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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Lapbook Tips (Courtesy Post)

Lapbooks (or Lap Books™) are such neat learning tools. Seems like I hear myself saying, "Ohhh let's make a lapbook out of that!" almost daily.

Anything can be made into a lapbook (a book, an idea, a Bible lesson, a documentary, a concept, literature, a movie, a biography, etc.).

The lapbooking process takes a topic, breaks in into sub-topics, and has the children summarize their learning in booklets (also called mini books or foldables). These booklet go into the lapbook (a tri-folded file folder, with or without extensions). Read more about lap- booking here.

There is no right way to make a lapbook. I'll show you three methods we have used; all work well.

Lapbooking Method 1

This is the traditional lapbooking method. We've made a few dozen lapbooks with Method 1 and it has worked fine. However, I have found that I prefer preparing the booklets ahead of time, as in Method 2 and 3.

Pray (don't ever skip this step).
Plan: list lessons and booklets (Free Lapbook Planner on her blog posted below)
Print booklets.
Teach a lesson.
Prepare booklet (cut and fold).
Fill in booklet with summary information from lesson (store in baggie).
Repeat #5 and #6 for each lesson until all booklets are created.
Prepare file folders (fold and add extensions).
Fill file folder with booklets.

Lap Booking Method 2

In Method 2 and 3 the booklets are prepared ahead of time. I like having all the cutting and paper scraps out of the way before I begin teaching the lessons.

In Method 2 the student(s) choose which booklet to use after the lesson is taught. I like the brainstorming and thought processes that are required of the students for this method.
 Pray (don't ever skip this step.)

Plan: list lessons (Free Lapbook Planner at her blog noted at bottom of this post)
Print and prepare a variety of booklets (store in large baggie)
Teach lesson.
Let student(s) choose booklet and document learning for the lesson.
Repeat #4 and #5 until all lessons are complete and booklets are created.
Prepare file folders (fold and add extensions).
Glue booklets into file folder lapbook.

 Lap Booking Method 3

Using this method the lapbook is completely planned and laid out before beginning the lessons. This is especially beneficial for lapbooking with small children.

Both students and teacher have the benefit of seeing what the lapbook will look like when completed (this is particularity motivating for some).

Pray (don't ever skip this step).
Plan: list lessons and booklets (Free Lapbook Planner on her blog posted below)
Print and prepare booklets (store in large baggie)
Prepare file folders (fold and add extensions).
Fill file folder with empty booklets (temporarily paper clip into folder).
Teach lesson.
Student(s) fill in booklet for lesson.
Repeat #4 and #5 until all booklets are created.
Glue booklets into file folder lap book.

How long does it take to make a lapbook?

The amount of time needed to create a lapbook depends on the topic and how deep you want to go. New lapbookers should plan on a quick and easy lapbook (mini lapbook) to start.Mini lap- books can be completed in a few hours.

Some lapbooks take days or weeks or even a whole year (think timelines), putting two to five file folders together with many extensions.

Lapbook Tips

Choose booklets based on the number of items or chunks of information.

Only print out the pages you need. Just because you purchase a kit, you don't have to print out every page. Learn to use your Acrobat printing features.

Some booklets work much better with card stock, especially movable booklets (ones that slide or turn).

Get a paper cutter. A paper cutter is a huge time saver. You can get a very reasonably priced, safe 12” paper cutter at any office supply or dollar store for under $15.00. I cut out all the booklets with a paper cutter while watching TV--preferable a documentary on the topic we will be studying. :)

Print out all card stock booklets in one batch and all copy paper booklets in another batch.

If you have trouble folding any of the booklets, do a search at Youtube.com. Most booklets are demonstrated in a video there.

Robin over at  http://Heartofwisdom.com/blog

(Homeschool101 wants to note, you do not have to use all of the resources in the lapbooks you use.)

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