We recently went back and looked at Henry VIII, his wives and the King’s Great Matter again. We have covered Henry and his wives already just by going out to various places and reading our different History books but this time we focused on his different wives and how everything unfolded together with the changes in the religion in England.
After we had covered everything I gave my daughter the Oaka Book Henry VIII Topic Pack to work through. It was a lovely summary of the events and she really liked the different character cards that came with the pack (she loved the different way the wives were depicted).
We read through the topic booklet together (it covers his different wives, the rise of Protestantism, what the Great Matter was all about, Thomas Wolsey, Thomas Cranmer, Oath of Succession and the Act of Supremacy). And even though we read this as a summary activity it actually ended up explaining the difference between the Oath of Succession and the Act of Supremacy which was not clearly included in the other sources that we had used. This is one of the reason why I like using different sources, we always find something extra when we use more than one source.
I also really liked the way they summarised the different wives into a “mind-map” type page.
My daughter worked through the topic booklet by herself.
And then we moved onto the Active Learning Map and Character Cards. This tends to be the one difference between the packs. The Science and Geography packs tend to have board games whereas the History packs tend to have these learning maps.
My daughter uses the learning maps and character cards in a few different ways. She likes to work through the learning map answering the questions (this is a great way of finding out if they have understood everything) and while she is answering the questions she adds in the character cards where she thinks appropriate.
She also likes to use the character cards in her way to retell the sequence of events and to summarise how key characters are linked. She is a visual learning so she likes using the cards when she “tests” herself to see if she can get the sequence correct and the links between key figures correct.
We found the Henry VIII Topic Pack to be the perfect summary activity for our History topic and we really liked the summary pages on the wives and enjoyed being able to use the character cards in our own retelling of events.
I do want to point out there are two other topic packs – Thomas Wolsey and the Dissolution of the Monasteries and the Pilgrimage of the Grace which cover these two topics in more detail. This pack is about Henry VIII and although it mentions Thomas Wolsey and the dissolution of the Monasteries it does not go into detail. For detail I think you would need these other two packs (I have not seen these packs but from what I can see on the website these would cover those 2 topics in more detail).