it yourself, but the physical box already has EVERYTHING printed and organized into grab-n-go bags. The game/study cards are already printed on card stock in full color. One module includes dice, game pieces, and a full-color game board on card stock, and another even includes a full-color, laminated menu chart and a dry-erase marker! Having everything at my fingertips like that was an incredible blessing to our busy household.
Box of I.D.E.As. is great for learners of all ages and abilities. The lessons cover all learning styles – auditory, visual, kinesthetic, actively doing, listening, writing, and more. My family enjoyed the modules that we covered during the review period, and we look forward to the rest of the lessons as well – especially the science experiment that tests rock salt’s power versus ice melt to liquify ice.
Who knew that the study of salt could be so fun and even meaningful and memorable? I am definitely curious to what could possibly be included in the Laundry unit, or even the Number 11 unit. What could Box of I.D.E.As. have in store??? I can’t think of any better way to fuel a love of learning and discovery. Box of I.D.E.As. is definitely worth its salt!
The SchoolHouse Review Crew took Salt and WWII-Pearl Harbor for spin. Click the image below to find out how other families used and enjoyed Box of I.D.E.As. activities.
Disclaimer: As a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew, I received this product at no cost to me in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are mine alone.