A New Timeline Trick

I hope to blog a little about some of the things we do around here for homeschool, but judging how often I actually blog, those posts will be few and far between.  But I wanted to share a project we did recently to help my little one learn the timeline.

(FYI we use Classical Conversations as the backbone of our homeschool, so when I say timeline, I’m referring to the CC timeline.)

My daughter loves the timeline.  Even last year when we had no song and the (sub-par, IMO) Veritas Press cards, she absolutely loved it.  She loves seeing how the pieces of history come together in one long story.  I’ve been trying to think of fun ways for us to study the timeline other than just recitation of the song.

One of the things we do is a timeline notebook/book of centuries (free download available through Simply Charlotte Mason).  Another thing we do is make a giant timeline board out of a foam posterboard.  My daughter is very hands-on in her learning style, and I wanted something she could manipulate while studying her favorite subject, especially with Memory Master so rapidly approaching.  So I took the mini timeline images I made for our book of centuries and posterboard and made her some small timeline cards that are easily portable and manipulated with her small hands.

I originally made our mini-images last summer.  I spent probably 3-4 hours downloading the images listed on the “info” page in each pack of the Acts & Facts cards.  Then I created a template in Photoshop and dropped the photos and card titles/dates into the template, making one page per week.  Then I saved them as PDFs and printed out several copies for us to use throughout the year.  I had done this the previous year for the board we made for the VP cards.  The small images are perfect for my eager little 6 year old to paste into her book each week.

I started by cutting out every. single. image. of each card.  All 161.  (Please excuse the poor phone photo quality, but there was no way I was dragging out my hubby’s DSLR with so much cutting ahead of me.)


Then, since each image was different in size, I cut out pieces of cardstock for the backing of each card.  Then I glued the images onto the cardstock.


(I used cardstock leftover from the days I used to paper scrapbook.  I haven’t paper-scrapbooked in over 7 years.  Someone call Hoarders, stat.  I have issues with letting go of paper.  Maybe I’ll use my whole stash by the time she graduates high school.)

Then I ran them all through the laminator.  Because a, I’m a homeschool mom which means I laminate things that sit still long enough; and b, because I want the cards to last.


This morning we pulled out the cards to review.  And my little hands-on, “timeline titan” (my nickname for her) was beside herself with joy.  She mixed them all up…


… and organized them by Age (I color-coded the cards) before putting them in order.  You can see the beginning of her timeline behind her at the edge of the rug in the above picture.


We spent most of the morning playing with her new timeline cards.  She had a blast.  And she was so proud of her completed “tiny timeline” that she made me leave it on the floor so she could show her daddy when he came home.

You may be thinking, “Uh… why???  Why all this work when we have timeline cards already?”  Because those cards are too big for her to lay out end-to-end, and frankly my hole-punching ability isn’t great and it’s a pain to get them all back on the binder ring.

The next obvious thing is: surely, surely, I’m going to share my card image pages with you.  Well, I wish I could.  But just like the VP timeline, the new CC timeline is copyright protected.  Meaning I can’t distribute anything (unless I have absolute proof you purchased and own the cards yourself) or I’m in serious violation of copyright.  I even looked on CC Connected last night to see if it would be safe to upload them there, but I didn’t see anything on CC Connected with actual images, so in the self-interest of not getting myself in heaps of trouble, I’m not uploading them there.

But.  BUT!  I’m not going to show you these cards and then just laugh and walk away.  No, I’m going to tell you how to make them yourself.  Without having to spend 3-4 hours downloading the images on the cards.  And all you need is your CC Connected subscription, a paper cutter and/or scissors, some cardstock, some glue, and a laminator (if you choose).

First, log on to CC Connected and go to the Tutorials section.


Then click on Cycle 1 and Timeline.


From there, go through each week (yep, ya gotta) and screen print each week.  The tutorials have small images of each card on them.  So I would assume that if someone has a CC Connected subscription, then it’s OK for them to have access to these.  🙂

(FYI for Mac users, over the summer, I could not do a full screen print from Chrome.  I don’t know if it was a Chrome issue or a Flash issue or what, but it did not work.  So if you try it and can’t get a full screen shot, switch to Safari.  I had no trouble with Safari when I need to print a tutorial screen.)

And then it’s just simple cutting and pasting (and laminating).  My cardstock backs were sized to 3X4.  For the tutorial screen images, you might could go a little smaller than that.  Play around and see what size works best!

I color-coded each Age as follows:

Purple: Age of Ancient Empires

Yellow: Middle Ages

Pink: Ages of Exploration, Monarchs, Enlightenment*

Teal: Age of Industry

Green: Age of Info/Global

Periwinkle (not shown): Presidents**

* I combined these three Ages because they are combined on the song on the audio CD, and also because this is the section my daughter has the most trouble with, so I didn’t want to make it too easy.

** She has the presidents memorized from last year, so I’m not too worried about getting these cards finished.  Maybe that can be a project for this summer.

And that’s it!  I realize this post will get some eye rolls, and if this were just a one-time lesson, I would not have spent nearly this much time on such a project.  But we plan to continue with CC throughout her education, which means we’ll be using the timeline extensively for at least another 5 years until she moves on to Challenge.  We’re going to get lots of use out of these cards!  And anything that gets my girl excited about learning is exciting to me!


8 thoughts on “A New Timeline Trick

  1. Pingback: Our Cycle 2 CC plans | Growing because of His Grace

  2. yes, that’s a lot of work!! so let me tell you what I did… I went to Google Images and saved images from weeks 1-12 history sentences, then put them in a video montage along with each corresponding song…had I known it would take 4 hours, not sure I would have even started it 🙂 so, you’re not alone! and yes, I’ll be making some tiny timeline cards (laminated, of course)! I find it impossible to let my kids play with $100 worth of cards… thanks for the directions!!

  3. Thanks for sharing. I was thinking about these the other night, but couldn’t imagine scanning in every single card. This may be time consuming, but it’s much easier.

  4. Pingback: Our Plans – CC Cycle 2 Week 1 | Growing because of His Grace

  5. Pingback: Our Plans – CC Cycle 2 Week 2 | Growing because of His Grace

  6. Pingback: Our Plans – CC Cycle 2, Week 3 | Growing because of His Grace

  7. Thanks for sharing. Christine – would you consider sending me the link to your video montage for the history sentences? Is it uploaded to CC connected? I would love to have my girls use this for memory time.

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