There are not many rules when discussing how to set up a time capsule, because you have to do what works for you! I don’t think there is a wrong way. Understanding WHAT a time capsule is will help you understand how to set one up. Setting up a time capsule was the first step in the Happy Hive Homeschool’s epic year of Holiday of the Day homeschooling adventures. You can set up a time capsule for any number of reasons, and at any time of the year! Keep reading for the how-to and plenty of ideas!
What is a Time Capsule?
A time capsule is a deliberate method of preserving materials so it survives into the future. The items placed in the time capsule can communicate what life was like at the time they were used. The time capsule can be hidden until discovered by future generations or it can simply be stored for a designated number of years.
How to set up a time capsule
In December of 2010 the Happy Hive created a time capsule. It was a simple bankers box. It was designed to store the memories and work samples from our year of Holiday Homeschooling. The outside is covered with “warning” signs: Do not open until 2020! Our Time capsule would be created and added to for one year, then stored for 9 additional years.
If you have children, grandchildren, or even for yourself, I highly recommend setting up a time capsule.
Here are some things to consider when setting up a time capsule for your homeschool.
What purpose will your time capsule serve?
Is your time capsule a family project or a student project? Is it meant to preserve only schoolwork or everything about life during the collection phase? Think about when the capsule will be opened and what will be communicated.
For example, our box had great work samples inside. After 10 years we were able to read them and laugh and laugh at the creative spelling that was used by each child. I was not a red pen spelling correcting mom. Those worksheets communicated that correcting every spelling mistake would have been the waste of time I knew it was. Each of my children survives out in society and can spell just fine.
Another question to decide beforehand is will you create ONE time capsule or one for each child? My children are very close in age, using one capsule worked just fine, a large family with many children may consider a different process. Perhaps each Child Begins their capsule on their 5th birthday and opens it on their 10th, or 10th to 20th. (you get the idea – this can begin at anytime!)
Decide how long you will keep your time capsule. We liked 10 years because enough time had passed the memories were, well, MEMORABLE! I also think deciding how long you will take to assemble and add to the time capsule is important to the process of how to set up a time capsule. Will you work on it for one or two months, or will you add to it over an entire year? Where will you store the time capsule? Ours was stored with the Christmas decorations so it was very visible year after year and would not be forgotten.
Part of our process was including a questionnaire for each family member. I placed a duplicate copy of the same questionnaire in a file folder on the top of the box and it says: COMPLETE BEFORE LOOKING IN BOX. The idea is to compare our answers and see all the changes 10 years have brought.
OPENING THE TIME CAPSULE!
I can’t tell you how wonderful it was to look back AND to be present in the moment as we opened our time capsule on New Year’s Day January 1, 2020. Inside was this picture. It was taken in May of 2010 when we went to the Grand Canyon.
For comparison’s sake here is a more recent picture from July 2019 when we were camping in Yosemite. That was the summer Happy Hive Homeschooling officially became an online business! Yea me!
I don’t like to spend my days “wishing” but comparing the two pictures, it sure would be nice to have them that little again. I do very much enjoy my young adults (when they are home!)
Favorite items from the Time Capsule
As we went through the time capsule, it was a bit chaotic. The first thing we did was sort everything into piles by family members. The children each had the most. That’s a change I would recommend. Don’t forget Mom and Dad if it is indeed a FAMILY Time Capsule.
After they had their piles and a bit of time to look at everything, I asked each of the kids to pick their favorite item.
This is Lauren’s favorite item from the box. Her spelling, as the oldest at the time (9 years old) isn’t too bad. The sibling relationship is coming through loud and clear. And to think I didn’t want to send them to school so they would not get picked on or bullied. Snort. Siblings are the best at that stuff!
Megan chose the same worksheet as her favorite. Her spelling was always very inventive! She was 8 at the time, and this is before her reading took off. I am a firm believer that children learn how to spell by being exposed to words through reading. I promise Megan got better and better the more and more she read. She will never be the National Spelling Bee champion, but she can hold her own! I also noticed she didn’t put her name on the paper. That was EXTREMELY common in the Happy Hive Homeschool. I didn’t need them to. I knew who’s work was who’s…and we knew when we were passing it out 10 years later too!
Douglas chose this as his favorite item from the box. This was the first thing we completed on New Year’s Eve 2009, and then again on New Year’s Day 2020. At 5, Douglas wasn’t doing much writing. His approach served its purpose, and homeschooling is all about adapting to the needs of your children!
Other Time Capsule Memorabilia
I kept an item of clothing for each of them. The “shorts” I had for Lauren started out as pants, and she loved them so much that when they got too short for her, we cut them into shorts. Lauren just grew taller, never much wider!
Megan’s was a shirt. Boy did that girl love horses. This shirt brought all that flooding back. I even found a picture of her wearing it!
Douglas’ clothing item was best of all. He was complaining that it was inside out while Lauren held it up for us to see… it wasn’t. The fact was… Douglas wore this shirt so often it wore OUT!
So then he said, well I was 5, It had Pirates on it!
Douglas wore this shirt my Mom brought him from Catalina for approximately 4 years! That’s CrAzY.
Here is Douglas in 2007 wearing the shirt. He would NOT let me retire this shirt until it did NOT fit anymore!
Here they are, now 15, 17, and 18 holding their favorite items from the box.
I’m looking forward to the TIME I have with my three bugs and the Memories we will make from today forward. I hope you enjoyed looking back at our memories as well and will get your time capsule ready for your homeschool!
Let a Time Capsule help you Homeschool through the Holidays!
The Time Capsule is an excellent end to your Homeschooling through the Holidays Season. If you are not familiar with the ways in which the Happy Hive recommends taking a break from traditional homeschooling and letting the holiday season provide the lessons now would be a GREAT time to check it out so you are fully prepared for October, November and December’s lessons when they arrive. You can learn all about Homeschooling through the holidays in THIS POST
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