Tuesday, April 2, 2013

A Journey Through Learning Lapbooks: The Earth ~ Schoolhouse Review Crew

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Have you lapbooked before? If not, do you like to scrapbook? Do your children like to scrapbook? Do your children enjoy using their hands for activities such as cutting and pasting?

Lapbooking is a great way to help little ones cement what they are learning. It also provides a permanent record of what they've studied, in a scrapbook form of sorts that they can look at over and over again. It's also a neat creation that can be proudly shared and discussed with friends and family.

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Two mothers banded together years ago and began producing quality lapbook products with their children and later the homeschooling community in mind. Through their efforts, A Journey Through Learning was created. We were given the great opportunity to review at least one of their products. We were given four to choose from. We chose to review one that was geared for 1st - 4rd graders, A Journey Through Learning: The Earth Learning Lapbook with Study Guide . A perfect fit because I have a 1st and 3rd grader!

How we used The Earth in our homeschool:

Let me begin by saying this is a well researched and put together study of  Earth.  Along with the lapbook cut and paste activities, there is at least one page of informational text to go along with the activity. Now, this text could stand alone, but it always sparked new questions and a thirst for more knowledge in my little ones. We would almost always jump to the computer to look for YouTube videos about our topic and visit the library (or our home library) for books on our topic of interest.

The Earth Learning Lapbook is in full color, I printed the first half in black and white because my color printer wasn't working at the time. It worked out great though, because the little ones got to color a bit, which they love to do.

First, I would pass out the lapbook "cut out" page(s) to the little ones, their manilla folders (we need two for this study) scissors, glue, crayons, the occasional brad (we needed one for Earth) and have a place handy to gather all the scrap pieces of cut paper.  I have one child in particular that delights in making the tiniest multitude of paper scraps humanly possible! It's great for fine motor development, right?!

As the children work on cutting out and assembling their lapbooks, I would read aloud the text for the particular lesson we were learning about. Read aloud time varied, but was generally about ten minutes. Then we would search for the answer to the question or questions our lapbook page asked within the text. My third grader would write the answers we discussed on her lapbook page by herself. For my first grader, I would typically write his answers in his lapbook page as he dictated or repeated the words as I was writing them down.

I also love that at the end of the study guide there are book suggestions, poems, songs, science questions to ask, (they make great narration questions!) and even craft ideas!

Final Thoughts: 

We learned about different types of rocks and how they are formed, types of mountains and how they are formed, the layers of the earth, volcanoes, the ocean floor and zones, the four spheres of the earth and so much more!  

I am very pleased with the retention my little ones have of the material. 

It was always a joy to get out A Journey Through Learning - The Earth. Everyone looked forward to our Earth science study. In fact, on more than one occasion we completed two lessons in one sitting.

A Journey Through Learning - The Earth sparked curiosity and lead to further research. It was fun to complete and never a chore. The only drawback was the amount of scrap paper we would have, especially after completing more than one lesson at once, and mostly because one little darling likes to make a prolific amount of tiny slivers of paper while cutting! We just need to work on our technique.
I also love that the placement of the lapbook pieces are mapped out for you on each cutout page, too. You don't have to think, "Now where will this (or all of these) piece(s) fit best?".


The Earth Learning Lapbook and Study Guide, 42 pages, need 2 folders: print $21, download $13 Be sure to check out the 14 sample pages found on the link above.

Letters, Numbers and Shapes Learning Lapbook, need three folders: print $20 or download $13. Be sure to check out the sample pages found on the link above.

Knights and Castles Learning Lapbook and Study Guide, 51 pages, need 2 folders  $21 print or download for $13. Be sure to check out the sample pages found on the link above.

Astronomy and Space Unit Study, 76 pages: $21 print or download $13. Be sure to check out the sample pages found on the link above.


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