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April 25, 2011

Home Schooling Series Part 5 ; Lap Books

In some previous posts I mentioned that we were doing a chicken lapbook. I have had a lot of people ask what a lap book is.

A lapbook is the same idea as a mini unit study. It covers a topic and can include all of your subjects except math. There are excellent resources online for lapbooks. For the lapbook we did on chickens I found most of my resources here.

I have done different kinds of unit studies or study centers with our children over the years, but this is the first time I have done a lapbook. It is really my preferred way of teaching and our kids preferred way of learning. The only thing is it takes TIME and EFFORT to put it all together! But I have to say it is well worth it. Just not always realistic. J

Here is how we did our lapbook, the subjects we covered and the things we learned.

We first took duo tang folders (Clear cover ones). Using index dividers (with the tab on the side) we divided our lapbook into 3 sections; Eggs, Chicks and Chickens. We used the front of the first divider to make a cover and we used the dividers to glue our booklets, charts, drawings and diagrams to. And our extra worksheets, we put into the back of the lapbook.

In our lapbook we covered social studies (different breeds and where they originated), science (experiments,charting, observation), language arts (alphabetical order, dictionary skills, grammer, spelling, outlines, research), art (drawing a chicken and coloring) & animal management.

We learned so many things in this lapbook. In our first section, eggs, we learned the parts of an egg and their different functions, how to candle an egg and tell if it is fertilized, how to choose the right eggs for incubation and how to hatch eggs in an incubator. In our section, chicks, we learned about the growth of an embryo, (While candling an egg at 5 days I bumped one and cracked it. We had learned that cracked eggs will probably not grow a healthy chick, because of disease and such, so I decided to open it up and observe what was going on inside. We were amazed to see a tiny little heart beating, what a miracle!), how to care for chicks, what to feed chicks, diseases and sickness in chicks. In our last section, chickens, we learned the different parts of the chicken, the digestive system, different breeds, and the purpose of chickens.

When we were about half way through this lapbook the kids were already excited about the “next one” we were going to do and what the topic would be! I wasn’t aware that there was going to be a “next one” but how can you deny a child who loves learning? So we are now starting a lapbook on sharks!!! Even though this may not be quite as practical, as we don’t plan to raise sharks any time in the near future, it will be fun to learn all about another amazing creature that God made.

Our chicks are hatching as I write, so everyone is pretty excited about that! Everyone is amazed at God's creation. How amazing that exactly at 21 days the eggs started to hatch!!! What a mighty God we serve!!! Now we will put into practice the things that we have learned. We plan to hatch at least another batch or 2 of eggs and grow some for meat and some for laying hens. So really the adventure has just begun :)

So that was our lapbook journey! So what about you. Have you ever done a lapbook with your children? What did you study about?


Forever Young said...

We love lapbooks! Just don't get around to them as often as I'd like. My kid's favorite was when we did a chocolate study. We compared and contrasted different candy bars (writing), researched the process of making chocolate from the beans, what culture began eating chocolate first, we graphed the different colors of M & Ms in a bag and, of course, tasted various candy bars in the process of comparing and contrasting. Great fun! Your chicks sound fascinating! Please post pics of them hatching. My kids still talk about the calf birthing video you posted last spring!

Mrs. Pauls said...

I am so glad your little chicks hatched. Those 21 days sure went fast!