Marco Polo & Prince Henry ‘The Navigator’ Lesson for Kids

Next up in our homeschool history for kids  is the 2nd week in our hands on early explorers for kids unit. This week’s history lesson focuses on Marco Polo and Henry the Navigator for Kids.

Early Explorers Unit - Tons of fun, hands on history activities to make learning fun! These explorer activities are perfect for kids from kindergarten to first grade, 2nd grade, 5th grade and more to make learning fun in social studies. Includes: Marco Polo, Henry the Navigator and more

Marco Polo & Prince Henry ‘The Navigator’ Lesson for Kids


Walk the Silk Route Hands on History for Homeschoolers

We walked the silk route (like Marco Polo did).  I put different items along our route to ‘discover’. Items we discovered along the way that were new to the Europeans: umbrella, coal, paper money, postal system, kite, hot water from tap, and good roads. The road then took us to the kitchen.

Spice Painting of Kublai Khan’s Palace

We explored spices from the East: cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, ginger, pepper, saffron, and poppy.  After smelling & feeling differences Goofy made a painting with the spices of Kublai Khanh’s palace. He LOVED this activity!

Marco Polo for Kids- hands on homeschool historySpice Painting for Kids homeschool history

Learning about Camels

We learned about camels (we were going to make a sock puppet camel, but we ran out of time and had recently made snowman out of socks)

Math in Early Explorers

It took 4 years for Marco Polo to get to China to meet Kublai Khan – how many days/month/years is that?

Discovering Silk for Homeschoolers

Explore silk – we went to Joann Fabrics and I let the kids explore with their hands. They felt the difference in materials: silk was a favorite =-)

Tasting Chinese Food for Homeschool Marco Polo Study

Chinese Food– Chinese is one of our favorite kinds of food so I whipped up some Kung Pao for dinner. You could also easily get some take out and eat out of the fun take out containers!! (If you live in Minnesota you HAVE to try Willow Gate – my favorite Chinese restaurant ever!!)

Macro Polo Video & Worksheet for Kids

free marco polo lapbook and worksheets for homeschoolers

Download FREE Marco Polo Lapbook and Worksheets for Homeschoolers

    By downloading from my site you agree to the following: 

    • This is for personal use only (teachers please see my TPT store)
    • This may NOT be sold, hosted, reproduced, or stored on any other site (including blog, Facebook, Dropbox, etc.)
    • All downloaded materials provided are copyright protected. Please see Terms of Use.
    • I offer free printables to bless my readers AND to provide for my family. Your frequent visits to my blog & support purchasing through affiliates links and ads keep the lights on so to speak. Thanks you!

>> Download Marco Polo Lapbook <<

Marco Polo Books for Kids

Favorite books to teach about Marco Polo in order of preference: #1 – Marco Polo by Demi (our cover looks different; it has beautiful illustrations that are gold & look like they are from the old Orient, tells the story in good depth for K-4th), #2 – written like a comic so great for a kid who is reading; summarized story but covers the highlights, #3 – you are the servant traveling with Marco Polo; good reality check with illustrations & information; written for 1st-6th grade


Prince Henry “the Navigator” for Kids

Homeade Compass for Kids

We made a compass – Find a plastic lid (think the size of a mayonnaise jar) and fill it with water. Slice a carrot, zucchini, etc. Strike a needle with a magnet 40 times and insert in veggie. Put veggie in the lid with water & watch it work! Goofy that it was pretty cool!!
Homeade Compass for Kids

Compass Scavenger Hunt

We had a Compass Scavenger Hunt(I would give you a printable, but this was personal to our house so it wouldn’t do you much good.) Goofy went certain number of paces N or S, turned East, etc. He thought it was so much fun he asked to do it again!

Henry the Navigator Books

I did not find any good book to read on Prince Henry…. so we read the information about him I found online and located Portugal & Africa on a map. (Because of this there is not a lapbook on him, but we did pencil him in to our lapbook timeline.)

Konos Early Explorers Curriculum Review

Materials I looked into to do our Explorers unit & what I thought of them:  KONOS Explorers

      • Timeline Characters – If you are making a timeline on your wall check this out. It has 24 cartooned explorer images with their names: Ponce de Leon, Hernando Cortez, Magellan, La Salle, de Soto, Cartier, Balboa, Pizarro, Polo, Vespucci, Cabot, de Gama, Columbus, Diaz, Erikson, Drake, Marquette, Henry the Navigator, Hudson, Coronado, Champlain, Raleigh, and Montezuma. It is currently listed at $9.95 at Konos. (We decided to make our lapbook itself into a timeline)
      • Activity Book – I did use a couple of ideas from here and there were some clever ideas. But overall I thought it was kind of vanilla considering what you can find for free by doing a Google search. There are 125 activities from cooking, acting, science, etc. It also includes a list of book recommendations, but I found many were no longer available at my local library. It is also currently listed at $9.95 at Konos.

About the author

Beth Gorden

Beth Gorden is the creative multi-tasking creator of 123 Homeschool 4 Me. As a busy homeschooling mother of six, she strives to create hands-on learning activities and worksheets that kids will love to make learning FUN! Beth is also the creator of www.kindergartenworksheetsandgames.com where she shares Kindergarten spedicif worksheets,& educational ideas.


Leave a Comment