Unit Studies We Can Handle

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Unit studies always seemed like a lot of work. But not these Online Unit Studies! Three cheers for digital resources in the homeschool!

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My friend Beth Napoli is a mama to five homeschool girls.  She’s been creating unit studies for her kids for years.  It used to involve trips to the library and lots of books.  But recently, with the explosion in the availability of on-line resources, Beth began developing on-line unit studies for her girls.  Now she is making those unit studies available to others through her website Techie Homeschool Mom!

Unit studies always seemed like a lot of work. But not these Online Unit Studies! Three cheers for digital resources in the homeschool!

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We recently signed up for Beth’s course called Famous Artists On-Line Unit Study.  Already I am impressed!  The first module was called “What is Art?” and led the children in an exploration of the concepts of “art” and “fine art” including a quiz where the children had to try to distinguish famous high-dollar art from kids’ refrigerator masterpieces.  Not an easy task!  (Note: You can try this module for free here.)

Each of the next ten modules focuses on one famous artist and each represents a different art movement.  Right now we are working our way through the DaVinci module and learning about Renaissance art.  I have to be honest; I have next to no background knowledge on any of these artists or art movements.  But I have been learning right along with the kids and loving every moment of it!

We learned about the “sfumato” technique he used (I bet you don’t know what that is!!) and a modern digital photographer who has invented a camera that can capture the individual layers of oils and pigment that Da Vinci used to create the Mona Lisa!

Today we studied the Mona Lisa particularly and learned about a man who tried to steal the painting in the early 1900’s!  And then we got to our first hands-on project.  When I hear the term “hands-on” I usually feel a little knot developing in my stomach.  Either the materials will be bizarre or expensive or the project will be beyond my ability to demonstrate, manage or clean up (or all three!).  But so far this hasn’t been the case at all with this On-Line Unit Study.  Today, we made Mona Lisa Parodies!!

All I had to do was to print out some black-line masters, tape them to the sliding glass door and provide paper, pencils, markers and colored pencils!  That was it!

Blackline Master


Robyn, Age 6


Ruth, Age 8


Emma, Age 9


Luke, Age 10


Mama, Age 37

If this all sounds amazing, let me assure you that it is!  Beth has put a tremendous amount of work into this and it will certainly provide weeks of excellent, enriching information and discussion.  This unit includes eleven modules in total and lifetime access! Sign up now and use it whenever you wish!

  • Lynna! Thank you for sharing this! What an amazing resource; I think we will definitely do this next year. So glad I finally found your site!

  • You definitely should check it out! She has some mini-units that are only $5, but for subscribers to her blog, they are free!

  • I feel like now would be such a good time for my kids and I to explore some online learning resources. Are these unit studies written to the parent, or could my oldest take the reins with one on his own? (He’s 11).

    • Yes, he totally could. We did it as a group because some of mine are too little. But he should have no trouble.

  • Thanks Lynna and Beth I look forward to showing this to the kiddos they’ve been asking for some art I’m sure they are going to love it.

  • That is some seriously cute artwork. Mama did a great job too!