History Timelines Using Paint Sticks & Washi Tape

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I have a confession:  our homeschool has never created history timelines. Sure, we have written down dates here and events there, but nothing formal or in one place. When we started using All American History Volume II from Bright Press Ideas, I knew we had the homeschool curriculum that we needed to get started with timelines!

Why, you may ask, did we never use history timelines? To be honest, I'm really not quite sure. In part, our homeschool areas have shifted over the years. I suppose I didn't want the hassle of hanging something up,  only to take it down again.

Also, prior history curricula used by the boys did not offer much in terms of timeline support. Suggestions or facts were not listed in lessons. I simply overlooked using history timelines in our homeschool.


All American History timelines

As we have shared, Busy Boys Brigade was very excited when our All American History materials arrived. Each of the three books are full of wonderful information, illustrations, and ideas.

  • Student Reader-The main text used by student to read lessons, study maps, and view historical images.
  • Student Activity Book-Workbook with review questions, mapwork, quizzes, and Presidential Biography forms.
  • Teacher's Guide/Answer Key-This workbook is momma's favorite! Full of suggestions, book lists, project ideas, and more! All Student Activity Book answers are in here, too.

I was thrilled to see timelines listed for each unit (total of 4 units in this series). All American History made it so easy for my boys and I to get started on our history timelines!

But, just how would we put together these timelines?

After some lengthy discussion (my boys love to plan out projects!), I remembered that Coach had brought home a box of paint sticks. I thought we would give it a go at painting the sticks and seeing what we could come up with in terms of timelines.

All American History timelines

How To Create History Timelines Using Paint Sticks

This process is simple. Make sure to lay out newspaper or other material to protect surfaces. Also, let paint thoroughly dry before applying marker or washi tape.

Paint Stick History Timelines Materials:

  • paint sticks (we have an extra large size)
  • tempera paint
  • sandpaper (if paint stick has any writing, use sandpaper to erase)
  • washi tape
  • scissors
  • permanent markers
  • paint or foam brushes
  • newspaper (or other protective material)
  • ruler
  • pencil

boys sitting at a table painting paint sticks to make history timelines
Smiley & Captain preparing a few Paint Stick History Timelines


young boy painting paint stick to make a history timeline
Xman helping prepare Paint Sticks History Timelines

Apply paint to sticks and let dry. Use ruler and pencil to mark off years or decades. Use washi tape to mark off years or decades (and on handle, if desired). Use marker to write date, event, and/or name.history timelines paint sticks materials

The boys had a fun time painting the paint sticks. As the paint dried, we looked at the timelines shown in All American History Teacher's Guide. We decided to create two paint sticks history timelines at this time.history timelines on paint sticks

One of the review activities suggested by All American History is memorizing the order of the United States Presidents. My boys enjoy this type of memorization and coming up with different ways to practice. It was declared that a Paint Stick History Timeline would be created for American Presidents.history timeline paint sticks

The other paint stick timeline was created to represent The Gilded Age (also known as The Age of Enterprise, The Age of Optimism, or The Victorian Age). The boys are currently working on Unit 2:  The Gilded Age in All American History Volume II. This timeline activity helped to solidify their understanding and recall of the dates, events, and people of this time period.history timelines paint stick


We plan on using these Paint Stick History Timelines a few different ways:

  • using clothespins to mark off answers to review questions
  • against poster board to write more information about each date, time, or person
  • written on both sides to maximize use of space and review


For more information about All American History by Bright Press Ideas, visit their site and follow for updates. Two homeschool All American History volumes are available, as well as many other fantastic resources.


site:  www.brightpressideas.com





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Please read these other Busy Boys Brigade posts for more ideas on how we are loving this homeschool history curriculum:

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