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Fox and Folk Music Homeschool Unit

Looking for a fun Fox themed homeschool unit? We love foxes at our house, mostly because we have a fox that lives in our yard! We see him (her?) almost daily and have had many conversations about him. When I was prepping our homeschool units for November, I came across several books about fall that featured foxes. We start everyday school day with a read aloud and these were the two favorites I introduced to our library this unit.

Fletcher and the Falling Leaves by Julia Rawlinson and The Fox Went Out on A Chilly Night illustrated by Peter Spier; Lyrics by Burl Ives

To my surprise, The Fox Went Out on A Chilly Night, is not actually an original book. It is an old folk song by Burl Ives. This played well into our music appreciation for the unit since Burl Ives is a beloved musician that my kids actually already are familiar with. (It's my fault. I am obsessed with Christmas music!) In the illustrator's note at the back of the book, it gives the story about how he felt inspired to illustrate the lovely song and how half a century later, the famous award winning book even got a facelift when he was asked to add color to some of the black and white drawings! My kids really loved that part.

After reading the book several times, we listened to different versions of the song. Our favorite was this one by Sugarloaf Mountain. Here is that same version with the illustrations from the book highlighted. My littlest in particular like that one "She said the art exploded with the music behind it!"

While we dove a little into the history of Burl Ives, I was surprised to learn that I knew so little about him myself. I recommend this short piece for the grown-ups seeking to learn more! Would also be wonderful for older teens who are doing a project or report on folk music in the United States.

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Of course, no homeschool unit is complete without a craft. If you know me, you know I hate crafting. Unfortunately I gave birth to three of the biggest crafters in the universe. The FOX craft from Easy Peasy and Fun was huge hit with all three AND a good way to get them to clean up some leaves in the yard while they searched for the perfect leaf for the fox. :)