Posts filed under ‘Lapbooks (and Notebooks)’

Getting Ready

This was the first year we took some time off from school. We usually never stop school, like never, ever. I do school easy and it’s my quiet time in the afternoon while the kids work and the littles nap. I like having them focused and occupied. But school is changing around here. As my kids get older I get more and more organized and more and more in depth in what I require. My daughter is now a sixth grader! (The boys? 4th, 1st, pre K, crawler)

I am working on a huge project. This past year I’ve been putting up links for my kids each weekend. I tag them in Delicious with Monday, Tuesday, etc. Each day they would type in the day of the week and their school links would come up–an online activity or a game or a lesson or article. Then they would get deleted and I would put up new ones. I also had to give them their other assignments either orally or jot them down.

So, this year I’m putting it all on the computer, all online. Each day they will go through their assignments on the computer. They are short lessons (I’m still not interested in intensive school) on several subjects. It says day one and you do all your day one work, right down the line. Each grade has its own math, reading, language arts and computer lessons. Then the students all learn the same Bible, history, science, music, art and health and PE. However, those lessons are divided by level–elementary, middle school (5th-8th), high school. I’m not recording lessons for high school because it was just too much, and I’m still not sure if we’ll be just using textbooks by then. There are textbooks for everything online for free.

Want to see a sample? I have 30 days done so far.

Here is the first day of sixth grade:

Day 1

Math (link removed)


  1. Write the words teeming, fathom, reverberate, cumulative (08) in your reading notebook and pay attention to them as you read. Please write the date in the top right corner of the page and label these words as Day 1.
  2. Read Carl Sandburg poems numbers 2-11. This poet was born in 1878.
  3. Look at the word monotone in poem 5. The rain is monotone and is being contrasted with a rainbow which has lots of colors. What does monotone mean? The prefix mono means one. This man is wearing a monocle.
  4. Look at the word catalpa in poem 6. I don’t know what it is. Do you? But the poem gives us clues. It says, “grass, catlapa and oak.” We know what grass is. Oak is referring to the tree. So we can assume catalpa is some sort of plant. This is catalpa.
  5. Write what you think is the definition of each of the words you wrote in your notebook.
  6. Look the words up to find their definition. If you were not correct, please add the correct definition to your notebook.
  7. Choose two poems and write what each poem is talking about in your own words. Label your answer with the number and title of the poem.

Click what year you are studying   Year 1    Year 2    Year 3    Year 4  (I took off the link.)  This is so that kids can have their grade level separate and other studies together. I am making this so your children and my children not in school yet will be able to use this. Right now we are on year 4 but my next sixth grader will be on year 2. Year 1 is ancient history and biology…year 4 is 20th century history and physics and chemistry.

She also has computer twice a week. Her math is Khan Academy right now.

Here is grade one. They should already be reading. They should be able to read the McGruffy First Reader.

Day 1

Reading on Your Own

  1. Read The Tale of Jolly Robin  chapter 1  (pages 1-5)
  2. Write the title and author of the book in your reading notebook.


  1. Counting to 20
  2. Play Snakes and Ladders  You can play alone or with someone.

English*  (For the first two weeks, the student needs someone to read to them and help them go through the reading curriculum.)

Rhyme — Long A Sound

  1. Look at the picture on the right side of this page. It’s the first poem in a book called, Abroad. What do you see happening in the picture?
  2. Have a parent or older sibling read the poem to you. What happened during the poem?
  3. Did you hear words rhyme in the poem? Read the first two lines again. Do you hear “go” rhyme with “below”? Now ask nicely to have the whole poem read to you again. This time listen for two rhyming words with A sounds. For example, the word day has an A sound. We call it the long A sound. Okay, listen close.
  4. What two long A sound words rhymed in the poem?
  5. *Print out this worksheet and fill in the long A sound rhyming words. (Just print out page one! Page two has a mistake!)

Click on what year you are studying:  Year 1     Year 2     Year 3     Year 4

Here’s Bible, history, science, art for elementary students.

Day 8


  1. Read  John 8:31-41
  2. Today for your Bible writing answer these questions. Who are really Jesus’ disciples?  (Look in verse 31.) Now ask one of your parents to explain verses 34 and 35.


  1. Read biography of Edison
  2. Cut out and write in Edison’s timeline piece and add it to your timeline.


  1. Cut out your O and oxygen pocket. Oxygen is part of what we breathe. We need oxygen for our bodies to work. It is another element in our world and is number 8 on the periodic table because one atom of oxygen has 8 protons in it. We’ll learn later about protons. Write or draw inside your oxygen card. And place in your pocket.
  2. Not everything in the world is hydrogen or oxygen or carbon or whatever else is on the periodic table. Those are the elements that other things are made from. When different atoms come together to make something new, they are called molecules. Probably the most famous molecule is H2O. Have you ever heard of it? It means two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom getting together. When they do, they make water! All water you see are H2O molecules. Here’s a picture of a water molecule.
  3. Draw a water molecule and label the three parts each either H or O. Label your picture and keep it in your science notebook.
  4. Build other molecules. Click on Nanolab and Build.


  1. Last week you read about Hector Guimard and looked at some of his creations. Remember you drew a picture based on what you looked at? Today you are going to make a sculpture like Guimard.
  2. Mix 1/2 cup flour and 1/2 cup butter or margarine. (You could add a teaspoon of sugar if you are allowed.) Look at your drawing from last week and mold or carve your “clay” to look like it. It will harden in the fridge. You can eat it later ;) with permission.
  3. An alternative is to make salt dough.

Here is a day for middle school.

Day 3**


  1. Read John 3
  2. Write a summary of what you think the most important lesson from the reading was.
  3. Pray and ask God to help you learn it/live it.


  1. Play Railroad Race  (In the middle you’ll have to choose which company you will work for, click on one. Don’t worry when it tells you to research the Indians or make a project. Just keep clicking. You should try and answer the questions though.)


  1. Read about punctuation.
  2. *Write about the transcontinental railroad. Use a period, comma, question mark and exclamation point. Notebooking page.


  1. Watch video about how steam engines work
  2. watch animation
  3. Explain to someone how steam engines work.


  1. Read this article and look at the pictures.
  2. *Open this art histoy pdf. Look over page 2, Art Nouveau. Look at the pictures and make a *Venn Diagram (what is the same about two of the pictures, what is different) and write a definition of Art Nouveau by your observations. You can write it on the back of your diagram.

You may have noticed youtube videos. I never send the kids to youtube but put all the videos right on the site I’m building. I plan on making this site available to everyone, but I will probably add a “donate” button since it’s a complete, complete, curriculum. Since it’s a work in progress I’m not sharing the link yet, but if you begged me I might. I hope this will be able to help families homeschool for free and especially help others like me overseas who don’t have the access to resources. I do have lots of science experiments. I have included videos of the experiments in case you don’t have the materials to do them.

All of the books are free so far. This is the hardest year to do that since it’s 20th century history and free books only go up to 1923. I do have reading novels, biographies and autobiographies for history. In the first 30 days they read 2 books for history. And they are always reading something for English as well. We’ll see how it goes this year. It’s a lot of work, but it will be there for my other children and hopefully for other families as well.


July 24, 2011 at 8:16 am 12 comments


As usual all of the links here are also found on the Links to All Things Free for Homeschoolers blog. We are homeschooling at a minimum right now as I’m 36 weeks pregnant! But, we are moving along.

And we’ve moved on to Africa. We learned about grasslands and rivers and focused on Kenya and Ethiopia, though we read about modern Egypt as well. I also had a book on hand with a history of the continent and an African folklore book. For their creative writing one week, they wrote a short story of the style of one of the folklore stories, which was how an animal got a certain characteristic. I loved my son’s story about how frogs got their long tongues.

For grasslands we used our same biome website.

My son made a river lapbook piece from here to put on our wall map. It’s a worksheet, but he just cut it out like a piece and it folds in half and everything. We have a geography workbook that I got for 50 cents and we did a couple river worksheets from there.

We used the same continents lapbook to make Africa lapbook pieces.

We did a Livingston coloring/notebooking page.

Played all of these online African geography games/tutorials. I had the big kids label a map of Africa with the different geographic regions found in one of the tutorials.

Kenya lapbook

Ethiopia lapbook

Here are lapbook pictures. You can download these lapbooks on the Free Stuff! page.They require very little writing. In the lapbook downloads there are video links so you can listen to their languages. The country lapbooks were the very first ones I made, and I’m finally getting around to using them.

When I was making these, I actually had friends from Kenya and Ethiopia. The Ethiopians were refugees, and the Kenyans were migrant workers. But I got to eat both of their types of bread since they all loved to share meals with our family. The woman in the picture above the recipe is making what is in the recipe.

November 18, 2010 at 2:38 am Leave a comment

Deserts — Australia

Next we learned about warm deserts and I paired it with studying Australia. Here is some of what we did.

Deserts — Here is the biome website I am using.

Australia — My kids each made a lapbook piece about Australia. (From the same lapbook as the Antarctica pieces)

The kids played with this online tutorial and game.

Map worksheet from homeschool creations. You follow the directions and label things on the map. I had my kids label the deserts on their maps as well. (My daughter made her own map instead of using the worksheet, but she followed the worksheet directions for labeling.)

My kids read the first chapter from this Australian folklore book.

All of my kids used this James Cook notebooking page. (You can color it and there are lines for writing about him.)

5 year old and 10 year old

My five year old colored and cut out this boomerang.

He also made his own Australian flag. I put THIS up on the computer for him to look at.

There is an Australian flag lapbook available on the Links blog as well as many books that you could read. Find them on the Geography/Cultures page under Australia. (The continents are in alphabetical order: Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia…)

November 7, 2010 at 4:42 pm Leave a comment

The Tundra–Antarctica–Inuits

I’m mixing things up a bit this year. I usually do science half the year and history half the year, but I am combining the two for the rest of the school year. We are studying earth science and geography/cultures as our themes.

For this next phase in our school year, we started off with the tundra and paired it with Antarctica and the Inuits. Here is some of what we did.

Tundra — This is a great website for all the different biomes.

Antarctica — A game about Antarctica and the research there–includes a lot of history. You don’t have to know anything ahead of time. I didn’t do it all fancy like they tell you to. I just printed it black and white on plain paper and made things work just fine.

My two older kids each did a lapbook piece about Antarctica for our wall map. I got the pieces from HERE.

Inuits — lapbook about the Inuits (Eskimos)  This has lots of writing space. I had my five year old do some of the pieces and just gave him different directions. On this piece he wrote the names of the animals instead of their uses as was instructed.

This piece made it onto our wall map.

Write your name in Inuktitut

You can find biomes on the Biology page of the Links blog. You can find Antarctica and the Inuits on the Geography/Cultures page.

October 29, 2010 at 2:06 am 2 comments

Up Where the Air Is Clear

Weather, such a simple topic, but it seems to have taken a long time to cover. We up and moved (again) in the middle of this study which is never helpful, but we are now living in the same place for a whole five months. Moving three times over the summer was hard on this mom who likes to have things organized, but I know having things organized helped us survive it and kept our school moving along.

As usual, we used the Links to All Things Free for Homeschoolers blog as our curriculum, under Science, then Earth Science, then Weather.

Some main weather websites are The Tree House Weather Kids and The Weather Wiz Kids and Weather Interactives for your older students.

My kids used the different links each day to learn the info (telling me what they learned each day). We usually do a topic a week like atmosphere and clouds and then on Saturday we do our hands-on day.


The vase did not work for the egg experiment. The cloud in a bottle is what my son is doing in the picture.


Here are our hands-on projects. These were not done just one a week. We did the experiments together.

Make a cloud in a bottle

Watch atmospheric pressure at work

Evaporation and Wind Chill — observation experiment

Make it rain

Everyone made their own cloud picture.

Make cloud pictures –This was a great one for my 5 year old. (I just used regular flour and baking powder, not self-rising flour.) You microwave the picture when you are done to make your clouds puff.


My five-year-olds rendition of stratus clouds. I had them each pick whatever kind of cloud they wanted to create.


I assigned different kids each a different weather tool to make.

Make your own barometer

Make an anemometer

Make a weather vane


The weather vane


Everyone did weather forecasting. The first link is a great site. It was fun and interesting and has three different levels. They worked on that site for a few days and all week every day they wrote the day’s high temperatures for our state and the surrounding area as well as the daily wind speed and direction. We just had sunny days, but you would mark rain and clouds on the map too. Then on the last day they had to prepare and present a weather forecast. They made a map to show us of the day’s weather conditions and then had to give a three-day forecast of weather conditions and temperatures.

Learn how to forecast the weather

Map your daily temperatures

Map your daily winds

Print out your state map click on with adjacent


Weather map for my daughter's forecast presentation


My two older kids (8 and 10) did a lapbook on weather as a final project. I wasn’t going to do a lapbook, but it felt like we needed something to pull it all together. There are several weather lapbooks you can find on the Links blog. I took pieces from several of them and gave my kids different pieces, except for the water cycle one I made for them.  These are the pieces I used:

clouds (pp. 2, 5)

hurricanes (pp. 8-11)

electric storms (pp.7-8)

tornadoes (pp. 5-6, 9–I actually didn’t pick any pieces about tornadoes)

seasons (causes)


One of the lapbooks...I had them each do different pieces and then they had to show them to each other and explain their pieces.

Here are some links for younger learners, things my 5-year-old did:

Coloring pages

Weather Graph everyday he filled in a square for what kind of weather it was outside

Weather Chart (from practical pages)

I had to put this together myself (laminated with clear packing tape), but my son loved moving the pieces each day.


September 18, 2010 at 11:31 pm 1 comment

Holes Lapbook

Here’s the lapbook I created for my daughter on the book Holes by Louis Sachar. She is ten years old. I think it’s considered a middle school book, but the vocabulary is not challenging.

I focused on plot in making the lapbook because there are several stories in the book taking place at different times in the past that all fit together into the present-day story. I really enjoyed reading it.

Some warnings: the warden is an evil character which shows mostly in one scene. In one of the stories from the past a black man is killed because he kissed a white woman. The woman he kissed was the town school teacher and model citizen but losing her love turns her heart and she becomes a bandit, a famous outlaw. Her story is very sad. This book offers some good opportunities to talk about how we can allow others to change who we are. There is another character everyone calls Zero. Everyone thinks he’s stupid and he doesn’t bother to correct them. Turns out he’s got a bit of genius for math.

Anyway…here are the pictures…

The four pieces on the left are  for writing about how the different characters/things listed there all fit together. Sam planted a secret field of onions which happened to be where his grandfather found refuge on “God’s thumb” where Stanley took Zero and ate onions which protected them from the lizards…it all works together.

There are a few character pieces as well. There are before and after matchbook pieces for two of the characters: how they changed during the story.

The piece at the top is a poem used in the book, well it’s a song. The piece calls for some analysis of its meaning and how it fits the characters story and asks the student to write a poem using the same idea.

There is also a piece on curses. Their family believes they are cursed. I included a couple of Bible references about curses in this piece to be copied from your version of choice. Basically a curse without cause can’t affect you and Jesus becoming a curse for us. We live in the land of the evil eye and curses are a big deal here. We have lived with the Roma (Gypsies) for 8 years and have seen and heard a lot about curses.

You’ll see there’s not a lot of color. This one is easy on the printer. You can use color paper if you like more color. Just the first and last pages of pieces have color on them.

Here’s the download link: Holes Lapbook

This link will remain on the Free Stuff page and will be on the “Books: supplemental materials” page on the “Links to All Things Free for Homeschoolers Blog.”

July 16, 2010 at 1:56 pm 1 comment

Space Lapbook

Free Space Lapbooks:

homeschool share

live and learn press

JFeliciano lapbook pieces from homeschool launch — these pieces are each at their own link. You can use the Links blog to see what’s available. Scroll down to Space (first is earth, then oceans, then space).

(Note: since I wrote this I’ve added a new lapbook to the list based on the Magic School Bus book, Space Explorers.)

I took lapbook pieces from these various places and used them with my five-year-old. I searched around and printed out what I thought was appropriate and doable for him on his own. (The specific links are below.) My son does already know how to read.

He’s the only one who did a lapbook. You’ll notice I let him do everything on his own. He cuts, writes and draws himself. That’s all part of school.

I’ll do another post with what my older kids have been doing and all their links. My son loved doing his lapbook. He’s still coloring space shuttle pictures and today he’s going to fold a star-finder (that will probably require my help).

Links for the lapbook (for my five-year-old son):


Draw the Phases of the Moon (this is a pocket and you draw pictures of the moon at each of the phases)


Comets and Meteorites (has not made it onto the lapbook)

Others picked from here (size of earth and sun, how far, day and night and focusing heat with a magnifying glass)

Color and Learn Space Shuttle Book

Constellation Strips (This is on the lapbook, but you can’t see it. He cut out one of these pages whole, and I folded it up and he glued it on the lapbook in the top left corner.)

*Below are things not on the lapbook but that he did. You could use one of these for a cover. My son wanted to draw his own cover.

Planets Printable and Orbit Paths

Constellations Dot to Dots

Solar System Coloring Page

More space shuttle coloring

Sun coloring page

Sun Book Nasa B/W book on the sun that you can print out–can be used some for coloring

Star Finder

This isn’t a print out, but my five-year-old really loved looking at these “space balls.” They show the relative size of the sun and the planets. It is really cool. You will like it too! Gather the family to take a look even if you aren’t studying space. (I recommend turning off your volume though.)

July 2, 2010 at 8:54 am 1 comment

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