50 State Study: Kentucky


Kentucky was a fun state, and I enjoyed getting to watch some of the Kentucky Derby videos while we were studying it. Hi! Future Ticia 2023, we just redid our Kentucky Unit, just a quick overviews so the kids could remember everything we learned, so I’m updating this to be more in line with our current geography lessons, while keeping some of what we did back then.

Kentucky Unit

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Kentucky Unit booklist

Apparently years ago when first writing about our Kentucky unit I never felt like sharing with you what books we used. Sigh, silly 2012 Ticia, if you want a printable version of the booklist go join my newsletter and you can find it on the subscriber page.

Kentucky booklist
  • Kentucky Rookie Reader
  • Wagon Wheels– is based on a true story of a possibly formerly enslaved family (that part was not included in the end bio, it mentioned some people at Nicodemus were formerly enslaved) and young boys who walked 150 miles to join their father after he moved on and asked for them to join
  • Abe Lincoln Crosses a Creek– a true story told in the style of a tall tale, I ended up not including an Abraham Lincoln mini-book because while he was BORN in Kentucky, he grew up primarily in Illinois
  • Night Boat to Freedom– I loved this book when we read it for the first time, it was such a great story of a family escaping to freedom, also the illustrations are AMAZING! I opted for a generic Underground Railroad mini-book to go with this in the updated notebooking pages
  • Happy birthday to you!– a longer picture book on how the song was written, which has FINALLY entered the public domain (primarily because someone fought to say, “No, there is no way you still have a copyright”)
  • Muhammad Ali: champion of the world– I forgot to add him to my recreated booklist, so I don’t have a copy to skim beforehand, I’m adding this when I remembered I forgot to add him in

Kentucky Unit videos

Modern 2023 Ticia uses YouTube videos for our geography, however, there are not really any GOOD United States geography videos, so let me show you the choices we have and you can choose the least painful version to watch.

My kids love to make fun of Homeschool Pop, it is very repetitive, and is so insanely cheesy.

I’m sorry, but if you’ve got a rapping bald eagle, that is just hilarious. I think this is the actual video we watched for our study. There were many comments on the existence of a rapping cardinal with special guest star bald eagle.

Kentucky Unit for homeschool geography

The kids’ new favorite version of US geography is a pirate, who sadly only has videos for just a few states. I say sadly, but I don’t know if it is sadly. There is another version that I put on to make the kids glad I never seriously did videos because it’s a teen girl and her tween sister while their Dad uses a weird sock puppet. It’s rather weird and odd.

This is part of a larger 50-state study

50 state study geography North America United States elementary preschool middle high

We’ve been slowly, very slowly, and now that the kids are seniors much faster, working through the United States, and are almost done with it. But, because we’ve been studying this a lot, I have a large number of United States Geography Posts, and I want to make sure you see it.

Let’s look at our old Kentucky Unit

Okay, I went for a very different version, which is kind of amusing to see

original Kentucky unit

This is what happens when you let the kids be “responsible” for their stuff.  Two of the items are lost/missing and one is glued in upside down.

Well, from top right going clockwise:

  • Young Abraham Lincoln– He was born in Kentucky before moving to Illinois, and there’s a great book about friendship and it’s also a great book to compare truth and fiction in a biography.  We wrote what makes a good friend.
  • Mohammad Ali– I learned so much about him from the books I checked out, and we all wrote catchphrases.  Of course ours weren’t really that catchy……..  More on monologues.
  • Daniel Boone– We had fun observing pictures of the real Daniel Boone and talking about him and making our own surveying equipment.

Yeah……..  That’s the pages I could find, not found:

  • Night Boat to Freedom– What color would you wear to freedom, or as all the boys there interpreted it that day: “How to arm a rowboat with nuclear missiles.”
  • State symbols- I love that they have a state motto: “To the stars through difficulty.”

Not included because they weren’t paper products:

Kentucky Derby hat
Silly past Ticia saved this picture so darn small
  • Kentucky Derby hats– because making hats out of paper plates and plastic bowls is always fun.
  • Happy Birthday to You- Ummmm, we read this book about the authors of that song, but for some reason I can find no information on what we did.  GROWL………………

Our current Kentucky Unit

We sat down and watched the videos I linked above, but really only the rapping birds as we filled out our US geography notebooking pages.

Kentucky notebooking pages

For me, having driven through Kentucky once or twice, my big memories are of the hills and lots of grass and stopping at the Kentucky Horse Park.

Kentucky Mini-books

  • Kentucky Derby
  • Underground Railroad
  • Kentucky symbols
  • Daniel Boone
  • Muhammad Ali
Kentucky Unit, 50 state study

More great learning fun

Okay, so I clearly linked to several posts related to Kentucky in some way shape or form, but let’s see what else we’ve done. I’m going to randomly grab updated posts, let’s see what I find:

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