Monday, February 18, 2013

1824 - Josefina :: An American Girl Lap Book and Unit Study

The girls completed their Josefina lap books last Spring (as you can tell by the green grass and flowers in the background, and Chiquita's long hair!  Oh, and Twinkle Toes braces free smile! lol) but I am just now finishing up the post since we just did a brief review and crafted the "Corn Husk Doll!"


Josefina Doll and Mini Doll
Free Josefina Mini Books from Homeschool Share

*You can also find the girls' bonnets here.  They make great Easter Basket gifts

~ Front Cover ~ 

For the cover the girls each choose an image from the American Girl Website's Wallpaper selections, cropping and pasting it to the front of their covers.  They then cut out the year "1824" with the help of our Cricut to add to the front cover as well.

~ Inside First Folder ~ 

 Free Josefina Mini Books from Homeschool Share:
  • Who is Josefina?
  • United States Map
  • In Josefina's Day
  • Josefina's Favorites

~ Inside Second Folder ~ 

 Free Josefina Mini Books from Homeschool Share:
  • Living in 1824
  • Conflict
  • Sombrieta
  • Spanish Words
  • Josefina's World
  • Recipe Pocket (homemade)

The girls love embellishing their Lap Books with their American Girl Historical Dolls Stickers

New Mexican Hot Chocolate ~

New Mexican Hot Chocolate
Serves 4

  • 5 Tablespoons powdered, unsweetened coca
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


Combine the cocoa, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and honey in a saucepan and mix well.  Stir in the hot water.  Heat over medium-high stirring constantly until it begins to boil.  Immediately turn down the heat and simmer for 30 seconds.  Add the milk to the mixture and continue to stir constantly over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, or until hot, but do not boil.  Remove from heat.  Stir in vanilla. Whisk until frothy.  Pour into mugs and top with a sprinkling of cinnamon. 

~ Bizochitos ~

We also made Bizcochitos, but I can't seem to find the pictures... 

~ Additional Crafts ~

Make a Corn Husk Doll

We used an Early American Corn Husk Doll Kit to make our doll,
but you can also find free directions online.

Painted Memory Box

The girls also have the Painted Memory Box Craft Kit, but decide to save it for an upcoming special occasion! ;)

The American Girl Website has additional fun games and activities as well! 

The girls continued studying the Early 19th Century with the boys, in addition to working on a Kirsten Unit Study/Lap Book.


  1. What beautiful memories for your daughters!

    (decreas to increase)

  2. Jessica,

    How much time do you spend on your American Girl unit studies? How many days a week/hours a week do you set aside for the study? I'm doing a Samantha study with my daughter this winter and am struggling to fit it in. Especially since I would like her to try some hands-on crafts from the time period.

    Your girls do such a great job with their lapbooks!

    1. It's really hard to tell exactly how much time we spend... The girls work on their reading checklist independently, and then I give them the mini books to complete on their own as they have extra time (usually 1-2 a week). They store the mini-books in a ziplock bag until we are ready to assemble the lap book.

      We do the baking and crafts together, as well as assembling the Lap Book. I try to have these activities as our focus one afternoon each week and over the whole unit we usually spend 1-2 afternoons baking, 1-2 afternoons with extra crafts or games, and one afternoon assembling the lap book and discussing everything they have been learning. This year I have scheduled our Unit Study's to last about 9 weeks (1 per semester), so we don't get to the extra activities each week, which works out good for those weeks that have additional other activities (holidays, birthdays, feast days, State-by-State baking days, etc). Though it has still been difficult to find the extra time.

  3. Post was, as always, fabulous. But I could not help but marvel at how long Chiquita's hair is. It seems like just yesterday she had it cut short for a wedding (?)

    1. Oh, funny! I mentioned, but you probably missed it, that the picture of the girls in this post was taken last Spring, before Chiquita donated her hair to Locks of Love and before Twinkle Toes got her braces on.

      I am missing Chiquita's long hair!! It grows fast though... She did have it cut off prior to my brother's wedding (good memory!) before it grew to the length pictured in this post. And then last June she had it cut again to donate to Locks of Love. Her hair does grow fast! Currently it is just below her shoulders.

  4. Thank you so much for sharing this! I have just started an American Girl Club for my daughter and some of our homeschool community. We did Felicity last month and will do Josefina this month. I will for sure be using many of your ideas.


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