Have you ever homeschooled with lapbooks before? I must confess that I have not. I’ve done my own version of journals or activity books, but nothing official. But now I can say I have. I was given the opportunity to review a few of the lapbooks from A Journey Through Learning.
I chose to do two lapbooks. Sweet Cheeks (age 4) worked on Letters, Numbers and Shapes, and RB (Kindergarten) learned about The Earth. I received the instant downloads which are priced at $13.00 each, but there are other formats available for some of the lapbooks such as printed or CD. The download included all of the lapbook sections to cut out and glue into the folders. It also included any information needed to read about the concepts being covered.
You do need a few materials before you begin your lapbook journey. You will need normal sized file folders. Some of the lapbooks use two folders and others three. Be sure to follow the directions given so the folders are glued together properly. (This stressed me out a little as I was doing it, but I get it now.) If you do the instant download, you will need a color printer. (If you desire color, if not, then print in black and white.) You will also need scissors, glue, a stapler, and brads.
How I Did This:
Because I had two lapbooks going on at the same time, I decided to print out everything I would need and then divide the sections by weeks and days. At the beginning of each lapbook, there is a black and white diagram that shows where all of the sections go, so I printed that out, numbered each section, and checked them off as they were completed. That helped me to remain organized during this process.
Letters, Numbers and Shapes:
This lapbook covered identification of letters and beginning sounds, cutting, tracing, counting, identification of numbers and quantities, and identification of shapes. My daughter has already accomplished these objectives and I thought this would be a fun way to culminate and assess this knowledge. She started off strong, wanting to do one or two sections at a time. She took ownership of the project and decided to search for all of the letters in the magazines instead of finding objects that begin with each letter. She did well with all of the math activities, but she lost steam over time with the alphabet. Having to find and cut out something for all 26 letters became boring for her, but I put it away and skipped that section for a few days. When I pulled it back out she finished it right up. She was excited to show her Daddy the final product!
This lapbook was an overview of geology, meteorology, and oceanography. It wasn’t exactly what I thought it would be. (I was hoping it would be mainly geology.) So I used this lapbook as an introductory activity and over the coming months I will go into more detail when we do our science lessons. This lapbook not only teaches some science (layers of the earth, types of rocks, how mountains are formed, water cycle, layers of the atmosphere), but it enlists reading skills, listening skills, cutting, writing, and reading comprehension. This lapbook is written for 1st-4th graders, so my son was a little bit young for it. He did have a hard time writing some of the answers, but we were able to adapt and he drew pictures instead. The vocabulary is rich, so RB was exposed to some new words which was fantastic! This lapbook did peek RB’s curiosity and he expounded upon some of the objectives on his own that were introduced to him. He was proud to show his completed lapbook to his dad!
I really liked using these lapbooks. The files were all inclusive and included books to read, songs and poems, crafts, and science questions. I think Letters, Numbers and Shapes was not challenging enough for my 4 year old, but The Earth was a higher level for my kindergartener. He didn’t like the writing aspects of the lapbook, but he is 5 years old, so I’ll cut him some slack. The kids enjoyed cutting out all of the sections and gluing them into the file books. RB really liked the layers of the earth section and created his own book based upon the activity we did with the lapbook. Next time I do a lapbook, and I have all the time I want, I will go through the sections slower and into more depth by reading books and doing activities. I was able to stick in a few things, but I felt rushed because of the review deadline.
I think The Earth lapbook could be split into 3 separate lapbooks: Geology, Meteorology, and Oceanography. More concepts could be added, like caves, earthquakes, cloud types, storms, jet stream, weather patterns, wave movement, ocean currents, and pollution. But this version was a great way to introduce beginning objectives. It was fun and different. I will be doing more lapbooks in the future!
*If you buy the instant download, then you will have this resource FOREVER in your files! I plan on pulling out The Earth in about 3 years.
Please click on the banner below to see what other Schoolhouse Review Crew members have to say about A Journey Through Learning Lapbooks. Remember, there are two other lapbooks that were reviewed.